In Spring the wildflowers appear in the Western Cape of South Africa. The area around Langebaan is stunning and the beautiful show continues along the West Coast through to Cape Town.
The flowers are at their best during August and September and their splendor is dictated by the amount of rainfall prior to the season which can start as early as July and extend right through to October.
The West Coast flower region boasts more than 1200 species of flowering plants. There are almost 4000 different species of plant seed waiting to be germinated and the displays are volatile and depend on the weather. This means that every year there is a different selection of flowers to enjoy.
If you are lucky enough to visit the area, you need to get out of your car and walk among the flowers to really experience their glory. But careful where you walk so as you don’t trample on the lovely show.
West Coast National Park
In the West Coast National Park near Langebaan, there are about 80 species of wildflower which are exclusive to this area. It’s best to go in search of the flowers at the warmest time of the day when they are open. Be sure to view them with the sun at your back, as the flowers turn to face the sun.
Apart from the flowers, many beautiful birds can also be seen in this area. My particular favourite are the flamingo. They stand in the Langebaan Lagoon and the pink and white display is stunning.
The Park boasts a population of tortoises, whales, sand sharks, porcupines and dune moles. In the Postberg section, you can see eland, wildebeest, hartebeest, springbok, kudu and mountain zebra.
Some of the flowers don’t open when the weather is cloudy or overcast so, if you can, view them on a sunny day. It goes without saying that you may not pick the flowers!
When you go in search of the wildflowers, wear light clothing, preferably with long sleeves. Cover your legs too, as there are plenty of insects hovering around the blooms.
I love to see the wildflowers against the vast expanse of the sea. It makes such a spectacular landscape, especially when you add a whitewashed cottage to the horizon.
Wildflowers mean that the flowers grow in the wild and were not intentionally planted in any way, either in plant or seed form. I saw the wildflowers for the first time last September, when we visited Langebaan. This year, we holidayed in the Winelands and Cape Town and colourful bursts of flowers were everywhere.
Wildflowers of the Western Cape, bringing beauty to what could have been such ordinary spaces.