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City Swellendam

Swellendam in the Western Cape is actually the first port of call if you start on the Garden Route from Cape Town (220 km). It is a nice town with a rich history and the third oldest city in the country after Cape Town and Stellenbosch, founded in 1745. Swellendam Situated in a beautiful green valley at the foot of the Langeberg Mountains. A little oasis in itself!

It is a quiet town, famous for its berries, architecture and history. Swellendam was once the last outpost of civilization in the east of the Western Cape and therefore it became a thriving market town. Now strategically located between Cape Town and George, at the beginning of the Garden Route, it is a place that is visited by tourists passing through, who'd spend a few days in one of the beautiful guesthouses, B&B's or hotels. There are plenty of coffee shops with terraces as well as nice restaurants and small shops to make your stay more enjoyable here.

Of course staying in Swellendam means visiting the Drostdy Museum, but otherwise this area is a great place to go in nature. Wildlife and adventure are just around the corner and what about driving a beautiful wine route near Robertson. Take a walk along the Breede River, and be surprised by the beauty and diversity of nature. The Cape mountain zebra, grey reebok but also the abundant bird life makes your walk into something special. On the river it is possible to go canoeing or river rafting and nearby you can go horse riding and mountain biking. In Swellendam it is also possible to play golf, but unfortunately it is a 9-hole course but it has a beautiful view of the Langeberg Mountains.

Nature parks in and around Swellendam you can go visit are:
Marloth Nature Reserve, which runs from the village to the top of the Langeberg mountains. Here you walk through native forest, the unique Cape Fynbos and wildflowers to waterfalls. You can encounter klipspringer, cormorant, buck and leopard here. The latter is not so easy to trace ...

Bontebok Nature Reserve is located just outside the village (6 km). The Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve where you can explore the native forest by foot or bike. De Hoop Nature Reserve is the southernmost nature reserve where it is lovely stroll to the Indian Ocean, where you can swim in mountain lakes. Zebra and Bontebok are often spotted here along the river.

From Swellendam, you can make a nice trip on the Tradouw pass. You come through small towns like Suurbraak and Ashton, where you make a stop in the busier Montagu. Take a piece of the Wine Road on the way to Worcester or take the exit towards Oudtshoorn and visit an Ostrich Farm. Visit the Wild Blackberry Liqueur farm, where you can also taste delicious liqueurs after an informative tour. And what's more fun than to go pick your fruit. An hour's drive from Cape Agulhas and Swellendam is Struisbaai. You can enjoy whale watching in season and the best from the white sands of Witsand which is about 70km from Swellendam. Whales see Witzand bay as their breeding ground.

For a nice YouTube video about Swellendam area, click here.

Please note that the shops in Swellendam close early in the afternoon on Saturday and on Sunday closed all day. The museum in Swellendam closes at 15:00.  

Your holiday begins at South Africa Specialist!