If the original inhabitants of this village were to visit it today, they would not find it much changed. A tar road and a few brick buildings have been added but the atmosphere remains the same. Forgotten by time and untouched by progress, the town exudes an old-world charm and the feeling of having stepped back into time. The village population consists mainly of the so-called “coloured” people of the Western Cape and the warm welcoming smiles on their faces ensure us of their pleasure at receiving visitors.
The village had its origin in 1890 when the railway line was extended from Somerset West to the foot of the pass.
History And Architecture
Buildings: The town is full of old buildings, some pre-dating the 1890s, which adds to the old-world atmosphere. Unfortunately, none of these buildings have been renovated and many are today used as storerooms and outbuildings.
Historic Trail: Sir Lowry’s Pass also has a historic trail. This trail takes one through the ‘Gantouw Pass’ where one can clearly see the ruts left in the road by wagons and canons used in earlier days for signalling. The wagon-wheel tracks have been proclaimed a national monument.
Fauna And Flora
Wild flowers: The mountain slopes near the village are covered in wild flowers, an attractive frame for the historical tableau that is the village.