Garden Route Tourist AttractionsThe Langkloof Valley
Part of the Cape Fold Belt, the Langkloof Valley and Mountains are a short range of mountains that serve as a link between the Tsitsikamma and Outeniqua Mountains. In the valley below is an area that stretches for some 160 kilometres that is ideal for growing fruit, particularly apples and pears, but there are other varieties as well.
Dotted in amongst the fruit trees of fruit farms in the area, are a selection of little towns – Haarlem, Avontuur, Misgund, Joubertina, Kareedouw, Louterwater, Krakeel and Assegaaibos, most of which lie on Route 62.
Joubertina is the main business town, formed initially on the Langkloof farm - one of few towns in the area where the original law prohibiting the sale of alcohol is still entrenched, but not necessarily in evidence in the town.
Every one of the towns originally clustered around a railway station, a series of houses, a church and a school that evolved from the initial introduction of farmers to the valley during the late 18th century. Today the towns are much the same, some of them larger, others virtually as they were when they appeared in amongst the incredible mountains that surround the valley, both north and south of here.
The Apple Express, the future of which remains uncertain and which runs infrequently today, links the towns of the valley and when it operates is well worth a trip for the sheer joy of riding on a narrow-guage railway line and for the incredible views. It is the longest narrow-guage railway in the world today.
The area is rich with fynbos, over 2000 species of which lie in the Langkloof valley. As a result there is an incredible bird life and the Langkloof Valley is a hiking mecca. The Formosa Nature Reserve is also in the valley, between Misgund and Kareedouw.