The weather all over South Africa is changing and it’s time to cuddle up to the one you love next to the fireside. Where better to do so than in one of these top cozy towns in South Africa?
Here are our top five cozy towns to keep the winter chills at bay:
Greyton is one of the smallest, quaintest towns in the mountainous area of the Overberg, Western Cape. Known for its artsy feel, Greyton was established in 1854. Prior to its establishment, the town was home to the Hassequas khoikhoi, a local tribe of South Africa. In Greyton there was originally an abundance of sheep and cows and in the 1600’s Ensign Schriver came from the Castle of Good Hope with the hopes of trading. Today, Greyton is well-liked by South Africans and foreigners alike. However, it is mostly an undiscovered gem for those seeking refuge from the bustling city of Cape Town. The endless ravines, mountains and farmland make this the ideal place for outdoor lovers.
Franschhoek is a popular small town in the Western Cape meaning ‘French Corner’ since the French Huguenots once occupied the area. Today, Franschhoek is one of the oldest towns within South Africa and it forms part of the wine lands area and other similarly popular wine regions including Stellenbosch and Paarl. Lovers of architecture will appreciate the Cape-Dutch style houses that dot the landscape. This sleepy hollow has a haven of beautiful guesthouses and also has some of the country’s top restaurants and wine farms. It is thus highly popular with foodies and connoisseurs the world over.
Situated more deeply in-land as opposed to Greyton and Franschhoek, Matjiesfontein is a quirky little town in the semi-desert area of the Karoo. The town’s name means ‘fountain of little reeds’ and it once had a Victorian spa and beauty resort. Matjiesfontein was a respite for those with lung ailments due to its healthy, stable climate. Today Matjiesfontein is still known for its Victorian charm with beautiful architectural facades dating back to the 1800’s. You’re sure to meet highly interesting folk on your trip to Matjiesfontein – there is a diverse mix of people and cultures so uniquely intertwined.
If you want an exquisite setting with incredible views then opt for a trip to Matroosberg, the highest point in the Hex River Valley in the Western Cape. The Matroosberg Private Nature Reserve offers an awe-inspiring view of snow-capped mountains as well as fantastic hiking routes for adventure lovers. There is also a 4x4 route and a myriad of camping sites. The Matroosberg Private Nature Reserve is 35 kilometres from Ceres, another exquisite sleepy hollow region.
Hogsback is a town situated within the Amatola mountain range in the Eastern Cape and is said to have inspired Tolkien’s ‘Middle Earth’. These are the most luscious of mountain ranges. Their greenness is due to their situation – on the edge of the Cape coastal mountain range close to the ocean. The Amatola Mountains are magical because of their extensive green forests, lush vegetation and indigenous trees. Furthermore, these mountains comprise waterfalls, inspiring views and multitude of ravines. There is even a six-day hiking trail for walkers.
What’s your favourite cozy town in South Africa? We’d love to hear what you think below.