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Cape Town’s unique story begins with the birth of Table Mountain eight hundred million years ago and the discovery of human footprints dating back 117 000 years. Today it’s a colourful and harmonious fusion of ethnic diversity and a city overflowing with opportunity.
There are many good reasons to visit Malmesbury, the heart of the Swartland, enveloped by fields of wheat, vineyards and olive groves.
The origin of the name ‘Darling’ might not be so romantic, but oh my word, no other town carries it as well as this little dorp.
The wheat industry town with the friendly people who’s rolling r’s will sooth your city slicker ears. Set in the heart of the Swartland, which by the way derived its name from the darkish foliage of the region’s original vegetation, Moorreesburg’s picturesque setting is perfect for a tranquil bucolic weekend away.
You’ll be surprised by the beauty you’ll find snuggled in the foothills of the Piketberg Mountains. Flowing wheat and canola fields and fruit and wine farms form an ever-changing tapestry around the village, morphing from emerald greens to golden yellows and wine reds as the different seasons pass over the region.
Porterville, an unspoilt and picturesque dorp on the slopes of the stunning Olifantsrivier Mountains was established on the farm Pomona in 1863 and named after the then quite popular Attorney General of the Cape Colony, Sir William Porter.
The Berg River traverses a veritable smorgasbord of nature, culture and history during the last few kilometres of its 294km journey from the mountains above Franschoek to St Helena Bay.
The quaint little town of Citrusdal at the foot of the Piekenierskloof Pass is undoubtedly another perfect springboard into the many delights of the magnificent Cederberg which is without a doubt one of the Western Cape’s favourite outdoor playgrounds.
Those massive and monolithic mountains going by the name of Cederberg are possibly the reason why you’ve decided to mission north along the N7, but let’s face it; you’re going to have to take a break before entering this gigantic sandstone playground and Clanwilliam is perfectly perched on the edge of this wilderness.
This picturesque seaside dorp may have started off as a humble fishing village, but today it is known as the ‘Diamond of the West Coast’, thanks to its pure, uninterrupted white beaches, blue sea and skies, its abundant marine life and its superb seafood.
Klawer which means clover was given its name due to all the wild clover that used to grow here prolifically. There’s so much to experience in and around Klawer such as river rafting on the nearby Doring River, hiking on trails where San rock art can be viewed and visiting the Klawer Wine Cellar, where exclusive wine tours and tastings can be done.
The town’s economy is based on mining and agriculture. The Olifants River Irrigations Scheme has made it possible for farming. Vredendal has one of the country’s largest cooperative wine cellars, Namaqua Wines.
Vanrhynsdorp is a little dorp with a lovely Victorian feel to it, and although you’ll find some interesting old buildings, the main draw card to this remote region is nature.
In the Hardeveld the pace is set by nature and not by human development. There are seven small villages situated in the Hardeveld: Bitterfontein, Kliprand, Molsvlei, Nuwerus, Putsekloof, Rietpoort and Stofkraal.
On the N7 and thus easily serves as a journey breather or 'not-quite-halfway' mark for those on the road between Cape Town and Namibia. It lies in the heart of the Namaqualand and makes an excellent base for those exploring the spring flowers.
South of Springbok, Kamieskroon is set among the granite rock formations of the Kamiesberg range. The town’s origins lie in the 1860s, 7km north of its present position.
Set in a narrow valley bisecting the granite domes of the Klein Koperberge (small copper mountains), is the principal town of Namakwa, Springbok. Shortened from Springbokfontein in 1911, it owes its existence to copper-mining undertaken after 1850 and a ready supply of water.
Steinkopf offers an intriguing number of historical buildings and surrounding sites with a lot of sentiment attached to them. Half-day and one-day site seeing tours are available, including donkey cart rides, and there is even an informative two-day hiking trail which includes a sleep-over night with traditional Nama food, hospitality and stories.
The official border post to Namibia. There are several camp sites on the banks of the Orange River. Many river rafting trips along the Orange and through the Richtersveld start here. Stunning rock stratum and petroglyphs can be viewed.
Grunau is a small settlement at the side of a rail track. The location of Grunau makes it a convenient and popular overnight location for travellers. It’s also serves as a good springboard for visiting the Fish River Canyon.
Capital of southern Namibia and focal point of the scenic and historic attractions in the surroundings is Keetmanshoop. Founded in 1860 by the Rhenish Mission Society and named after Johan Keetman, the town still retains vestiges of its original German buildings.
Mariental is a city of 10,000 inhabitants in south-central Namibia, lying on the B1 national road 232 kilometres (144 mi) north of Keetmanshoop and 274 kilometres (170 mi) southeast of Windhoek. It lies at an elevation of 1,090 metres (3,580 ft).
Many visitors to Namibia start their adventure in Windhoek, the capital and largest city of this Southern African country. Nama, Herero, German, Afrikaans, and British cultures have influenced the growth and development of Windhoek.