Guests may like to go further afield, and enjoy a day trip to nearby towns and attractions.
The Clanwilliam Museum can be found at the end of the town’s Main Road in “Die Ou Tronk” (the old prison) and is a fascinating look into Clanwilliam’s Voortrekker history. The museum also chronicles the growth of Rooibos Tea industry of the area. The museum is open weekdays from 8am to 12pm. It contains Voortrekker wagons and a variety of artefacts from the time of the pioneers.
The Cederberg Wilderness Area lies some 200km north of Cape Town, stretching from the Middleburg Pass at Citrusdal to north of the Pakhuis Pass at Clanwilliam and encompasses some 71,000 hectares of rugged, mountainous terrain.
The Cederberg is renowned for its spectacular landscapes and rock formations, as well as its namesake, the rare Clanwilliam Cedar. It was proclaimed a wilderness area in 1973 and has grown into a popular destination for hardy hikers and mountaineers.
The Cederberg Heritage Route provides three multi-day ‘slackpacking’ trails where you’re only required to carry a small daypack. Accommodation is in simple but comfortable guest cottages. All meals are provided as well as transport for your bags.
Donkey Cart excursions are an exhilarating way of enjoying a pristine part of the Cederberg Mountains whilst creating jobs for local people.
The beautiful, fertile Biedouw Valley lies just 32 km from Clanwilliam. Fantastic fly-fishing is available here under the epic slopes of the TraTra Mountains. The area becomes a canvas of colour just after the rains, when it is endowed with an astonishing array of spring flowers. Local farmers restrict their herds from grazing in the valley during flower season to preserve the glorious scene and help with annual pollination.
Lamberts Bay is a fishing village, and famous the world over for its surfing beaches. Bird Island is a popular attraction here, linked to the shore by a breakwater connected to the harbour, making it easily accessible to the public. Bird Island includes a state-of-the-art sunken hide, designed to blend in with the rocks of the area. It is an important breeding site for Cape Gannets and supports impressive flocks of many coastal bird species.
If you find yourself in Clanwilliam, why not visit the Rooibos Tea Factory? Though the factory itself can be visited by previous appointment only, the shop is always open for business, and stocks the tea itself, tannin-free and high in vitamin-C, as well as soaps, souvenirs and acclaimed skin-care products.
If you are keen to increase your knowledge of the Rooibos industry you can take a Tea Farm Tour at Elandsberg. Elandsberg Farm offers guided Rooibos safaris throughout the year. Enjoy the specialised eco-safari, which incorporates the Rooibos plantations, fynbos and the unique rock formations of the Cederberg.
The region is fortunate to have three excellent wine routes available for tourists.
The Darling Wine Route boasts world-famous cellars like Cloof, Grootte Post and Darling Cellars.
The West Coast Wine Route in the Olifants River Valley incorporates the whole river area, the splendour of the Cederberg and the unspoilt West Coast. One of the giants on the route is Namaqua Wines in Vredendal, producing in excess of 35 million litres of wine annually. Enjoy a complete wining and dining experience in fantastic restaurants with expansive views of vineyards and the Maskam Mountains.
The Swartland Wine Route covers a large area stretching from Paardeberg in the South to the Bergrivier in the North. The large geographical diversity makes for wines with a distinctive character, carefully handcrafted by local vintners, showcasing the best of the area’s cultivars.
Look out for South Africa’s most uniquely situated wine farm, the Cederberg Private Cellar. Here, among the fynbos and spectacular rock formations, you’ll find the highest altitude vineyards in the Cape.