Spring is clearly on its way with flowers popping up everywhere and the increasing sunnier days. Everyone seems to be talking about the flowers this year and there're even flower reports and sightings on the news!
I've never been on a flower mission before but this year I decided it was a must, I couldn't miss out any longer. We headed to Darling on the last weekend of August. Flower season is typically from the end of August through till October. And while we may have been a bit early, I think a visit to Darling is always worthwhile. The Darling tourism site describes the town as “Only an hour from Cape Town… but a million miles away!” and I couldn't agree more. The town is delightfully quaint and is famous for its wild flowers. It's a must on any flower initerary.
Where to see the flowers
When you're flower searching make sure that it is a bright, warm, sunny day. Otherwise you're bound to be disappointed as the flowers will be tightly shut. Who knew they were so tempremental. There are a couple of small wild flower reserves that are scattered around the town. They are easy enough to find and are free to enter. They could probably get quite crowded but the flowers and scenery are still beautiful none the less and there are little paths you can walk on amongst the flowers.
About 20 minutes outside of Darling and perhaps one of the most famous places to see the flowers in the Western Cape, is Postberg in the West Coast National Park. The grounds are literally covered with blankets of flowers. While Postberg is beautiful it definitely will get crowded on the weekend and cars will be piling in so make sure to go earlyish. Unfortunately when we went it was quite chilly and overcast so not many flowers were open. At least it wasn't too crowded and we could still have a nice picnic on the lagoon.
Spring in the Western Cape also means that the canola fields turn golden and the yellow fields just look amazing. I was constantly amazed every time we passed a yellow field. And while the flowers aren't exactly 'wild' they're still beautiful and I'm sure the farmers won't mind too much if you pop over the fence just to take some pictures.
Where to stay
The Granary Petite Hotel is an obvious choice in Darling. It's comfortable, tastefully done and has everything you would want (plus it allows dogs). A stay includes breakfast at the hotel's Chicory Cheese cafe and on Sundays when the cafe is shut, they give you a voucher for The Marmalade Cat (my favourite!). I loved stay at the Granary and I'd highly recommend it.
In the area
There's lots to do around Darling and keep you entertained from museums and theatres to sweet shops and breweries. We were a bit too busy flower hunting to make the most of what the town and area has to offer but we did manage to pop into the famous Darling Brew brewery and check out the beach at Yzerfontein, The Marmalade Cat restaurant is definitely a must for a breakie or a lunch.
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