Clanwilliam Tourist Attractions
Clanwilliam, situated in the fertile valley of the Olifants River, is an attractive little town with a number of buildings in Cape Dutch style which draws visitors not only for its own sake but also for its nearness to the Cedarberg range.There were a few settlers in this area as early as 1732. The little town was founded in 1820, and is thus one of the oldest in the country. A common plant in the surrounding area is the rooibos ("red bush"), whose dried leaves are used to make rooibos tea, a tannin-free tea rich in vitamin C which is now widely exported.A few of Clanwilliam's earliest buildings have survived, among them the prison and the house of an Irish settler.
North of Clanwilliam R 364 winds its way up to the Pakhuis Pass. 37km/23mi from Clanwilliam a side road runs south to Wuppertal. In 15km/9mi a poor track goes off on the left to the Bidouw Valley, which is famed for its bizarre rock formations and the splendor of its flowers in spring (August and September).
Clanwilliam Dam, an artificial lake created by the damming of the Olifants River, is a popular resort, particularly in summer (fishing, water sports of various kinds). The Olifants River, whose water irrigates the plantations between Citrusdal and Clanwilliam, rises in the hills northwest of Ceres and flows into the Atlantic to the west of Klawer. When the first white man reached the river in 1660 he encountered a herd of elephants: hence the name Olifants (Elephants') River.
Rooibos Tea Factory
A common plant in the area surrounding Clanwilliam is the rooibos ("red bush"), whose dried leaves are used to make rooibos tea, a tannin-free tea rich in vitamin C which is now widely exported.The Rooibos Tea Factory can be visited by previous appointment.
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