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Designed as sustainable off-grid retreats for total immersion in the natural environment, Sima Kade is truly at one with its surroundings. The cabins here are built using stone and wood from the valley to mimic the surrounding environment.
Sima Kade has several places to stay depending on your group size. We were staying in the Venus Cabin, a tiny house made for 2 people. To get to these cabins you must drive up dirt roads, which were rough and bumpy in places. It had not rained for some time so we managed to make it there with our two-wheel drive saloon car, but in the rainy season, I think you would need a 4×4.
Once we reached our cabin we were delighted. It was a two-storey contemporary tiny house fashioned in mostly wood, metal and glass. The place was stunning, and the windows made it feel that you were outside in the woods even when you were inside. Downstairs there was a small rustic kitchen and a small seating area. The size of the interior downstairs was small, but there were two outside areas. One of these had a braai and a seating area – and an outdoor bath. These cabins are hidden in the woods so no need to worry too much about privacy (except watch out for the monkeys) as the neighbours were way away and you couldn’t see them – in fact, we spent a lot of time wandering around the place naked. From this area, you had views across the valley to the mountains beyond. On the opposite side of the cabin, there was another deck with seating and an outdoor queen-sized day bed with a canopy. There was also an outdoor shower (I love outdoor showers!). For us, it was a perfect base for our two-day stay.
On our final morning, we were in no real rush to leave Sima Kade. After a leisurely breakfast, we decided to go on a walk and look at some of the other places to stay at Sima Kade as we knew they were unoccupied.
The Bush Camp is designed for up to 16 people to stay at. It is set at the bottom of the valley by the river. It has 4 small, but cute cabins and 4 small tree houses, and is ideal for a family of group of friends. There are communal areas for all to enjoy.
From the Bush Camp, we wandered up the hill to the Sky Terrace. This again is a group site that can take 16 people. The accommodation is made up of repurposed grain silos turned into mobile bedroom-pods, with two beds (bunk-style) in each and Towers which are tall rock structures perched on the slope with large glass windows and a butterfly roof. The tower has 2 en-suite bedrooms. There is also a large kitchen area and the Butterfly Hall, which is a large round hall with a strong wooden floor and stone walls broken up by 11 double doors. The hall has a butterfly roof floating on wrap-around windows and a large fireplace. Perfect for group yoga!
ABOUT SIMA KADE BUSH RETREAT
Sima Kade (Tree of Life) is nestled in a private valley in Magaliesburg, about 30km north of Johannesburg. Built using stone and wood from the valley the three separate, self-catering venues mimic the surrounding environment, flowing from forest to river-side to grass along stone pathways. Designed as sustainable off-grid retreats for total immersion in the natural environment, Sima Kade is truly at one with its surroundings. The venues are ideal for groups, ceremonies, outdoor enthusiasts, retreats and totally private, secluded stays.
This is the perfect base for exploring the Cradle of Humankind, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Bush Camp (sleeps 16)
A rustic, outdoor retreat venue, sprawling along the riverside in the heart of the valley, comprising of interconnected areas, linked by winding paths that take you from one beautiful space to another.
Sky Terrace (sleeps 16)
A mixture between an Incan village and a modern, bush-veld glamping experience. A series of lawned terraces built on a shelf beneath majestic cliffs, overlooking the rest of the valley and the Magalies mountains. The accommodation comprises Repurposed grain silos turned into mobile bedroom pods, with two beds (bunk-style) in each and stone towers, a tall rock structure perched on the slope with large glass windows and a butterfly roof. The tower has 2 en-suite bedrooms.
The Cave House (sleeps 2-4)
The Cave House is located at the top of the valley, overlooking a gorgeous forested amphitheatre. The house is open plan with a large fully equipped kitchen, bedroom with wooden flooring and dining area with a wood-burner fireplace.
The Kama Cabin (sleeps 2)
The Kama Cabin (Cabin of Desire) is a double-story tiny home, specially designed for a beautiful spot at the heart of the Sima Kade Valley – a hidden ridge that offers incredible views of our cliffs and the Magalies mountain.
The Venus Cabin (sleeps 2)
The Venus Cabin, named for the evening star that follows the sunsets framed by the main view of this site. A double-story tiny-home, special designed for a stunning site – nestled on a slope half in forest and half looking out over the Sima Kade valley. The stream starts ascending towards the rock-pool nearby, giving you the gentle sounds of water falling.
Best time to visit Magaliesburg
Magaliesburg has a semi-arid climate. It hardly rains here. The average annual temperature for Magaliesburg is 46° degrees and there are about 151 inches of rain in a year. The best time to visit is from January through June and August through December. In this period you have a warm temperature and little precipitation. The highest average temperature in Magaliesburg is 81°F in January and the lowest is 63°F in June.