Out And About: Sho’t Left to Nature, Beauty, Culture, Inspiration In Outdshoorn


Late last year my friend, Vuyo and I just wanted to relax, unwind and just get away from the buzzing city so we took a sho’t left to Oudtshoorn….

Situated 480km away from Cape Town, Oudtshoorn is a small town in the Karoo and it prides itself on nature, adventure and beauty.  Mostly the town is known for its attractions… On our first morning, we got to wake up to a beautiful sound of singing birds….no noisy taxis hooting or people screaming….just nature at its best….On the downside, we didn’t have cell phone reception.  I suppose that’s also good if your plan is just to switch off and relax.


Sho't Left to nature
Thuli and Vuyo

This was our first visit to the town.  We visited the Cango Caves and did the adventure tour, they don’t call it the adventure tour for nothing. After all the sweating and climbing we had lunch at the Cango Caves restaurant which is known for serving a mean lamb curry.  We also got a chance to do camel rides and boat rides.  I couldn’t help but admire the ostriches, white lions, cheetas etc.  Oh, we also went up to the Rust and Vrede waterfall.  The waterfall itself is breathtaking but that sound of water just freaked me out, as a result, we ended up not exploring as much as we had hoped.


The beauty of nature

One of my favourite moments of the trip was when we visited MaBetty’s cultural village situated in Bongolethu township.   Our country is full of inspiring women and MaBetty happens to be one of them.  She came up with the concept of a cultural village in an effort to showcase and preserve the Xhosa culture, art and food.   She is generous with her knowledge of culture, language and the food.  We received a warm welcome at Abafazi restaurant (situated in the village).  We were served imifino, white samp, mutton stew, umxhaxha, batatas, rosterkoek. When she’s not busy cooking her traditional Xhosa dishes she does beadwork and needlework, she makes traditional Xhosa outfits.  With her ideas, she has managed to encouraged creativity and create opportunities for other women in her community by teaching them what she knows.  Her passion is contagious and she’s doing an amazing getting other women involved.  The women in the village they grow their own vegetables, rare their own chicken and they gladly explain to their visitors how it’s done.  Some of the food they prepare is fresh from the garden.

MaBetty and Thuli

Happy women’s day to all the inspiring women out there!  Keep doing what you doing!


About Author


Thuli Gogela is a Food Technologist with 8 years of experience developing products in food manufacturing. She is dedicated to discovering wholesome traditional dishes and recipes with a distinctive taste from different parts of the African continent. Thuli is well known for her food blog, Mzansi Style Cuisine which was established in 2010. She saw a gap in the traditional food market that people were hungry for. From there, it didn’t take long to build her brand. In 2013, she started writing a recipe column for the Cape Times for and has collaborated with some of the biggest brands in South Africa namely, Knorr, Nedeburg Wines, First Choice and Spekko rice. Not only does Thuli feature traditional African dishes, she’s also open to developing recipes, food consultations and brand collaborations.

Comments ( 3 )

  • Wow, what a fabulous adventure and gorgeous photography! Thank you for sharing!! XO’s

    • Thanks Juliane! Thats the beauty of Africa at its best. xoxo

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