Wine, stargazing and more: These 3 hidden gems are worth a trip

Tulbagh is just an hour and a half drive from Cape Town. Picture:

Tulbagh is just an hour and a half drive from Cape Town. Picture:

Published Nov 25, 2021


Cheapflights have revealed that searches for domestic flights were up by about 294% compared to pre-pandemic times. This means that many South African want to explore their own country this summer season. While South Africa is famed for safari and beaches, travellers who want to explore the off the beaten track have plenty of options.

Cheapflights shares three hidden attractions to explore:

Tulbagh, Western Cape

Tulbagh is just an hour and a half drive from Cape Town-offering guests spectacular wine farms, mountains, valleys and all-round laid back charm,

Dubbed the fourth oldest town in South Africa, there's plenty to see and do. Spend a day at wine farms like Saronsberg and Twee Jonge Gezellen to savour the wines and views. The more adventurous can hire a bike at The Tulbagh Hotel. The routes range from easy to difficult and include pit stops for travellers to explore. If you want to spend the night, there are plenty of quaint accommodation, some boasting spas and other lavish amenities.

Sutherland, Northern Cape

There's something super charming about Sutherland. Over the years, this hidden gem has gained popularity, mainly for its culture, history and stargazing. The town, which is home to over 2000 people, offers stargazing in some of the destinations most picturesque settings. According to Cheapflights, guided sessions are hosted almost every night throughout the year.

For guests who want to sleep under the stars, camping proves to be a top attraction for guests visiting here. Other activities to try in Sutherland include Sutherland Planetarium, Blesfontein Farm or a sunrise hike.

Clarens, Free State

Clarens is one of those destinations that may seem small, but there's so much to see and do. Known as the Jewel of the Eastern Free State, the town is in the Maluti Mountains in the Free State.

Clarens is a foodie destination, offering quaint restaurants at every corner. After a morning of exploring, spend a few hours savouring the food offerings. Clementines, described as the most exclusive restaurant in Clarens, offers a vast food and beverage offering, including oxtail pie and chicken pot pie.

Or head out for an afternoon beer tasting at Clarens Brewery, one of the country’s first brew-pubs, cideries and distilleries. Its beers, including Clarens Blonde, English Ale and Stout, are among travellers’ favourite options. The adventurous can try their hand at outdoor activities like abseiling, white-water rafting, ziplining and hiking.

Bibliophile, a small family bookstore, is also worth visiting. Besides offering a selection of new, used and unusual books, you will also find stock maps, travel guides and souvenir books on Southern Africa, as well as a music section.