Western Cape DestinationsGrabouw, Cape Overberg
Reaching the town of Grabouw entails a mere hour’s drive from Cape Town over the Hottentots Holland Mountains with a descent into one of the most beautiful valleys in the Western Cape - the Elgin Valley - filled with flowers, fruit, fynbos and wine.
Grabouw lies in this green paradise, sandwiched between the Groenland and Kogelberg Mountains, with enchanting stretches of forest, vineyard and orchard as far as the eye can see. This is apple country - 65% of South Africa’s export apples are produced in the fertile valley and this has earned it the international reputation as the ‘valley of apples’. The valley is also home to the now famous farm, Applethwaite, on which Edmond Lombardi created the pure apple-juice drink that became known as Appletiser in 1966.
The locals refer to Grabouw as Elgin-Grabouw, probably because the local railway station, called Elgin, is better known than the town renowned not only for its apples and fruit but also for its wine and roses. Grabouw was named after the village in Germany, Grabau, by Willem Langschmidt who created the town on the farm Grietjiesgat in 1856. The father of some 23 children, Langschmidt and his wife - who also managed, between giving birth - to run a little trading store, Willem was to sell off parts of his farm, which later led to the little farming community of Grabouw. Today the town has become a commuter town for those wanting to live the country lifestyle and a perfect day trip from Cape Town, particularly as it is only 70 km outside of the mother city.
Grabouw holds its annual festival at the country club with some of the most incredible views over the Eikenhof dam at the foot of the Nuweberg. Thousands of visitors descend on the town at this time of year to sample the flowers, fruit, wines and local products. Grabouw is not far from the coastal towns of Gordon’s Bay, Kleinmond and Hermanus, and Strand and Somerset West are only a short drive away.