The scene resembled an excerpt from a National Geographic documentary. Only one thousand times better. No, one million times better!
We were driving up the gravel farm road when we spotted them. Melvin and Sophie, majestic with their incredibly long necks and tiny ears; feeding on the foliage of the tree in front of the cottage we had rented on Kwetu Guest Farm.
“Look Mommy, real giraffes! Look Daddy, they’re eating the tree!” nine-year old Benjamin exclaimed. He could not believe his eyes. Truthfully, neither could his Mommy and Daddy. We were mesmerized by the scene playing out in front of us and waited for them to finish their meal before we unloaded the car and headed for the athletics.
We found Kwetu on an online booking site, Trivago, while searching for an affordable one-night stay in the Swellendam area. Our daughter, Katherine had an athletics meeting in Swellendam the Friday afternoon, and we weren’t that keen about driving back home afterwards. Just 10 minutes outside Swellendam, Kwetu was perfect, and offered everything and even more than what their website images portrayed.
The guest farm has three comfortable self-catering cottages and we stayed in the Steenbok cottage. The farm also offers two one-bedroom apartments for rent by the main house. Stretching over 83 hectares for visitors to walk, jog or cycle, Kwetu is without a doubt the ‘perfect weekend getaway destination to relax with tranquil surroundings’, as their website promises.
Despite the winter chill still in the air, a braai was virtually mandatory when we got back to the cottage later the evening from the athletics. Katherine received her first ever medal and celebrations were duly in order. While she and her brother had their showers and discovered the Wi-fi password, Mommy and Daddy enjoyed some cosy ‘us-time’ by the fire.
It was just on dawn when we were awakened by a rustling sound outside our bedroom window. Two Eland were feeding at the same feeding station outside our cottage where Melvyn and Sophie had the afternoon before. Sonja the owner, had promised that we should see some of the game on the farm in the morning, but boy, oh boy, were we in for a treat.
Soon after the Eland finished their feed, we were spoiled with an absolutely incredible ‘walk-by’ of Wildebeest (including a rare golden Wildebeest), Kudu and Springbok. All the while we were enjoying our coffee and breakfast on the adjacent stoep. Surreal – but at the same time so very real and so absolutely amazing.
It was with rather heavy hearts that we later the morning gathered our belongings, packed the car and further soaked in the sights, sounds and smells of our surroundings. It was a welcome sojourn (Thanks to Katherine’s athletics), but way too short.
“We have to come back Mommy and Daddy”, Benjamin proclaimed as we drove off. “This was so peaceful and relaxing, and we made such wonderful family memories. I really loved it here!”