Take a walk around the streets of Worcester and admire the range of stylish architecture left by the town’s early Dutch and British residents. Tour the nearby wine and brandy distilleries or spend a day hiking in the surrounding mountains. Visit a museum to learn about the lives of farmers who first worked here or spend a day browsing art galleries.
The farming town of Worcester dates back to 1819 and is the capital of the Breede River Valley area. Located on the main route between Cape Town, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth, its wine trails and relaxed atmosphere make it a major draw for visitors from around the world.
Spend a few hours exploring the compact town center on foot. Church Street is where you’ll find the majority of the town’s old buildings. Stop in at the Congregational Church to see typical Dutch wooden architecture. It’s hard to miss the Dutch Reformed Church, with its towering Gothic revival steeple.
Worcester and the surrounding region offer many opportunities for those who like to get active in the outdoors. Visit the Karoo Desert National Botanical Gardens where a large array of semi-desert plants are exhibited in 381 acres (154 hectares) of land. The smaller Garden of Remembrance is also worth a visit and was designed by local artist Hugo Naude. You can see more of his work and other local artists at the Hugo Naude and Jean Welz Gallery.
Go on a tour around the local wineries and brandy distilleries. There are dozens of vineyards in the area so you’ll be sure to try a variety of wines. If you like brandy then a visit to the KWV Brandy Cellar is a must. This is one of the largest brandy distilleries under one roof in the world.
Worcester’s inland location makes the temperatures more extreme than nearby Cape Town. Summers are generally hot and dry while in winter snow is common in the mountains. The diversity of attractions make Worcester a pleasant place to visit any time of year, either as a stopover on the way to Cape Town or for a longer, relaxing stay.