Oudtshoorn is home to the world’s largest population of Ostriches! Seeing (and eating) an Ostrich is a must when passing through town. In addition to everything Ostrich, there are a number of other things to see and do while in the area.
Things To See & Do
1) Congo Caves
The caves are millions of years old, but were first discovered in 1780 by some Dutch. A visit to the caves must be done through one of the two tour options (Heritage and Adventure Tour) that operate daily. We elected to take hour long Heritage Tour and enjoyed the leisurely stroll through the caverns and learning more about the history of this natural phenomenon. Reservations are required (email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
2) Cango Ostrich Farm
A trip to Oudtshoorn would not be complete with out a visit to one of the many ostrich farms. (Chose one of the show farms: Cango, Safari or Highgate.) If you choose you can feed or even ride one of these unique birds, as a part of your tour.
This pass which links Oudtshoorn and Price Albert provides some of the most spectacular scenery around. Allow ample time and be prepared for a slow going drive over the unpaved road. Return via the paved road, which is longer in distance but shorter in time. (It too is a very scenic and beautiful drive.) Watch the weather and plan your trip accordingly.
4) Karusa Winery & Brewery
The establishment is a winery and one of the few craft breweries that we have encountered in South Africa to date. In addition to wine tasting (no beer tasting) you can enjoy a light lunch. Our favorite wines were the Shiraz/Cab, Grenache Noir/Shiraz/Mourveder, and their 5th Element Syrah/Viognier. Kevin was also a fan of their Zwartberger (amber ale) beer.
5) Cango Wildlife Ranch
Interested in Croc Cage Diving? Then this is for you. The Wildlife Ranch is also home to cheetahs, lions, leopards, and white bengal tigers.
6) Rust & Vrede Waterfall
A waterfall that is located about 11km off the R328 not far from the Cango Caves. We attempted to visit the waterfall on a rainy day and made it all the way to the entrance only to find that it was closed, due to the rain!
7) Wilgewandel Holiday Farm
We did not choose to visit the holiday park, however the key draw is to ride a camel. We drove by and snapped a few pictures of the camels from the road.
8) CP Nel Museum
Located in town, this museum is dedicated to providing history of the Ostrich industry. (We did not visit during our stay.)
9) Meerkat Adventures
Rise early (meets before 6am) and sit in a field waiting for the meerkats to make their appearance and move through their morning rituals. Note: Weather matters. Meerkats do not make an appearance in rainy weather. Due to the weather, the expense, and our time limitations, we did not elect to take this tour.
The restaurant specializes in Karoo cuisine. We would highly recommend based our fantastic dinner. We followed a local’s recommendation to eat either lamb or ostrich while in Karoo. We ordered the lamb stew, an ostrich burger, and a bottle of the Fairview (La Capra) Pinotage. We throughly enjoyed all three. The food was so good that we even considered eating there two nights in a row.
2) Karusa Winery
The Karusa Winery & Brewery serves cheese platters, meat platters, and light lunches. The food was good for lunch and we enjoyed sipping a glass of wine / beer by the fireplace on a rainy day.
3) Bello Cibo
The food was average and the atmosphere was just okay. Personally, we would probably not visit again and would try one of the other recommendations we received instead.
Other recommended options, that we did not visit include: Jemimas, The Colony @ The Queens Hotel, Su Casa, and Buffelsdrift Game Lodge.
Karoo Sun Guesthouse
We enjoyed our two night stay at this modern B&B. Our hosts were friendly, rooms are spacious, modern, and clean. Although we never used it, the honesty bar and common ares (including pool and grassy yard) were an added bonus.