Dawn on the Klip River and the early morning mist that softens the outlines of the weeping willows gradually gives way to dappled ripples of sunlight. Don't worry; you don't have to share such purple moments with any strangers. Henley River Lodge is a self-catering house that you can have all to yourself. Situated in Henley-on-Klip, so named because it was so green and peaceful that it reminded one of the original founders of his home town on the Thames, it is bizarre to think that this place is only 50 kilometres from the hubbub of Johannesburg. The only frantic activity you might encounter here is the yearly regatta, where local children race motley collections of rafts down the slow-moving river, right past the banks of your un-fenced lawn. And what a lawn! If you don't grace it with a game of cricket, or maybe rounders, or at the very least croquet, then you are doing it an injustice. The house itself is a great entertaining space. The rooms are simply and comfortably furnished with views all the way down to the river, and glass doors give way from a large, open-plan living area to a slate patio; an ideal spot for the famous South African braai. In summer tiled floors, air-con and sleek, granite-topped kitchen will keep you cool, while in winter there is an open fire with an endless wood supply and underfloor heating.
The rate structure for Henley River Lodge is
Lodge with only main bedroom (2 guests) GBP100 per night
Lodge with main + 1 guest room (4 guests) GBP125 per night
Lodge with main + 2 guest rooms (6 guests) GBP150 per night
Activities in the area include canoeing, hiking (Suikerbossrand 15km away), diving at Bass Lake (1km away), and cycling. The lodge is adjacent to a wetland and there is abundant birdlife. There are several coffee shops, pubs and restaurants in the surrounding area.