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Posted on: Wednesday, 23 June 2010

A night in Napier

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Napier Patat Festival

Napier Patat Festival

We spent part of this weekend just gone in Napier, a quaint town in the Cape Overberg Region.  The original reason for our visit was to enjoy the festivities of the Napier Patat Festival but our late arrival meant we missed out on most of the stalls and exhibitions.  However, the town had a lot to offer nevertheless!

We checked into our wonderful guest house; Peace Valley which is run by Lorna Young.  The accommodation is massive and although there is sleeping space for a number of guests we had the place to ourselves.  The garden of Peace Valley is beautiful with two fairly large dams a focal point and a great place for the resident Labs to swim!

Napier town is full of interesting shops, restaurants and buildings.  It was great to see how the residents had got involved in the Patat Festival with scarecrows in various ensembles propped up throughout the town!  We stopped off first at Pascal’s for a bite to eat.  Pascal’s serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and is a little spot of bohemia!  The food was great and I particularly like the décor of the place – for me it was a slice of Paris in the Overberg.  We could have sat there for hours but it was a sunny day and we decided to ditch the lacklustre performance of the Springboks for a historical walk of Napier instead!

Napier

Photographs – Left: The Good Food Cafe / Right: One of the original houses, still in use today.

What a clever idea this was; so often you pass through small country towns and wonder what the history is – well this was an answer to the questions.  We met the rest of the small group partaking in the walk outside the Good Food Café and started on our way.  Immediately across from the meeting point was one of the original residential buildings in Napier – built in 1839.  This small house is still occupied today and our tour leader pointed out how the house was built below street level so that water could be channelled down to the houses for domestic use!  A lot of these old houses have stepladders up to attic doors – so quaint!

Another interesting building is the now restored Feeshuis, one of the oldest buildings in the town.   This building was used as slave quarters from 1810 to 1820 but as it’s next door to the Dutch Reformed Church it’s now used for Sunday school lessons instead.

Napier photographsPhotographs – Left: Original slave quarters for Klipdrift Farm / Right: Original Klipdrift Farm Homestead

We chose The Fox, a traditional olde English pub for dinner on Saturday night and visited the Farm Stall on Sunday morning after a delicious breakfast at Peace Valley, but that’s another story …

Napier is a wonderful country town with friendly, helpful locals.  We had a wonderful visit and are planning a trip back to this part of the world in December.

If you are from Cape Town and decide to visit Napier make sure you take the scenic route back home and venture along Clarence Drive.  The scenery and views are well worth the extra few kilometres.

Useful Napier Links:
Napier Attractions
Things to Do in Napier
Napier Photographs
Napier Accommodation
Western Cape Accommodation

Helen Rushton

About 

After living in London and travelling the world for many years and more recently living in the Mother City, I now reside on a tranquil sugar cane farm in Kearsney; an area steeped in the history of South Africa’s sugar industry. During the summer months I get involved with the community by assisting the local primary school with swimming lessons at our country club. Some of my favourite things are reading or picking freshly grown vegetables and Iceland poppies in our garden. Milly, my boxer loves her walks to the river that runs through our farm and sometimes, Sandy the cat I hand reared, joins us for a stroll!

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1 comment about A night in Napier
  1. September 23rd, 2010 at 12:26
    Ove says:

    Your article about Napier… Please allow me to help you with the one caption, the ‘original house’ … was only built after the church (after 1928) and was until recently the pastorie (parsonage) of the DR church.