Court-building pioneers
are east of Cape Town


by Bob Alman with the Greyton Country Croquet Club


South Africa's national championship in both Golf Croquet and Association Croquet, played in Cape Town in mid-November, could be the occasion of your exploration of the nearby countryside. The folks at the Greyton Country Croquet Club would be happy to greet you at any time, and may even invite you to play a game of croquet with you and yours on their scaled-down backyard court--the one they use while they raise money to built their two world-class "real" courts. You could stay overnight at the inn of a charming and distinctly arty little town, and explore nearby the wine country. If not for the breathtaking Sonderen mountains looming above their pastoral valley, it might remind you a little of England's home counties.

Greyton–South Africa's Little England–with sunshine added!

 

Greyton is a small village a couple of hours drive from Cape Town. Set in the Overberg region, with the Sonderend mountains as a backdrop, Greyton is all oak-lined lanes and gorgeous country cottages.

To be there feels like you have travelled back in time into an olde English parish, with white picket fences and farmers’ markets to boot.

Art is everywhere in Greyton, you’ll even find random paintings on the walls of houses. Greyton has become somewhat of a haven for the artistic, intellectual and eclectic minded.

You can hire bicycles for the day and peddle around Greyton’s side streets, soaking up the scenery at a leisurely, laid-back pace. Mountain bike buffs can enjoy many kilometers of cycling track through stunning mountain terrain.

Greyton has several boutique wine producers on its doorstep. Local Lismore Estate Vineyards was started by Californian Samantha O’Keefe who believes she found paradise and the perfect terroir in Greyton.

Her passion and vines chilled by the winter snow and nourished by the African summer sun, produce classic cool climate wines that are rich, complex and lovingly hand crafted.

With it’s offbeat interior and colourful verandas this “Greyton icon” has become a landmark in the Overberg, and is undeniably the social and cultural heart of Greyton. The Oak & Vigne has become a place where locals and visitors become acquainted, where the Cape Town social set mingle, and people-watching is an important activity.

The charm of this town is immediately evident upon driving down the narrow streets. The cottages which line the roads were built by semi-skilled labourers when Greyton was first established as a small agricultural village some 150 years ago.


NOVEMBER VISITATION DAYS IN GREYTON
For all players in the South African National Championship the Greyton Country Croquet Club will be pleased to host your visit for a half day in Greyton, "the jewel of the Overberg," surrounded by wine farms. Your visit would start with lunch and continue with a tour of the town or even croquet on a scaled-down courts. The first Visitation Day is on November 8, before the Golf Croquet championship in Cape Town. The second is on November 26, the day after the end of the AC championship. Send an email to Denis Turnbull (denisaturnbull@gmail.com) to find out more.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Greyton Country Croquet Club website
South African Croquet Association (for info on the national championships)
Croquet World Online's story on "Croquet in South Africa".

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