Altes Landhaus is an oasis in the Little Karoo set among lush gardens
Altes Landhaus is a hundred year old farmhouse that was originally built as a rectory for the local church. The house is surrounded by beautiful gardens and is set among the grandeur of the Swartberg Mountains as a backcloth. In season (normally October / November) the soft lilac blooms of the Jacaranda trees add a distinctly exotic touch. This is a small, exclusive hotel with seven suites and two double rooms. The owners provide every luxury and the rooms are air-conditioned. Dinner can be provided on request.
About Altes Landhaus’ Location
This is an excellent base from which to explore the surrounding countryside and Little Karoo region. This is the centre of the once booming Ostrich industry producing feathers and leather for the fashion industry. At the turn of the 1900s, vast fortunes were made supplying the fashion houses in Paris, London and New York. Wealthy farmers built grand houses known as Ostrich Palaces. A number of these still exist and remain Ostrich farms that you can visit and learn about these fascinating creatures. You can buy Ostrich products such as belts, purses, shoes and handbags. You will be paying a fraction of the price you will pay in Europe or North America. From Altes Landhaus it is a short drive to the world renowned Cango Caves. Here you can experience the main cave system with relative ease but for the fit, there is also an extended trip which will introduce you to more challenging caving – not for the faint-hearted or those who suffer from claustrophobia! While you are here, you should drive the spectacular Swartberg Pass. This is a gravel pass with sweeping views over the little Karoo in one direction and the great Karoo in the other. At the other side of the pass you can visit charming Prince Albert which seems to be caught in a Victorian time warp. It is also the centre of South Africa’s olive industry and you will also be able to indulge your taste buds in some excellent restaurants. Be sure to try the Karoo lamb!
You can also visit South Africa’s Port capital of Calitzdorp where there are a number of wineries where you can taste the product.