The Moreson Cottages and Campsite is a must visit for many reasons. We had an amazing weekend but could easily have extended our stay if it was possible at the time.
Moreson River Cottages & Campsites is located on the upper reaches of the Breede River near Wolseley, 18km away.
It is probably the closest access to the Breede River from Cape Town (about 1 hours’ drive and less than 100km away), but still far enough from civilization to justify this outing. The camp site is situated on a working grape farm in the Slanghoek valley.
For bookings and inquiries you can follow this link to the website for Moreson.
There are 10 campsite, all with direct access to the river. The sites are set amidst a black wattle “forest”, and even though this is one of our dreaded invasive species, they produce much needed shade during the hot summer months. Consequently, the sites have no grass.
The Breede river at Moreson is wide and slow-flowing, but a bit on the shallow side, which makes it very safe if you have younger children. We were there during April, after the first rains had fallen, so there was plenty of water, but the owners advise that in particularly dry years the river can be very low, especially in the late summer months.
There is however a deep section of the river a mere 50m up from the campsite, which has water all year round. The river is navigable for canoeing, but you will have to lift your vessel over some of the shallow areas at times. However, there are vast stretches of deep river downstream, which will provide hours of paddling fun.
There is electricity at the camp sites, as well as a light for those dark nights.
For the non-campers there are 2 self-catering cottages, with the Bridge cottage being located between the camp sites, and the Pump House cottage a little way further up the river, at the deep pool mentioned above.
Check-in is from 14h00. You need to collect a key for access to your ablution facilities. Check-out is at 10h00, but management is relaxed about when you leave, especially on Sundays out of high season. In fact, due to the close proximity to Cape Town, they encourage you to stay late on a Sunday. Why rush home?
Enjoy a lekker braai to end off your weekend properly!
Important Additional Info For Your Stay
- There is no shop on site.
- They sell black wattle wood, but you need to arrange it with the owner.
- The water at the taps comes from a borehole, so it is suitable for human consumption. We used the water for cooking and coffee, but prefer bottled water for drinking purposes, just in case.
- There are braai drums, but you need to bring your own grid.
- There is reasonable cell phone reception at Moreson.
The ablution facilities are spacious and well maintained. Each site has its own shower room, with toilet and basin.
The showers are gas-fired. This is convenient since you can leave all your toiletries there and not schlep it with you every time you take a shower.
Toilet paper was supplied.
Activities at Moreson
Moreson is mostly about the river. The Breede River is the largest river in the Western Cape, and at Moreson it is closer to the origin than most other campsites along the Breede river. The upside is that the river is cleaner than in lower reaches (due to the impact of agriculture), but it is subject to lower water levels during dry spells.
A canoe is a great way to explore the river, both up and downstream from the campsites, but the water is more navigable downstream.
The Breede teems with fish life, including carp, barbel and bass, but fishing is not ideal from the campsite, due to the shallow depth of less than one meter. Furthermore, the river is crystal clear at Moreson, which is not ideal for fishing. However, about 800 meters downstream, at one of the pump stations, the deep river is easily accessible and we pulled out a 5.2kg specimen carp within an hour. Bites are strong because these stretches of the river are isolated and not over-fished.
Birding was not fantastic, probably because we were there in autumn, but we did see kingfishers (pied and giant) and we were entertained by Cape Batis in the trees above our campsite. At night the continuous calls of the Spotted Eagle owl adds to the atmosphere and serves as a reminder that you are out in nature.
The best way is to take the N1 to Worcester and turn right onto the Rawsonville road just after you come out of the valley from the tunnel. After 6km turn left onto the Slanghoek Road and then travel for 20km, where after the turnoff to Moreson River Cottages & Campsites is on your right.
Consider taking the spectacular Bainskloof pass (R301) on your way back.
Make sure not to miss Moreson for a well deserved break.
Please visit this link to read about the other destinations we have explored.