54 Jan Van Riebeeck Road, Oudtshoorn, South Africa
More about Oudtshoorn
The sign of great food!
Hills near Oudtshoorn
Garreth and Rian and the Hippo
Travel Tips for Oudtshoorn
The Klein Karoo National Arts Festival
Every year in March / April the Oudtshoorn is transformed into the cultural capital of the region.
It is a festival that promotes Afrikaans and also Rural Cultural activities and combines all aspects of Art, Film, Cabaret, Theatre, Dancing and other parts.
What had started in 1994 as a small gathering of artists today enjoys interational sponsorship and during last year was also honoured by a visit of the South Africa President Thabo Mbeki.
Oudtshoor is well known for its ostrich farms. There are lots of them everywhere, and you'll be able to see them as you aproach the town. The tours are OK: lots of info on ostriches and some other stuff. The fun thing is to get on top of the ostrich, and if you weigh less than 80 k, then you'll be able to ride it! Be careful though, you'll probably fall.
This rock formation is known as the Organ Pipes for obvious reasons.
The lighting in the caves such as the illumination for this formation is only turned on as vistors are in any particular cave and turned off again as they leave. This is because it is believed that light encourages growths on the rock which in causing lots of damage and stopping the stalagtites and stalagmites from growing.
Several ostrich show farms offer entertaining daily tours and demonstrations during which one can learn about the history and use of these birds, their life cycle and about how they are farmed. Curio shops on the farms and in Oudtshoorn specialise in the finest ostrich leather, ostrich meat and ostrich feather products.
Oudtshoorn, Center of the Klein Karoo
"Ostrich Capital of the World"
Although the town itself is not so very, very impressive -- it reminded me a bit of Eureka, Nevada, actually -- there are some rather extraordinary things to see and do.
First, there are a number of ostrich farms, which are open to the public. Oudtshoorn was the source of most of the ostrich plumes used in the wild and wonderful hats of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and these super-economy-sized birds made many in the town rich.
Second, about a half-hour's drive outside of town are the Cango Caves, one of the world's larger cave systems. If you're into subterranean adventure, these caves are a must. Don't miss them!
Neither my wife nor I will forget the silly antics of the ostriches. A bird with a brain smaller than one of its eyes, they're apt to do just about anything. While sittng in the front row of a sort of mini-bleachers used by the farm to show off their charges, one bird was brought up very close and placed in a sort of chute so that people could ride them. Fine. We had a fine time watching people climb on, then promptly fall off again. However, while attempting to take a few pictures, the blasted bird noticed a button on one of the epaulettes of my travel vest, and very neatly pecked it off! It's a rather odd experience seeing an ostrich beak heading straight for your head!
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