Leeuwkloof Valley, Northern Gauteng

For visitors to South Africa that want to enjoy all of the conveniences of the big city, but prefer to stay overnight outside Johannesburg and Pretoria, there are gorgeous spas, weekend retreats and lodges in the Leeuwkloof Valley.

This beautiful valley is home to the Leeuwkloof Valley Conservancy, which is a tranquil game reserve that spans some 400 hectares. It is only an hour from Johannesburg and its international airport, and 30 minutes from Pretoria. But, despite its being so close to the city buzz, it is a complete retreat, thanks to its range of wildlife and pretty vistas.

There are more than 240 grazing animals in the reserve; including zebra, kudu, wildebeest, eland and impala. They share their habitat with baboon, caracal, jackal, porcupine and warthog, amongst many others. There are also snakes, frogs and tortoises in the mix, as well as around 200 different bird species.

To get the most out of your time in the Leeuwkloof Valley and its conservancy, book a guided game drive or explore the hiking and cycling trails, accompanied by an experienced guide that can share his or her insights and point out all the best spots. There are also great fishing spots for travellers that simply want to sit on the banks and drink in views of the still water while they wait for a fish to nibble their line.

In the vicinity of the Leeuwkloof Valley, visitors may also enjoy canoeing, visiting the impressive Roodeplaat Dam, or getting a cultural injection at the local Ndebele village, where they can enjoy authentic African food, song, and dance.

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