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“A fantastic, quiet getaway”

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Little Switzerland Hotel
Ranked #3 of 13 Bergville B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
132 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“A fantastic, quiet getaway”
Reviewed 29 July 2014

We stayed in the self-accommodating units a little further from the hotel itself. The view was spectacular, and being away from the hotel itself was, personally, quite refreshing as we felt like we had the place to ourselves.

The hiking trails were awesome. We missed out on seeing the Bearded Vultures but will definitely try when we visit Little Switzerland again.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DonPackett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 24 September 2014
Dear DonPackett,

Thank you for taking the time to review Little Switzerland Resort.

I am glad that you enjoyed our Hiking trails. We have trails from 30 minutes right up to a full day 8 hour hike. I hope that you will join us again to complete them all.

We have a variety of bird life, as well as wildlife, on the property. When you join us again please enquire with Reception regarding a bird list. A few of our staff members are knowledgeable about the birds on the property and will be delighted to assist you.

Thank you once again for reviewing our Resort.

Kind Regards,

Barbara
Hotel Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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140 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (31)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
57 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 July 2014

Little Switzerland offers either a hotel or self catering accommodation. We opted for self catering as this suits the children and us better. The self catering unit is clean and well maintained. Fireplace in the lounge with a shed stocked with wood and kindling. Underfloor heating and beds with electric blankets help keep the cold at bay. The views are spectacular. The hiking trails are many and a delight. The restaurant at the hotel has a limited selection of meals - not a great choice if you're eating healthily but holidays are meant for indulgences right? The coyote cafe on the property is another option if you don't feel like cooking. Great service and the food is of a super quality. There are programs for the children with varied activities to keep them occupied. There's also a shop on site for anything you may have forgotten. Some renovations are in progress which should make the hotel a bigger attraction.
If you want to enjoy nature and have an affinity for the mountains like me, you will love little Switzerland.
Downside: a section of the road (about 10kms) leading to the venue is riddled with potholes and construction on the road has all but stopped. Caution required and don't travel in the dark on this road.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sharon r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 19 April 2015
Dear sharon r,

Thank you for taking the time to review our Resort!

Good news! The roadworks are now in full progress and we are hopeful that they will be completed in the near future.

We hope to welcome you back to the Resort soon to savour some more of our indlugent meals and breathtaking views.

Kindest Regards,

Barbara
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Centurion, South Africa
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2014

I was traveling with my family , 2 kids under 10, to Alpine Heath, and had an unfortunate incident of a double puncture. This took place about 23km away from the resort. We called Alpine Heath only to be told, they could not assist. We managed to get as far as a garage outside little Switzerland, from the security at their gate, to an amazing gentleman called Divan Swanepoel that went far beyond his duty, to ensure my families safety. He transported us to Alpine Heath, and took on the task to assist with our vehicle!!! How amazing is that, and we not even clients of little Switzerland!!! I am definitely NEVER coming back to alpine Heath!!! But little Switzerland.....I will ensure I tell EVERYONE how awesome you are, see you very soon on my next weekend away!!!!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Yashina2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 19 April 2015
Dear Yashina2014,

Thank you for your AMAZING review of our Resort!

We take pride in all our Staffs efforts to go the extra mile for all of our Guests. I hope that we get the opportunity to welcome you to the Resort soon.

Please keep up to date with our events and special offers on our Facebook page - Little Switzerland Resort

Kindest Regards,

Barbara
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
united kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 May 2014

We came here with our toe young kids and had a fun trip. There is plenty to do activities-wise, from walks to put put (the course is very run down though), bowls, fishing, tennis and trampolining. The chalets are well kitted out in the kitchens, and the bedrooms warm with electric blankets and under-floor heating. The service was mixed - reception were welcoming but the restaurant staff were poor - we arrived and asked for a drink ten minutes before it was due to close and were made to feel very unwelcome. The Coyote Cafe at the entrance is a hidden gem though - good food and friendly staff, at reasonable prices.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Tegasamaki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 19 April 2015
Dear Tegasamaki,

My apologies for taking so long to respond to you. Thank you for taking the time to review our Resort.

Just to provide you with some feedback: We have upgraded the putt putt course and are looking at perhaps doing a remodelling later in the year. Thank you for pointing out our short comings in the Restaurant. We now stay open in the afternoons so that Guests can enjoy afternoon tea, early dinners, etc. Thank you for making us aware of this so that it could be rectified.

Thank you for your kind words about Coyote and our Reception staff. I hope to welcome you back to the Resort again.

Kind Regards,

Barbara
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2014

Have you ever experienced that feeling that you’ve just arrived in a little space of heaven after having driven the road from hell? Well then Welcome to the Little Switzerland Resort in the Drakensberg. If you’re looking for artificial comfort and opulence, then rather support the Hilton family trust or any other chain enterprise for that matter. The nature of this resort is very different.

With a history that spans over a hundred years, from having started as a Tea Garden to having transformed into the quaint chalets and hotel rooms with breath taking and majestic views of what feels to be the top of the South African landscape, this resort possesses an old world charm.

Led by two forces of nature - Mr and Mrs Mumby, supported by their exceptionally dedicated staff (the genuine smiling voice of Glen Hadden confirming your booking, to the wonderful Barbara and her hospitality and waiter staff in the restaurant, Little Switzerland, possesses a sincere warmth and an accommodating spirit which I haven’t experienced in many of the establishments we’ve been fortunate enough to visit over the years.

The Rooms and Décor: We had the pleasure of staying in their Honeymoon suite, overlooking the valley, and (of course my favourite) the stables down below! I found the décor to be in good taste – exquisitely crafted dark wood – not the stained attempts. The room was clean with a wonderful smell, which greets you as you open the front door. The spa bath in the bathroom was a godsend esp. after having returned from one of the numerous (and very well worth it!!! )hikes the resort has on offer.

The Spa: Nancy from the on-site spa offers one of the best Aromatherapy Body Massages ever (and believe me, with the demanding lifestyle of Johannesburg we’ve been to a few). The product they use in the spa is Gatineau – which is still one of my all-time favourites. I have a sneaking suspicion that Mrs. Mumby has something to do with that, one can see she is a true lady in every sense.

Food: We enjoyed it thoroughly  The old world restaurant with its high ceilings, offered a buffet with a wonderful range of options. An A’ la carte menu is also available, but we hadn’t dipped into that one, well not yet. Should you be lucky enough to experience the Mezze starter options, you will never want to have it anywhere else. Be very cautious of the desserts however, they chase you down and turn every possible rubber part forcing you to gain at least 5 kgs!

Activities on Offer: This resort has the capacity to cater for a myriad of needs - from the team building corporate with conferencing facilities, to the family with young children or the couple whom simply wishes for a romantic and relaxing weekend away. If you are fortunate enough to be able to share the experience with your children they can choose amongst pony rides, swimming, supervised quad biking rides or simply admiring the zebra which wonder in and amongst the buildings. From what I have seen the supervision has been tightened and the entertainment host is an exceptionally fit and patient young man gifted at entertaining both the young and the not so young. As an experienced rock climber and hiker, who knows the trails in this area like the palm of his hand, this young man will make any individual, or group enjoy the beauty this region has to offer. During summer months the resort even has water sports available on the dam!

The Tragedy:

My grandfather whom lived and passed away in Winterton – hence our familiarity with this exquisite region and the numerous resorts it has on offer, used to be a Super-Intendant of Road Works in his day. He was responsible for having commissioned the original tarred road which lead - and still does - up to the Cathedral Peak Resort.

Besides the fantastic reputation which the Cathedral resort already possessed (at that stage) the road further contributed to enhancing its’ exposure to a greater client base due to the ease of access.

Bringing us back to Little Switzerland: … This Drakensberg gem (which I would consider to be an indelible part of the historic significance of this landscape) is based on the old Retief / Oliviershoek pass. The pass can be accessed from the N3 Durban Highway using one of 2 turn offs – the shorter route from Johannesburg being the Harrismith turn off, or from the South east taking the Bergville turnoff – this route (a beautifully tarred road thanks to the Kwazulu Natal Government) adds an additional hour and a half to the journey of potential clients coming from JHB in order to get to the resort. However the Oliviershoek pass had become a favourite for heavy freight carrying vehicles, due to them saving on toll fees.

The result: a road which had horribly deteriorated. Worst of all the Freestate government stepped in! They paid a small fortune to one of their “preferred suppliers” to repair the road at the top and on the pass itself, which now resembles a moon scape – craters and all! This process of ‘repair’ started about 7 years ago. Currently it would be better to scrape the entire surface voiding it from any tar and changing it to a dirt road! The bizarre part the trucks still use it. Local farmers whom have offered to try and level the surface have been turned down due to it being a Provincial “road”.

The impact this nightmarish road has had on the business of the resorts on and close to the pass – specifically Little Switzerland has been disastrous. At one point the owners were forced to close the hotel and restaurant for a period of two years. This resort, having been one of the legendary choices for weddings, young couples’ honeymoons and corporate team building weekends – which still carries the capacity to be, but purely because of the ineptitude of a corrupt and ill managed system, is being jeopardized.

After a chat to one of the “Die Hard” visitors whom have been returning on an annual basis for over 17 years, the sadness of this fact is even more disheartening.
When sitting and admiring the view as the sun’s rays lights up a truly iconic land, which holds the forgotten roots of ancient forests and footprints of various cultures from the inspirational San, to the warrior Zulu and Sotho, the headstrong Afrikaners and the colonial English, one is filled with a sense of awe followed by trepidation. How can it be that a government which is wanting “to create jobs” has so completely lost touch with its’ provincial governments’ activities to allow the infrastructure to disintegrate to such a degree?

Yet the Mumby’s and their staff fight on. One can see how they systematically are trying to upgrade, even under the duress of lacking support from government. Their courage and commitment to a standard of excellence is second to none and warrants a sense of loyalty and respect.

Which makes Little Switzerland far more than a worthwhile destination, it makes this resort an epitome of the South African spirit.

Room Tip: Well we loved the Honeymoon Suite. It wasn't overtly ostentatious, but remained elegant and as...
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ulricha V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 19 April 2015
Dear Ulricha V,

Thank you once again for writing this AMAZING review of our Resort. I hope that we are able to welcome you back to the Resort again.

I just wanted to let you know that the road works are now in full progress and we are all hopeful that this will lead to some much needed rejuvenation of the Northern Drakensberg area.

Please keep updated on our Facebook page as to all of the events that we are running.

Hope to see you soon!

Best wishes,

Barbara
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2014

When going on a complementary ponyride our daughter cut an artery in her foot. The grooms didn't even notice it and went on like nothing happened. Luckily there was another mom that was a nurse, she was able to stop the bleeding. We rushed to the nearest private hospital that was 1 hour and 15 minutes drive away. Our daughter needed 11 stitches in her foot to close the cut. This happened on 31 December and it ruined our New Year's eve. I was not happy about the the way we were treated by the hotel staff after this incident. So beware before letting your child go on a ponyride.
Otherwise the food was really good, the scenery beautiful and the decor outdated.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Marieke33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 16 April 2014
Dear Marieke33,

Thank you for your feedback.

I am glad that you enjoyed part of your stay and apologise for the incident on the Pony ride. Although precautions are taken on all of our activities unfortunately accidents do happen. Divan, our Entertainment Manager, did assist you in covering the wound and stopping the bleeding so that it would not get infected. Unfortunately we are not able to do any more than this as we are only qualified to do very basic first aid. Glen, our Reservations Manager, did call ahead to make sure that the Hospital was able to assist you. He also printed a map so that you could travel safely. Our Reception Staff did call you to make sure that you had found the Hospital and they did make sure that you would be back in time for Dinner.

We appreciate feedback and are continuously trying to improve on our service. I would be grateful if you could email us directly at the Hotel and advise how we could have improved in our service to you. I apologise if we did not meet your standard that you expected and would like to know how we could improve should you join us again.

We did thank the Lady that assisted you at the Pony ride and they did advise us on departure that they would definitely be coming back as their Children had so much fun.

Kind Regards,

Barbara
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
31 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 February 2014

This is a very nice destination in the Drakensburg. Features alot of facilities on site and excellent views. Reasons for not however rating it higher is that the in room amenties and decor is a bit on the dated side. Nothing wrong with them, but just not what you would rate as 5 star.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BAD99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LittleSwitzerland335, Manager at Little Switzerland Hotel, responded to this review, 31 March 2014
Dear BAD99,

Thank you for taking the time to rate Little Switzerland. I am glad that you enjoyed our facilities and our amazing views! We hope to welcome you back again.

Kind Regards,

Barbara
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Little Switzerland Hotel

Property: Little Switzerland Hotel
Address: R74 | near Oliviershoek Pass, Bergville 3350, South Africa
Region: South Africa > KwaZulu-Natal > Drakensberg Region > Bergville
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 13 B&Bs / Inns in Bergville
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 32
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Little Switzerland Hotel South Africa/Bergville

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