The Tulbagh Immersion


Recently, I had an opportunity to visit and stay in Tulbagh for a weekend. When travelling to the Western Cape, a visit to the village of Tulbagh is highly recommended. Not only is this town famous for the earthquake that nearly destroyed it 50 years ago but also for its quaint old town charm – quite fitting for the fourth oldest town in South Africa. Nestled in a bowl framed by mountains on three sides, the village of Tulbagh dates back to the 1700s and is now steeped in a rich history and culture. Keep on reading to see what this town has in store.

One of the best ways to experience the town is by staying at the Tulbagh Boutique Hotel. We recommend a two to three-night stay. This centrally located property dates to 1859. The welcoming hospitality and the friendliness of staff will make you feel right at home from the moment you arrive. 

Despite having the appearance of a small sleepy town, Tulbagh is in fact buzzing with activity. Karee Wine Bar at the hotel serves the best gin cocktails you’ll ever have and dinner at the Olive Tree Bistro will not disappoint.

We took a step back in time and joined the local historian and heritage activist, Jayson Clark, for a Historic Tulbagh Walking Tour. As we meandered down age-old Church street and explored some of the interiors of many of Tulbagh’s heritage buildings and 19th century streetscape, the sheer beauty and charming nostalgia of this town just left me in awe. The enthralling story tells the history of Tulbagh as an outpost of the Cape Colony through the age of pioneers and colonists as well as the development of the Cape vernacular architectural style.

The fun didn’t stop there. Other activities, to name a few, included olive and olive oil tasting at Oakhurst Olives, a spectacular wine tasting experience at Saronsberg Wine Cellar, Krone MCC tasting at Twee Jonge Gezellen as well as ziplining through the Ceres Mountains with Ceres Zipslide Adventures.

Escape to a scenic and historically rich town, only an hour and a half’s drive from Cape Town and immerse yourself in all that Tulbagh has to offer – the town known for its natural beauty, simplistic lifestyle and hospitable town folk.