HESSEQUA – The Hessequa region offers some of the most off-the-beaten-track small towns or “dorpies” as it is often referred too, along the Garden Route.
Many of these “dorpies” offers a selection of top facilities to experience like wine tasting, cheese tasting, olive tasting, museum tours and public facilities like Nature Reserves and Blue Flag Beaches.
The following are ten experiences offered within the Hessequa region for under R100 per person:
1. KORENTEPOORT DAM RESORT
The Korentepoort Dam is located about 18km outside Riversdale and is accessible through a well maintained gravel road. The resort offers day visitors Bass Fishing (license required), Canoeing and Picnic areas which are ideal for a family experience.
https://www.korentepoortdam.co.za l 082 990 6611
2. WHALE WATCHING
The town of Witsand is known as “The Whale Nursery Of South Africa” due to the amount of giants flocking to warmer waters of the Indian Ocean between June and November. No boats are required as views from the beach makes for good Whale Watching.
3. TUIN-OP-DIE-BRAK FYNBOS GARDEN
The Tuin-Op-Die-Brak Fynbos GARDEN is located in Stilbaai and offers over 200 fynbos species, including medicinal plants. The garden is well maintained and also includes a sun dial, benches, fountain, nursery and a braille trail.
https://www.mystilbaai.co.za/thingstodo/tuin-op-die-brak l 028 754 1181
4. BALEIA WINES – WINE TASTING
The Baleia Wines is located along the N2 highway in Riversdale. The winery offers wine tasting with a selection of fine wines ranging from subtle reds to refreshing whites.
https://www.baleiawines.com l 028 713 1214
The Tuinplaas venue is located along the N2 highway in Albertinia and offers the ideal child-friendly environment with a restaurant, garden ceramics and a selection of child-friendly facilities like the Fairy Garden and Tiny Town. The Tiny Town and Fairy Garden will keep the young one’s entertained for quite some time while the adults can relax in the farm-like atmosphere.
https://www.tuinplaas.business.site l 082 784 0043
6. KASSELSHOOP – CHEESE PAIRING
The Old School Tasting Room and Eatery at Kasselshoop is regarded as a must-visit facility when exploring the Stilbaai region. The venue is located on the farm Soebattersvlakte, approximately 18km from Stilbaai. Kasselshoop offers cheese pairing with gin, wine, beer, port, chocolate and olives.
https://kasselshoop.co.za l 073 259 7966
7. GOURIKWA NATURE RESERVE
The beautiful Gourikwa Nature Reserve, just outside Gouritsmond, is home to some game, accommodation units, wedding venue and a light house. The venue offers a light house tour to day visitors with a outlook over the ocean. The Gourikwa Nature Reserve light house tour is ideal for off-the-beaten-track explorers.
https://www.gourikwa.co.za l 087 702 9126
8. JULIUS GORDON AFRICANA CENTRE
The Julius Gordon Africana Centre in Riversdale is home to the largest collection of Thomas Bowler paintings in South Africa and also houses a selection of Africana memorabilia, stone artifacts and art. There is no entry fee to the venue, but donations are welcome.
https://www.explorersgardenroute.co.za l 028 713 7939
9. GROOTVADERSBOSCH NATURE RESERVE – HIKING
The Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve is managed by CapeNature and is located about 20km outside Heidelberg. The Nature Reserve yields World Heritage Site status and is accessible by a well maintained gravel road. The hiking community and nature lovers can look forward to two day hiking trails ranging between 10-15km (permits required).
https://www.capenature.co.za l 087 087 8250
10. CULLA UYS NATURE GARDEN
The Culla Uys Nature Garden in Heidelberg, offers nature lovers the opportunity to relax in nature with an abundance of flora and fauna in the region. The Nature Garden also has outdoor seating areas, which are ideal for bird watchers.
https://www.explorersgardenroute.co.za l 028 713 8018