Tag Archives: oak trees

Art and Architecture in Stellenbosch (2020-08-16) Historic Attractions | Photo Gallery 10 APR 2021

Last year was of course filled with many quiet moments and even more quiet spaces. It doesn’t happen very often, but every now and then I get the opportunity to leave the girls behind with Chantelle and venture out on my own little photo walkabout – which is exactly what happened on one pleasant Sunday afternoon back in August of last year. So hello to the naked oak trees, classic architecture, and the oh so many pieces of art on public display of Stellenbosch and its university campus grounds!

Established along the banks of the Eerste River in 1679 by Simon van der Stel, the then Governor of the Cape Colony, the achingly beautiful Stellenbosch is recognized as the second oldest town in South Africa. Surrounded by mountains, filled with ancient oak trees, and home to much of South Africa’s historic wine industry, the relatively wealthy Stellenbosch is a town well worth visiting.

It is also worth mentioning that although technically Stellenbosch isn’t a university town as such, the reality is that it very much is, with the Stellenbosch University campus, faculty buildings, and student residences occupying much of the heart of this old town. What this then translates to is that when the students aren’t on campus then the town becomes a LOT quieter – and because the university is integrated into the town, you are able to casually stroll around these magnificent examples of old architecture whenever you like. In other words, there are a lot of pretty buildings waiting to be seen!

My casual stroll with camera phone in hand took me past the grandiose Dutch Reformed (NG Moederkerk) church, the eye catching red of the Stellenbosch University Museum, through the Jan Marais Square (Red Square) and over the underground Stellenbosch University Library, and past the majestic faculty buildings and large residences that so many students call home during the academic year. I walked alongside the surging Eerste River, down the historic Dorp street, and past so, so many art galleries just stuffed with the treasure of artistic endeavour. Seventh heaven for someone like me then!

Breakfast at The Pool Room, Oak Valley in Elgin (2015-11-05) Photo Gallery 14 NOV 2015

So having enjoyed an unintended (but delicious) cup of Hot Chocolate at Fred & Max in Elgin, I suggested to a dejected Chantelle that perhaps we should wander over to the nearby Oak Valley Estate to see if their beautiful The Pool Room restaurant could maybe help us out in terms of a nice breakfast.

(We were on our way to Caledon for a bit of a mid-week break from work in case you are wondering.)

IMG_20151105_095414 the pool at the pool room, oak valley, elgin

Situated in the picturesque and fertile Elgin, Oak Valley Estate is an old estate (established 1898), known these days for its multi-purpose functionality, namely its wines, flowers, meats, mountain bike trails, and now of course, restaurant.

IMG_20151105_094846 at the pool room, oak valley, elgin

The first thing that strikes you when you stop in the gravel parking lot in front of The Pool Room’s entrance is the sheer beauty of all the greenery around you. Lush lawns, plentiful trees… well, you get the picture.

The clean, spacious restaurant overlooks an elegantly shaped pool, with the water continuing that theme of tranquility which makes this such a special little dining spot.

IMG_20151105_095420 inside at the pool room, oak valley, elgin

Thankfully for Chantelle’s sake, The Pool Room does in fact have some delicious breakfast options available on their menu, and we enjoyed a thoroughly relaxed meal in an absolute perfect setting.

IMG_20151105_095436 chantelle at the pool room, oak valley, elgin

In other words, highly recommended as a fantastic breakfast stop! :)

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Related Link: The Pool Room | Oak Valley Estate