Louis Leipoldt's Grave

Landmarks / Memorials in or near Clanwilliam, Cederberg in the Western Cape, South Africa.

Western Cape Tourist AttractionsLouis Leipoldt's Grave

Where? Cederberg Wilderness Area entrance, Cederberg, Western Cape

Overnight? Stay in Clanwilliam, in Western Cape

Just as one enters the Cederberg Wilderness, on the R364 not even ten minutes' outside Clanwilliam, is a sign indicating Louis Leipoldt's Grave.

It is a little difficult to see if you're driving from Clanwilliam. It's easier to look out for when driving from the other direction. But if you know to look out for it on the left just as you reach the Pakhuis Pass, then you will find it.

Louis Leipoldt was christened Christian Frederik Louis Leipoldt, but was always known simply as C. Louis Leipoldt, the South African poet who wrote in Afrikaans (and whose poems don't easily translate into English for their beauty).

He was also an avid botanist and wrote novels, plays, stories, children's books, cook books and a travel diary. He was best known for his poetry, however (considered one of the greatest Afrikaner poets), and his work as a doctor.

His life was interesting and his career varied. Born the son of Christian Friedrich Leipoldt, a preacher of the NG Kerk in Clanwilliam, his grandfather was the founder of Wupperthal in the Cederberg, and his mother also the daughter of a missionary.

Despite his chosen career as a doctor, his love for cooking and the plants of the Cederberg began when he spent much of his childhood at the knee of the family cook who taught him the medicinal properties of herbs.

This love for food was to continue and, whilst studying to be a doctor, he trained under the French master chef Auguste Escoffier.

His cook books included: Kos vir die Kenner (food for the Connoisseur), Leipoldt's Cape Cookery, Three Hundred Years of Cape Wine, and Polfyntjies vir die Proe (Token for the Tastebuds).

Visible from his grave in a little cave just off the road (there is plenty of space for parking) are the three peaks Faith, Hope and Charity named such by Leipoldt.

Hiking Trail: The sandy path leading off to the right is a trail that takes you in amongst a few of the huge sandstone rocks of the area and into the plateau below. The downhill, circular walk is lovely and not difficult, and eventually joins a jeep track that brings you back to the R364 just down from the grave.

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