Things to Do in Western Cape Western Cape Overview
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Four By Four Trails
Attaquas 4x4 Trail is located in the Outeniqua Nature Reserve. The pass used to be the main route for ox wagons travelling between Cape Town and Mossel Bay. The trail was completed in 1869. The trail takes one on the northern side of the Robertson Pass. The trail is 20 km long and takes about 3 hours to complete. It is graded between 3 and 4 and a low range, high clearance 4x4 vehicle is needed.
V and A Waterfront
Look no further if you're at the Waterfront on a mission to find an entertaining and educational spot to occupy children! Head straight for the Predator Tank exhibit and make sure your visit coincides with the action at shark feeding time when they get hand fed by divers. Large ragged-tooth sharks, nervous looking gamefish, rays and giant turtles glide past you in a seemingly endless procession. Gaze from a seat in the amphitheatre at the enormous picture window or get up close and personal with their toothy smiles in the curved plexi-glass tunnel.The Diversity Hall houses weird creepy crawlies like giant spider crabs, octopuses, exquisite but deadly firefish and delicate beasties like seahorses and box jellies.There's an activity centre with organised activities, touch exhibits specially for very young children and the Diving Animals display where Cape fur seals entertain with their playful antics.The Kelp Forest Tank is mesmerising. Drift away with the swaying dense thicket of giant seaweed whilst shoals of shimmering little fish flit about in the shafts of sunlight.There are loads more creatures and an amazing variety ranging from rainbow bright tropical fish found in the Indian Ocean to the more subtle silvery beauties residing in the Cape's cold Atlantic waters.If you have your diving ticket you could also scuba dive with sharks in the Predator Tank or amoungst the teeming fish in the Kelp Forest Tank.Check out amazing frogs at Beyond the Pond. This themed and highly interactive gallery was created to raise awareness of the plight of frogs, to inform visitors on what can be done to create frog-friendly environments and to raise funds for the Amphibian Ark www.amphibianark.org. Jump in to find out more about these quirky yet threatened creatures.Need to know?Open daily 9:30 – 18:00. Feeding times at Two Oceans Aquarium: I&J Predator Exhibit – 15:00 daily, Kelp Forest Exhibit: Wednesdays and Saturdays – 12:00, Penguins in the Sappi River Meander Exhibit – 11:30 & 14:30 daily.It is recommended to allow one to two hours to enjoy the diverse and magnificent displays. Wear comfortable shoes!
Galleries and Museums
Situated in the heart of the Overberg, the quaint village of Stanford is just half an hour outside of Hermanus and an hour and a half from Cape Town.Stanford Gallery exhibits the work of latter day South African artists of the past few decades, as well as prominent contemporary artists and notable emerging artists. Mosey around and you might find an etching by Pippa Skotness, a drawing by Pieter van der Westhuizen or a lyrical landscape by Joshua Miles.The Overberg has a wealth of creative talent and Stanford Gallery is committed to promoting local artists whose work is fast establishing a reputation in this region.The gallery has a beautifully appointed studio, which opens onto the village green. Regular workshops explore a variety of mediums from painting and drawing to printmaking. The studio is also available to art societies and groups who would like to make use of it.Need to know? Gallery hours are Tuesday to Sunday from 8am till 5pm.
Four By Four Trails
Damon 4x4 Trail is located 10 km from Worcester and named after a notorious sheep thief of the area. The trail is 13 km long with a difficulty grading of 2 to 3. It takes approximately 2 to 4 hours to complete. A maximum of 10 vehicles can utilize this trail at once. The trail runs between the hills of Hangkloof and Boskloof. The best period to enjoy this trail is between July and October when the succulents and aloe are in bloom. Please contact for further information.
This day walk and hiking trail is located near Tierberg in the Prince Albert district. Bloukop Mountain offers breathtaking views of the surrounding area. This circular trail has a difficulty rating of moderate. The trail is 11 km long and features overnight facilities. Booking is required; the trail is not accessible during certain times of the year.
The 2.1 km Gap Circuit is the shortest route on Robberg Nature Reserve and usually takes half an hour to complete. The trail is marked by an amazing geological site – the incredible evidence in Cretaceous rock of the split of Gondwanaland.
Duration: 30 minutes
Distance: 2.1 km
Eskom controls 3000 ha of West Coast around the Koeberg Nuclear Power Station. In keeping with both Eskom's environmental policy and national conservation trends, Eskom has decided to open this property to the public. Grysbok, Steenbok and the larger Duiker are buck species in the area and Bontebok and Springbok have been introduced as well. The elusive African wild cat, Grey mongoose and genet can also be seen. 153 Bird species can also be observed. A hidden treasure in the reserve is a large underground lake that supplies a lot of the surrounding areas with water.
Galleries and Museums
Visit the beautiful stately Dutch Reformed Church in the main street of Napier. Built in 1838, it features a teak interior and a stunning pipe organ.
The 9 km Salt River Hiking Trail starts across the road from the village shop. Head towards the beach and follow the route to the right on the beach. After 400 m, the route turns right into the scrub forest.
Follow the trail past a lookout point until it joins up with a jeep track. Turn left towards the Salt River mouth and follow the trail back along the coast.
Need to know? The trail is not passable during high tide.
This quaint little bay boasts a beautiful lighthouse and a crayfish factory that sup[ports most of the town's folk. Doringbaai offers beautiful, scenic views, and a rich ecosystem great for avid birders and nature lovers.
Bosman’s Crossing is a picturesque blend of heritage and modernlifestyle with a trading village as the central theme. The trading village incorporatestourist shopping, community shopping and craft markets. To enhance visitor browsing,an arched village piazza, a river promenade and a cobbled arcade were addedwith an aesthetic emphasis on natural materials.This provides an area of leisure, reflecting traditional activities of theStellenbosch wine lands embraced by the ambience of a village square consistingof restaurants, coffee shops and wine bars, open square and arcade, riverfrontboardwalk and bridge, access to the nature reserve, mini museums and a place tohonour South Africa’s wine pioneers - a “third place” to meet people and makenew friends. Papegaaiberg is a stone's throw away, with the starting point of the 24-kilometre long Vineyard Hiking Trail, through a seriesof hills and ridges, through forest plantations, vineyards, olive groves andsome of the remaining small remnants of the coastal Renosterveld.
Pezula Golf Estate
Direct access is a little steep but it's worth the effort to steal away and spend hours on the beautiful private beach of Sparrebosch. Swim, fish or just soak up the tranquility and stunning natural beauty around you.
Galleries and Museums
Take a trip down memory lane at the Outeniqua Transport Museum.
You will be able to see 13 different steam locomotives including a narrow gauge, the Emil Kessler- Johannesburg’s first steam locomotive and the impressive GL Garrett. Also on view are beautiful old carriages such as a coach from the Royal Train of 1947, Paul Kruger’s coach and private saloons.
A photographic exhibition displays stunning photos of South African steam. There’s also train travel poetry and displays of crockery and cutlery previously used on main line trains and station restaurants. Road motor vehicles and a private vintage car collection complete the displays.
Summer season (1 September to 30 April)
Daily excluding Sundays 08:00 – 17:00
Off peak season (1 May to 31 August)
Mon to Friday 08:00 – 16:00
Sat 08:00 – 14:00
2 Mission Street, George
+27 (0) 44 801 8288
Great Brak River
To the east of the Great Brak River mouth is Hersham Beach, a great spot for a stroll or swim. Lifesavers are on duty during peak season holidays. Dolphins and seals frequent the surf and Southern Right Whales can often be seen from July to November.
Versailles Wine Farm Estate is situated in the picturesque Wellington valley. All wine is made using a wine-making tradition established by the French ancestors of the Malan family, owners of the farm for six generations.
Guests can stroll around the endless vineyards and indulge in tasting from a large variety of Malan de Versailles Shiraz, Versailles Chenin Blanc, Savignon Blanc, and Cabernet Blanc and Merlot.