Foaling Season – August to mid-November
Should your party wish to see a mare give birth please give Duncan Barry the mobile number of one person in your party that will be responsible for waking everyone up. Mares tend to foal between midnight and 5am. The ‘maternity’ paddock with the mares that are due and the foaling units are conveniently situated adjacent to Barry House. As with humans we cannot accurately predict exactly when a mare will foal so there is no guarantee that you will be fortunate enough to witness a foaling. We hope you do get to live this experience! It will remain one of your most precious memories.
Dress warmly as the foaling is done outside in as natural a manner as possible and to prevent the foal from slipping on cement when it first tries to stand.
Have your shoes, waterproof jacket, etc lined up before you retire for the evening.
Should you receive a call, get to the foaling unit a.s.a.p. as it can happen very quickly!
Please watch from outside the foaling camp so that the mare has space to move around.
Please talk softly so as not to upset the mare.
Guests are welcome to explore the farm or hike through the forest along the banks of the Breede River. For their own safety guests may not go into the horse paddocks or cattle camps.
Young children must please be accompanied by an adult as our young thoroughbred horses are unbroken and not tame ponies.
Fresh Water Fishing
The Breede River has mainly bass and carp. So bring your rods, catch and release, unless you are going to enjoy a fish braai! Winning carp have been caught with a mielies and bingo dip bait in the Breede River that runs through our farm.
The farm dam has also been known to reward a spot of fishing with some behemoths.
Swimming / Canoeing
The river has a lovely sandy beach to build castles or relax in the shade of the many trees. Bring your paddle-skis or canoes and life-jackets with. Swimming and canoeing are at own risk. Always employ the buddy system when swimming or canoeing in the river or the farm dam.
All farm activities are at own risk.
The garden is haven to Cape Sugarbirds, Wagtails, African Hoop -hoos. A walk around the farm will delight you with flocks of Sacred Ibises, Guinea Fowl, Egyptian Geese, Blue Cranes, etc. Answer the Fish Eagles call and stroll down to the river to find the flock of rare Darter birds (Anhinga rufa), 3 species of Kingfishers, ducks and geese.
Giant King Fisher photo by John Heddon
Juvenile Malakite Kingfisher photo by Norman Barrett
Darter bird photo by Norman Barrett
Breede River runs through Riverton
Carp photo by Norman Barrett
Molting Southern Red Bishop by John Heddon
Old fashioned fun!
A delightful Victorian jungle gym graces the Barry House on Riverton garden. Charming butterfly swings, a rock climbing wall, a climbing frame, monkey rings and a slide are sure to provide the little ones with lots of fun.
Remember the thrill of letting go of the foefie slide at the right time to splash into the river on those hot summer days or hunting for tadpoles in the farm dam during November?
The modern day equivalent at Riverton remains the same except that children must not partake without parental supervision and you are advised that there are no life guards or life saving equipment at the river or the farm dam and that neither Barry House on Riverton, the owners or staff accept any liability what so ever. All activities are taken entirely at own risk.
Massage Option at Barry House
Jackie and Liz are available to come to Barry House by appointment to treat you and your guests to a full body massage, or a ‘specific problem area’.
They offer a number of styles at R650.00 for 1 hour: Swedish, Deep Tissue, Trigger Point, Sports, Combination. For groups of more than 5, the rate is discounted to R600.00 per person. They can do single, couples and group massage treatments all in the comfort of your room, the family room or under the trees in the garden for a unique experience! They provide massage beds, oils and towels.
Contact Jackie Bond via email email@example.com or cell +27 (0)82 956 7830 to book.
No need to designate a driver. Phone Johan Smit Charter Services on 082 666 9884 to book a bus to take your party wine tasting – local wine estates of your choice. His rates are very reasonable and he will wait whilst you have lunch.
Best to book this activity for Saturday morning or midweek as many of the wineries are closed on Saturday afternoon and Sundays.
Country Living 101
Living close to nature is a wonderful privilege, but it does require a slight shift in thinking and awareness.
Drink from the jug of water provided in your room, bottled water or filtered rainwater from the spout in the kitchen. The tap water comes from the farm dam and hasn’t undergone any chemical processing as you have in the city.
Stick to the beaten paths through the forest so that you can see where you are walking. Most snakes will sense you coming and hurry away before you see them, except for the lazy, poisonous puff adder that gets extremely annoyed when trodden on.
Use insect repellent in summer and keep the screens over the doors and windows closed.
Should you venture down to the river in summer or take a marvelous walk through the forest please check yourself for ticks afterwards. Should you find one it is important to SCRAPE it off so as not to leave the head behind to fester.
Bees are vital for the pollination of our fruit. The bees won’t disturb you, if you don’t disturb their hive.
Please do not flush any non-biodegradable objects down the toilets as this may upset the eco-balance of the septic tanks.
Barry House on Riverton is close to some of the top wine estates in the area!
Neighbouring Bon Courage, Springfield, and Cloverfield, also Zandvliet, Excelsior, Arabella, Viljoensdrift, De Wetshof, Van Loveren and the most amazing Chocolate and Wine pairing at Robertson Winery (premier pairing wine temporary sold out).
Besides wine tasting Robertson also offers golf, river cruises, horse riding, sky diving, an exotic birds paradise, cactus garden, antique shops, art galleries, game drives, fine cuisine, fast foods and more. On the desk in the Barry House sitting room you will find a tear off map highlighting the wineries and activities in the area or see http://www.robertsonr62.com/robertson-activities for further details.
We do not have riding horses on our farm. However, the Robertson Riding School is only 4 farms away. They offer outrides through the vines and along the Breede River, ponie rides and wine tasting carriage rides. Riding helmets are available should you not have your own. Contact them directly on +27 (0)82 402 7088 or +27 (0)72 291 7631 to book or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Café Maude on Bon Courage
Why not start your day at 9am with a delicious breakfast under the Peppers Trees at Café Maude on neighbouring Bon Courage wine estate?
There is a mini jungle gym and swings to keep the children occupied.
Try Bon Courage’s international award winning Jacques Bruére MCC or Shiraz – you won’t be disappointed!
Open Mon to Fri from 09:00 – 17:00 I Sat 09:00 – 15:00 The restaurant isn’t always open on a Sunday, so check in advance Tel: +27 (0)23 626 6806
Viljoensdrift River Cruise
Departs daily at 12 noon. Arrive half an hour before hand to select your Deli picnic & wine and lunch on board the 50 minute Viljoensdrift river cruise on the Breede river. About 5km further down our Bonnievale R317 road. The cruise is R60 for adults and includes an informal wine tasting and R20 for children 3 to 12 years old.
Tel: + 27 (0)23 615 1017 or book your cruise online.
Birds Paradise on the outskirts of Robertson is a must if you have young children to entertain. Over 200 cages of exotic birds, snakes and monkeys, an outdoor mini-zoo (crocodiles, lemurs, porcupines, etc), large jungle gym and swings, curio shop and tea room.
Telephone: +27 (0)23 626 3926
Sundowners & Dinner
Enjoy the tranquil view of the cactus gardens at Mo & Rose at Soekershof, Klaasvoogds.
Robertson is blessed with many great places to eat at. We have only named a few below.
Bourbon Street on Voortrekker Rd, Robertson, is a must for the best steaks in South Africa!
Four Cousins on Voortrekker Rd, Robertson as you enter the town. Nicely presented food and Boet beer.
The best Steers in the Boland can be found at the Shell Garage as you enter Robertson. Debonairs Pizza and Rapid River Spur can be found at the Mall, off Voortrekker Road, near KFC. Debonairs Pizza will deliver to Barry House on Riverton.
Klipdrift Brandy Distillery
Learn about the angel’s portion on a tour of the distillery or enjoy a Brandy tasting at Klipdrift Distillery on Voortrekker Road, Robertson!
Light lunches (gourmet burgers & nachos) are also served.
Hands on Bee Keeping, Bushbraai and Tractor Ride
Walk in the footsteps of Farmer Redbeard, the bee-keeper, and practice the art of smoking the bees, retrieving and spinning out the honey. One’s taste buds get to explore the different types of honey produced in this area, and which can be enjoyed on fresh homemade bread with tea or coffee on his ‘stoep’.
Or join Farmer Redbeard for a tractor ride with an optional bushbraai included.
Marbrin Olive Farm
Tour the Marbrin Olive Farm and learn how olives and olive oils are processed. You’ll also be able to taste their olive oils, try different cultivars of olives and their range of home-made olive tapenades. Marbrin Farm also accommodates group bookings for their tapas menu.
Book a tour, olive tasting or tapas menu on Cell: +27 (0)73 840 8228 | +27 (0)78 916 3606 or Email: email@example.com
Owls Rest Olive & Lavender Farm Stall
Experience lavender harvesting – by hand – and the steam distilling process which produces lavender water and essential oil and purchase quality merchandise at the Owls Rest farm stall. Located on Route 62 between Robertson and Ashton nestled at the foot of the Langeberge in the Klaasvoogds West area.
Tel: +27 (0)23 626 1284
Saggy Stone Micro-Brewery
On your way back to Cape Town why not take a slight detour off the beaten track and enjoy a craft beer tasting and lunch at Saggy Stone?
Fish Eagle Hiking Trail
A 7.5km hiking trail starting on the Van Loveren Wine Estate, crosses the Breede River and climbs up the Rooikrans with breathtaking views of the valley. Organise in advance should you wish to hike on a Sunday.
Tel: +27 (0)23 615 1505
The Robertson Golf Club on Silwerstrand Golf & River Estate welcomes visitors.
The 18-hole golf course is a good mix of short and long holes with Danie Obermeyer signature bunkers providing an added challenge.
The superb changing facilities, bar and the spectacular view from the wrap around patio all ensure a great day on course.
Telephone the Pro Shop: +27 (0)23 626 1090 to book.
Braam Coetzee Art Studio, by appointment with the artist who made Nguni cattle paintings famous: +27 (0)82 498 3885
Natasha Barry Art, by appointment on Riverton farm. Oil paintings with artist’s moulding: SMS +27 (0)82 975 2243 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rialheim Ceramic Studio & Open Air Galley (Studio Tour available on request) on Clairvaux Estate as you enter Robertson from the Worcester side.
Open: 09:00 – 17:00 Monday to Friday, 09:00 – 14:00 Saturday and 09:00 – 14:00 Public Holidays (Closed on Christmas and Boxing Day).
Tel: +27 (0)79 898 3120 or Email: email@example.com
Robertson is home to the Western Province Sport Parachute Club that was established in 1972. Operating as Skydive Robertson, it is a training and recreational Club. In a first for the Western Cape, the South African National Skydiving Championships was held in Robertson in April 2011.
Have a look at their website to find out over which weekends the Club will be jumping:
www.skydive.co.za. Tel: +27 (0)83 462 5666 to book your skydive or tandem jump!
What about a tandem jump as a present for the adventurous type?
The Lord of War movie starring Nicholas Cage and Ethan Hawkes features the Robertson airstrip!
Natasha Barry Art
Inspiration: Smallpox and the knowledge how to inoculate against it originally came from Asia. Hundreds of years before Edward Jenner developed a successful smallpox vaccine in 1796 certain African societies were already practising inoculation. They carried out a general inoculation by scratching the pus of an active case into their skin with a 95 to 99% success rate. Over a quarter of Europeans who contracted smallpox by breathing it in before Jenner’s vaccine, died.
Viewing: By appointment only. SMS: +27 (0)82 975 2243 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Commissions: The artist does accept commissions should the subject matter interest her and she feels that she can contribute something unique. You are welcome to forward an idea(s), colour scheme and photos for a quotation. However, should you want a painting that looks exactly like a single favourite photo the artist suggests that you consider having the photo enlarged and possibly printed on canvas as an option.