Paarl (pärl) [key], city, part and seat of Drakenstein local municipality, Western Cape prov., S South Africa, on the Berg River. It is the center of South Africa's wine industry and of a tobacco-growing region. Canned foods, jams, textiles, and cigarettes are important products. Paarl was founded in 1687 by Dutch farmers, and in 1690 French Huguenots settled there. It is the site of a teachers college and of a commercial college.