The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Oudtshoorn

Afrikaans name: Oudtshoorn

Oudtshoorn CBD

Oudtshoorn CBD

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Western Cape

Oudtshoorn was established on the farm Hartebeestrivier in 1853. The town is named after Baron Pieter van Reede van Oudtshoorn who became ill and died at sea, on 23 January 1773, en route to the Cape where he was to become Governer. Originally products such as tobacco, grapes and other fruit were produced in the area but that all changed with the boom in demand for Ostrich feathers.

In the 1880's the town boomed from the huge demand for Ostrich feathers and Oudtshoorn became the Ostrich capital of the world. In the 1900's the demand faded but Ostrich products are still produced in the area. Other farming activities include tobacco, wheat, lucerne, honey, dairy, wool and mohair.

Several grand buildings built during the Ostrich era still stand and have been declared as national monuments.

The CP Nel museum shows a collection of items from the old way of life. Another place of interest is the CP Nel Town House.

The home of CJ Langenhoven, called Arbeidsgenot, can be visited.

Other places of interest nearby include the Ostrich Show Farms, Greystone Game Park, Cango Crocodile Ranch and the world famous Cango Caves.

The suspension bridge over the Grobbelaars River was built in 1913 and is a national monument.

CP Nel Museum

Above - CP Nel Museum

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Bank in Oudtshoorn

Above - Old building now used as a bank

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Jaami Masjid Muslim Temple

Above - Jaami Masjid Muslim Temple

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Jewish Synagogue

Above - Jewish Synagogue (1888)

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Ostriches near Oudtshoorn

Above - Ostriches in the fields near Oudtshoorn

Photo © Johan van Zyl

Ostriches near Oudtshoorn

Above - Beautiful scenery in Oudtshoorn district

Photo © Johan van Zyl

References and further reading

Things ewe never knewe about South African place names - Author: Ann Gadd - Published: 2015 - Page: 161

Southern Africa from the Highway - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1991 - Page: 134

The Pictorial Motoring Atlas of South Africa - Author: Maxwell Leigh - Published: 1987 - Page: 46

Road Tripping South Africa - Author: MapStudio - Published: 2014 - Page: 59

Readers Digest Illustrated Guide to Southern Africa - 4th edition - Author: - Published: 1986 - Page: 119

Places to Visit in Southern Africa - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1995 - Page: 300

Places to Visit in Southern Africa - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1995 - Page: 304

Places to Visit in Southern Africa - Author: AA RSA - Published: 1995 - Page: 312

On Route - A region by region guide to South Africa - Author: B.P.J. Erasmus - Published: 1995 - Page: 73

go! - Issue 161 - Author: - Published: 2019 - Page: 23

Hit the Road - 2nd Edition - Author: MapStudio - Published: 2018 - Page: 87

Farm Stall to Farm Stall - Author: Jennifer Stern - Published: 2014 - Page: 48

go! - Issue 085 - Author: - Published: 2013 - Page: 50

Farm Stall to Farm Stall - Author: Jennifer Stern - Published: 2014 - Page: 47

Country Life - Issue 218 - Author: - Published: 2014 - Page: 45

Country Life - Issue 212 - Author: - Published: 2014 - Page: 84

Book of the Road - 4th edition - Author: MapStudio - Published: 2019 - Page: 135

Conollys Guide to Southern Africa - 2nd edition - Author: Denis Conolly - Published: 1982 - Page: 114


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