*Disclaimer: I didn’t explore the entire Garden Route; in fact, I barely scratched the surface, but I want to share my experiences so that every time I read this I remember one of the most restful holidays I’ve ever had.*
In September 2016 I spent a week in Riversdale, a small town in the Southern Cape, situated along the N2 between George and Cape Town. At first glance there doesn’t seem to be much going on; people will possibly stop by to fill up and have a bite to eat on their way along the highway. It doesn’t even have a beach.
But it does have the Old Jail – and old building that was used as police station, magistrate, prison and once, a place of execution. These days it’s a browser’s paradise, with most of the cells converted to little shops, with everything from art, books, vinyls, clothes and much more. And for those with a bit of a morbid curiousity, like me, there’s an old gallows locked behind thick bars.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite browsing to your heart’s content, you can have a little sit-down and enjoy some of the fare from the coffee shop’s menu. Although I didn’t try it myself, the carrot cake is rumoured to be out-of-this-world. I can however vouch for the Jail Breakfast (come hungry) and the exceptionally friendly service.
Next time you’re on your way along the N2, take the turn-off to Riversdale and visit the Old Jail.
Riversdale is active on Twitter.
For more info and activities along the Garden Route, download the Garden Route and Klein Karoo app.