George holds a special place in my heart as we got engaged at Fancourt but I’ve always thought of it as just a town to pass through on the way to Plett. Last weekend, my husband was playing in a squash tournament so we decided to make a long weekend of it and joined him. I also love a good road trip! Farm stall stops, tasty snacks and good music (I currently have the Rocketman soundtrack on repeat). We always plan to leave around Oliver’s nap time which means we can knock out a big chunk of travel while he sleeps.
Squash courts are incredibly stressful places to be with toddlers given the tiered seating, stairs and lots of people so I spent a lot of time finding things for us to do (in between slipping in to support my husband before heading out again!) We stayed at the Protea Hotel King George which was 2 minutes away from the squash club which made life a lot easier. Since I had to do a lot of Googling, I decided to put together a list of a few of the things we did (and had wanted to do) in George.
Red Berry Farm: Definitely top of my list – so much so that we went back with Dad on the Monday! What a beautiful spot! The absolute highlight was the strawberry picking and Oliver had the best time. He loved trekking through the muddy fields and picking the big, juicy strawberries I pointed out for him. And the best part for me was the sheer delight on his face every time he saw one, pointed and said “WOW!!” Oh my heart! Oliver couldn’t wait to eat them and as soon as we were out of the field he ate almost the whole punnet (you are not allowed to eat in the field) There is something to be said for fresh fruit straight off the farm – so sweet, juicy and delicious.
We had a hugely decadent ice-cream from Framboos Handcrafted Ice-cream and said hello to the horses before heading back to the hotel. We went back on the Monday for more strawberry picking which ended up making fantastic padkos! They have the most incredible maze (the largest permanent maze in the Southern Hemisphere) that is both mind-blowing and completely terrifying! We just looked at it from the outside as you need a good few hours to attempt it and I actually have no idea how you find your way out of it! We stopped to feed the bunnies and played on the jungle gym before grabbing a coffee and strawberry babychino for the drive home. This is an absolute must if you haven’t been and they have something for everyone to enjoy.
Herold’s Bay/Dutton’s Cove: What an absolutely beautiful corner of the world. Herold’s Bay is so picturesque – it reminds me of a tiny European village with the houses build high up in the mountain looking down on the beach. The stretch of beach is also magnificent and we had a lovely long evening walk along the beach and promenade. If it wasn’t almost dinnertime, we definitely would have stopped for an ice-cream too 🙂
We had wanted to try Dutton’s Cove when we were in Oubaai last year but we didn’t have a chance so we made a plan this time around. They are situated right at the top of the mountain so they have the most gorgeous views looking out over the sea – and if it wasn’t so cold, you’d think you were on a tropical island! They have a little jungle gym for the kiddies and space for them to roam around. The food was tasty but not what I would go back for – the atmosphere, location and experience made it such a lovely evening 🙂
Happy Valley Kids Play Centre: This was such a lucky find as there is next to nothing open in George on a Sunday. With my husband’s first squash match starting at 8am, I had a lot of time on my hands to keep us busy! And not an easy task when not so much as a coffee shop was open… Lucky a team mate recommended Happy Valley to me and while they only opened at 10am, it meant we had somewhere to go where Oliver could play and I could get a coffee 😉 It turned out to be such a lovely morning and Oliver had so much fun he didn’t want to leave and their coffee was delicious (and comes with a homemade biscuit which always wins me over) At just R39 for 90 minutes, it made for a very affordable and fun morning!
Outeniqua Choo Tjoe: we’ve added this to our list for next time as we unfortunately didn’t get there as it is closed on Sundays. I have heard such great feedback about this transport museum and it is apparently a must-see. The Choo Tjoe used to provide passengers with a picturesque and scenic 52km journey along the Garden Route, giving them spectacular views of the ocean. In 2006 it was rendered unusable after it was damaged by severe flooding. The museum is filled with old steam locomotives, a photo gallery and private vintage car collection. At just R20 for adults and R10 for kids (under six is free) it’s another affordable and fascinating outing. While Oliver is definitely too young to appreciate the museum, I have no doubt he would have loved looking at all the trains!
Garden Route Botanical Gardens: I only realised on Sunday afternoon that this was one spot actually open on Sundays – and from 7am!! It would have been the perfect place to wander around with Oliver from very early in the morning. It looks so beautiful and has a lovely tea garden too.
What are your favourite things to do in George?