If you are a firs time tourist to South Afica, or if you visited before and want to experience something spectacula, then you should consider this!From the bulb extravaganza of Nieuwoudtville to the flower fields of the Namaqua National Park, from the village blooms of Loeriesfontein to the succulent delights of Goegap Nature Reserve around Springbok and the historic copper sites in the district, this is a road trip to delight the senses.
From the bulb extravaganza of Nieuwoudtville to the flower fields of the Namaqua National Park, from the village blooms of Loeriesfontein to the succulent delights of Goegap Nature Reserve around Springbok and the historic copper sites in the district, this is a road trip to delight the senses.
The 270km trip between Nieuwoudtville and Springbok in the Northern Cape is best done over three nights in the spring months of August and September. (First, though, you’ll need to get to Niewoudtville – itself a remote little town in the southern part of the vast Northern Cape province. It’s best to drive yourself from Cape Town, which is a journey of about 350km, which will take about four hours by car.)
You’ll want to savour this Namaqualand journey for as long as possible, because you’ll be driving through a carpeted land of colourful blooms as the region comes alive with the first rains of the season.
Nieuwoudtville is more than a daisy town, however. This is where you find more than 300 species of geophytes, beautiful bulbs that have been lying dormant and then present themselves in great abundance in springtime.
One of your stops MUST be the Pakhuis Pass. About 7km out of Nieuwoudtville we come across a series of ancient glacial pavements formed back when South Africa was still part of the giant land mass known as Gondwana.
If you have time, go to Loeriesfontein until you reach the quiver-tree forest, which is famous in this area, and is one of the largest in the world. And seeing as how we’re on the road, we might as well zip up to Loeriesfontein and visit the massive wind-pump display at the Fred Turner Museum.
Heading out once more from Nieuwoudtville, we venture west towards the N7 over Vanrhyn’s Pass and into Vanrhynsdorp, the little Victorian-era town in the Knersvlakte. As you pass through the area, you will come across an intriguing mix of fynbos (a plant kingdom all on its own), succulents and wild flowers. going north to our second night’s lodgings in Kamieskroon, which bristles with exotic cameras and lenses during flower season.
Plan your next sleepover in the lodgings in Kamieskroon, which bristles with exotic cameras and lenses during flower season. Travellers come from all over the world to attend photographic workshops in the flowers, and leave with some of the finest natural images they have ever captured.
The prime attraction of the Kamieskroon area is the nearby Namaqua National Park, more than 1 000km2 of pure flora. It’s quite a dizzying experience to move through such vivid colour, laid out in vast swathes all around us.
After a fun-filled night at the Kamieskroon Hotel, go north to Springbok, in the heart of Namaqualand. First stop is lunch at the Springbok Lodge & Restaurant, where you will find out first hand where the local upwellings of flowers are.
One of these places is the Goegap Nature Reserve. Take some picnic snacks out to Goegap and drive slowly through the reserve, stopping for flower sightings and a pop-in at the Hester Malan Wild Flower Garden, which features an amazing selection of succulents.
If there’s time, drive out to Nababeep and visit the mining museum celebrating the historic copper boom that once reigned here. Or over to nearby little town of Okiep, also written O’Kiep, famous for copper mining history in the area. And there will probably be more ‘flower stops’ along the way…
This is an amazing trip, one of the most colourful trips that you will have in South Africa!!!