Municipality: Bergrivier Local Municipality
Also see the neighbouring towns
Velddrif (population 7'800) is on the northern bank of the Berg River and 2Km east from Laaiplek in St Helena Bay on the Atlantic Ocean, and adjacent to Port Owen, which is just south of Velddrif.
Velddrif is on the Crayfish Route, which is known for its fresh seafood. Bokkoms is a dried fish available in the area.
The West Coast is part of the Cape Fynbos Kingdom and 80 species are endemic to the West Coast. The best time for flowers is from the end of July till the end of September.
The Euclea racemosa (Kersbos) is found in the Dwarskersbos area, while Babiana ringens (Rotstert), Willdenowia incurvata (Sonkwas Riet), Limonium (Strandroos) and Leucospermum rodolentum (Sandveld Luisebos) are just part of the interesting flowers to be seen.
The Berg River Estuary is home to about 30'000 birds.
The West Coast Fossil Park offers mountain bike trails, bird watching, picnicking, horse riding trails, a tour of the fossil dig.
022 766 1606/7 www.iziko.org.za
Bird guide: 072 585 3131
Rocherpan Nature Reserve is 25Km north of Velddrif. There are two bird hides on the seasonal pan. The nature reserve is also home to the black oystercatcher (swarttobie).
083 452 3864
022 952 1727 (office hours)
023 231 1170 (office hours)
The Cape Columbine Lighthouse is at Paternoster between St Helena Bay and Vredenburg.
A point of interest for most people is the outlet of the Bergriver into the sea. The breakwater and the entrance to the harbour is a popular sightseeing spot. You can watch the fishing boats, outgoing yachts and the beautiful Bay of St. Helena. Watching whales playing in the bay is a rewarding sight.
A leisurely trip on the river, bird-watching, sunset – and bay cruises are available aboard:
Berg River Boat Trips: 082 951 0447
Bergriver Goose 022 783 0294 / 083 780 2222
Angling 022 783 0818 / 083 759 7075 ( your fishing experience at Swartjiesbaai)
Hiking trails on farm, watch milk-and farm activities: Langrietvlei 022 783 0856
Hiking trail Kliphout Krans 022 952 1864
Camping, hiking, 4x4 routes, quad bike route Klein Tafelberg 083 429 9313
4x4 Day routes & West Coast tours, 4x4 training, waterskiing & Ski tube, quad bikes, jet ski, target shooting/pellet-gun
and all beech equipment to rent. Sunset Adventures 022 783 2763 / 083 226 1728
Horse riding Windstone 022 766 1645 / 083 477 1756
Hiking, mountain biking, birding, flowers in season and a private nature reserve if you are a staying guest.
Mountain Mist 022 952 1750
Salt pans and the harvesting of salt can be seen in Velddrif. Tours to the salt factory are available only on a Thursday morning.
For an appointment phone: 022 783 1133
The annual Berg River Canoe Marathon ends at Velddrif.
Alabama Festival, held in August, with music, art, shows, and entertainment such as Cape Mallay singers. The festival is held at Pelican Harbor, which is a rennovated fishing factory.
When European farmers farmed in the area, they took their cattle through the Berg River at the drift where the town was eventually established. The name Velddrif stuck.
In 1899 a pont was introduced to cross the river. A bridge was built in 1950.
Velddrif began as a cannery and evolved around this industry. The town became official in 1946 and became a municipality in 1960.
Laaiplek, within walking distance of Velddrif was the "harbour" used by farmers to send their produce to Cape Town.
Thanks to Bea Strüwig, Velddrif Tourism Official, for additional information.