Napier at a glance
Regarded as one of the best 25 small towns in South Africa, Napier is an eclectic mix of proud Afrikanerdom and overseas influence.
This charming hamlet is home to about 5 000 people and its wistful laid-back charm has and continues to attract visitors and property investors not only from South Africa but also from foreign shores.
Surrounded by wheat, barley and canola farmlands, Napier is tucked into the foothills of the Soetmuisberg mountain range. Its main street is lined with charming homes, many adorned with Broekielace, and is dominated by the NG Kerk which led to its establishment back in 1838.
Napier was founded following a dispute between two neighbouring farmers, Michiel van Breda and Pieter Voltelyn van der Byl, about the best location for a community church. Van Breda wanted to build a church on his Langefontein farm, but Voltelyn van der Byl was insistent that it be built on his Klipdrift property.
When neither of these two gentlemen could reach an amicable agreement they both went ahead and built an NG Church on their own farmsteads. Van Breda's site led to the formation of Bredasdorp, while Napier grew around Van der Byl's church. The town is named after Sir George Thomas Napier, who at that time was the British governor of the Cape Province.
A visit to Napier's Dutch Reformed church is well worthwhile. It is built in the style of a Greek cross. Teak adorns its interior and the unique pipe organ is crafted from solid yellow copper.
Other attractions include art galleries, a giant sundial and an Ox Wagon Monument commemorating the 1838 Ossewa Trek when dissident Afrikaners made an exodus from the Western Cape.
Over the years, more and more people have invested in either holiday or permanent homes in the hamlet. Apart from its countrified lifestyle, Napier offers property investors the convenience of amenities at Bredasdorp and coastal towns, all situated within an easy commuting distance.
Bredasdorp offers essential amenities such as large supermarkets, a hospital, doctors, dentists and schools. And it takes Napier residents less than 20 minutes to make the 17km trip.
When the summer heat sizzles, a trip to a nearby coastal town helps to cool down the temperature. The historic village of Arniston is a half-hour trip away, while Struisbaai is situated under 50 km and Gansbaai is a pleasant 50-minute journey.
It is for these reasons that Napier appears to be on the upswing as a property investment area.
With 1 266 freehold properties and a further 11 sectional title units, Napier's popularity is illustrated by the fact that 34 properties changed hands in the village in 2018. An additional nine transactions took place for vacant residential land.
While 38% of the local population is pensioners, there was an interesting upswing of youthful buyers in 2018. In fact, this group who ages ranged between 18 and 35 years, represented 20% of the village's buying market.
An added attraction to invest in the area is the fact that Napier offers a lovely retirement village with one and two bedroom Cape vernacular-style cottages.
While Napier is certainly nowhere near the bottom end of the scale, it is nevertheless still possible to acquire property in this lovely village at an affordable price.