Vermont, Cape Overberg

The little village of Vermont is usually spoken of in the same breath as its immediate neighbour, Onrus, and indeed, the two lie close together on the coast where the Onrus River runs into the sea via a lagoon, just over an hour’s drive from Cape Town in the Greater Hermanus area.

Vermont borders on Onrus and on a number of green belts created in an effort to maintain the inherent tranquillity and endemic fynbos and bird life in the area. Its name, which is derived from the French words ‘mont vert’ - meaning ‘green mountain’ - is after the American state of the same name and probably refers to the Onrust Mountain, which serves as a backdrop to the village.

Vermont, a newer suburb than its neighbour, serves mainly as a holiday village, its residents making their way here primarily during holiday seasons. A beautiful coastal path stretches from Onrus along the coastline becoming what is now known as the Vermont Trail, interspersed with tidal pools and ending at the sand dunes of Brekvis (Breakfast) Bay, one of the most undisturbed beaches in the area and a perfect spot for the earliest meal of the day.

The Vermont Salt Pan, an ecologically sensitive seasonal body of water that teems with bird-life, plays host to a large population of flamingos that come here to breed - their pink wings and long legs against the backdrop of the mountain make a wonderfully scenic moment.

Nearby Onrus, famous for its artist community, is also bounded by unspoilt surrounds. It lies nestled between a sandy swimming beach popular for surfing, a great tidal pool, the mountain and the lagoon. The green belt behind the beach is relatively safe from any proposed development, making it a wonderful alternative to Brekvis Bay.

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