A mountain bike challenge, agricultural show, spring flowers, country charm – Aurora is must-visit this September
Just inland from the West Coast town of Velddrif, along a stretch of beautiful country road, lies the picturesque town of Aurora, nestled at the foot of the Piketberg Mountains, only 185km from Cape Town.
On the 3rd of September the town will be hosting its not-to-be missed Om Die Berg mountain bike challenge. The event offers an exciting nine stage, 55km mountain bike race – with a route traversing the base of the mountain; a less grueling 20km route; and a leisurely 10km cycle route. There is also a 21km trail run taking place, as well as a 10km walking route for a more sedate pace.
The Om Die Berg event promises to be a favourite amongst mountain bike and outdoor enthusiasts, with the routes navigating beautiful farm lands, veld and mountain side scenery. The event is being organised by the NG Kerk in Aurora, with all funds raised going towards the restoration of the beautiful historic church building in the town, which was built 114 years ago.
Also taking place in Aurora on the 3rd and 4th of September – and the starting point for the Om Die Berg cycle routes – is the annual Aurora Sandveld Skou – a festival of everything that is agricultural, coupled with live entertainment, music, dancing, food of many varieties, stalls selling an abundance of items, kids entertainment, farm animals, country hospitality and so much more.
While in town, be sure to visit the impressive Dutch Reformed Church, and take a trip to McClear’s Beacon, a national monument situated on the farm Klipfontein. Also take a drive up the mountain to the Danielshoogte Private Reserve and experience spectacular views of the valley – on clear days, Table Mountain and St Helena Bay can be seen. In Spring the flowers here are spectacular as nature unfolds her annual wildflower spectacle.
For hungry travellers, Die Rooi Granaat Restaurant and the Koekeloer @ Koffiemoer Coffee Shop are highly recommended stopovers in Aurora, and a top-rated accommodation option is Chateau La Terrance, a quaint French-influenced guest house situated in the town.
Established in 1906 and named after Ceylonia Aurora Perreira, the daughter of the first Dutch Reformed minister in the area, the town of Aurora has an interesting history that gives new meaning to the saying “things are going pear-shaped.” It was here that a French astronomer set up an observatory and declared that the world was pear-shaped – a finding that had the astronomical world up in arms for decades whilst they tried to prove otherwise.
“This small, once unheard-of gem is a village of hidden surprises where visitors can look forward to breath-taking scenery, beautiful architecture, and a rich and warm welcome from the local community. Added to this are the incredible night skies, the abundant flowers to be found here in Spring, beautiful mountain scenery with dramatic rock formations, and a wide variety of bird life – making Aurora a birdwatcher’s paradise,” says Nomonde Ndlangisa, CEO of Bergrivier Tourism.
Aurora forms part of the Bergrivier district (alongside the towns of Velddrif, Piketberg and Porterville) – a beautiful area on Cape Town’s doorstep that offers a vast array of activities and accommodation options, as well as some of the most pristine and untouched nature reserves, wetlands, lagoons and more.
For more information on the Om Die Berg event visit www.auroraomdieberg.co.za or call 083 320 7509. You can also email email@example.com. For more information on where to stay, eat and more things to see and do in the Bergrivier area visit www.bergriviertourism.co.za.