A DAY IN THE MOUNTAINS

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Baviaans mountain route - 

NB – Not recommended for vehicles that have low ground clearance and /or have low profile tyres. 

 

Although it is possible to do the whole of this route in a day, if you start early, the likelihood is that you will want to linger and enjoy what the gardens have to offer. The scenery is awesome and the driving can be tiring, so be prepared to prioritise and edit your plans as you go.

Leaving Bedford, travel west on the R63 and take the turn to the right (BGF board).  

You could stop at the historic Glen Lynden churches then head for Skelmkloof farm  garden - it will take you slightly over an hour from Bedford. One of a kind, this is an arid Karoo type garden with a quirky sense of humour and wonderful hosts, who will offer you teas and lunch. Ask about the Cape parrot breeding programme. Francois can also tell you about the geology and fossils found in the area.

Your next stop could then be Huntly Glen for one of Ernest Pringle’s fascinating talks and an intro to his famed butterfly collection.

Definitely don’t miss Eildon with its magnificent garden that will beckon you through its six different ‘rooms’ each with a unique character and more happy roses than you can imagine. Ploughman’s Platters are on offer for lunch on Fri, Sat & Sun.

Travelling back down the valley, you could stop at Lynedoch before turning right into the Seekoei Valley to visit the family-friendly Moolman gardens - Glen Ross and Belmont. Refreshments and warm hospitality await you at both homesteads.  

There is one last treat for the day: tea (or lunch) in the rose-filled De Klerksdal garden which you will reach by driving back towards the old churches and then turning right. 

Bid farewell to the route at De Klerksdal and turning right to reach the tar road (link off the N10) after about 1.5km on gravel . NOTE:  If you reverse this last section of the trip, the De Klerksdal farm gate is such a short distance on gravel that you could consider this as a pop-in even if your vehicle is not robust enough for the remainder of this itinerary.

Bedford Gardens 2019

 

BELMONT Ria & Henry Moolman  087 7003 440 Entry: R20pp. Tea.

DE KLERKSDAL Helena and Pieter de Klerk 084 517 5151 Entry:  R20pp. Tea, lunch Fri, Sat & Sun

EILDON Barrie & Alex Pringle 046 685 0706 Entry: R20pp LUNCH Fri, Sat & Sun - ploughman’s platters.

GLEN ROSS  Danél  & André Moolman 087 702 1234 Entry: R20pp, Refreshments.

HUNTLY GLEN  Butterfly collection & talks Anne & Ernest Pringle 046 685 0706 Entry: donation

SKELMKLOOF Hilda & Francois Marais 046 685 0632 Entry: donation. Tea, lunch Fri, Sat & Sun 


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    Engulfed in the mountain landscape, Danél has created a tranquil family garden. Her love for roses is very evident in this oasis where ducks, bantams, dogs and her children enjoy space and freedom.
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    This established, informal country garden is situated on an old family farm. Helena’s love for roses is very evident as you stroll along the curved beds massed with annuals, perennials, shrubs and a feast of roses in a myriad...
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    The Glen Lynden Churches are located in the Baviaans River valley north of Bedford. The old church was built in 1828 by the government through the influence of Thomas Pringle for the Scottish Settlers and their Dutch neighbours.
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    Eildon will be serving lunches on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Lunch is a Ploughman’s Platter served al fresco in sublime surroundings. Wine available. Cash only (The proceeds go to the Bedford Care Group).
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    Visit Huntly Glen Farm on the Baviaans Mountain Route for a fascinating butterfly talk by Ernest Pringle and a glimpse of his renowned collection Friday at 14.00 or 16.00 or on Saturday and Sunday 10.00 or 12.00
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