- Western Cape
Hoekwil, Wilderness, Western Cape
Hidden Jewel of the Garden Route
Hoekwil lies just 10 km inland from the little seaside village of Wilderness. Residents believe it to be a little piece of paradise and holidaymakers the “Hidden Jewel of the Garden Route”.
A tiny village, Hoekwil consists only of a school, a church, a post office, two shops and two coffee shops, but do not be fooled into thinking that there is nothing to do in this small colourful place! Sea, lake and mountain views, plus a very Big Tree sets Hoekwil apart from just any other little countryside town.
The Big Tree is a yellowwood tree thought to be as old as 850 years. You will find the tree on a clearly marked hike, known as the Woodville Hiking trail, that takes one into a nearby forest.
The Hoekwil Hoopla Arts Route, a circular 30 km route from Wilderness, through Hoekwil and into the Outeniqua mountains, is a firm favourite with the exploring holidaymakers. The route is a series of tea gardens, restaurants, artist galleries and accommodation venues.
Hoekwil is also ideally situated to visit the beaches at Wilderness and Victoria Bay and a drive out toward Knysna, maybe take the 7 Passes Road, will leave many attractions on the way to explore.
Accommodation in the vicinity includes hotels, farm cottages, guest houses, tented camps and camping facilities.
Things to do and see
- Woodville Forest Walk
- Woodville Picnic Site
- Kingfisher Trails
- Black Horse Trails
- Hoekwil Country Café
- Wilderness Beach
- Kaaimansgat Pass
- Touw River Pass
- Garden Route National Park
- Milkwood Evening Market
- George Golf Course
Hoekwil receives approximately 769 mm of rain annually with significant rain falling throughout the year.
Summer months, November to March will have average temperatures of between 12˚C and 26˚C.
Winter months, May to August will have average temperatures of between 6˚C and 21˚C.
Commercial Airlines offer flights to George Airport, only 32 Km away via the N2. Car hire facilities are located at the Airport.
At the end of the 19th century, many of the folk in the area we now know as Hoekwil and the lakes were woodcutters who exploited the timber for a living. As the forests became depleted, the situation of the woodcutters became dire. As a solution, the House of Assembly of the Union Government passed a resolution in 1913 that the farm Olifantshoek (Hoekwil) should be transferred to "the Kerkraad of the George NG Church for the purposes of a labour colony for settlement."
It was during this time (1912-1923), that Rev. Jan Andries Beyers actively took the lead to change and improve the lives of many people. The establishment of a church settlement at Olifantshoek where about 25 families were accommodated, is a monument of his love and commitment towards the poorest of the poor of his people. It can therefore categorically be said that Rev. Beyers was the founder of Hoekwil.
Originally Olifantshoek consisted mainly of a portion which was designated on the maps as the State owned Olifantshoek Plantations, hence the name. Presently there are still various explanations of the origin of the name “Hoekwil”.