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Welcome to Stanford
Tucked away in the Overberg valley it is one of the Cape’s best kept secrets, the village of Stanford. Found in 1805, this small hamlet with its Cape Victorian and Edwardian heritage is the perfect getaway not too far from the City. A mere 2 hours’ drive from the Mother City (Cape Town) you find yourself in a friendly little piece of countryside where farm markets and old traditions reign supreme.
This picturesque town is truly an awe-inspiring piece of art waiting to happen. With the mighty mountains on one side, Walker Bay a stone’s throw away and the Klein River meandering through the town, this is a natural paradise. Naturally, this hidden gem has become a popular retreat to the scurrying city folk and local artists. The quaint coffee shops and eateries also provide an enjoyable pit stop on the way to Cape Agulhas and the Overberg attractions in between.
The village of Stanford is also the only town in the Overstrand to be classified as a heritage site and holds the world’s shortest river as the crow flies, the Klein River. Short as it might be from origin to ocean, the steady flowing river is still approximately 80km of winding river and produces many hours of fun and adventure to young and old alike. The river is especially popular for its boat trips, along with bird watching, kayaking, fly fishing and general relaxation.
Originating at the Hartebees River, the waters divide between the Onrus River and the Hartebees/ Klein River and flows east towards Caledon. From the farm Diepgat, near Caledon, the river turns South and then West as it flows through Stanford and finally joins the Atlantic Ocean at the Klein River lagoon. The lagoon, also known as “Kleinriviersvlei” is approximately 10 km long and 2 km at its widest. This river with all its branches serves as a true life-giving source for the plant and animal life in area and of course, its human inhabitants.
No doubt thanks to the enriched waters of the river, the town boasts with wonderful fresh produce. All this fresh produce, home-made and –baked goodies and unique crafts can be admired and indulged in at the town’s famous farm markets. The monthly Friday evening and weekly Saturday morning markets create a festive atmosphere of true belonging and visitors are welcome.
The friendly town also holds various little shops, boutiques and eateries to snoop around in. You might find an interesting piece of history in the antique store or discover your new favourite restaurant or drink. The town’s shops and restaurants all come with friendly hosts and the ability to make time disappear.
The truly homey town still holds that essence of brotherhood and the goodness of helping out your fellow man without asking for something in return. The streets are safe and mostly still dirt roads, making you feel lost in a time long gone. The river delivers “lei water” for cooling off, irrigating your crops or the most popular, for kids to have paper boat races on. A true community based village where everyone still greets you when you pass by in the street or at least tilts a hat. Warm friendly faces all around and loads of grazing farm animals to go with it, Stanford is based in goodness.
So if you’re looking for an escape from the hub-bub of the city and to flee to the essence of nature and good old family values, you’re in luck. Stanford is the perfect small town for a good holiday, a fun breakaway and a peaceful home to settle in.