Loads of kiddy fun to be had in Paarl
THE school holidays are over but next time your family is lucky enough to have a break think about spending the day in Paarl and its surrounds.
The Drakenstein Municipality took some local kids out for a day of fun in and around Paarl at the end of the holidays. JBJ went along. A petting zoo, crocodiles, a jumping castle and a mystery activity box made it a day to remember.
There’s plenty for kids to do in this scenic part of the Boland. For one thing there’s the Le Bonheur crocodile farm where you can learn about – and meet – these ancient and potentially deadly reptiles.
A guided tour of the croc pond, where about 1 000 of these reptiles hang out, provided a chance to get up close and personal by holding and touching one of the smaller crocs. For the adventurous, Le Bonheur has recently introduced a croc cage dive – but you have to be older than 9. The family-owned farm is also home to emus and potbelly pigs. There’s a dam for catching and then releasing fish and a cozy pizzeria. All of which adds up to a great place for an outing, or even a birthday party.
At the Alpaca Loom farm kids get to play with some of the 330 alpacas. These animals originate in South America although they seem very at home in Paarl. They weigh 50-90kg and come in 12 different colours and many shades. They are clean and inquisitive animals and have beautiful fleeces, which are clipped once a year. Farmowner Kerstin Heisterkamp said alpacas were not too big and did not need much maintenance compared to other livestock. This made them ideal for small farms. Alpacas don’t bite or butt. If they are confused or frightened, they simply lie down. Spitting is one of their few means of defending themselves. Fortunately, spitting is something they do to show other alpacas who is boss, rather than at humans.
After learning about exotic creatures, Rhebokskloof Wine Estate was the perfect lunch spot. It has hectares of lawns, a jungle gym and a jumping castle, and there is a kids’ menu at the restaurant. Special events and festivals such as the OmmiBerg see Romping Rascals transform the area with toys, an obstacle course, pushbikes, tractor trikes and a trampoline – with adult supervision. On Sundays there are pony rides.
Friday’s grand finale came at the Nederburg Wine Estate where the staff have developed a fun kids’ tasting with a mystery box. A clue is chocolate, strawberry, marshmallows and cookies all feature.
The last word goes to one of the kids, Ben Rossiter, 9. Ben said he had the time of his life and would definitely be back to visit the alpacas.
An alpaca heads over for some petting from parents and kids at the Alpaca Loom farm. In front is Jaime Withers, 8.
Lea Goebel, 5, feeds alpacas a treat of dry grass.
Children enjoy the outdoor play space at Rhebokskloof.