The quaint town of Darling is situated on the West Coast. It is small, with an old-fashioned, laid-back ambience that lends it a charm beyond description. Its homes, people and rural lifestyle ensure that the entire town is reminiscent of yesteryear. However, Darling is also especially pretty. It is surrounded by rolling hills, each laden with green vineyards. Wheat fields that give the entire countryside the golden hue of fertility stretch on for miles.
While small and relatively quiet, the infrastructure of Darling is more than sufficient. There is everything necessary for locals and tourists that are based here while exploring the beauty of the Western Cape. The combination of being a peaceful retreat with plenty in the way of infrastructure has made Darling an ideal hub for creative minds, such as artists and writers, who need to explore the creative crevices of their minds for inspiration.
Those wanting to enjoy a real taste of Darling should consider exploring the little town on foot. Visiting the antique shops, art and craft shops, and outlets that supply plenty of keepsakes and mementos is sure to give you a very different perspective of this charming destination. For refreshments, visit any one of the hospitable coffee shops or restaurants to “refuel”.
Darling does not experience the very hot summers that other parts of South Africa do. The average summer high is 24 degrees Celsius. Winters are chilly and fairly wet, but never reaching the point of being extreme.
The Darling Museum is dedicated to the history and heritage of this little town. Because much of this area was, originally, dedicated to agriculture, there are pieces of the original farming equipment on display. The Darling Stagger is a 2.5 day walk that combines walking and cycling with food and, most importantly, wine (hence the reference to staggering). This showcases the beauty of Darling with plenty of fun and socialising included.
Evita se Perron is a theatre, restaurant and sort of museum founded by famous comedian and satirist Pieter Dirk-Uys. His alter-ego, Evita Bezuidenhout, is the resident of this little haven of all thongs delightfully kitsch. There are a number of shows hosted in the theatre, starring the much-loved “Tannie Evita”. The kitchen produces some of South Africa’s favourite dishes.
Due to the gorgeous surrounds, Darling has many reserves situated around it. These include:
- Buffelsfontein Game Nature Reserve
- Bird Island Nature Reserve (just off Lambert’s Bay)
- Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve
- Elandsfontein Private Reserve
- Groot Winterhoek Wilderness Area
- Grotto Bay Coastal Nature Reserve
- Renosterveld Reserve
- Rocherpan Nature Reserve (especially for those wanting to catch sight of a whale)
- Tienie Versveld Reserve.