Secret Getaways for Your December School Holiday

With 2020 drawing to a close, we all need a little spoiling and now is the time to look out for a secret spot or getaway to take the family for the December school holidays.

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Some might say it is a little premature to start celebrating but a fun holiday break will put everyone in a better frame of mind for the new year. Start planning right away to secure an extraordinary holiday location to ensure sweet memories of 2020. Here are a few suggestions in case you need some inspiration: 


Waterberg, Limpopo  

Local is lekka and there are still spots available in South Africa in December. A secret spot not far from the buzz of Johannesburg is Safari Plains set in Mabula Game Reserve. It is an easy drive via Warmbaths and a relaxing Big 5 safari experience awaits you. There are just 20 luxury air-conditioned tented suites with a wide viewing deck and even a sunken bath with a view. Enjoy twice daily game drives and dine under the stars in the candle lit boma. 

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White River, Mpumalanga 

Still on the local scene is the Casterbridge Hollow Boutique Hotel in White River, Mpumalanga. Enjoy a ‘green hotel’ in a serene setting with a vibrant lifestyle centre next door. Enjoy boating on Pine Lake Inn or take the family to the Kruger National Park for the day, it’s at least easy to social distance when you in the bush. The Panorama Route also starts here so you will surely run out of time and have to return again someday. 

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Clarens, Free State 

The eastern Free State in the foothills of the Drakensberg offers superb vistas and a heap of activities for the entire familyThis charming town hosts a huge outdoor market on the town green with superb crafts, delicious cuisine and a craft beer brewery. Take a drive to the Golden Gate Highlands National Park and then hike to a shady spot for a picnic. 

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Red Carnation Hotels 

Spoil yourself with a couple of nights of pure luxury and pampering at the internationally awarded Oyster Box Hotel on the beach in Umhlanga, the Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa overlooking the ocean close to Camps Bay or the Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve and Wellness Retreat in the Cederberg in just two hours north of Cape Town.  

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Premier Resort Mpongo, Eastern Cape   

The Eastern Cape is famous for its hospitality and superb malaria free game reserves. Premier Resort Mpongo is a unique blend of luxury and wildlife just 35 kms from East London and easily reached by air or road. Enjoy game spotting and end your afternoon drive with sundowners as the game descends on the water holes to slake their thirst. 

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Premier Resort Cutty Sark, KZN   

The Cutty Sark at Scottburgh is well known and this landmark hotel re-opens on 15 December after a major refurbishment. With just 56 rooms this is a secret spot to rediscover on the main beach with warm waters and excellent diving on the Aliwal Shoal on the KZN south coast. The kids club and nearby golf courses are also a big attraction. 



For those who want something totally different why not wing your way to Zanzibar with its unusual Afro-Omani culture and gently spiced cuisine. Direct flights to the island make this an easy choice and the Albatross Ocean View Hotel will not disappoint. Ocean view rooms, excellent cuisine and lazy days on the beach complete the package, Do take a tour of quaint Stone Town and enjoy lunch in one of the many restaurants overlooking the harbour. 



Chill in the Seychelles, the fabled Garden of Eden, with some of the best beaches in the world. The secret hideaway of Carana Beach Hotel is a boutique resort with just 40 chalets overlooking the beach on Mahe island. Enjoy snorkeling in the warm waters and there is a choice of dining options.  



There’s nothing quite like it – the newly opened Xigera Safari Lodge in the Okavango Delta in Botswana with just 12 luxury tented suites. View abundant game from land and on the water and return to the pampering spa and exquisite meals served under the stars overlooking the lily covered waters. A rare experience indeed. 

Call Thompsons to reserve one of the above secret getaways in South Africa, or overseas, for your December holiday – and enquire about many December holiday packages on offer. But don’t delay as time is running out.   

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