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Citrusdal Snapshot

Hanekom, Van Zyl, Valencia and Aspalathus Linearis (Rooibos tea to the uninformed) are the dominant species in this little town set invitingly on the far side of Piekernierskloof Pass. In contrast to its namesake, the fragrant Citrusdal Valley, the town of Citrusdal is as the name suggests: you know, a little dull. It serves mainly as an economic hub for the region’s farmers who spend a lot of time gazing at their Navels (and Valencias), in an ongoing quest to satisfy the fussy overseas customer with the perfect orange. So while the town itself is not the place to base yourself, the comely valley stretching out for miles on both sides most definitely is.

Things To Do

  • Physical exertion in and around Citrusdal involves hiking, biking, skydiving, canoeing on the Olifants and eyeballing rock paintings. The jacked tourism office will be able to point you in the right direction for most of these activities.
     
  • Citrusdal is your gateway to the southern Cederberg and the outdoor pleasures found among its craggy folds. Before heading out to the area do yourself a favour and purchase Peter Slingsby’s excellent, Cederberg – The Map. Whether hiker, biker, rock-arter or casual tourist passing through the area, you will find this annotated map extremely user-friendly. Available from Exclusive Books in and around Cape Town.
     
  • The town once had 11 possible mountain bike routes traversing cultivated farmland and fynbos mountain. Most have long since fallen into disuse, but, if interested, contact the tourism office for an update of where you can and can’t ride.  
     
  • The Baths is blissful therapy after a hard day’s slog on bike or foot. Day visitors are permitted and there is a hot- and cold-water pool, as well as several indoor jacuzzis.
     
  • If you have time, explore some of Citrusdal’s tar and dirt byways, among them the Paleisheuwel mountain drive leading off Piekernierskloof Pass, and the dirt road to Ceres (R303), which cleaves a wondrous path through the Koue Bokkeveld.
     
  • The Uitspan Coffee Shop on Voortrekker Weg is a good bet for coffee and light meals. It shares space with Citrusdal’s tourism office and dishes up light day fare, including omelettes the size of carpets and decent burgers. Dinner is limited to Patrick’s, a local flavour of the day and owned by a rosy-cheeked Irishman with an Afrikaans accent. Popular for steaks, pizzas and other satisfying 70’s throwbacks like avocado ritz and garlic snails.
Getaways in and around Citrusdal
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From
R200pp

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