Cape Town - Darling

West Coast - Cape Town South Africa

Boerassic park

Bishop Tutu in Boerassic Park in Darling

Darling is a small country town found about 90 kilometres north of Cape Town and about 30 kilometres inland from the sea. In the days before the West Coast road was built one had to drive along a pretty nasty stretch of gravel road from Darling to get to the coast at Yzerfontein. Today the West Coast road to Darling and Yzerfontein is a lovely tarred road.

This little town has a couple of shops, a few more houses than shops and a large graveyard on the outskirts of the town. Its main claim to fame is its farming where the main crop is wheat with an up and coming wine indusrty as well. Just recently a wind farm has been established close to the town which will also help to bring in money to the area.

Why is this little town on the map at all?

It's because of a comedian we have here in the Western Cape named Pieter Dirk Uys. A very funny man who during the apartheid era took it upon himself to rip off the local politicians.

Pieter has a favourite character whom everybody knows. She is Tannie (aunty) Evita Bezuidenhout. A very grand lady who is supposed to be the Prime Minister of Babettikasweti a homeland (imaginary) on the borders of SA. She often interviews the the politicians and gives them a really hard time.

Uys has taken over the local railway station in Darling and has turned it into a restaurant and a theatre where he produces his own shows.It's named Evita se Perron (Evita's platform) and it is from here that Evita keeps her beady eye on SA's new democracy. The theatre has two cabaret venues and he advertises the venue as a stress free zone.

In the bar he offers his own exclusive wines marketed under the label of Evita Shiraz and Evita Sauvignon Blanc. There is an arts and crafts section where one can purchase the art works of the locals. Here he sells things like Sjamboks (Whips), Darling hand made paper and various wooden articles. In the garden he has established his own version of Jurassic Park which he calls Boerassic Park (Boer being a farmer). It is filled with local flowers and some exquisite plastic flowers from Taiwan.

A couple of satirical gnomes can also be found in the garden in the shape of some of the politicians of the apartheid era.

In the past most of our politicians were Afrikaans speaking and from a farming background. They used to speak English with a terrible accent. This is where the “Boer” reference comes from.

A visit to Darling during the Spring when the flowers are blooming and then onto Evita se perron for a lunch and a show will make for a good outing.

If you feel that you will be too tired to motor back to Cape Town take a room the local hotel for the night and enjoy waking up in a small country town. The air is clean and fresh and after eight in the evening the town goes to bed.

For those who like wines with a difference there are two wine estates in close proximity to the village which are open daily to the public and produce some really good wines.

The best time to visit this village is definitely in early spring when the wild flowers are blooming. You can then combine a visit to the wineries with a drive to see the wild flowers and then utilising Darling as a base visit other parts of the west coast to see the flowers.

See you here soon!

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Page updated 13.5.2015

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