Monday, November 16, 2015

Altyd Water - Rawsonville

Last month we decided to try somewhere new to us and decided on Altyd Water (It translates as "Always Water) on a farm near Rawsonville just behind the Du Toit's Kloof Winery. There was not too much information available on the internet other than their Facebook page but it did look very nice. We booked our usual midweek 4 nights from a Monday to Friday. It was only just over an hours drive from us so we arrived there a bit earlier than expected but this was not a problem as we had the place to ourselves, other than one other overnight visitor who arrived late on Monday and left early on Tuesday morning.

The campsite is unusual in that there are no marked out sites. There are several electricity boxes spaced out around the campsite and you just choose where to camp wherever you like. The campsite is on the banks of the Smalblaar river, which although not very deep, has crystal clear water and is great for swimming in a few of the deeper pools. There is a cenetral Lapa/Entertainment area with shade cover, benches and basins with taps, so we pitched near this.
The whole site has several trees for shade a lush and green grass in a very beautiful setting.

Here are a few photo's

Crytal clear water

 View from the campsite towards Worcester.

Views around the camsite and farm.

 Looking back at the campsite from downstream.

The ablutions are in one block behind the campsite and get 5 stars.
On the left side there are 2 showers and 2 toilets with wash basins. On the right hand side there are 2 bathrooms with a shower, toilet and wash basin in each. In the centre there is a washing up area.

We had very nice weather except for the Wednesday, when it was cloudy and it rained quite heavily in the evening. However on Thursday morning it cleared up again nicely.

We went into Rawsonville one day to buy a few essentials that we had forgotten to pack. Not a great experience. There are only a few very run down and small supermarkets/cafes there. It is best to take everything with you unless you are prepared to drive all the way to Worcester.

I spoke to the farmer and he advised that if you have a group they will allocate the whole site to you for a weekend if you have 20+ people in your group. Otherwise they do not allow more than 40 people per weekend.

Definitely going back here one day.

New update..... We have returned for another visit in April 2016 and I made a video with a camera drone. I have uploaded it to the log and it shows as a new post.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Silwerstrand Robertson

It has been a while since I updated this blog. Since my last post we have been camping a few times to Leentjiesklip and eventually over a long weekend in September we went with the Trekkers, Laarger 8 to Silwerstrand in Robertson on the banks of the Breede River for 4 nights.

I understand that the campsite is now managed by Antionette, the owner of the Montagu Caravan Park, who has many years experience and does a wonderful job. We arrived around lunch time and were personally shown to our site by a very friendly and helpful staff member. The access road was tar nearly all the way with the last 150 meters or so being gravel. This was not a problem, however a Northerly wind blew for the most part and the other users of the road tend to speed up and down, causing huge clouds of dust to blow over the whole campsite. Maybe a couple of severe speed bumps might help with this. 

It did not take us long to set up and we relaxed and waited for the others to arrive. We had our inflatable Standup Paddle Boards which we inflated and also went for an paddle up the river. Once you crossed a narrow channel upstream there was quite a long and lovely stretch that was navigable. Since we took our boards to Klipkrans in April this year, a few of the other members of the Trekkers have also obtained SUP's.

On the Friday we visited Excelsior Wine estate to go and buy some wine and ended up having a very nice lunch in their restaurant. It seems to be the marketing strategy in the area for wine farms that also have restaurant facilities to have not only very resonable prices for excellent food but to also sell the wines in the restaurant at cellar prices. It seems to work very well for the local tourism industry in the area.

Over the weekend the weather got even better, the dust subsided and we spent many hours on the river and braaing in the evenings with the other Trekkers.

Even though the campsite was fully booked for the weekend, it did not feel crowded as it is very well spread out. The main ablutions were pretty old and dated, but were cleaned regularily. There is a much newer and smaller ablution block near the fron entrance. I think they do plan to upgrade the main ablutions shortly.

On the Sunday morning, which was our last day, we woke up to rain. We were contemplating staying another night to let our camper dry out. However, by late morning the weather cleared up, so we quickly packed up and departed for home.

There is quite a lot of competition for campsights in the area, so next time we will probably try one of the other campsites but am sure that we will be going back to Silwerstrand sometime in the future.