The Western Cape of South Africa is a holidaymaker’s dream destination. It is filled with world famous tourist attractions and hidden gems alike. Sometimes we focus so much on the former that we forget about what the latter has to offer. This is exactly what I aim to highlight in this post with a collection of photos that will inspire you to explore the Western Cape. So head out of the busy city and take a Shot Left!
West Coast National Park is one of the Western Cape’s most popular natural attractions. Every year during the August and September flower season the park explodes into colour when thousands of flowers come out to play in the Spring sunshine. This also attracts thousands of visitors who come to view the beautiful little things as well as to explore everything the park has to offer. But did you know that the West Coast National Park also offers houseboat accommodation? I can’t imagine anything more calming than relaxing on the tranquil blue waters of Langebaan while soaking up the sun.
The Garden Route is a lush green part of South Africa that stretches from Heidelberg in the Western Cape to Storms River in the Eastern Cape. It’s a must on everyone’s list of places to see in the Western Cape and has an array of attractions and accommodation options. One such place is Botlierskop Private Game Reserve nestled in the Outeniqua Mountains. The reserve is a hidden gem accessible by a little dirt road driving and is located just before the town of George. With rolling mountain views and game drive viewing of four of the Big 5 of South Africa, this is one of those places that you’ll only see by doing some Google’ing and road trip exploring.
I’m sure when most of us think of the Cape Winelands, we think Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. The Durbanville Wine Valley is often overlooked and far too underrated in my opinion. It is home to some of the most beautiful wine estates with views on par with the more famous wine valleys. A drive through the Durbanville Wine Valley will also reveal some interesting things like this castle we came across on a spur of the moment road trip. Set against the green hills, it resembles an image out of a medieval movie and certainly turns a few heads. We would have missed this quirky setup if it weren’t for taking a back road and taking the time to explore the Western Cape province!
Some things can only be experienced by a little bundu bashing – by tractor that is. A tractor ride is not usually on people’s list of things to do in the Western Cape but I can assure you it’s an exciting experience that rewards you with views you won’t get to see any other way. On the Protea Farm in the Koo Valley 30km outside the historic town of Montagu you’ll have the opportunity to go 1500m above sea level on an exhilarating tractor ride. Awe inspiring views of the valley and Robertson awaits you; and if you go in March, you’ll see hundreds of Proteas in full bloom all the way to the pinnacle of the ride. Sure it’s a little bumpy, but it’s definitely worth it!
We’re all familiar with the Western Cape’s more common points of interest namely, Table Mountain and Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. Chapman’s Peak Drive is also one of Cape Town’s popular attractions and offers the most scenic drive around the Atlantic Ocean but the view of the mountain itself is just as stunning. The best way to enjoy this view is from the Hout Bay Harbour. Go on the weekend and pop in at the Bay Harbour Market too for some good food, music and a great vibe.
The past two months have been freezing cold in the Western Cape. Uncomfortable yes but it also means fairy tale snowcapped mountains. And it seems this year you don’t even have to drive far as the snow views could be admired from the picturesque Franschhoek. Visit one of the many stunning wine estates and pair your wine with beautiful views of snow and majestic mountains.
Many more reasons to explore the Western Cape
The list of places to visit in the Western Cape is endless and it’s not considered one of the best tourist destinations in the country for nothing. Whether you choose to explore the Western Cape by road, rail or sea; you’re sure to have an amazing time. Just remember that a journey of discovery is best enjoyed in a group so bring along some family and friends and get to know this awesome province!