Honeywood Farm has been in the Moodie family since 1817 and borders the wild and wonderful Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve up against the Langeberg Mountains. It is a nature lover's paradise and offers hiking, mountain biking, birding, horse riding, and swimming in rivers and pools, all in a peaceful and secure environment. In 1817 Melkhoutboom, known colloquially today as Groot Vader Bosch, was bought by Captain Benjamin Moodie 9th Llaird of Orkney, a Scottish immigrant, from Jacobus Steyn. A few years later he bought the adjacent farm Kruisrivier from Johannes Jacobus Spies and it is this original ruin of the Ou Werf homestead forms the foundations and ruins within the Woodcutter’s Lodge. Captain Moodie brought 200 immigrant labourers with him and they settled in the Cape Colony.
Your hosts John and Miranda Moodie look forward to welcoming you to Honeywood Farm and sharing this splendid inheritance with you. The farm offers a genuine eco-experience with comfortable accommodation and opportunities for adventure tourism, birding, extreme biodiversity in the surrounding environment and a secure, safe area of the country. Honeywood loves animals and has three dogs and plenty of cats – we do allow animals in certain cottages but this needs to be arranged in advance and discussed when making your booking. Cape Nature has a strict no dogs allowed policy so you may not walk with your dog in the nature reserve.
Chat’s been there, loved that!
John Moodie, descendent of the first Moodies in the area, (1817) took our “family on a getaway” shortcomings in his stride. My lasting impression is that whatever you need – privacy, information… towels… it’s soon taken care of at Honeywood. The rain on Saturday for which we were miserably unprepared (I really must get some wellies!) presented no problem. I was anxious we would miss out on seeing something of the farm and surrounds. No, it was into John’s Pajero, for an exhilarating drive to see Renosterveld, indigenous forest and spectacular views.
The chance to relax, unwind and enjoy a true sense of feeling welcome has turned us into life-long Honeywooders. If you’re not the eager self-catering sort, John’s wife Miranda can cook up your meals. When we met her she was making scones! Our accommodation, right next door to the Moodie’s own farmhouse, was spacious. Once a family home, the interior was filled with books, antiques, photos and memorabilia steeped in family history, which John happily shares with you if you’re interested in learning about those early pioneering days.
I knew it was going to be a memorable getaway when we turned off the N2, 11kms outside Swellendam, and the sky turned into a pink, gold and orange blaze of sun-setting glory. Then on through Suurbraak, historic mission village, picturesque despite glaring poverty, we were captivated by the roaming chickens, donkeys and the enviable petina of aging architecture. Our trips into Swellendam (to stock up on vino and veggies) got us noting it down as an enticing place to explore.
So many things make this farm getaway magical: The stars at night, waking up to find horses grazing on the lawn outside, the electric orange roots of the saffron tree exposed on the river banks, porcupine spines found on a footpath… But don’t let me rattle on… you’ll have to get there to make your own discoveries and memories.
Espresso-sized summary of Honeywood Guest Farm
- Plenty of choice when it comes to accommodation – from 2 adults, 2 children-sized cottages, to houses large enough to comfortably accommodate an Italian family reunion – and a bush camp! The Moodies have a beautifully appointed wedding venue and well-equipped conference centre too.
- Lots to do on the farm, including horse riding, walking, bird watching, mountain biking and hiking. Also art getaways, tutored by Miranda Moodie.
- Close to the Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve.
Contact: John and Miranda Moodie at Honeywood Guest Farm
Tel: (028) 722 1823
Cell: (+27) 083 270 4035