Western Cape DestinationsMontagu, Breede River Valley
Lying between Cape Town and Oudtshoorn on Route 62 - South Africa’s version of America’s Route 66 blessed with scenery to take your breath away, some of the country’s finest wines and advertised as the longest wine route in the world - is the wine-producing town of Montagu.
Known as the ‘mountain mecca’ of the Cape, Montagu lies surrounded by the Langeberg mountain range nestled between the Keisie and Kingna Rivers in the western corner of Kannaland, and is famous for her orchards, vineyards, local herbs, rock formations and healing hot mineral springs.
Montagu is one of the best examples of a late Victorian agricultural village in the Western Cape with a number of examples of preserved Cape Dutch and Georgian National Monuments - Long Street houses 14 of the town’s 22 national monuments and Joubert House epitomises late 19th century living.
The main attraction in Montagu is the radioactive hot springs, originally part of the farm ‘Uitvlucht’, on the edge of the village. Lover’s Walk - a charming passage through cliffs to the springs, was painstakingly reconstructed after a flood in 1981 completely devastated the Kloof, including the Baths complex.
The Nature Garden, which offers a peaceful and relaxing alternative to the springs, was founded in 1954 and is a joy to visit during spring when wild flowers are in bloom. Cogmans Kloof, now one of the major entrances to Montagu, was initially impenetrable until Thomas Bain built the pass and tunnel through the kloof that negotiates the Hole in the Rock, known locally as the gateway to the Klein Karoo.