Welcome to Part 2 of the Berg Adventure. If you haven’t read Part 1 you must go back to see the pictures of the wonderful Gooderson Monk’s Cowl Resort.
ahead. There are cottages to rent on the Ardmore farm and they have a tea garden. African Loom is in the same building as the museum and you can watch the ladies at work. Mom and I went into the museum section which also showcases Steve Bull’s art. I must say we were quite disappointed with the museum. It was hot and stuffy and the ceramics were not labelled as to who had made it and in what year. Most of the ceramics are behind dusty perspex so I could not get a clear photo. Don’t get me wrong – it was wonderful to look at the ceramics and also to see all the copies of articles that Ardmore has been mentioned in. But we felt that so much more could have been done. We looked at the wonderful products that African Loom make and I decided to buy a bag and i’m so glad that I did (you will find out why).
|Ardmore Museum ceramics|
|The bag I bought from African Loom|
Mom and I wanted to properly experience the glory of the Drakensberg mountains and so we had to go for a walk. First we thought about going to the Drakensberg Sun and do their fern shaded walk but found out at Monk’s Cowl reception that we would need to phone and book. Our next thought was the hour walk to the waterfall at Monk’s Cowl Nature Reserve on a circular route. That sounded like a nice stroll so we got into the car to drive there.
It was a wonderful drive and the mountain got bigger and bigger. Oh yes the bag from African Loom! – packed with 2 water bottles, cellphone, tissues, camera and car key. We had hats on, sunscreen on (thanks to hubby for making sure I had packed it) and Mom had a walking stick.
We arrived in the car park and I suddenly had a thought – do we have to pay to go walk?? Our handbags are locked in the boot, so I had to get mine out. The answer is yes that you have to pay. Cost is R35 per adult and R5 for a map. You also have to fill out a form as to the names and ages of those going for a walk and which walk you are doing and the name and cell number of one person. There are also various boxes to tick – water? Jacket? Food? I just ticked the water box as we were only going to do the hour walk to Sterkspruit Falls. The longest hike at Monk’s Cowl is 5 hours.
|The start of our hike|
So off we went on our ‘walk’. It was wonderful walking through the cool forested area and we were really enjoying ourselves. Then we came to an open area and followed the trail down, down, down to the falls. By this time we were feeling rather warm and it was far more difficult. We realised that our walk was actually a hike. The Sterkspruit Falls were so beautiful and we sat down on the bench provided to have a breather and to drink some of our water. Now the challenging part began – we had to get back up the steep path! Walk, walk, walk, stop for a breather, walk, walk and walk. The next stop on our
walk hike was to go and look at the pools. We went down slightly but the rest of the way was very steep so Mom just looked from the top and I went down to take a photo.
|Forested walk on the way up|
We went to the bathroom to run cold water over our hands to cool down and then enjoyed an ice cold Coke at the little restaurant.
|Mom and I at the restaurant after the hike|
dipping and chocolate and coffee pairing. I of course liked the look of the chocolate and coffee pairing and asked Mom whether she would like to try it as it was for two. Mom was uncertain and then said why not! So I ordered it for
us. The coffee for the pairing is made using the siphon method (I had to ask) *makes note to research this coffee
making method* It was so wonderfully presented with the chocolates down the middle and the small coffee glasses. The bottle that you see in the picture contains chilli essence. I was told to add 1 drop to my coffee if I wanted to.
I decided to be brave and SHEW! My sinuses were definitely clear. I did not add the chilli essence to my second cup of coffee. Mom and I cut the chocolates in half and we ate a chocolate and then drank some coffee. It was a fun experience and if you are staying in the area you must do it. I paid for our chocolate and coffee pairing and I also bought 4 slabs of their chocolate.
|The Drakensberg Chocolate Memories shop|
Museum”. So as Mom and I love vintage and retro items it was a must see. The museum is owned and run by Sandra Lemmer (funny my Mom’s name is also Sandra). Originally the museum was situated in Rosendal in the Free State but she has moved everything now to her husband’s family farm. The museum is actually the contents of an old trading store (negosiewinkel) that date from before the 1970’s that she discovered in Lesotho. You are able to buy some of the items if she has lots of that item. There are old sweets, medicines, haberdashery and lots of fascinating things to see. An amazing and funny walk into the past. No photos are allowed to be taken inside the museum (as the notice said by the door) but Sandra Lemmer allowed me to. I was so happy as I wanted to show my sister everything we had seen inside. Another building next to the museum is her shop filled with items to buy including vintage fabric. Please note that if you want to see the museum it is R20 per person which is so worth it. Sandra also has another antique shop in Winterton.
|Sandra Lemmer Antiques|
|Inside Negosie Museum|
|My cappy and chocolate cupcake|
Quite Interesting and I bought rooibos tea and watermelon jam from another little shop. We carried on our way but
we were reluctant to end our adventure so we just had to stop before reaching home.
|Tous Les Jours at the Piggly Wiggly Centre|
D275 road off the R600
The Drakensberg Chocolate Memories
Negosie Museum and Sandra Lemmer Antiques
D275 road off the R600
Valley Bakery Coffee Shop and Art Gallery
Off the R600