Swellendam is the third oldest town in South Africa (after Cape Town and Stellenbosch). The town has over 50 provincial heritage sites, most of them buildings of Cape Dutch architecture.
The Dutch East India Company founded the town of Swellendam in 1745 as the last outpost of civilisation on the eastern frontier. By the middle of the 19th century, British settlers had colonized the eastern districts and Swellendam became a thriving centre.
Swellendam is a bustling tourist town offering visitors a variety of accommodation options.
The Hermitage Valley is the largest youngberry producer in the country and visitors are invited to visit some of the farms and taste the liqueur and other berry products on offer.
Swellendam is also famous for the picturesque Koornlands River, its many ancient oak trees which line the streets, the Cape Dutch architecture with their thatch roofs, stately whitewashed homesteads.
Outdoor adventures and activities include backpacking in the mountains, the Marloth Nature Reserve, the Bontebok National Park and the De Hoop Nature Reserve. Visitors can also tour the wine route of the Breede River Valley, Montague and the Klein Karoo.
A picturesque 9 hole golf course with magnificent views of the Langeberg Mountains can be found just outside the town.
Other activities in the Swellendam area include: canoeing, water-skiing and the “watersnake” on the Buffeljachts Dam, Pot Se Vlot’s double dekker river boat on the Breede River and Two Feathers horse trails. The area is a nature lover’s dream with an abundance of wild flowers and fynbos to be seen.
Swellendam is the gateway to the Garden Route.
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