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Why did we hand pick Highland Lodge?

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  • Rustic farm setting with well marked hikes and roaming game
  • Excellent stillwater flyfishing in 11 trout dams
  • History & rock art in the Stormberg

Highland Lodge

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Price tier (pps): R200  R1500+

Child policy: All ages

34km from Dordrecht

 

-31.4077, 26.7873

About

Highland Lodge overlooks one of the eleven trout dams on the farm. This spacious, eight bedroom country style lodge provides comfortable accommodation for large groups. The lodge has a large interleading lounge and dining room. The kitchen is fully equipped with a gas stove, and gas fridges and freezers. Since snow often falls at the lodge during the winter months, fireplaces and heaters have been installed to ensure a cosy stay during the cold winters, when temperatures often fall below zero.

There are indoor and outdoor braai areas, leading onto the wooden deck with its spectacular view of the valley. This is quite a treat, especially when the surrounding area is covered in snow in winter. Highland Lodge offers both self-catering and full catering options. The lodge is serviced daily by two of their friendly staff, and laundry can be arranged.

Trout Fishing

Highland Lodge provides fly fishers with an excellent array of fertile stillwaters, all providing wonderful sport for trout. Four pound rainbows and browns are common and eight pounders are frequently landed. 

Clay and Wing Shooting

Owner Luke Bell has fifteen years wing shooting experience and has trained and bred championship field trial pointers. Luke will organise your clay pigeon and wing shooting, ensuring that you have a memorable shoot.

Historical Sites

Relive the tribulations of the Boer war in the Stormberg by visiting a skirmish site where the famous Boer General, and later statesman, Jan Smuts and 200 Boer horsemen narrowly escaped capture by the British by sliding down the escarpment, enabling them to break through to the Cape.

Rock Art

The Stormberg is rich in rock art with a great variety of imagery. At Highlands you can explore some of these interesting sites. 

Other Activities

Enjoy a well-marked hike through the Stormberg with its panoramic and breathtaking views of the mountains, dams and roaming game.

For the bird enthusiast there are a good variety of birds, including the rare Rudd’s Lark.

For flying enthusiasts, the Lodge has its own 1.2km airstrip.

All in all, Highland Lodge is considered the perfect venue for flyfishers looking for the challenge of wild trophy trout, and for families looking for the freedom of the great outdoors, with a great indoors to come back to.

Rates & Summary


Farmhouse

6 Bedrooms and 2 bathrooms
Fully equipped kitchen 
Indoor braai and bar room
Dining room and lounge with fireplace
A wooden deck with outdoor braai and spectacular views

Pricing

  • R 200 pp self-catering
  • R 700 pp full board

Catering

Self-catering and full board options are available.

Kids

Kids are welcome.

Why Stay Here?

Highland Lodge is in classical farming country – remote yet hospitable. Some of the best still water fly fishing in South Africa can be found at Highland Lodge. For members of the family who are not partial to this pursuit, there are a range of other activities to keep them busy. That said, nothing beats a good book in front of the fireplace while the rest of the crew is out trying to catch trout in the snow.

Summary

  • Rustic farm setting with well marked hikes and roaming game
  • Excellent stillwater flyfishing in 11 trout dams
  • History & rock art in the Stormberg

Privacy

The farmhouse can accommodate a large number of people, but is only rented to one group at a time to ensure privacy. 

Things to consider Bringing

This area can get markedly cold in winter. Packing some decently insulated clothing is recommended, and particularly so for flyfishermen or anyone who is likely to get wet during their stay.

Road Conditions

The roads in the area are usually in good condition.

Activities & Attractions

  • Trout fishing
  • Clay and wing shooting
  • Historical sites
  • Rock art
  • Hiking
  • Birding
  • Mountain bike trails
  • Quad bike trails
  • Game viewing

Details

Accommodation & Hospitality

  • Lounge
  • Dining table
  • Verandah / patio
  • Fireplace
  • Firewood provided
  • Bed linen supplied
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Laundry service available

Catering & Kitchen

  • Breakfast and dinner by arrangement
  • Full Kitchen
  • Braai area available
  • Microwave oven
  • Gas stove
  • Fridge or minibar
  • Basic cleaning materials

Utilities

  • Water supply good for drinking
  • Gas geysers
  • Eskom electricity

Leisure Amenities

  • Satellite television

Business & Connectivity

  • Limited cell phone reception

Access & Convenience

  • Nearest shops further than 10km
  • Nearest fuel further than 10km

Payment

  • Credit cards not accepted
  • EFT accepted

Gallery

Map

Blog

Fishing Highland Lodge

Tom Sutcliffe 11:55am 13 Aug

This was a wonderful August to be fishing Highland Lodge because the trout were exceptional and the weather was a touch milder than in previous years. My performance was dismal when it came to hooking and landing trout and I got nowhere near the results my mates Chris Bladen, Darryl Lampert, Gerrit Redpath and Jean Bence did. They out fished me with ease. I had a few days of a flu-like illness, even had to spend a valuable angling day resting up, but that to one side, my fishing was simply not on song on this trip. Next year I will turn the tables around.

Water temperatures were...

read blog read article

Friendly N6

Eastern Cape

About

The Friendly N6 route runs between Bloemfontein and East London, connecting the provinces of the Free State and the Eastern Cape. Aliwal North is at the border of the 2 provinces.

South Africa is famous for horizons that stretch for kilometres, so wide open spaces and endless skies are a traveller’s constant companions on the N6. The route takes one through about 600km of peaceful, diverse and beautiful land, giving one a sense of just how vast the country really is.

The N6’s attractions include everything from sea to snow, interspersed with charming towns. These are only slightly off the beaten highway, and are intriguing and pleasant places to explore. In the Free State, Bethulie and Zastron are within easy travelling distance of the N6, while Reddersburg, Smithfield and Rouxville are main stops along the route.

In the Eastern Cape the towns of Dordrecht, Molteno, Elliot, Rhodes, Burgersdorp, Barkly East and Lady Grey are all worthwhile diversions for curious travellers with time on their hands. For those sticking to the highway, Aliwal North, Jamestown, Queenstown, Cathcart and Stutterheim are along the route. These provide a sufficient diversity of interests and activities for guests. The highway is also relatively close to the Gariep Dam, Oviston and Hogsback Nature Reserves.

Sprawling sheep farms are probably the most obvious and frequent feature of the landscape, but the area is rich in cultural significance and interest. 

Apart from San (or Bushman) history and rock art, there are also interesting museums and art galleries, and fine local arts and crafts. The route’s proximity to the mountain kingdom of Lesotho means that Basotho culture is an important and unique influence on the culture of the area. Xhosa culture is proudly and strongly entrenched in the Eastern Cape.

The hills and towns of this area were witness to the Great Trek. This was the migration of the ‘Trekboers’ from the Eastern Cape across the Gariep River, (previously the Orange River) further into the central interior. It is often mentioned as an example of Afrikaner rebellion, perseverance and endurance. 

This same Afrikaner resilience cost Britain an unanticipated £190 million in the South African (or Anglo-Boer) War, which is commemorated at many sites and towns along the N6 route. 

Travelling south to East London from Aliwal North, tourists are afforded a majestic view of the Maluti mountains of Lesotho, as well as a sample of the Great Karoo in Stutterheim and Queenstown. East London itself is a lovely city which really lives up to the ‘friendly’ N6 brand. It has some interesting tangible links to prehistory: the East London Museum displays the last remaining dodo egg, as well as the body of a coelacanth, one of the oldest species on the planet. This fish was thought to be extinct until one was found alive on a fishing boat in the East London harbour in 1938.

Look out for

Relax and rejuvenate in Aliwal North’s hot springs and appreciate its beautiful old buildings. 

The Kologha Forest and the Kubisi Indigenous State Forests are less than 10km from Stutterheim. Large swathes of ancient indigenous forest are home to yellowwoods, ironwoods, white stinkwoods, Cape holly and Cape chestnuts with montane grassland cresting the slopes. Six well-marked forest trails, from 3-17km long, start and end at the Kologha Picnic site. They lead to waterfalls and good trout fishing and birdwatching spots. Rare birds found here include the endangered Cape parrot, grey-crowned crane and white-starred robin.  Mountain bik­ing and horse rid­ing are allowed on certain trails. Maps are avail­able at the forest kiosk. 

The Thomas River Historical Village is in the Amathole mountain region on the 31 000ha Thomas River Conservancy between Stutterheim and Cathcart on the N6 highway.  The area was named after Thomas Bentley, a deserter from the Van Der Kemps Missionary who was shot dead with an arrow while crossing the river. The conservancy offers a variety of outdoor activities including hunting, hiking, rock art talks and trails, fishing, birding, and paintball. The village dates back to the 1870s, has a popular restaurant and houses museums themed on wagons, rock art, pubs and vintage motor cars.

Mgwali Cultural Village near Stutterheim showcases Xhosa culture, with crafts and traditional food on sale. 

Tiffindell Ski and Alpine Resortnear the picturesque village of Rhodes is South Africa’s only ski resort. It offers snow adventures on the slopes of Ben McDhui, the tallest mountain in the Eastern Cape. 

Lady Grey and Cathcart are quaint, peaceful towns to visit. There is a Cape vulture sanctuary 12km from Lady Grey at the Karringmelkspruit gorge. Cathcart is known for its wildflowers, San rock art, excellent hang-gliding launch sites, fishing, birdwatching and adventure activities. 

Malaria-free game viewing is possible at the Lawrence De Lange Nature and the Longhill Nature Reserve near Queenstown, as well as at Tsolwana Game Reserve near Tarkastad. Big 5 game viewing is possible at the Mpongo and Inkwenkwezi Private Game Reserves, both within 35km of East London. 

At the N6 route’s end, East London, visit the Python Park and Lion Park, the Queen’s Park Zoo, the East London museum and the aquarium. Enjoy the shopping, restaurants and, of course, surf the waves. The Calgary Transport Museum (5km north of East London on the N6) has a quaint collection of carts, wagons and buggies. It is open daily from 09h00 to 16h30.

When to go

To Do

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