Take a step back in time and visit the Darling Museum, located in Darling on the West Coast Way Culture Route and Tractor Route.
A museum is such a fascinating insight into an area, and a great way to see the progression that has been made over the years. There’s something so interesting about having a piece of history displayed in front of you. I love the little town of Darling, and a trip is not complete without a visit to their museum.
The Darling Museum was founded by a group of local farmers’ wives in 1978 to preserve the butter making history of Darling. This section is still there, but the place itself has since grown exponentially over time to showcase a wider variety of historical items.
It is only R10 to enter the museum, which is a small price to pay for such an interesting exhibition. You could easily spend two hours moseying through it while reflecting on a time gone by. Darling was founded in 1853 and the museum does a good job of illustrating the lifestyle and development of the village since then. The layout of this museum is what makes it stand out from others. It’s easy to navigate and separated into different rooms, showing us what life was like back then. You’re taken on a journey through a typical bedroom, kitchen, parlour & dining room and garden, all the way to a general dealers store, a classroom, and even a saloon. It’s a great place for the current generation to see what life used to be like and how much things have changed. There’s even actual bills and invoices in some of the areas showing how much various items used to cost. Trust me – if there is anything that will shock your kids, this will be it.
The museum is crammed full of treasures, and I’m sure if I went again I would see things I never saw the first time around. I was especially fascinated by the butter-making area, as well as the outside barn filled with local agricultural machinery.
Take a step back in time and visit the Darling Museum. It’s open 7 days a week, and at only R10 it’s definitely worth the fee. I recommend the Darling Mystery Trail if you have a bit more time. The mystery trail is a treasure hunt with riddles and takes about two hours. Tickets are R30 (collect at the front desk of the museum) and includes a treasure as well as a chance to win a prize. Bring your smartphone with GPS, QR-Code reader and navigation app, as well as a pen and paper and a sleuth-like mind. This is a great activity if you have children with you.
Make a trip out of it.
Combine your Darling Brew visit with a West Coast Darling road trip for some wine tasting at Ormonde Wine Estate and a visit to the Darling Museum. Add a West Coast safari with a game drive, archery and a self-guided nature walk at Thali Thali Game Lodge. Or turn it into a foodie road trip and visit Russells on the Port for lunch and cocktails overlooking the Port Owen Marina. Visit www.westcoastway.co.za for more information on the best #WestCoastWay experiences.
Find the Darling Museum on the West Coast Way Culture Route and Tractor Route
Written by Christine Bernard Photography by Warren Bernard
Photos by Warren Bernard (www.flatwhiteimages.com)
West Coast Way is South Africa’s road trip with the most twists. South Africans and visitors can explore a unique collection of themed routes to do adventure-filled Cape West Coast self-drive trips or a West Coast Holiday. The new West Coast Way “basket” of free routes on offer include the West Coast Way Tractor Route, the West Coast Way Berg Route, the West Coast Way Foodie Route, the West Coast Way Cultural Route – as well as the newly launched West Coast Way Wild Route, all of which are designed to showcase the many attractions and activities that are already on offer on the Cape West Coast and inland areas – but may be unknown to many. For more information on West Coast Way’s #WestCoastTwist and the list of 101 Things to Do on the West Coast visit www.westcoastway.co.za or call West Coast Way on 0861 321 777. Connect with West Coast Way on Facebook and Twitter at WestCoastWaySA.