West Coast Five Day Itinerary

Our suggestions for a self-drive, five day trip up the Cape West Coast with ideas on what to do and where to stay

Western Cape Tourist AttractionsThe West Coast Five Day Itinerary

Anyone with any knowledge of the flowers will tell you that to see them at their best, you need to drive with the sun at your back. What this means is that you should drive all the way up to at least Vanrhynsdorp or Nieuwoudtville to start your route.

Where? Niewoudtville, Lamberts Bay, Clanwilliam, Paternoster and Darling in the Cape West Coast

Best? Spring and Summer

Overnight? See Cape West Coast accommodation, in Western Cape

Note that this is a Five-day itinerary for the West Coast – IN flower season!
The flowers are best viewed between 11am and 15pm.

Day one:

Head up to Nieuwoudtville from Cape Town, without any stops, no matter how tempting. This will take you most of the day. Really start drinking in the scenery on leaving Vanrhynsdorp and taking the Vanrhyns Pass via the Bokkeveld escarpment to Nieuwoudtville. Did we say 'no stops'? Take time to explore the succulent nursery at Vanrhynsdorp if you can. Overnight at Nieuwoudtville accommodation.

Day two:

Explore Nieuwoudtville, the Falls, the Hantam National Botanical Garden, the quiver tree forest (no flowers here, but the quiver trees will have you mesmerised), the local community's bulb nursery on the edge of town, and even the church's gardens. Everything comes up flowers at this time of year. Overnight at Nieuwoudtville accommodation.

Day three:

Drive to the town of Clanwilliam. The countryside all around here will be filled with wild spring flowers. Clanwilliam serves as the centre from which to do numerous short flower routes – Graafwater, Lambert's Bay, Leipoldtville and the Biedouw Valley. Also visit the Ramskop Nature Reserve above the town's dam. Overnight at Clanwilliam accommodation.

Day four:

Drive from Clanwilliam to Paternoster. It is a shame not to experience something of the seaside whilst on the West Coast, and Paternoster is the epitomy of West Coast living. Spend some time exploring one of the West Coast's most beautiful seaside villages. Filled with quaint, whitewashed homes, many of them still original fisherman's homes, the beach, the restaurants and the lifestyle. There is plenty to do in Paternoster, and even the local corner café is something of a deli to cater for visitors. Overnight at Paternoster accommodation.

Day five:

Spend the day in and around the charming town of Darling. It is known as the wildflower jewel of the West Coast, and for many Capetonians is where they come to experience the flowers in season. Vist the Renosterveld Reserve, the Tienie Versveld reserve and the Duckitt Orchid Nurseries. If you decide to stay, find Darling accommodation options to suit all budgets.

Popular Attractions near to the West Coast

West Coast Three Day Itinerary


Three-day itinerary for the West Coast – OUT of flower season. Leave Cape Town via the R27 – there is a lot to do en route and day one is jam-packed. Look out for the Darling Wind Farm, something of a demonstration project - you cannot...

More info and contact details: West Coast Three Day Itinerary

Hantam Botanical Garden


Hantam National Botanical Garden is regarded as one of the world's most special biodiversity treasures, and forms the first National Botanical Gardens in the Northern Cape Province, and the ninth National Botanical Garden in South Africa...

More info and contact details: Hantam National Botanical Garden

Knersvlakte Nature Reserve


The Knersvlakte is acclaimed for its magnificent white quartzite gravel, and the myriad of succulent species, some clearly visible and some secreted by impressive rock formations. Of the 1 500 plant species in the Knersvlakte, about 190 species...

More info and contact details: Knersvlakte Nature Reserve

Did you know?

Paddle the calm of the Paternoster bay on double, sit on top, Epic kayaks with all safety gear and paddles supplied, weather dependent (includes short beach briefing to prepare). Launch from the main beach and follow an easy course.

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