• The Woodturners…

    Father and son team, John and Andrew Early have turned their obsession with the beauty of wood into award winning pieces, using only salvaged pieces of wood. Each bowl is turned from wet wood, left to dry for up to four years, then re-turned, sanded and waxed or oiled. “Pieces will continue to dry throughout their lifetime in a dynamic process that makes them ‘living' art works, says Andrew. Experience John and Andrew Early's beautiful wooden vessels and exclusive furniture, which is sought after by decorators around the globe, and which has earned them an Elle Decoration International Design Award and a Conde Nast House Style Award. 0723656270 www.andrewearly.co.za
  • Michael J Mawdsley Jnr

    Michael trained and worked as a goldsmith and jeweller for over 25 years before turning his mind and hands to sculpture - an almost inevitable move since at the core of all his work, the creative drive had always been the main motivation.

    The whole process of taking a basic idea through to a finished bronze requires the same creative drive and ability whether working as a creative goldsmith & jeweller or a sculptor and although Michael still produces jewellery, he finds the sheer physicality of the bronze art form more challenging and more satisfying.

    Michael’s sculptural work to date covers the triad of African Wildlife, the Human Form and the Local Flora. He has produced works from the very small, often to use as door knockers or business card holders, through to large, stand-alone works of art.

    If you are interested in commissioning a specific work, please either phone him on +27 (0)83 294 0107 to discuss.
    Michael John Mawdsley Jnr: http://www.vivavoce.co.za/

  • Rob Fowler at Corrie Lynn

    Corrie Lynn & Co. furniture has been in operation for more than 10 years. They specialise in custom-made furniture using a variety of different woods.

    Robin Fowler, a self-taught cabinet-maker has successfully been designing and manufacturing wooden furniture for a variety of clients all over South Africa. These clients include corporate businesses, game lodges, hotels, restaurants as well as individuals looking for something different.

    Robin has mentored and trained Corrie Lynn & Co staff to produce furniture from raw wood to the finished product. Staff member’s craftsmanship is recognised through labels attached to the individual pieces of furniture.

    Furniture Making Workshops
    Due to demand, Robin is now offering different courses in furniture making at his workshop at Corrie Lynn Farm in the beautiful Dargle Valley in the heart of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.

    Courses have a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 5 participants to allow for individual attention.

    The courses vary from a very basic level for first time furniture-makers to more advanced specific courses on joints and specialised machinery. The price of the course includes all materials, refreshments and lunches.

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A Chocolate Cake Road Trip to the Midlands

There are many things that lure people to the Midlands. Sometimes, it is a longing for some quiet farmland surroundings, while other times it is the call of an action packed adventure. Or could it be as simple as the best chocolate covered waffle? Armed with a sweet tooth and a map, discover how many temptations are tucked away in the Midlands Meander. If you are driving to our Lemonwood Cottages from Durban or Johannesburg, here’s a list of the best confectionary pit stops.


#1 Wanda’s Cafe
Stop here for an amazing cup of coffee, brewed by the Barista ‘Wanda the Fish’, and a homemade biscuit or a slice of farm style lemon meringue

Yard41, 4 Shafton Road, Howick | 22 min from Lemonwood Cottages | 033 330 2673 | http://www.yard41.co.za/ | open Monday to Sunday from 6.30am until 3pm

#2 Florentines Belgian Chocolate shop
Imagine a classic and crispy waffle with Italian ice-cream and 70% dark chocolate sauce.. its a taste unlike anything! Or treat yourself to fresh strawberries dipped in a cup of white chocolate

R103, Howick | 20 min from Lemonwood Cottages | Open daily 8.30am – 5pm (except on Monday) | +27 33 330 4146 |

#3 Tasha’s Fudge
After studying at the Silverwood kitchens , Tasha Jardim took her grandmother’s fudge recipe and started this successful home grown business. You’ll love her ‘pick n mix’ jar of fudge with all sorts of crazy flavours such as red velvet, mince pie, French vanilla coffee, honey & Horlicks and cheesecake !

Shop 1, Jacaranda Centre, Hilton Avenue, Hilton | 27 min from Lemonwood Cottages | +27 (0)83 381 8483 | Email: tj@tashas-fudge.co.za | visit http://www.tashasfudge.co.za | Open Monday to Friday, 08:00 – 16:30

#4 Blueberry Cafe
As the name suggests, they have the best blueberry cheesecake (the berries are freshly picked!). Their restaurant is artistic, spacious and relaxing with large windows that look out over to the surrounding farmlands and the distant Drakensberg mountains

Netherwood Farm, R103, Nottingham Rd | 33 min from Lemonwood | Open everyday 8-4pm | +27 33 266 7132 | http://www.blueberrycafe.co.za | info@blueberrycafe.co.za

#5 The Sugar Shack and Chocolate Heaven
How divine does a handcrafted Belgian Chocolate fondu sound? We love this shop even more for the long list of health benefits that come from eating chocolate that they’ve put on their website. High quality dark chocolates has flavonoids and theobromine that help with immunity, lowering blood pressure, reducing stress and even sun protection!

The Junction, Nottingham Road | 32 min from Lemonwood | Cell: +27 (0) 83 305 2273 | cynthia@traditionalsweets.co.za. | http://www.chocolateheaven.co.za

What’s happening in the Dargle Valley

Well what a week it has been in the Midlands, and the white frosty Dargle Valley. As you may have seen all over Facebook there was snow all over the place and with plummeting temperatures our fireplaces have been working overtime.

Snow Dargle

Image Credit | Jean Allen

Visitors have been flocking in to the area and it has been a fantastic and festive season that is for sure. With so many delightful restaurants, cafes and craft stores along the Meander it has made for a magical Winter wonderland experience.

However the snow does not last, and there are some other events coming up in the Dargle Valley to look forward to. Get those legs turning and enter the Marriott Dargle Trails Festival. There is a trail run, MTB ride, fun walk and more. All the details are in the image below and you can enter on the Roag website.

dargle trails

If you need accommodation for that weekend, stay with us! Email Kate on booking@lemonwood.co.za.

We look forward to having you to stay soon in our little piece of paradise, the Dargle Valley.

How to spend a rainy day in the Midlands

The Midlands can be a beautifully mystical kingdom, as the mist settles in and the rain falls to the earth. Days like these are just beautiful for those who want to stay indoors and those more adventurous outdoors folk.


Don’t let the rain ruin your plans. There are plenty of places to visit even on a rainy day in the Midlands.

Start your day off with a warm, hearty breakfast at Piggly Wiggly. Their cappuccinos are great and they have a cosy inside area to sit and relax in.

Meander along and be sure to stop in at Groundcover for those wooly sheep skin slippers to keep your feet warm at night. Tea and scones next to the fire at Fordoun is a lovely way to spend a rainy day, or maybe you’d rather enjoy the misty view from Blueberry Cafe, while nibbling on a delectable piece of cheesecake.

If you are need of a good pamper session then check into Brookdale Health Hydro for a day of relaxation, massages and other therapies. You may even fall asleep to the peaceful rain falling outside.

End your day with a pub meal at Rawdons Pub or a pizza at Il Postino, before heading back to the warmth of your cottage at Lemonwood.

Cosy up in bed, or next to the fireplace, with a good book or a cup of tea to end the day.

Sound like a perfect day to me!

Take a look at our gallery

Our awesome website has the most wonderful gallery. Before you come stay with us you can take a look at our cottages, take a look around the main house, and get an idea of the beauty surrounding us.

Here are some images from our gallery, and you can click here to see them all.

Come spend a relaxing week or weekend in the Midlands. Spend your days meandering and your nights under the stars, or cuddled up by the fireplace.

Email us on booking@lemonwood.co.za to make your reservation.

We can’t wait to meet you!

The snow has been falling

The Drakensberg mountains have had their full of snow over the past week which means we have been feeling the chill. You can see the snow as you drive from Hilton towards the Midlands. The last few days have been so clear that the views around us have been absolutely spectacular.

Snow Report SA

Image courtesy Snow Report SA Facebook Page

We are avid followers of Snow Report SA and the pictures that people have been submitting have been AWESOME! Check out their Facebook Page.

Here are just a few of our winter warmer tips for those visiting us soon.

Tip 1 : Pack a hot water bottle. This way wherever you are you will have that extra bit of heating.

Tip 2 : Light a fire. Our cottages are stocked daily with free wood so your fireplace can be roaring before sun goes down.

Tip 3 : Pack wool socks. They say if your head and feet are warm then your whole body will be warm.

Our cottages are warm and cosy with loads of blankets and fireplaces.
We hope to see you with us soon.

Events in the Midlands

There is always something going on in the Midlands, be it markets, garden shows, or conservancy talks.

Here’s what’s coming up in the Midlands.



fern hill

If you have an event that you’d like us to share all you have to do is get in touch with us on Facebook.

Winter Holiday Fun

It’s nearly winter school holidays again. Can you believe how quickly this year is going. We read something on Facebook that there are only 20 more Fridays until Christmas. Not sure if that’s true but it was a bit of a shock to read anyway.

So before the year flies by and you lose out on your leave, best you plan a little vacation to the Midlands. Schools break up in just over a month, for 4 weeks. At some point you are going to want to get away and take a break, right?

Stay at Lemonwood and your kids will be entertained around the Meander all day long. There are so many kid friendly activities for them to take part in while you sit back and relax, drinking coffee by day and wine by night.

We have 4 cosy country cottages to stay in, or if you want to bring friends along too, we rent out the main house. Have a look at our accommodation and rates here.

Lemonwood Rooms

Email us on booking@lemonwood.co.za to book your winter holiday to the KZN Midlands.

Winter in the Midlands

Winter Midlands

The Midlands is really just a beautiful place to be all year round. Throughout the year we have tourists visiting and enjoying the location in proximity to the Drakensberg and the beach in Durban. Some might feel that winter isn’t a great time to go on holiday but let us put your mind at rest as we list a bunch of fun winter activities in the Midlands. Country Pubs

Candle Dipping

Coffee Shops

Spa treatments

Whether you just want to spend some tranquil time out in the country or you want to keep active there are so many things to do in the Midlands. For a more extensive look at what’s on the Midlands Meander route click HERE.

Midlands Country Market

This Sunday sees a new market in our neck of the woods, the Midlands Country Market.

All the details are in the poster below and there is still space for vendors to take up a stall. Display your locally made goods for the Midlands to see. If you are a Midlands local or just visiting, make sure you stop by this lovely new market.

Sunday 19 April : 8am – 11.30am
Peter’s Gate Herb Farm

Midlands Country Market

Lemonwood Flora

We have shared so much about the animals creeping and crawling around our beautiful cottages. Now for the natural decor that adorns our lawns and gardens. The flora found around Lemonwood Cottages is definitely to be admired. In the Autumn the trees turn the most gorgeous shades of orange, red and brown, and then come Spring the garden is blossoming with white, purple, orange, red and more floral beauties.

Here are some pictures we’ve captured in our garden and the area that surrounds our cottages. Enjoy & we do hope to see you visiting soon!

Flowers around Lemonwood Flowers around Lemonwood Flowers around Lemonwood Flowers around Lemonwood Flowers around Lemonwood Flowers around Lemonwood

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  • Pet Friendly @ Lemonwood Farm…

    Bring your dogs on holiday with you to Lemonwood farm!

    Canine Guest Etiquette
    A guesthouse owner's list of dos and don'ts - by Elaine Hurford

    •When you arrive - PLEASE leave your dog/s in the car. Don't let them out on a stranger's property until the host has given you the go-ahead. The resident dogs might not like it. It's best to meet on neutral territory OUTSIDE the gate where they can sniff and get to know each other, and then bring them into the property together.
    •Close gates behind you at all times! This is absolutely vital both in town (traffic risks) and rural areas (there may be farm animals about).
    •Bring the lead! I can't believe how many people travel with no form of restraint for their dogs. It's plain stupid.
    •If you are asked to keep your dog on a lead outside the room or cottage, kindly adhere to this rule. If your dog chases and harms the resident cats or ducks for example, you will have a very unhappy host. Remember that in rural areas some farmers don't hesitate to shoot strange dogs on their property. Sheep and ostriches present wildly exotic scents to urban dogs, and you do not want to go home with a corpse.
    •Bring your own dog bedding AND a big old sheet to cover sofas, chairs, beds or other comfy and tempting places to sleep. The dog will feel more at home and the host will appreciate the fact that your pooch hasn't left hair or mud on the furniture.
    •Feed your dog out of doors or in the kitchen / bathroom, preferably on a piece of newspaper, and clean up afterwards. Pick up dog poos and dispose away from the premises in a knotted plastic bag.
    •Travel with your grooming tool to brush sand and mud out of doors. Don't let wet dogs into the house - you know very well how smelly a wet dog can be.
    •Bring favourite toys and chews with you. It makes the dog feel more secure and prevents furniture damage.
    •Ask ahead whether there is an enclosed garden or patio where you can safely leave them while you go out to a restaurant or shopping. (Some owners do not make this clear in their Pet Policy.) It's not always possible to take your dog everywhere with you, and you can't leave a large pup indoors to consume the furniture and carpets - even for a minute.
    •Check ahead that the local vet will be in residence - or consult your latest edition of The South African Pet-friendly Directory to find out where the nearest vet is. Many small towns don't have a vet. You don't want to be stuck in an emergency and your host won't want to tend to emergencies at night or after hours.
    •If your dogs are diggers, they are best left at home until you've cured them. One remedy is to bury a ball of chicken wire in the hole and cover it with sand, or bury the dog's own excrement in the hole and cover it. Both are unpleasant finds for the digging dog.
    •If your dogs are barkers (and most dogs will start protecting "their" new territory very quickly), keep them quiet until a respectable hour in the morning, and on weekend afternoons. Even if they don't bark at home, you never know what exciting stimuli might be on the other side of a new fence.
    •Please keep your dogs from jumping at the hosts' small children or grandchildren - and for that matter on the hosts themselves! Your dogs may be very sociable but a lavish display of affection from a strange dog may frighten small children.