If you are travelling along the N2 and need a pitstop, here are five pawsome places between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth where your dog is welcome to have a break from the car too.
1. PEREGINE FARMSTALL, GRABOUW
Opening times: Open daily from 07h30 to 18h30
Contact: Telephone 021 848 9011, http://peregrinefarmstall.co.za
Peregrine is so popular that the only time I have ever seen the parking lot empty is when it’s closed! However it’s popular for good reason and it’s one of my favourite places to stop on the N2 on the way back to Cape Town (don’t even bother trying to cross the N2 if you are going in the opposite direction).
Not only do they have a designated dog-friendly area with plenty of water bowls, they serve probably THE best venison pie you will EVER have! That said, all their pies are damn good and vegans will be pleased to know that they now have a range of vegan-friendly pies too.
Apart from good food at reasonable prices, the farmstall section offers a myriad of products from earth-friendly creams to freshly baked bread and syrup-laded koeksisters to bunches of flowers. Also on the premises you’ll find a nursery, a Padkos Express section (takeaways for those in a hurry), various stalls selling local crafts, a travelling bookshop, Elgin ciders and wines, along with plenty of seating both indoors and out. Kids will also have a ball in the play area.
2. DELISH DELI AND FARMSTALL, HEIDELBERG
Opening times: Open daily from 07h30 and open for dinner from Wednesday to Saturday.
Contact: Telephone 028 722 1850, www.delishn2.co.za
This is a great place to stop and stretch your legs in Heidelberg, whether it be to grab a takeaway, buy some wine, or enjoy a meal. Your leashed dog is welcome to join you outside on the wooden deck.
I have had breakfast there and can vouch for their Mommy Bear breakfast (R35 for 1 egg, bacon and tomato with toast and jam) while on another occasion I had their special of the day – three huge homemade fishcakes with an equally large Greek salad for R80. It was such a big helping I ended up taking half of it away with me for dinner!
Delish also have wood-fired artisinal breads and a variety of jams, preserves along with a large selection of wines for sale.
3. TIMBERLAKE ORGANIC VILLAGE, SEDGEFIELD
Opening times: Open daily from 09h00 to 17h00
Timberlake is a small village of unique independent businesses on the N2 between Wilderness and Sedgefield where you’ll find local craftsmen, clothing, wines, plants, coffee shops and restaurants. The restaurants and coffee shops have outside areas with most being dog-friendly for well behaved dogs on leashes.
My personal favourite here is The Oyster Shack, who serve delicious wild coastal oysters as well as budget-friendly light meals. The quirky little bar area is right up my alley too! If you are looking for something a little more upmarket I can also recommend Zucchini Restaurant – go take a peek at their novel saddle-chairs by the bar!
Another thing I like about Timberlake is that they compost food waste on the farm, they capture rain water and recycle grey water, along with only using pro-biotic cleaning products,and growing food without pesticides or herbicides.
4. THYME & AGAIN FARMSTALL & BAKERY, PLETTENBERG BAY
Opening times: Open daily from 08h00 to 17h30
Contact: Telephone 044 535 9432, www.thyme-and-again.co.za
Keep an eye out for this friendly farmstall on the N2 opposite the Keurboomstrand turn-off just outside Plettenberg Bay where well-behaved dogs on leashes are welcome to join you outside.
They do all their own baking and stock a range of Thyme & Again homemade jams and marmalades, along with a small fresh vegetable and fruit section, a wide range of herbs, spices and condiments and a wine section. On the menu in the café you’ll find reasonably priced breakfast options, burgers, quiches, sandwiches, filled pitas, wraps, salads and sweet treats. Vegans and vegetarians are also very well catered for here!
NANAGA FARMSTALL NEAR PORT ELIZABETH
Opening hours: Open daily from 08h00 to 17h30
Contact: Telephone 041 468 0353, www.nanaga.co.za
Just off the N2, along the R72, you’ll find a farm stall with a rather endearing family history that goes way back and involves cabbages being sold out of a car boot followed by the launch of roadside pineapple juice, pies and roosterkoek Today, Nanaga is both a restaurant and farmstall that welcomes dogs, kids, oumas, locals and those just passing through.
The farmstall bursts at the seams with crafts, gifts and toys, along with the usual farmstall fare of jams, chutneys and relishes. You’ll also find homemade rusks and biscuits, pies, lemon meringues, cheesecakes, roosterkoek and koeksisters.
In the restaurant you can tuck into flapjack stacks, French toast, lamb and mint pies, meatballs, curries, fish and chips, roosterkoek, toasties and burgers. They also have a Sunday Lunch special accompanied by live entertainment on occasion.
Published November 2018