Wellington, steeped in history and tradition, has a magical atmosphere
that will captivate you once you discover the town, its people and
its myriad of attractions. Originally known as Limiet Vallei (border
or frontier valley), the area became known as Val du Charron or
Wagenmakersvallei (Valley of the Wagon Maker) towards the end of
the 17th century when the French Huguenots settled here.
After the eventual establishment of the town in 1840, the name
was changed to Wellington in honour of the renowned soldier and
conqueror of Napoleon at the battle of Waterloo.
Nestling at the foot of the Groenberg, the town lies in a picturesque
valley on the banks of the Kromme River with the majestic Hawekwa
mountains silent sentinels on its eastern border. The town is a
mere 45 minutes' drive from Cape Town and within easy reach of all
the other Boland towns.
Wellington is, of course, known for its educational institutions.
Huguenot College, an institution of the Dutch Reformed Church, offers
training to students in social, youth and missionary work.
Apart from fine cuisine and pleasant accommodation, visitors to
the town can discover a magnificent legacy of historic buildings,
may venture into breathtaking hikes or visit one of the cellars
on the wine route for a relaxed wine tasting. Just a few of the
reasons why a visit to Wellington should not be missed.
The Wellington Information Centre is housed in the Old Market Building
which dates back to 1847. The bell in the adjoining clock tower
dating from the same year, used to announce to the town's inhabitants
that the day's marketing activities were about to start.
A visit to Wellington's berry farm is an absolute must. Strawberries,
Raspberries, Youngberries as well as Cape Gooseberries are grown
here. Visitors can enjoy guided tours as well as their own herry
picking. Delicious jams and herry vinegar can be purchased.
The fact that the majority of South Africa's vine cutting nurseries
are found in the Wellington area, is due to the excellent soils
and climate of the region. Of course the town is also the home of
the Wellington Wine Route and the seven wineries are all open for
wine-tasting and sales.
Wellington also has a few hiking trails and scenic drives to be
enjoyed. There are a number of hiking trails and picnic places in
the mountain and some of the most exquisite species of wild flowers
can be seen at certain times of the year and Bains Kloof Pass offers
an unsurpassed kaleidoscopic view.
The Horseshoe, a favourite route with joggers and bikers, takes
one past many of the old Huguenot farms with their magnificent Cape