Nottingham Road. The first place we went to was Lilac Crane and it is very close to the bridge on Nottingham Road. The shop is filled with local arts and crafts and I found a beautiful necklace with the pendant made from a vintage
ceramic plate and a handmade coconut coffee soap. I really wanted to buy a dish cloth with a coffee design printed on it. Unfortunately it was a bit too expensive.
railway tracks. My Mom chatted to the owner and discovered the building was a former chicken shed which they had now converted into a coffee and craft shop. A lot of the crafts for sale had been created by the owner and they were so
well made. The train track was very close to the building and we saw 2 trains go by while we were there.
Mom had her usual Five Roses tea. There was a cool breeze blowing but we enjoyed sitting on the veranda in the warm morning sun. In fact we found it very difficult to leave, but our tummies helped a lot by reminding us that it
was nearly lunch time.
We had decided on Caversham Mill as our lunch stop, but we first planned to look at the menu before a final decision was made. More dirt roads to drive on to get there but fortunately they were not teeth rattling and there was nice scenery. Ardmore is very close to Caversham Mill, practically a neighbour and we decided to go and see them after lunch – don’t forget the tummies were rumbling. The restaurant can only be reached by driving over a single lane bridge but there was no one around when I got there. Caversham Mill is not cheap but we were too hungry to go and find somewhere else to have lunch and the menu had delicious sounding items on it.
and Mom had quiche and vegetables. Of course we had looked at the desserts before ordering our lunch and Crème Brulee was on it! So I’m sure you can guess what Carryn and I ordered. It was relaxing watching and listening to the water flow. Lots of old photos are on the walls showing what the mill used to look like and you can read its history as well. The mill wheel was washed away in a big flood many years ago. Definitely a place for a return visit.
artists collaborate under the mentorship of the award winning founder, Fee Halstead. They create pieces that feature in fine art collections and exhibitions around the world. All I can stay is WOW! The intricate work, the animals and the sheer size of some of the ceramic pieces. It is part museum (dedicated to those artists who have died), part gallery and part showroom. The only problem is that you need very deep pockets or a strong credit card in order to buy one of the ceramic pieces. So we enjoyed looking and taking lots of photos.
We took a walk over to the Spa once we were done as we wanted to smell the perfumes they sell there and then checked what the night’s activities were on the board by reception. Carryn and I decided that we would go for the
marshmallow braai at 6pm. We then walked back to our unit so that we could get the car and go to the first of two places that we were visiting that day.
affirmative. I just needed to phone the caretaker and arrange a time. It was arranged for Thursday and we just needed to go and look before 12pm as guests would be arriving later. Guests? Guests in a church? Yes because this was no longer a church but a self catering guesthouse called St. Andrew’s Retreat.
welcome to look inside, in fact everywhere. I had thought that we would just be looking around the outside of the building and was thrilled that we could see what they had done inside. It was amazing! The original stain glass windows and even the baptism font are still there while the stone pulpit hides a gas heater. There are 3 bedrooms inside the converted church and all have double beds and an en-suite bathroom. Two bedrooms are on the ground floor and the 3rd bedroom has been added above them. There are the most beautiful views over the garden and beyond from the windows of the 3rd bedroom and it is definitely the most luxurious. There is a fully fitted kitchen with a gas stove, two lounges and a dining room. All areas except the bedrooms are open plan. The church was built in 1906 and the owners have taken great care to keep original features and create a warm welcoming place to stay.
say that is not the case now.
and we were very surprised to discover how the weather had changed. A very cold wind was blowing and it had become very cloudy. It was a very “refreshing” walk and we watched while 2 brave fly fisherman tried to catch trout. After taking a few photos we headed back to the warmth of the unit. After supper Carryn and I ventured out again – this time over to the bonfire area as we wanted to attend the marshmallow braai. Unfortunately they did not have enough people wanting to attend the braai so it was not happening. We were very sad as we had a craving for braaied marshmallows. A staff member told us to go and ask for some marshmallows at the restaurant. We did just that and were given enough to chase away the craving. The restaurant has been beautifully re-decorated and Carryn and spent quite a long time trying to get the perfect photo of their lighting. Then it was back to the unit and I started the fire so we could have our braaied marshmallows.
over to the side of the road. At the same time a man in an Audi pulled up next to me. I wound down my window and asked him if it was my tyre and he said it was the back right. He asked if I could manage and I said I would not be able to. What a blessing to have someone right there when my tyre went flat. We had a chat as he changed my tyre and he said he worked at Hartford House and we told him about our lovely time there. It turned out that the man who stopped and changed my tyre was the Executive Chef Constantijn Hahndiek! We all thanked him profusely and gave him a hug. I then drove slowly into Mooi River to get the changed tyre pumped and we headed to Howick.