|Vervet monkeys play on the stoep of the Fundudzi suite at Madi a Thavha|
I liked that: Confidence Mudau, whom it turned out would be our housekeeper, introducing herself with confidence. It was a mark too of the place we were going to stay, one that is a Fair Trade tourism lodge actively engaged in bringing work and dignity to the local community.
Madi a Thavha means "water from the mountain". Another word might simply be "oasis"!
The lodge lies 10km west off Makhado (formerly Louis Trichardt), on the southern slopes of this northernmost mountain range in South Africa and about a four-hour drive from Gauteng.
|View of the Soutpansberg from the lawn at Madi a Thavha|
I'd chosen Madi a Thavha purely on the recommendation of TripAdvisor, and because the website said they had an on-site gallery called the Dancing Fish featuring local Venda and Tsonga arts and crafts.If you were heading up to Beit Bridge on route to Zimbabwe, it would make an excellent stop. For those living in Gauteng, it would be a good hideout for a long weekend.
We stayed in Nwanedi, a suite which had its own little stoep looking out on the mountain slope. I'd wanted to book Fundudzi, which has a more elevated stoep with an even better view but it was occupied.
|Nwanedi's comfortable stoep and a place to make a fire.|
|Bedroom mural in the Nwanedi suite|
|Spot the embedded horseshoe|
|The baobab was impressive.|
|One of the many butterflies we saw|
|Paperbark acacia in the foreground, mountains beyond...|