Letsatsi Lodge, Vanrhynsdorp
In 1968, a flourishing Catholic mission station west of Vanrhynsdorp was forced to shut down under apartheid law, and in the decades following it became a well-known landmark next to the N7 at the turnoff to the town. Two years ago, the renovated mission station reopened as Letsatsi Lodge and has become popular during flower season. The chalets are stylish and even though the lodge is close to the N7, the traffic noise isn’t too noticeable. The Red Ox Steakhouse is on the premises – tuck into their Sunday buffet and dessert for only R95 per person. Where can I see flowers? Brink van der Merwe, botanical fundi and lodge manager, says flowers bloom on the lodge premises if it has rained enough in June: yellow Othonna intermedia and white skurwekukumakranka ( Gethyllis villosa). Brink offers flower tours in the area and sells succulents and a large variety of aloes. The Knersvlakte is known for its unique succulents – look next to any gravel road in the area during flower season and you’ll see miniature marvels in bloom. Facilities: There are 33 self-catering units at Letsatsi: twin-sleeper safari tents, luxury chalets sleeping two or four, and four-sleeper family chalets. Rates: From R425 per person sharing. Family chalet R1 700 per night. Breakfast R65 per person. How to get there: Vanrhynsdorp is about 300 km north of Cape Town via the N7. GPS: S31.60688 E18.72830 (Letsatsi Lodge) Contact: 027 219 2828; email@example.com; ncfamouslodges.co.za – Erns Grundling
Note: Take your camera and watch the sunset at the dam. There are springbok and black swans on the property. The animals, along with the fields of spring flowers, ensure that photo opportunities abound.