The Midlands Meander: 8 stops you have to make

According to our To-Do list!

The Midlands Meander is a magical place. It is home to beautiful waterfalls, misty mountains, indigenous forests and my favourite part, farmland. It has hidden gems and wonderful treasures. Once you discover this part of South Africa, you will find you will want to return for more and more.

But what makes up the Midlands Meander?

The Midlands Meander is an 80km network of sightseeing routes between Pietermaritzburg and Mooi River . The routes wind through Nottingham Road, Curry’s Post, Lions River, Howick, Merrivale, Kamberg, Balgowan, Rosetta and a few other areas. Each little area offers accommodation, restaurants, arts and crafts, farms, activities and so much more. The expansive countryside offers breathtaking postcard material views.

A few weekends ago we took a road trip through the Midlands Meander. We have visited this side of the world a few times, but this time we visited with a to-do list. We wanted to stop at every coffee shop, every restaurant, every farm and explore every road. And we did. Every item on our to-do list got ticked off, slowly but surely.


1. Chocolate Heaven

WHERE: Nottingham Road

WHAT IS IT: The name says it all. Chocolate Heaven allows you to indulge in a fine selection of hand-moulded Belgian chocolates as well as chocolate fondues.

WHAT WE LOVED: Fresh, juicy strawberries dipped in chocolate. And the sugar free chocolate (labelled: diabetic chocolate) is divine! Especially the coconut one.

Address: The Junction Complex, Nottingham Road

2. Romesco Olives

WHERE: Howick

WHAT IS IT: An olive showroom offering tastings with a huge selection go marinated, stuffed and smoked olives. The olives you love, you can buy and take home.

WHAT WE LOVED: The Greek Moussaka Kalamata olives as well as the Spicy Panzanella Olives. We loved them so much we brought home 3 bottles of each.

Address: 7 Prospect Rd, Howick

3. Howick Falls

WHERE: Howick

WHAT IS IT: A waterfall. Duh!

WHAT WE LOVED: So beautiful!

Address: Howick, KwaZulu-Natal

4. Terbodore Coffee

WHERE: Curry’s Post

WHAT IS IT: A coffee shop where they roast their own coffee using the finest imported Arabica beans.

WHAT WE LOVED: There are 3 things we absolutely loved about Terbodore Coffee. Firstly, coming from the city of Johannesburg, we only know coffee shops in shopping centres and franchise coffee shops. This coffee shop, however, is in an old barn and the setting is in the garden. It was so lovely to sit outside, enjoy fresh air and sip on delicious coffee. Secondly, we loved the dog bone shaped coffee biscuits that accompany your cup of coffee. We bought 3 packets of these to bring home! Thirdly, the dogs that run around the garden are so cute and friendly.

Address: 87 Currys Post Rd, Howick 

5. Nottingham Road Brewing Company

WHERE: Nottingham Road

WHAT IS IT: A rustic craft brewery producing some of the nicest beers I have ever had. Some of the beer names are Whistling Weasel Pale Ale, Pickled Pig Porter, and a Tiddly Toad Lager.

WHAT WE LOVED: The beer of course. But two of our favourites included the mango ale and the cappuccino porter. Also, they make the most delicious ale pie.

Address: R103, Rawdons estate, Nottingham Road

6. Swissland Cheese

WHERE: Balgowan

WHAT IS IT: A dairy farm, with a farm stall. But this is no ordinary farm. They offer picnic baskets and picnic blankets, and the farm stall sells delicious artisan goat cheese, snacks, wine and everything you need for the perfect picnic. The picnic also comes with a magical view.

WHAT WE LOVED: Everything! The delicious cheese, the view, the setting, the atmosphere. This is exactly what you want when you’re in the countryside.

Address: Old Main Road R103, Balgowan

7. The Ugly Duckling

WHERE: Rosetta

WHAT IS IT: A shop that sells just about everything except the kitchen sink. From furniture, carpets handicrafts, clothing to so much more.

WHAT WE LOVED: All the goodies we bought for our home, like a beautiful ornament for the TV cabinet.

Address: 84 Main Road R103 Rosetta  

8. Blueberry Cafe

WHERE: Nottingham Road

WHAT IS IT: A restaurant on top of a hill specialising in blueberry goodies, like blueberry cheesecake, blueberry milkshake and blueberry pancakes.

WHAT WE LOVED: The blueberry cheesecake!

Address: Netherwood Farm, R103, Nottingham Road


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There are 4 comments

  1. From the bottom of our hearts here at The Ugly Duckling, thank you for choosing us as one of your top choices. It’s always nice to get such positive feedback.

  2. Aaaaah I love the Midlands – and this post just made me want to go back again!
    Especially for blueberry cheesecake and that gorgeous view from Blueberry Cafe.

    It really is such a special place…
    I am desperate to go down one year when it is snowing there. And snuggle next to a fire at Granny Mouse and eat their incredible scones.

    Who am I kidding…? I love the Midlands because all we ever do there is eat!!

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