En route to the Klein Karoo, indulge in a valley bursting with fruit
The soft light of dawn cascades over the Langeberg mountains. Amber peaks and the trill of birdsong signal daybreak to the residents of Montagu. A breeze carries the sweet fragrance of the orchards and vineyards through the quaint streets and surrounding rocky terrain. In this Western Cape valley famed for its fruit, there are charms to indulge every taste.
Considered the gateway to the Klein Karoo, Montagu lies between the Keisie and Kingna rivers. Apples, pears, peaches, apricots, and grapes grow in abundance within the Koo valley. Whether pickled, packed fresh, or dried in the sun, fruit is the town’s most renowned export. Every Saturday, locals sample the sweet produce alongside homemade pies, cakes, and pickles at the morning market in Euvrard Park. But nature’s candy is best enjoyed straight off the tree.
Among Farmer Redbeard’s orchards and grapevines, thousands of dancing bees collect pollen. The hum of their movement adds to the melody of the valley. They convene at the hive to pass nectar to one another, not long before the beekeeper arrives to gather the golden combs. Just outside of Montagu, a trip to this apiary is complete with honey tasting and a tractor ride.
High above the farms, eagles soar. These mountains are the perfect hideaway for birds of prey. The piercing silence is disrupted only by the occasional grunt of a climber. With hundreds of climbing routes, Montagu is known as the Mountain Mecca of the Western Cape. From the 500-metre Lover’s Walk to the challenging Bloupunt trail, there is an adventure for every fitness level, all year round.
Two hours from Cape Town, just beyond the Cogmanskloof Pass, friendly faces greet you on arrival. An array of farm stalls sit against a panoramic landscape. This valley is a mélange of health, heritage, and happiness. Welcome to Montagu.