Rally your spirits here

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The quickest way to re-boot is with a countryside break to replace the quotidian routine with time outside, good food and a reminder of what matters most: uninterrupted time together. But what makes a hotel great for families? Entertainment, value, indulgence and location.

Citrusdal Country Lodge’s good-value casual and genial atmosphere belies Wian and Mariaan van der Vyver’s well-organised formula: comfort rules for people and canines alike. Set on the main road, 66 Voortrekker Street, this 3-star hotel boasts characterful ensuite rooms (self-catering ones too) with antique furniture and objects, modern bathrooms, conference facilities, a jolly ladies bar, gym, swimming pool, lapa with braai facilities and a bright restaurant.

Breakfast – a full-Monty buffet served by waitrons – is as indulgent or abstemious as you wish to make it. For dinner, expect popular dishes such as a glossy oxtail stew in a deep sauce made rich from the melting gelatine and a mighty Carpetbagger, in addition to pastas, steaks, chicken salad and burgers. And an appealing children’s menu featuring home-made takes on classic favourites will be introduced soon. The wine list is reasonably priced and the intimate bar is great for pre- or post-prandial drinks.

Enjoy country air at or in the glittering pool, explore the Olifants River Valley, visit the Carmien indigenous rooibos tea farm (022 9213405), partake in fresh water angling (022 931290) or track the wild flowers from July to October. If the fresh air grows tiring, there’s a superb hot water spa on the outskirts of town (022 9218026).

Rates are R1 100 pn for 2 people. Book: (022) 9212221 or info@citrusdallodge.co.za.