Enjoying the country side
Favorite thing: The countryside around Oudtshoorn is remarkable especially the area towards George. Stop, breathe the fresh air, take a walk around and check the lovely field plants that grow in the area, just relax and enjoy whatever you do.
Favorite thing: This plant is typical of not only this area, but the entire region. It is cactus-like in looks, and has orangey red flowers when in bloom.
It is hardy and succulent, in a land where the toughest only often survive.
Having said that, this particular area of the Little Karoo is like a little oasis, where the earth is kinder on the vegetation.
These aloes pepper the hillside as one drives along... I really like them. Reminds me I am HOME :)
- National/State Park
What is an ostrich?
Favorite thing: A fully grown ostrich towers over the average man. They are very strong, and fast!
They can do some serious damage if you have ruffled their feathers (so to speak!).
They mate between April and September - the cooler months - mainly, but may also conceive other times of the year.
The male ostrich makes a hole (more like a shallow trough), for the female to lay her eggs in. She will lay anything between 10 and 16 eggs in all.
They hatch in about 42-44 days.
Males are the more beautiful of the specie, with black and white contrasting feathers... and females are more mousey brown and greyish in colour.
What is interesting with ostriches is generalyl the female loks after the eggs herself.. but in their case, the male and female take turns... the female often looking after them during the day, and the male at night.
- Farm Stay
Favorite thing: Oudtshoorn is a lot bigger than I expected to be honest. It is the biggest town in the Little Karoo.
It is fondly called the 'ostrich capital of the world' :)
The people here are friendly and welcoming generally. Afrikaans is mostly spoken but they do speak and understand English, so dont worry about arriivng and not being able to communicate with the locals!
It is a town that has the most sunny days of any other place in the country too.
The town is named after Baron Pieter van Rheede van Oudtshoorn, who was enroute to Cape Town to become the new Govenor, and he didnt quite get there! This took place in 1773.
It has a couple of lovely monumnets, namely the C.P. Nel Museum and Le Roux's Townhouse, and offers tradition, culture and fun to the visitor.
- Farm Stay
- Historical Travel
The Little Karoo
Favorite thing: This area is in a little oasis-type part of the Karoo, which is mostly desert. The soil is fertile, the land rich.
They grow crops like lucerne, tobacco, fruit, grapes and various types of grains, and these flourish due to this region having the most sunny days a year than any other region in the country.
It has the majestic Swartberg mountain range on the one side and characterfilled Outeniqua mountain range on the other.
A beautiful spot and a must-see!
- Farm Stay
R62 Brandy Route
Favorite thing: This route is quite a new route, and includes six brandy cellars and one museum on its route.
The R62 Brandy Route has become quite popular of late, a good accompiament to the ever-popular wine route!
This route takes you to Worcester, Barrydale, Oudtshorn (photos) and De Rust, to name a few.
These towns are full of picturesque and character-filled buildings with historical architecture.
- Wine Tasting
- Beer Tasting
- Road Trip
Favorite thing: They are farmed for their feathers and meat, which is a sad thought, but reality.
I am not much of a red meat eater, but do enjoy some ostrich meat now and again... makes it difficult though, having met some of these fine beasts.
Their eggs are also cleaned out, and sold as plain eggs to be painted on, or local artists paint on them and sell them to tourists. This is a huge trade here.
Their feathers are also used for making hand bags. Very popular with visitors, but I could never buy one. I couldnt carry one around with me.
Same concept as wearing a fur coat.. a no no for me.
- Farm Stay
- Family Travel
Some facts about an ostrich:
Favorite thing: Something you always wanted to know about an ostrich but where afraid to ask:
* Males have black and females grey feathers.
* The males sit during the night on the eggs and the female during the day.
* The brood time for an egg is 42 days.
* An Ostrich lays approximately 12 eggs.
* One egg weighs 1,5 kilo.
* It takes about 1,5 hour to hard-boil an egg.
* The world record to eat a hardboiled egg is 6 minutes and 40 seconds (1985/1986).
* An ostrich egg contains 24 chicken eggs.
* The stomach of an ostrich contains about 1,5 kilo stones. These help the degusting of the food.
* Each year one can gather 1,5 kilo of ostrich feathers.
* A grownup ostrich weighs about 100 kilo.
* An ostrich skin is recognizable by the feather markings on the surface.
* An ostrich can hold a speed of 80 km/h over a short distance.
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