Themika is a working fruit, wine and olive farm that lies in the Tulbagh Valley, 10 Km outside the Historic town of Tulbagh. The farm is nestled at the foot of the Saronsberg Peak and Winterhoek Mountains and offers spectacular views of the surrounding areas. For a relaxing, peaceful getaway, we offer 3 rustic, free-standing cottages on the farm, perfectly situated for guests to explore various sites and activities in and around Tulbagh.
The first thing you need to know about Tulbagh, discovered in 1658, is that it is the 2nd oldest town in SA and it has the largest concentration of provincial monuments … all in one street! And you also need to know it has extreme temperatures ….. snow-capped mountains in winter … 40+ temperatures in summer !
The beautiful site of masses of white roses greets you as you enter the town. This is a community venture by Dream Tulbagh and the roses were planted by locals and are being cared for by a team of local ladies. Another venture is the Community gardens in Church Street. Fresh produce are sold to residents on a weekly basis. The monthly Country Market is packed with local’s stalls selling fresh produce, arts and craft and other goodies you won’t find anywhere else.
Take a stroll down Church Street, exploring the 32 national monuments there …. Original Cape Dutch and Victorian architecture painstakingly restored to its original form after the devastating earthquake in 1969. Some of these buildings now house museums (no less than 5!), B&B’s, restaurants, galleries, gift shops, etc. You will find a plaque in front of every house, telling you about its history of over 300 years.
Tulbagh also boasts Saronsberg Theater where some of SA’s top bands, singers and actors perform. Across the road from the rose park is Tarzan shoes, an unimposing building but a peek inside reveals hand-made leather boots, shoes and sandals – all manufactured on the premises by locals. Peek in at a deli, gift shop, restaurant, the hotel and other quaint shops in the main road (van der Stel Street)
Tulbagh lies in one of the most beautiful and fertile valleys in the country where peaches, pears and 70% of the country’s plums are grown. If you take a drive down the Winterhoek road during Spring, you will be surrounded by orchards full in bloom ranging from snow-white to deep pink blossoms, and a few months later, the branches are heavily laden with fruit. Then you realize where it all comes from when you buy it in the supermarket! Prunes are also cultivated in the valley – natural and sun dried, as well as numerous other sun-dried fruits. Sample a variety of olives and virgin oils
The valley has 11 wineries which produce some of South Africa’s finest wines – so wine-tasting at the various cellars is a must! You may sip a glass of organic wine at Waverley Hills wine farm. Pop into Saronsbegr and Rijks wine cellars to taste their award winning wines. Love sparkling wine? Well, there is Twee Jonge Gezellen’s flagship Krone Cap de Classique. Not to mention the well-known Mont Pellier estate, Drostdy, Tulbagh Winery and up and coming Lemburg cellar. Bicycles at one of the farm are to rent if you would like to go wine tasting at the various cellars, by bike
Kimilili cheese is on the road just past Montr Pellier and boasts a local cheese maker.
You can go for chocolate tasting at Monniki, (Het Huis van Waveren in Church Street) with tea, coffee or Amarula … for breakfast if you like!
The valley is surrounded by the Saronsberg peak, Winterhoek, Witzenberg, and Obiqua mountains and the Waterval mountain range down south. They provide a spectacular site in winter when covered with snow
Tulbagh has become a sought-after wedding destination. Various farms have quaint wedding chapels and together with the old-world charm of the valley with its warm hospitality, create a beautiful setting for memorable weddings
For a relaxing facial, mani- or pedicure out in the country, there is a day spa at one of the farms where the daughter makes natural products from fynbos – body lotions, soaps, massage oils, body butters and lots more. Alma at Tulbagh Hotel also offers massages and other treats for a relaxing day
One of the most amazing sites to see, is Santa Claus on a fire truck, Christmas lights and decorations, and everything else that goes with Christmas … only, its IN JUNE when the town hosts “Christmas in Winter”.
The Arts Festival is held in September when local artists as well as artists from other parts of the country, exhibits their work. At various venues on farms and in town, Concerts, plays, tours and talks are also hosted Then there is the annual event that proudly displays two of Tulbagh’s most prized assets … the Horse and Wildflower show. In November, at the Drostdy-Hof Christmas market, you can purchase handmade gifts
There are several professional artists in and around Tulbagh. A must-see is the incredible gallery of Vasek Matousek on the Winterhoek road.
There is also Annette Barnard’s studio and gallery at Paddagang in Church Street … as well as the Christo Coetzee Meuseum.
The Saronsberg private art collection at Saronsberg Cellar is also not to be missed.
Some of the farms including, Themika Guest Farm, have cycling trails … some of these trails host the Absa Cape Epic and MTN mountain bike races.
Spectacular hiking trails at Waterval and Murludi Hiking Trail Permits available at the tourism office.
Horse About … down Wolsely way, offers moonlight rides during full moon, as well as sunrise and sunset trails. Then there is Tulbagh horse trails on the Winterhoek road.
Local photographer, Norman Collins offers Photographic tours. I mean, really, by this time you would want some photos of the beautiful views as well as some of the farm activities. – booking essential.
Tulbagh is truly a destination for all seasons.
The locals are friendly, extremely helpful, and very hard-working and they live in the most beautiful valley on earth (yes, I am prejudiced!) … But come and see for yourself.