Congratulations to Deidre and Lara Strydom, Xplorio Gansbaai’s first ever competition winners.
Known as a true coastal gem of the Overberg, the village of Arniston/Waenhuiskrans is a beautiful time capsule of our rugged coast’s past. With such a rich history, we thought you might enjoy these interesting facts about Arniston:
- The town was originally named after the nearby Waenhuiskrans Cave.
- Legend tells that the Cave is big enough for an ox wagon and a full span of oxen to turn around inside.
- The second part of the town’s name came from the HMS Arniston which shipwrecked here in 1815.
- It is the only town in South Africa with an official double barrel name which was officially recognised in 1981.
- Arniston/Waenhuiskrans was established as a town in 1922.
- The nearby renovated hamlet of Kassiesbaai was declared a National Heritage Site in 1986.
- Kassiesbaai along with the adjacent dunes of Dollas Downs have been declared a Grade 1 Nation Heritage Site called the Waenhuiskrans Cultural Landscape.
- The nearby Marine Reserve was also established in 1986 and stretches 12km into the ocean.
- The natural Waenhuiskrans Cave, believed to be the biggest coastal cave without a supporting pillar, can only be reached during low-tide and best done with a guide.
- Another lesser-known ship that also met its end on the rocky shores of Arniston is the Queen of the Thames.