FISH TAILS: Green, clean and cool by the Sundays River

BY KIRSTEN EMERY - JULY 30, 2014

Being a very active outdoors family, we love visiting places where pristine natural landscapes stretch far and wide. Recently, as we needed a complete but nearby escape from the urban buzz of Port Elizabeth, I booked the family into Umlambo B&B and River Camp.

This family-owned establishment offers warm South African farm hospitality on the Sundays River - near the Addo Elephant National Park, at affordable rates.

When we arrived at the Umlambo Farm House, I was taken aback by its large, beautiful and perfectly maintained garden. We were greeted like old family friends by Angela Taylor, the manager.

My children soon found new friends in the resident dogs and took off to play in the garden while my boyfriend and I relaxed with fresh lemonade on the huge veranda overlooking the indigenous garden. Being arachnophobic, I was relieved that the unit looked well-maintained and clean.

Umlambo offers luxury and self-catering accommodation and can cater for groups. We spent our first night at the farmhouse and our room reflected the Percy Fitzpatrick era in which the house was built. Tastefully decorated, it carried through a feeling of space and relaxation.

As with the other luxury guestrooms, ours was en-suite and fully-equipped with fridges, ceiling fans, heaters, tv, hairdryers and tea/coffee facilities. 

We had opted to have all our meals at the farmhouse and I was glad we had - the food was scrumptious and plentiful. Being in the open air really does work up an appetite!  

There are also plenty of activities nearby which can be pre-arranged or booked by Umlambo. So on the Saturday morning; we joined in on a 4x4 safari into the Addo National Park where we enjoyed the park’s immense amount of game.

We then spent the second night at the Umlambo River Camp. The camp also sported beautifully-maintained thorn-free lawns, gardens and private jetties. Its fireplaces made for a warm and relaxing braai evening under the stars.

Situated on the widest bend of the Sundays River, Umlambo River Camp yields some impressive sized fish and is ideal for canoeing, swimming and bird-watching. We took the kids on a night canoe ride and had small fish jumping into our canoes amid giggles.

Sadly, we had to leave the next morning.

Umlambo B&B and River Camp is highly recommended for anyone looking for an affordable base to explore the Addo and Sundays River area within close reach of PE. 

Find them at www.umlambo.co.za  or contact Angela on 082 960 8952.