Paarl Post

Lots of summer fun in Drakenstein

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Drakenstein Lion ParkPhoto: Shane Hart
Drakenstein Lion ParkPhoto: Shane Hart

These are the summer holidays, and for many residents of Drakenstein there are loads of fun-filled attractions to visit and keep their little ones entertained.

By supporting local businesses in Drakenstein, not only do they save money on petrol, but also get the opportunity to have loads of fun just a stone’s throw away from home.

Here are some exciting places to visit:. At LE BONHEUR REPTILES AND ADVENTURES you can enjoy a day of reptile adventures such as the croc pond tour, snake exhibition or, for the more daring, a cage dive with a crocodile. There is also a spacious kids play area on the premises, a catch-and-release dam and restaurant.

Le Bonheur’s activities and restaurant operate Monday to Sunday, and the pizza oven is open from Wednesday to Sunday (09:00-17:00, closed on Christmas Day). Booking can be made at For more information, contact Le Bonheur’s on 021 863 1142 or at .DRAKENSTEIN LION PARK AND CHIMP HAVEN is also home to white lions and rescued tigers. The lion park was established in 1998 to provide lions in distress with a place where they can live in safety, free from abuse and persecution. Lions that are found here are treated with compassion, love and respect. The haven is open from Monday to Sunday, 09:30-17:00 (including public holidays) and closed on Christmas (25 December). There is a ticket discount at the entrance if you are a South African citizen with valid proof of ID or driver’s licence. Adults pay R80 and children R40. Alternatively, the price for adults is R150 and children R75. The lions feed every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 16:00. Contact Drakenstein Lion Park for more information via email at or contact their office on 021 863 3290 for accommodation.. THE ALPACA LOOM comprises a coffee shop, weaving studio and different tours on farms and learning about the alpaca. Opening hours are open daily from 09:30 to 17:30, except at Christmas (25 December). Admission fee to the petting zoo is R20 per person, and one can buy alpaca feed for R20 per serving. The Alpaca Barn Tours is R100 per adult and R70 per child. Children under 3 are free, and this includes the entry to the petting zoo as well. They also offer alpaca walks, a guided walk where you lead an alpaca on a halter. The cost is R150 per person, minimum two people. Duration: ±45 minutes. To test your newly developed alpaca handling skills, give our Alpaca Agility Course a try at the end of the Walk. Offered daily at 10:00 and 16:00, by appointment only, please, to avoid disappointment. For more information visit, or call 084 793 3666. . The Drakenstein Correctional Centre. Visit where South Africa’s first truly democratic President, NELSON MANDELA, spent the last part of his imprisonment. Here you will not only learn the history of the imprisonment of the late Madiba, but also have the opportunity to stand next to his statue at the entrance to the prison and visit the house within the prison precincts where he stayed. Both the house and statue are historical landmarks and can be seen as educational and fun by those inclined to learn more about the country’s history. There is no cost for pictures taken at the Madiba statue and there is no cost to enter the house Madiba stayed in. Visits are open daily from 07:00 to 14:00, Monday to Friday.. For those who enjoy hiking, the PAARL MOUNTAIN NATURE RESERVE is the first option on the list to visit for this festive holiday with the family. It has a landscape of fynbos vegetation surrounded with granite rock formations that are set among wild olives, rock candlewoods and wagon trees. There are different trail activities one can follow, such as the Mill Water Wild Flower Garden, where numerous species of proteas can be viewed, climbing the Bretagne Rock, catch a bass at the Nantes dam and enjoy mountain biking. Picnics and panoramic views of the Drakenstein valley can also be viewed. During the week entrance is free, but on weekends (Saturday and Sunday) and public holidays, and entry to the dams costs R30 per person from 07:00 to 19:00. For more information contact the Paarl Mountain Nature or the Nature Conservationist Lindsay Lewis on 021 807 6231 or 073 748 6325. The Meelwater Camp, located where the offices are, marks the start of the hiking trails, which are free during the week. Only on weekends and public holidays do you pay R30 per person and R30 per car. . The GIRAFFE HOUSE WILDLIFE AWARENESS CENTRE on Old Paarl Road has a wide range of African wildlife, bird and reptile species. The Giraffe House allows people to enjoy family picnics while learning about animals. Entrance fee to visit this attraction is R80 for adults and R60 for seniors. Children from 2 to 15 years pay R55. For more information visit the website . Enjoy fun and excitement with the family at BABYLONSTOREN while enjoying a walk in the garden. There are also different farm animals and restaurants. Visit the website on . Grab your popcorn and take a seat with your family and enjoy new action, comedy and romance movies at MINIMAX CINEMA in Paarl. This December watch movies such as Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Strange World, The Estate and Avatar: The Way of Water (3D). Only on Monday and Tuesday all movie tickets are sold at half price R35 per ticket. Standard ticket prices are sold from Wednesday to Sunday, at R70. . For a picnic with the best view, visit the iconic Afrikaans Language Monument. You can also enjoy something to eat and drink at the restaurant or take with your own picnic basket. Entrance fees as from 1 April to 31 March 2025 for adults pay R40. For Drakenstein residents with valid library tickets it is R10, and if you visit the Language Monument and Language Museum, R10 discount at the second visit point. Show proof of payment from first visit point. SA students and pensioners pay only R10 (with proof). Children pay R10 (free under 6 years), and for school groups R5 per learner and entry is free for two teachers and the bus driver per group (please book in advance for educational programmes). For more information visit . The EXOTIC ANIMAL WORLD (previously know as Butterfly World) consists of a large greenhouse showcasing exotic butterflies and other tropical birds, mammals and reptiles. Those with an entry ticket can visit te restaurant on the premises. They are open everyday from 09:00 to 17:00. The last entry is at 16:30 and no bookings are required. The fees for adults are R88, children pay the normal rate R49 and children under 3 are free. Students and pensioners pay R79 and a combo for a family (two adults, two kids) are R225. For more information visit the website . If you and your kids are looking for a nice walk or ride on your bikes or to have a picnic, visit the newly upgraded Paarl Arboretum situated on the eastern bank of the Berg River, with about 2 600 trees and shrubs.

. Besides all the above, Drakenstein is home to many wine estates. For more details about places to visit in Paarl and Wellington, visit

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