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Camping in Cederberg

Looking to get off the grid a bit? Camping is probably the best way to relax, have fun and recharge over a weekend. South Africa offers a wide selection of campsites and farms to go camping, but for this article, let’s focus on Cederberg.

Cederberg is located close to Clanwilliam about 300km away from Cape Town making this the perfect location for a quick weekend away. On your way to Cederberg, along the N7 you will also find a selection of small towns and interesting places to stop and explore or to grab something to eat.

river

This scenery route is a must for nature lovers and photographers as grey mountains, blue skylines and green fields stretches from Malmesburry �all the way to Piketberg and more.



What a fun weekend away it was with a group of friends. We decided to visit Jamaka in Cederberg and got a campsite next to the river under huge trees. A bit paranoid at first as The Cederberg is known for its reptiles and hand-sized spiders, I jumped and did �yoga-dance-like moves each time a leaf dropped on my head, luckily I got tired from yoga and I started to relax.

After the long drive we had to unpack and start setting up the camp for the weekend. First it was the tent. Being afraid of spiders I made sure that our tent was, wind, fire, mosquito and spider proof and set a rule that if someone leaves the tent open, they have to pay a fine of R50.



Next up was the kitchen. Now, when I go camping, all I need is a wind-fire-mosquito-spider free tent, clothes, food and a sleeping bag, but when we started setting up the kitchen, I realized we were camping “in style”. Jamie Oliver, eat your heart out! We had a bar fridge, a bread machine, an Ice Maker, Gas Grill, gas stove and something that sucks the air out of wine bottles.


At last we could relax, chilling out around the fire with the sound of the water from the river, baboons barking in the distance and good friends talking about life. Nothing like a braai to bring people closer to each other.

Shower hour. After hard work, a nice braai and hilarious stories it was time to get ready for bed. Luckily Jamaka offers public showers with hot water for that. It is always good to choose the campsites with bathroom facilities as I can guarantee you it would have been torture if we would have had to clean up in the ice cold river.

Early the next morning we woke up, baked bread and made breakfast on the grill to give us the energy to walk up the mountain to buy wood at a farm close by for the camp fire for the night. In the 37 degree heat we walked a road that felt never ending, but after we got back to the campsite we ran to cool off in the river.

This is truly an amazing experience for families, youngsters and seniors as the Cederberg offers something for everyone.

What do you need when you go camping?

  • A tent (Try to get a tent with a ground sail as it is common for scorpions, snakes and spiders to try to cuddle with you while you are asleep)
  • Mattress (Blow-up mattresses are perfect for camping as this takes up minimum storage in your car)
  • Sleeping bag and pillows
  • Wood (Camping is not the same without a braai)
  • Firelighters
  • Braai grid
  • Fire extinguisher (Yes, you need it)
  • Food (Try to take food that won’t spoil if you do not have cooling facilities. Steak is a good idea to pack as steak won’t spoil over a weekend away)
  • Drinks (Whatever floats your boat)
  • Water (Its important to pack enough drinking water as most campsites are far away from towns and some don’t offer fresh drinking water)
  • First Aid Kit
  • Gas stove
  • Gas Lamps or battery operated lamps
  • Pots and pans

Fun activities to do when camping:

“Stokbrood braai”

  • Go find a stick, clean it up with a knife to remove the rough pieces and bark.
  • Make bread dough (Mix flour with yeast, add warm water and butter to the flour and mix. Use your hand and fold the dough over until well knead. Leave to rise)
  • Take a ball of dough and with your hand roll it until it looks like a snake.
  • Wrap the dough around the top of the stick and braai until its ready to eat.

Swing

  • When packing your stuff for the camp, throw in a strong, long rope.
  • Find a stick
  • Find a tree or pole
  • Tie the rope to the tree and the other two ends around the stick.

 

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