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.
Gateside is found in the heart of tranquil Hilton village, 10km from Pietermaritzburg, at the entrance to the scenic Midlands Meander and close to St Anne's and Hilton College. Set in a quiet lane amongst green pastures with magnificent views of ...
Luiperdkloof is a 1900 hectare working cattle farm located in the scenic Balele Mountains between Wakkerstroom, Utrecht, Vryheid and Paulpietersburg
Nestled in the scenic foothills of the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Mountain range, you’ll find Lythwood, a 4-Star country hotel right on the Midlands Meander. If you are looking for a relaxing all inclusive weekend away or a short midweek break, away from the
Glen Ormond is a 6 hectare property, elevated above the Mpofana River between Rosetta and Mooi River in the picturesque and serene Natal Midlands. There are abundant wildlife species which move freely through the properties in the region.
Newly renovated Loft Room available to rent on short term basis. Set in a well landscaped garden in Howick North / Central.
The Grey Goose Game Lodge is situated at the foot of the Drakensburg Mountains on the outskirts of Newcastle. Whether for business or pleasure we are a fantastic getaway, offering a great service in beautiful surroundings.
Our furnished, self catering house has four beautifully decorated en-suite bedrooms, two of which are family rooms and a loft room - comfortably sleeping 10 adults and 6 children
Leafy Lane is situated at the end of a cul-de-sac approximately 3 Kms from the N3 Highway. It consists of two bed sitting rooms and are fully equipped with double door fridge freezers, microwave, mini stove, toaster and kettle.
Self catering cottage with own kitchen and lounge. Ideal for a family as all guests share the same bathroom which is en-suite. Bedroom with one queen size bed, ceiling fan and air conditioner. Lounge with two single beds and ceiling fan. Full DSTV and
Monte Vista Guest House is a 4 Star graded and AA Superior registered establishment set in the tranquil residential area of Estcourt. Monte Vista Guest House is ideally suited for business travellers but also for tourists.
Welcome to Sycamore Avenue Treehouses - Dinner Bed and Breakfast accommodation - “If we can’t fly with birds we can at least nest with them.” Eccentric, unique and romantic treehouse D,B&B accommodation on the KwaZulu Natal Midlands Meander.
Exclusive use by guests. Guest Lounge with TV, off street parking with remote controlled access, log cabin type outdoor gazebo with fireplace. Two separate private sleeping wings. Malaria Free Area. English breakfast or alternatives by prior ...
Station House is conveniently located close to shops, banks and petrol stations, yet far enough away from development to hear no sound other than that of nature.
King's Hill B & B is situated in the picturesque village of Hilton, the gateway to the Natal Midlands & has beautiful views of the Cedara Valley. We can accommodate a maximum of 6 people sharing in 2 tastefully decorated, non-smoking rooms...
This luxury boutique hotel boasts 31 spacious rooms, (8 Self Catering & 14 Standard rooms, 1 disabled friendly room, 7 Superior rooms and 1 Executive Suite). The rooms are furnished with solid wooden furniture and superior quality fabric.
The cottage on Lake Zonk is an ideal getaway. Situated only a few metres from the waters edge, it provides spectacular views and easy access to water based activities.
The Legendary Nottingham Road Hotel, or "Notties" as it is affectionately known, is a 3 star graded hotel. As of 18 Mar. 16, we have opened our recently completed "Garden Suites". This long awaited addition to the hotel sees 10 new suites now available...
The Farmhouse Lodge is situated 3 minutes from the centre of the town of Newcastle in magnificent park like surroundings. We are an ideal stopover between Kruger park and the KwaZulu-Natal Coast. German spoken. Rooms air conditioned, Internet, DSTV
The main cottage, Gobbins' Cottage, is a spacious double storey one bedroom home with a large open plan kitchen leading onto a cosy lounge with underfloor heating for those cold Dargle winters. The kitchen is well equipped with large fridge, oven...
Arusha Lodge offers 14 en-suite rooms (single, double and twin rooms available). Each room is fully air conditioned (heating and cooling), fitted with a personal safe for your security and convenience. The rooms have own coffee & tea making ...