The landscape surrounding the villages of Klawer and Trawal falls across low, undulating hills where farmland and fertile river banks adjoin arid scrubland. Likewise, slow accompanies fast in a place you can take it all in on a slow drive or join one of the seasonal river rafting expeditions down nearby Doring River. Trawal is the southern gateway to the Namaqua West Coast, and lies on the Olifants River. The settlement’s economy is largely based on table grape farming. Klawer is home to amongst others the Klawer wine cellar. It developed around the railway station servicing the Olifants River Valley and got its name from the Afrikaans word for sorrel. Most of the surrounding farms, vineyards, orchards and fields are irrigated with water supplied by the Olifants River Irrigation Scheme.
Their shared histories are tied by the gradual opening of trade routes. The coming of the railway in 1914 was one of the events that sparked intensive farming into life. For a decade, the station at Klawer was the end of the line in the rail connection between Cape Town and the Namaqua West Coast.