I’d never been to Witsand before, yet I’d heard so much about it from family and friends who frequent this remote spot for holidays, boating, long walks and quiet family breaks. Last week I headed there with my son Eden for an escapist weekend at the Breedezicht Lifestyle Estate, staying in one of their houses that overlooks the Breede River, and Indian ocean beyond. Breedezicht roughly translated means ‘broad or view’ and that’s exactly what we encountered from the balcony, and green parklands.
After settling in, we took the pups for a very long walk and play on the empty beach, getting a lay of the land before returning to our comfy home for home made pizza, bubbly and a movie, indulging in the simple things only afforded when stopped in time. It’s gorgeous there, remote and historic, close to nature, surrounded by farm lands and with countless stars in the dark sky.
The Breedezicht Lifestyle Estate
I chatted with Hugo La Grange who is the project manager of the estate and he introduced me to the ethos of the development. Launched about ten years ago, the owners were slow to develop the land until the last few years saw a resurgence of interest from upcountry South Africans looking for a more remote location to invest in. Be it holiday home, a weekend getaway or idyllic retirement option, Breedezicht Estate has five architectural style houses for you to choose from.
I stayed in their Cape Heritage House which had 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a spacious open plan kitchen, lounge and dining area which opened onto a lovely braai room or enclosed stoep. The bedrooms being the top floor which a good balcony to step out on to take in the uninterrupted views, first thing in the morning. It is a bit of a first come first serve scenario with two of the bedrooms and the braai room and deck having excellent views of the river and river mouth that opens on to the Indian ocean.
For the rest of our stay we took lots of long walks, found the most gorgeous church to photograph, watched the boats swayed by the ebb and flow of the water from the deck, ate rooster kook, drank hot chocolate, did yoga, slept late, read and relaxed into the right mix of comfort in a picturesque rural setting with views across the river and towards the ocean.
This rather wild yet rural coastal spot truly offers the right kind of soul food and I took mine from long walks on the beach with my dogs and in depth exploration of the village on foot. A place where everybody greets you with a courteous smile. Blissful and relaxing.
Activities on offer from Breedezicht and interesting Witsand facts
- Take a boat trip down the Breede River to the well-known bush pubs, a characterful activity that has been drawing crowds for year.
- Spend time lingering on one of the jetties.
- Enjoy one of the many hiking trails around the estate.
- Beaches offer tranquil walking and swimming with windless and mild winter days.
- The area is renowned for all kinds of water sport; swimming, kayaking, sailing, surfing, windsurfing, snorkelling and water skiing especially. It is actually said to be on of the world’s top 10 kitesurfing spots. So if that is your sport, get out there.
- Each year between June and November the Southern Right Whales come to this shoreline to mate and calve, giving Witsand the reputation for being the primary nursery for these beautiful animals.
- Fishing in the Breede River estuary is recognised as some of the best in South Africa with the upper reaches of the river known for its bass, while the lower reaches are a cob fisherman’s paradise. For the rock angler, good catches along the coastline are guaranteed. Please note that catch-and-release is strongly encouraged.
- The nearby Pontoon at Malgas is the last hand operated pontoon in Southern Africa, used for vehicle and cattle crossing across the Breede River. It is the only way to cross the river apart from by boat and a charming experience.
- Bird watching along the Breede River is spectacular. The majestic Fish Eagle, the osprey, Fish Owl, Kingfisher, oyster Catcher, the Blue Crane and an amazing variety of other birds are often seen along the banks of the Breede River. There are said to be about 260 bird species in the area.
- There is a 4×4 route that originated in the mid 80’s when tractors used the roads, about 9 kilometres that takes you through various points on the farm where you can enjoy a view towards the ocean.
- Visit the Waterkloof ostrich farm for insight into this business, with the curious attraction of the ostriches here being herded by Border Collies.
Right next to the Breedezicht estate is the Koffie ‘n Kletz coffee shop with excellent light meals and very good shopping, nearly all sourced from local producers. You must have Rooster Koek here.
Visit the most beautiful Joseph Barry Church that stands alone in a field, with a flock of sheep as neighbours. Joseph Barry, native of Scotland, patriarch and pioneer, created the harbours at Port Beaufort and Malgas in the early 19th century, going on to build a trading empire that would serve the Overberg. Today surrounded by flowering aloe vera and green fields, the church holds Sunday services and is understandably very popular for weddings.
Interested in owning property here?
One of the very few places on our magnificent Western Coast shoreline that has remained pristine and unspoilt, this valued property investment by Central Developments Property Group offers 2, 3 and 4 bedroom houses for sale, either from spec or pre-built. Fully serviced, well-managed in maintained grounds, they are set to unique architectural guidelines that range from Cape Heritage to Modern Beach. Whatever suits your taste and budget.
Breedezicht Estate has a 3-bedroom house to rent for only R2000 per night if you’d liketo spend time here to learn more. For information or to make a booking, you can visit www.breedezicht.co.za or contact Hugo La Grange on firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Essential Details
- Website: http://www.breedezicht.co.za/
- Contact details to learn more: Hugo La Grange at 082 823 9777.
- Location: About 300 kilometres from Cape Town at the entrance to Witsand and Port Beaufort, the GPS coordinates to Breedezicht Estate are 34° 23′ 13″ South, 20° 49” 58″ East or click HERE to view map.
- Should you be lucky enough to stay here, there are a couple of places in Witsand to buy basic groceries but my recommendation would be to stop in either Heidelberg, Swellendam or Riversdale for food, drink and other essentials. Or better still just bring what you need from home.
- Breedezicht estate is pet friendly, the whole of Witsand is.
- River meets ocean. Farmland. Close to Nature. Exclusive estate living.
What a perfect weekend break place this is. Would love to make it a regular one.
A snippet of a video by Eden Weiss Videography depicting the weekend mood.
*I was invited by Jo-Ann Janse van Rensburg of Cherry Pick PR to spend the weekend in one of the Breedezicht Estate houses on a self-catering basis, to get a personal experience of the area. Accompanied by my son Eden and my gorgeous well behaved pups Tuscan and Sienna Storm, we enjoyed the most wonderful relaxing break.