I recently did a spontaneous weekend’s excursion up the West Coast to discover the spring flowers, but what I discovered instead was a ‘blooming’ and vibrant town called Darling.
Leaving Cape Town to travel along the R27, is the !Khwa ttu cultural centre where you can learn about ancient hunter-gatherers. The courteous and friendly staff at !Khwa ttu went out of their way to make us feel welcome on arrival, and the game and view is absolutely spectacular. Being a city slicker, I normally prefer to stay in a cosy chalet, but was pleasantly surprised by our tented bush camp with a variety of beautiful birds, great hiking trails and of course my personal highlight, an enclosed outside shower.
Taking the R315 is a wonderfully scenic road that will lead you into Darling. First stop of course has to be Evita se Perron “Boerassic” Park museum, where I had a good giggle at the many slogans, sculptures, art and tongue in-cheek décor.
Two very lazy and old ginger cats wonder around to welcome guests, and I was impressed with the kitty “area” that Pieter-Dirk Uys has constructed for his special ‘furkids’.
This quaint little station is a real darling, but if staying overnight, you have to make a reservation for a dinner and show with Tannie E which is mandatory.
Next stop was Darling Brew which is a craft microbrewery specalising in what they call “slow beer” in 500 ml bottles. This brewery offers fabulous beer tastings and meals with many craft beers on offer.
My personal pleasure in life is wine and our first wine stop was Ormonde Vineyards situated in the heart of this quaint town. Lovely tranquil setting overlooking the vineyards and a grand and fabulous classic manor, prepared us for a great afternoon to savour their fabulous and renowned wines.
But wine aside, what I find wonderful about travelling to any small town in South Africa is the discovery of unknown gems like Darling Sweet. If you love toffee, then this is the place to visit! A wide variety of toffees are on offer together with a beautiful display of vintage toffee tins, make this a special treat.
Leaving Darling my last stop was Groote Post. This working farm has a beautiful display of wild flowers as you drive into the farm which is ‘blooming’ spectacular.
Wine tasting, a great restaurant, friendly staff and a loyal customer of My WineRoute, is the perfect reason to make a special detour.
There is of course a lot more to Darling that awaits your discovery, but to assist you in your personal itinerary get a copy of Visitor’s Guide Flower Route showcasing the above sights and more.