Witzenberg Valley

Landmarks / Popular Tourist Routes in or near Tulbagh, Cape Winelands in the Western Cape, South Africa.

Western Cape Tourist AttractionsWitzenberg Valley

Where? Getting there: It's only 90 minutes' from Cape Town.

Overnight? Stay in Tulbagh, in Western Cape

The Witzenberg Valley is a huge basin lying in amongst four mountain ranges. To the west is the Nuwekloof Pass and the valleys stretching from Tulbagh to Wolseley, including Ceres and the area up the Gydo, Theronsberg and Swaarmoed passes (Warm Bokkeveld).

Its surprisingly high altitude sees it lie deep in amongst the characteristic folds of the Skurweberg, twenty odd kilometres north of Ceres.

The Witzenberg Pass takes one from the summit of the Gydo Pass into the valley, a road that passes through a neck in the craggy sandstone mountains, before opening out into the valley bright with the green of deciduous fruit orchards.

The pass is not a road frequently travelled as it ends only in the Witzenberg Valley, but it is clearly sign posted from the summit of the Gydo Pass, off to the left. You will know you are in the valley when you pass the Tru-Cape welcome sign, but before that you catch a glimpse of the green of the valley as the pass evens out.

This is the heart of some of the oldest fruit producing orchards of the country, specialising in apples, peaches, plums, pears and grapes. Which is why Witzenberg Valley is also known as the 'Valley of Abundance'.

Included in the valley are the towns of Wolseley, Tulbagh and Ceres, Prince Alfred Hamlet and Op-die-Berg, the Warm Bokkeveld, Koue Bokkeveld and the Ceres-Karoo, stretching between the Groot Winterhoek Mountain and the Hex River Mountains.

During winter the surrounding mountains are peppered in snow and the valley is often known as Little Switzerland.

There is so much to do, as a visitor, to the valley, that you could stay for a month and not even skim the surface - wine, fruit and olive farms, weekly and monthly markets, fig picking in Wolseley, Christmas in Winter Festival (June), restaurants, historical monuments, hikes, mountain biking trails, 4x4 routes, bird watching and plenty of accommodation.

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