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Paarl is one of those very few places in the world which has everything to offer a visitor. In addition to the beautiful natural surroundings, Paarl is one of the oldest towns in South Africa. The streets are literally steeped in history dating back to the early Dutch settlers. Add this to the gourmet delights and award winning wines on offer to visitors and one really does have it all available in one place.
The quaint shops that line the sidewalks of this attractive country town offer an array of locally produced merchandise and other items of interest to the many visitors. Whether you enjoy viewing the local artwork on display in the galleries or relaxing over a coffee, the town of Paarl offers an ideal escape from the hustle and bustle of the bigger cities.
In addition to being an attraction on its own, Paarl is an ideal base from which to explore the Overberg of the Western Cape. Renowned for its food and wine, Paarl is often referred to as the gastronomic capital of South Africa. There are many fine restaurants in the surrounding area offering haute cuisine to enhance the experience of those fortunate enough to visit this attractive and interesting region of South Africa.
Visitors to Paarl are struck by several things when they arrive – the beauty of the Breede Valley, the pristine clear blue sky, the rolling vineyards and the Pearl of Paarl set high above the Valley. Paarl Mountain or the Pearl of Paarl are an impressive unique set of huge round granite rocks which glisten in the sunlight after a shower or rain, giving the appearance of massive pearls.
The small wine lands town of Paarl is found a short 44 minute drive from the Cape Town metro. Arriving into Paarl the family holiday starts with the sighting of the world famous Paarl Rock, an exceptionally large granite outcrop which is believed to be approximately 550 million years old. The dome shaped rock was originally named by in 1657 by Abraham Gabemma to Pearl Mountain or Peerleberg. The Paarl rock is now world famous recognisable landmark of Paarl with its exquisite wines, incredible Dutch styled accommodation venues and breath-taking country side.
The holiday town of Paarl is situated is the sunny winelands region of the Western Cape surrounded by mountains and vast green vineyards as far as the eye can see. Established in 1657 Paarl is the 3rd oldest town in Southern Africa but has always kept its small town country charm. Paarl has also firm roots established by its founders in the Afrikaans culture; this is evident in the construction of the Taal Monument or Afrikaans Language Monument in 1975.
In the bustling eleven kilometre long main street of Paarl the budget family holiday conscience visitor can view a wide variety of building resorted to their original splendour, these include buildings dating back to the Victorian, Cape Dutch and Georgian era. Amongst some of the remarkalble buildings is the oldest South African Dutch Reform Church, Die Strooidak Kerk and Ceres Accommodation house constructed in 1693. The Paarl museum is also a must see with artefacts dating back to early African man, European slavery, Colonisation and modern day Apartheid.
Paarl is naturally a premier South African wine producing town with and this is where we find the KWV or Kooperratiewe Wynbouers-Vereniging 22 hectare cellar, making it one of the largest in the world. Numerous wine tours can be booked directly from you Paarl Accommodation establishement and these will cover various wine farms growing grapes such as Pinotage, Shirazand Cabernet Sauvignon to the white grapes such as Chenin Blanc and Chardonnay. Large internationally recognised wine farms such as Nederburg, Klien Constantia, Simonsvlei and Backsberg Estate can also be visited on wine tasting tours whilst on holiday in Paarl.
Besides the wine farm tours the town of Paarl offers numerous city based entertainment venues such as shopping centres, a recently upgraded cinema complex, a modern medical centre and various top quality restaurants and taverns in and around the city centre. Accommodation suitable for all budgets ranging from camping, self-catering to upmarket bed and breakfasts and hotels are available in Paarl and surrounding areas.
Attractions in and around Paarl:
- The award winning restaurants and such as the Grande Roche Hotel and world famous Bosman’s Restaurant.
- Art galleries, curio shops, The KWV and other wine tasting venues.
- Hot-air ballooning (November to April only) – Float with the wind.
- For the Golfer Paarl is the ideal place to stay Boschenmeer Golf and Country Estate
(with 27 holes) and Pearl Valley golf estate.
- Butterfly World – The largest tropical butterfly park in Africa where butterflies fly freely in a beautiful covered garden.
- Drakenstein Lion Park – A sanctuary for captive born lions.
- Arboretum – 700 species.
- Bien Donné – Orchard and herb garden tours.
- Jan Phillips Mountain Drive – drive to “The Pearl of Paarl” at your own leisure.
- The Land Rover Experience – Off-Road training and conferences linked to 4X4 driving.
- Floradale – Hiking trail in Du Toitskloof Mountain Pass.
- Afrikaans Taalmuseum – Home to the youngest language in the world.
- Afrikaans Language Monument – an imposing structure (also on the mountain) – reaching into the deep blue sky – a beautiful clear resonating language – fascinating the European visitor.