The enchanting KwaZulu-Natal Midlands Meander has always been home to artists and crafts-people. In 1985 local artists, potters and weavers joined forces to create an arts and crafts route. Six studios opened their doors to the public and the KZN Midlands Meander was born.
The aim of the Midlands Meander was to encourage the public to take to the country, and to give visitors a chance to find interesting accommodation in the Natal Midlands and see crafts-people at work. By selling directly to visitors, the studios were able to keep prices down, and with the active support of hospitality establishments in the area, such as Midlands Bed and Breakfasts and Natal Midlands self catering accommodation, a unique route was formed. Other artists and crafts-people were encouraged to move to the area and today the Midlands Meander is a stimulating arts and crafts route with quaint and exciting Natal Midlands accommodation options.
The Natal Midlands Meander reaches from the N3 freeway to well into the Drakensberg Mountain Range. Holiday Travellers between Johannesburg and Durban would benefit from an overnight stay in one or two of the Natal Midlands accommodation bed and breakfast or Guest House options.
Scenic beauty and picturesque villages
The Natal Midlands can boast an excellent road infrastructure, which takes travellers through scenic beauty while linking Midlands Meander outlets and picturesque villages along with some of South Africa's leading hotel accommodation and Midlands guest houses, and a host of delightful Drakensberg or Midlands bed and breakfast establishments. Bird watchers and fishermen will enjoy a visit to the Chelmsford Nature Reserve just south of Newcastle, which also forms a part of the Midlands Meander route.
There are many historical buildings in the Natal Midlands, several of which date back to the 1880's. A number have been declared National Monuments including some well preserved Settler Churches.
Whether you're a Natal Midlands local discovering the doorstep experiences of the region for the first time, an overseas traveller exploring this enchanting Midlands Meander countryside, or a holidaymaker en route to the coast, the Midlands Meander has something for everyone - all year round.
The National Botanical Gardens in Pietermaritzburg is a very pleasant place to take a stroll under the shade of beautiful magnolias, some dating from the Victorian era. The Natal Museum in Pietermaritzburg has impressive collections of insects and moluscs, as well as excellent exhibits of dinosaurs and early human habitation, all adding to the interesting activities dotted around the Midlands Meander.
THE BATTLEFIELDS Accommodation and activities
It is difficult to imagine that the scenic and tranquil landscape of central and northern KwaZulu-Natal was once the focal point of major military clashes; where over a time span of 70 years, one historical drama after another unfolded in the Natal Battlefields / Midlands region, and all of this against the backdrop of the African veld and the majestic Drakensberg Mountains. This region can get quite cold in Summer and scorching hot in Winter which calls for comfortable accommodation in this Battlefields Region. Air conditioned accommodation or adequate heating should be considered when booking into a Natal Battlefields bed and breakfast or Guest House. Battlefields Self Catering accommodation which is generally more cost-effective should also be considered, for larger parties. If you are uncertain about comfortable midlands accommodation options, then check out the star-graded properties on Where to Stay.
Largest concentration of battlefields in South Africa
The Natal Battlefields Region boasts the largest concentration of battlefields in South Africa drawing visitors from all over the world, especially British holiday makers who take advantage of a healthy exchange rate and book into some of the wonderful Battlefields accommodation guest houses and Midlands bed and breakfasts. In these Midlands Battlefields military engagements were to shape the course of South African and world history, and rock the pedestal of the British Empire. Battles raged over the green hills and sweeping grasslands of the Natal Midlands.
Every town, historical building, battle site and memorial has a fascinating tale to tell, an event to commemorate, a poignant memory to recall.
But don't let the KwaZulu Natal Battlefields description mislead you into thinking you are going to spend your time in the past. The region has the climate, scenery, wildlife, cultural diversity, cuisine and Midlands accommodation hospitality to make your visit unique and memorable.
Although the towns of Colenso forms a part of the Natal Midlands Battlefields Route, accommodation options are very limited.
Estcourt, Ladysmith, Newcastle and Dundee bed and breakfast or Guest Houses form the "bigger town" options, not to say that you should not visit some of the smaller, historic Midlands accommodation options on Where to Stay.
If you need a break from the busy city life, Gilly's offers tranquil wide open spaces, amazing views with incredible sunrises and sunsets.There is a trampoline, tennis court and an entertainment area with braai facilities for the Guests to use ...
Sugarlands Cottage is a cozy self catering cottage situated along the Currys Post Road in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, with easy access off the N3 (1.5 hours from Durban and 4.5 hours from Johannesburg).
Blue Haze Country Lodge is a charming lodge set in mountain and lake scenery bordering the popular Wagendrift Dam in the picturesque foothills of the majestic Drakensberg mountain range. Located 8 kms from the town of Estcourt and situated on 12 acres of
Whether its just for a quick night stop over, or an extended stay Arbor Guest House offers Luxury Accommodation in Newcastle. 10 rooms - all with en-suite bathrooms. All rooms have own entrance leading directly into garden area. Lapa with bar area...
Cheetah Ridge Lodge is the ultimate family safari vacation destination. A beautiful colonial grey stone manor house situated in lush fenced-in gardens, Cheetah Ridge Big 5 game lodge comes complete with a swimming pool, tennis court...
Come to the Midlands and enjoy the country air and beautiful mountains and views. We have spacious self catering cottages, you only need to bring food and relax or maybe we can do the cooking for you. (booking only), The cottages have cosy log ...
There are the two cottages; the smaller option has a large bedroom, where the glorious winter sun's rays stream in to keep it warm and cosy. ( The en-suite bathroom is a shower, basin and loo.)
Accommodation consists of 4 comfortable chalets each with its own lapa, built in braai and boma fire place for you to enjoy each other's company. Each chalet has 3 bedrooms and can accommodate 6 people.
Inkwazi cottage is set in the stunning Balgowan Valley, next door to Michaelhouse (10km from Nottingham Road Village).
Enjoy the warmest hospitality in Pietermaritzburg as Patrick Laundy welcomes you to Brevisbrook. Guests feel most relaxed in this peaceful country style property set in lush surroundings overlooking indigenous trees and a bubbling stream.
Beautifully appointed with an African safari lodge flavour - our exclusive yet affordable accommodation is suitable for families, corporate guests, sporting groups and tourists alike.
...once an old railway station, now converted into beautiful self catering cottages that are set in stunning surrounds and the ideal platform to explore KwaZulu Natal.
Elandsheim is situated in the heart of the famous Zulu, Anglo and Boer battle sites, 55 km from Dundee, halfway between Johannesburg and Durban. We are surrounded by privately owned game reserves, rivers, waterfalls and magnificent Zululand thornveld
Aladdin's Chameleon Overnight Accommodation offers, clean, comfortable, affordable accommodation starting at R550.00 for two people. Centrally located on the R103 in the scenic village of Nottingham Road.
The hotel comprises seventeen luxurious, individually appointed double suites with private verandas, underfloor heating and dream bathrooms, each with bath and shower, and a dressing area.
Hillhouse Accommodation was featured in Elle Decoration - The Country Issue June/July 2013. Also in House and Leisure - The Travel Issue, 101 Dream escapes in May 2015. Again in Getaway mag 2015 and Midlands life in 2008.
Each cottage is fully equipped with fridge, stove, microwave and utensils. Duvets and one extra blanket are provided, please bring towels. Each chalet has its own braai area and fire wood is supplied. 450ha of peaceful surroundings with 5km of ...