Did You Know?

Did you Know:
The first inhabitants of the Berg River Valley go back as far as the Stone Age. This period stretches over thousands of years to the San and Khoi groups of the 18th & 19th century. Artefacts from these early ages have been found around the Bain’s Kloof Mountains and hills surrounding Wellington can be seen in the local museum. Originally known as Limiet Valley (border or frontier valley), the area became known as Val Du Charron or Wagenmakersvallei (Valley of the Wagon maker) towards the end of the 17th century when the French Huguenots settled here. After the eventual establishment of the town in 1840, the name was changed to Wellington in honour of the Duke of Wellington, renowned soldier and conqueror of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo.

Did you Know:
Wellington’s educational institutions stemmed from Scottish and American influence and were initiated by Dr. Andrew Murray, who was assisted by various people of American and Dutch origin.

Did you Know:
Coronation Arch in Victorian Park was erected in commemoration of the coronation of King Edward VII in 1902. Visit the park and experience the beauty of the rose garden that was designed by leading rose specialist, Gwyn Fagen.

Did you Know:
Lady Loch Steel Bridge is the very first of its kind to be built in South Africa and is still in use today. In September 1853, on the same day that Bains Kloof Pass was opened, the first wooden bridge was built over the Berg River. This bridge was the gateway to Cape Town and the Swartland from the interior. The bridge was rebuilt in 1891 and renamed after the then Governor’s wife, Lady Loch. In 1910 the wooden bridge was replaced with a steel bridge, which is still in use.

Did you Know:
Limietberg Nature Reserve has nine different hiking trails through indigenous fynbos terrain and there are also a number of scenic drives in and around Wellington. Many historical sites, as well as ancient San Rock Art, the final resting place of the Bains Pass builders and disused manganese mines can be experienced on these routes.

Did you Know:
In 1853, Bain’s Kloof Pass – an engineering masterpiece designed and constructed by Scotsman Andrew Geddes Bain – provided access to the hinterland beyond the mountains, becoming the official ‘Gateway to the North’, over which countless wagons creaked their way to the diamond and gold fields. A National Monument, the magnificent Pass remains a well-travelled attraction and offers unsurpassed vistas, indigenous flora and fauna, crystal-clear rock pools, camp sites and hiking trails (graded from ‘children to challenging’).

Did you Know:
Wellington is home to artisanal Brandies that are unique to the valley and a variety of other premium, handcrafted pot-still spirits, including Grappa, Absinthe, Vodka, Gin and Limoncello. The country’s first indigenous, internationally acclaimed single grain Whisky, is also produced in Wellington.

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