Linger a while in Lambert’s Bay
Lambert’s Bay started out as a small and humble fishing village, much like all the other fishing villages along the Cape West Coast. Today, however it is known as the Diamond of the West Coast and one of the major tourist destinations year-round because of the moderate climate.
Here Seafood is king. In all its wondrous variety, the plentiful seafood has made the town into the prosperous community it is today. Fisherman come from all over when the snoek (Cape Barracuda) run. This unique tasting fish is delicious slow-cooked on an open fire, basted with lemon juice and apricot jam …
The bay boasts long stretches of pristine white beaches perfect for strolling along. It’s also an interesting place to watch divers bring out their catch of crayfish and perlemoen (abalone) and just generally soak up the peace. The two and half-hour trip from Cape Town is worthwhile even if you do nothing else but come watch the dolphins or the yearly visits by the Southern Right Whales from July to November.
Lambert’s Bay caters well to all the varied needs in accommodation that the influx of visitors require with an upmarket hotel and tasteful guesthouses, hospitable B&Bs, fully equipped self-catering flats and chalets and for the outdoors enthusiasts there are camping and caravanning facilities with all amenities (see West Coast Accommodation).
What I truly love about Lambert’s Bay is that they have made the change over from fishing village to thriving tourist destination without giving up the character of the town. You have professionally run tourist industries of organised boat trips to go seal and dolphin watching, the 4×4 trails, the yearly Crayfish Golf Classic tournament, the smoothly organised holiday programs for visitors and the Lambert’s Bay Crayfish Festival that bring Capetonians in their droves every year.
All this, yet the people of Lambert’s Bay have stayed humble, down to earth and totally community orientated. Sitting on the beach around a ‘swart drie-poot pot’ (heavy three-legged cast iron pot) as waiting for the crayfish to cook; surrounded by sun and sea, good friends, good wine and nature at its best, one starts to understand just how valuable this diamond really is.