From Good Friday on 19 April to Family Day on Monday the 22nd, South Africans are in for the last long weekend until Youth Day public holiday on Monday, 17 June. If you can, it’s worth putting in a few extra days’ leave at work in order to make the most of the time off until we enter the colder winter months.
So, how to spend the mini-holiday? Sitting at home is not going to cut it, but you don’t exactly have enough time at your disposal to plan a big trip to an international destination either.
Enter the transcendental Karoo village of Prince Albert in the Western Cape. The nearest airport is in George (95 kilometers from the village), so even if you live up north, getting there need not be an arduous trip.
The village boasts a large variety of accommodation options, ranging from old colonial farmsteads and secluded cottages a few kilometers away, to guest houses and a hotel located smack-dab in its center. Whether you’re looking to rough it and camp out or to be treated to old-world Karoo luxury, there’s an option that will cater to your specific desires.
The past few years have seen the popularity of the village soar for many reasons, and two major factors that have contributed to its appeal is:
1) What’s on offer for the outdoors adventurer. The village and surrounds sports some incredible hiking trails and even a park run. But what is particularly prominent is the reputation of the area as a cycling mecca. If you feel like bringing your mountain bike and treating yourself to some incredible off-road Karoo trails, be sure to contact Prince Albert Cycles for some recommendations advice and cycling gear.
2) The village is home to various artists, all masters of their craft in their own right – from metal forging and photography to calligraphy and rug weaving. If you feel like picking up something special to take home, be sure to pay the local Prince Albert Gallery a visit.
Speaking of which, the village also has more than enough to satisfy the shopper in you. Pick up some Karoo fauna at Renu-Karoo Nursery and Nursery Shop, visit the Prince Albert Olives’ factory shop to get the award-winning olive oil straight from the source, or pick up something pretty for your home at Cinnamon&Grace.
Prince Albert is also home to world-renowned restaurants. Whether you’re in the mood for freshly baked goods, classic pub-style fare or authentic, home-grown-Karoo cuisine, there’s an eatery to suit your palate.