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The first thing that will catch your eye in Somerset West is the view over False Bay. This town surrounded by majestic mountains and hills covered with vineyards is rich in cultural heritage dating back to 1672 when the land was purchased from the locals and a cattle post was established by Dutch soldiers.
The town was named “Somerset” after and British Governor of the Cape Colony during the 1800s, Lord Charles Henry Somerset. The suffix ‘West’ was added after 1825 to differentiate it from Somerset East
Somerset West is well known for the traditional “Helderberg Lights Festival” or the “Strawberry Festival” when Main Road is transformed into a magical display of lights and Christmas decorations. During the festival Main Road is closed off to traffic during the evenings so everybody can enjoy the flea market stalls and parades. People from all over Cape Town travel to Somerset West to share in this fantastic display of Christmas spirit.
The Helderberg area has a community radio station “Radio Helderberg” broadcasting community based information and contemporary music.
Somerset West is home to various Sports clubs e.g. Soccer, Bowling, Baseball, Tennis, Cricket, Croquet, Hockey, Golf, Squash, Athletics and various others. Click here for a list of sports clubs and their contact information.
There are numerous wine farms in Somerset West that are part of the Helderberg Wine Route including Vergelegen which has the oldest vineyard in the area and also the historic Cape Dutch homestead. Vergelegen hosts the annual “Carols by Candlelight” event every Christmas season.
The Helderberg Nature reserve is situated on the slopes of the mountain and offers picnic areas, hiking trails, a restaurant and a gift shop.
For the watersport enthusiast there are the beaches in Strand and Gordon’s Bay as well as the harbours offering sailing and various other sports.
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