IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF ENSIGN OLOF BERGH
Within a few years of Jan Van Riebeeck's arrival in 1652 as Governor of the Cape, journeys of exploration into the interior began in response to Khoisan tales of a legendary land of untold riches lying beyond the snow capped Cedarberg range to the north.
ON THE ROAD TO MONAMOTAPA
7 days: This tour starts and ends in Cape Town
Ventures into the unknown were fraught with danger associated with marauding tribes and wild animals with all of the 'Big Five' – Lion, Elephant, Cape Buffalo, Black Rhino present in appreciable numbers within the emergent Cape Colony. Add to this Khoisan raids complete with poison arrows and you have a flavour of what life was like at the time for those so bold as to venture forth in search of fame and fortune.
Times have indeed changed although Leopards still roam the heights of the Cedarberg mountains in defiance of the spread of suburbia and the encroachment of man.
Our chosen route is a modern day rendition of a 'trek' into the hinterland beyond the city lights as a tribute to those who opened the way north to the vast plains of the Great Karoo, flanked by the purple hues of distant mountains, and all around a sense of silence and solitude replaces the frenetic rush of the modern world.
It is a land of legends and time honored tradition, of small towns and quaint names, of country folk and hospitality, and a sense of spaciousness with star-studded night skies where one can find inner peace associated with the marvels of creation. We hope you will enjoy the odyssey as much as we do ...
0ur tour following hotel collection starts at the South Western tip of the African continent in the Cape Point Nature Reserve and ends with a visit to the West Coast National Park. After a day of active exploration we will check into an historical farmhouse for the night and enjoy the culinary delights the West Coast has to offer.
In the morning our route continues to the foot of the Cedarberg mountain range and the tranquil Olifants river valley with its citrus plantations and vineyards. Accommodation for the night is in the town of Clanwilliam – a settlement founded by Irish colonists in the early 19th century. The historical hotel with its spacious dining room and table d'hote menu of many courses is a delight within itself for those in search of past tradition
Upwards and onwards into the Cederberg mountains the winding corrugated road over the rugged Pakhuis Pass and into the heart of the Cedarberg. Late afternoon finds us on a working farm set in pristine mountain 'fynbos' and wind eroded rocky ridges on the edge of the western escarpment at Oorlogskloof.
Dinner is Farmhouse fare at its best with roast lamb as the specialty.
Following breakfast we travel through the hamlet of Nieuwoudtville and then west to a lookout point on the edge of the escarpment overlooking the sprawling quartzite plains of the Knersvlakte on the very threshold of Namaqualand. Then we head south down the Blaauwkrans Pass to the flint stone plains and lunar landscapes of the Tanqua Karoo.
Once again we dine on traditional fare superbly presented and discuss farm life in the outback before heading outside to admire the magnificence of the night sky once again.
A pre-breakfast drive along the river before breakfast exposes us to the way of life on the farm and the fascinating diversity of bird and botanical life.
Afternoon takes us through Mitchell's Pass and onto Tulbagh for a tour of this delightful village of traditional cottages and a visit to a winery before checking into our accommodation and dinner in the town.
Our last day finds us in the Nuwekloof Pass where the line of rail breaches the Voelvlei and Osikwa mountains before doubling back to Worcester and then on north through the Hex river valley.
Lunch at a classic wine house will be followed by a leisurely drive to Franschoek and tour around the picturesque village established by the Huguenots in 1688. After checking into our lodgings for the night we will attend two wine tastings before settling into a classic French style restaurant for the evening meal.
After a leisurely start to the day we make our way over the old Helshoogte Pass into Stellenbosch for a drive through the town and a visit to the Bergkelder and Van Ryn Brandy Distillery before returning to Cape Town by midday. Tour ends with extensions in Cape Town as options.
Contact us if you would like more details on this and other options
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