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Cycling in Tulbagh valley

Cycling in Tulbagh valley

Last weekend, Jon and I drove in the Volvo to Montpellier to stay in a simple cottage in the vineyard.

It was so pretty with the autumn coloured red and gold vines in front of the cottage and surrounded by mountains.

We dined on my babotie, yellow rice and salad in front of the log fire with the dogs curled up at our feet. We slept in a brass and iron bed.

After a delicious English breakfast at Montpellier, we cycled into Church street in Tulbagh to see the farmers market. The old buildings in this street amongst the oaks are pretty. We cycled around the other roads, which are not pretty, to see the village. Then returned to the church museum where we walked in the graveyard to see the names of people who settled here. We noticed how long some of the women lived. 80 to 90 years was common.

We returned to our cottage in the vines to shower and change to drive back to the village for dinner. We drank a sherry in the Paddagang. It was very quiet so we returned to Church street and found Pielows which was full. We sat out under the stars. The dinner was excellent.

On Sunday, we decided to drive all the roads on the west of the village and found wonderful roads on which to cycle amongst the orchards. There was very little traffic. We noticed that a number of the farms were owned by the same families which we had seen in the graveyard.

We popped back to the cottage for lunch and to see the dogs. Then drove north to find Moniki chocolate farm which is high up on the mountain in a farm dated 1714. Here we drank a port and ate delicious chocolates.

Then we went east and found another old farm with super guest cottages, Schalkenbosch. This was even higher and bigger than the last farm. That evening as the sun was setting we cycled slowly round Montpellier seeing the shadows grow and reached our cottage just before dark.

The next morning before breakfast we cycled on the tarred road to Twee Jonge Gezellen. Then went up various dirt roads to explore. We enjoyed the houses, animals and scenery.

Then we cycled into Church street and found Gossip where Michael Kenny served us a super breakfast. He is a retired opera singer. We like Tulbagh and will return.

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Delene Burman

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