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Posted on: Wednesday, 10 October 2012

The Small Town Charms of South Africa

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The Charm of Darling

The Charm of Darling

The small towns of South Africa lend this diverse country so much of its charm and appeal. Many of the towns are popular tourist destinations in their own rights, but some are quiet little retreats that are almost unheard of on the global tourism platform. Local and international tourists are urged to visit the small towns in addition to big metro epicentres to get an authentic perspective of the Rainbow Nation and its people.


Darling Attractions – home of many South African artists, this is also a particularly beautiful destination during the flower-blooming season of spring. This is the famous “home” of Mrs Evita Bezuidenhout, a character that is known and loved by South African and international audiences.

Fabulous Franschhoek

Fabulous Franschhoek

Need a place to rest your head? See Accommodation in Darling

Knysna Attractions – one of the real gems of the Garden Route, this coastal town hosts a number of huge annual events (such as the Oyster Festival and the Pink Loerie Mardi Gras). It offers idyllic backdrops and breathtaking views of the lagoon and the Indian Ocean.

Looking for a place to stay? See Knysna Holiday Accommodation

Franschhoek Attractions – this French retreat is in the heart of the exquisite Cape Winelands and is just oozing history and heritage. This is the heart of good food and wine.

Need a bed for the night? See Franschhoek Holiday Accommodation

Simons Town Attractions – this naval town is full of history, particularly in terms of the South African Navy and other military units and operations. Museums and monuments abound.

Oulik Oudtshoorn

Oulike Oudtshoorn

Looking for accommodation in Simons Town?

Oudtshoorn Attractions – this Karoo town is quaint and full of Afrikaans culture. Every year, it hosts the famous Klein Karoo National Arts Festival, which is attended by actors, dancers, singers, comedians, satirists, and other respected artists from all over South Africa. It is also known as Ostrich Land, since there are so many ostrich farms in the district. Ostrich rides and products (meat, eggs, feathers and leather) are especially popular.

Find accommodation in Oudtshoorn


Nieu-Bethesda Attractions – situated in the heart of the Eastern Cape Karoo, this tiny little town is known for Helen Martins and her unusual art. She lived here generations ago and created art out of scrap glass. Her home, called The Owl House, is a treasure trove of eccentricity and wonder.

Its Nice in Nieu-Bethesda

Its Nice in Nieu-Bethesda

Need a bed for the night? See Nieu-Bethesda Accommodation

Port St Johns Attractions – nobody needs to visit the Seychelles when we have access to this tropical paradise on the Wild Coast. This getaway is favoured by backpackers and surfers for its stunning beaches and relaxed ambience.

Find accommodation in Port St Johns

Grahamstown Attractions – every year, tens of thousands of visitors flock to this university town for the National Arts Festival. Arts, crafts, food and performances are the order of the day during this festive occasion.

Find holiday accommodation in Grahamstown.

Kaapsehoop Wild Horses

Kaapsehoop Wild Horses


Pilgrims Rest Attractions – having been established in the latter part of the 19th century, this whole town is a national monument. There are a number of must-sees amidst absolutely gorgeous landscapes.

See accommodation in Pilgrims Rest for hotels and guest houses.

Kaapschehoop Attractions – a tiny, quiet retreat, Kaapschehoop is known as the home of the last wild horses of South Africa. These horses roam around freely, delighting young and old alike.

Find accommodation near Kaapschehoop at Lowveld Accommodation

Cheerful Clarens

Cheerful Clarens


Clarens Attractions – this is the home of a number of artists, and is renowned for its natural beauty and abundance as well as the fauna and flora found here.

See accommodation in Clarens for a bed for the night


Groot Marico – mampoer is a distilled liquor that is extremely high in alcohol content. This town is known for the production of this strong, but delicious adult treat.

Find accommodation near Groot Marico in Central Region Accommodation

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Amelia Meyer


Amelia is a freelance writer and editor with a passion for all things travel-related. She is based in Knysna, but has studied, lived and travelled further afield. She studied Film, Media and Literature at the University of Cape Town. She began her solo career in the form of Voxate Writing & Editing in 2008 and loves every minute of it. Amelia believes in silver linings, lessons learnt and the responsibility to do what’s right. When she is not writing, she can frequently be found at the local animal shelter, on the bicycle trails of the nature reserves or sampling new restaurants with her family.

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1 comment about The Small Town Charms of South Africa
  1. October 10th, 2012 at 16:06
    Pieter van Zyl says:

    Love the small town of Clarens and Parys,,,you can spend the whole day there and just stroll in all the shops,,, to unwind and enjoy the people around you