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Garies

Garies

Municipality

Municipality: Kamiesberg Local Municipality
District Municipality: Namakwa District Municipality

Info Garies Tourism Bureau

Garies

Phone number: 027-652-1014

Garies is a Nama (a Khoisan tribe) name, also spelt th'aries and xharis. It is the word for a local grass variety, in Afrikaans known as kruipgras (literally "crawling grass").

Attractions

Garies is a small Namaqualand village on the banks of a dry stream in arid country. Its population is about 1500.

The Kamiesberg Mountain Range lies to the east, with highest peaks at about 1800m. Several other small places with interesting names are found in the area: Platbakkies, Kharkhams, Spoegrivier, Nariep, Soutfontein, Wallekraal, Hondeklip Bay, Kamieskroon, Leliefontein, Bitterfontein.

See photos of the area.

Letterklip (Alphabet Stone)

Letterklip, north of the town, is a group of big boulders on which earlier visitors carved out their names. This set of boulders was used as a fortress during the Anglo-Boer War.

Anglo-Boer War graves

South of the town is memorial monument for a British officer killed during a skirmish with the Boer troops of General Manie Maritz.

Flowers

Garies lies in the area known for its carpet-like covering of spring wildflowers, such as the Namaqua Daisy, around August/September/October if earlier winter rains had been good.

Rooiberg Hiking Trail

The Rooiberg Hiking Trail is at Garies.
Phone: (027) 652 1014

Studerspoort

Studerspoort lies on a gravel road in the Kamiesberg Mountain Range on the way to Platbakkies (northeast) on the R355.

Groenriviermond

Groenriviermond is about 60Km west from Garies on the Atlantic Ocean. The Groenrivier is mostly dry, and originates in the Kamiesberge Mountain Range. The beaches are rocky with white sand dunes. There is a lagoon.

To do: fishing, hiking and 4x4 trails.


Light tower at Groen River
Photo: courtesy Ben de Klerk

History

Garies started as a religious centre when a Dutch Reformed Church was established on the farm Goedeverwagting in 1845. It was initially named after the farm. Just before the formation of the Union of South Africa, Prime Minister John X Merriman (1908–1910), approved the name change to its present name, Garies (or Th’aries), which is a Khoisan for the grass growing along dry river beds in the area.


Prime Minister John X Merriman (1908–1910)

Nature

Garies lies within theWWF AT1322 Succulent Karoo ecoregion, more specifically in the Namaqualand-Namib Domain.

The area has the richest succulent flora in the world; about one-third of the world’s approximately 10'000 succulent species. Nearly 40% of the species are endemic.

Rain falls mainly in winter: less than 150 mm per annum.

Temperature ranges from: -4°C to hotter than 40°C.

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