Nestled cosily behind the hustle and bustle of the Cape Town metropolis, the Cape Winelands boasts a theatrical display of exquisite nature, proud cultural heritage and some of the world’s best wine making establishments. Lush green valleys are dotted with quaint little towns and enveloped by some of the Western Cape’s most beautiful mountain ranges.
The Cape Winelands’ vast array of reputable accommodation, recreational activities, award-winning restaurants and South African hospitality make this destination a must-see for locals and tourists alike.
The French Corner
When visiting Franschhoek, one will notice the French flair throughout. The French influence in Franschhoek (meaning ‘French corner’) stems from the arrival of the French Huguenots in the Cape over 300 years ago. The Huguenots were fleeing religious persecution in France, and brought their knowledge of viticulture to the Cape, establishing many of the first vineyards in the region. The town promises culinary delight and year-round events gaining the attention of food and wine aficionados from across the globe.
Enjoy delicious bubbly at the Franschhoek Cap Classique and Champagne Festival which takes place in December each year, offering tastings of France’s finest champagne as well as South Africa’s famous Cap Classiques.
The Cape Winelands is home to some of South Africa’s most luxurious accommodation, from five star hotels to picturesque guesthouses amidst the rolling wine farms. Stellenbosch is host to one of the most esteemed hotels – The Lanzerac Hotel and Spa – undoubtedly a magnificent gem presenting world class hospitality. With 48 exquisite rooms and suites with private swimming pools, indulgence is prominent.
The Lanzerac Spa, amongst its grace and grandeur, is one of the first hotels in South Africa to offer a treatment that is taking the world by storm. Known as ‘doctor fish’ (gara rufa obtusa) are little toothless fish that use a suction mechanism to exfoliate and massage the skin, thereby stimulating acupuncture points which relaxes the body and releases fatigue. The treatment is for the hands, face and body, leaving the skin smooth and rejuvenated.
The Cape Winelands is South Africa’s biggest wine making region, with over 600 wine farms and cellars to visit. Whilst exploring this region, there are many wine routes that aptly direct wine connoisseurs to the greatest and most memorable establishments.
The Paarl Vintners Wine Route is highly recommended as the 33 wine farms en route display enticing tastings with special mention of Fairview which offers unique tastings of uncommon grape varietals, such as Sangiovese, Mourvèdre, Carignan. If this is not enough, the cheese tasting room is next door, tempting wine tasters to indulge in a selection of 6 to 8 of Fairview’s Jersey milk and goats’ milk cheeses.
Paarl’s Palmiet Valley Estate sits at the foot of the Drakenstein Mountains is a great place to end a day of touring. The Cape Dutch architecture emits deep-seated cultural heritage and the hospitality is unsurpassed.
When the palate needs a rest, the list of activities in this region is endless. Connect with the Earth and get your hands working by picking olives or cherries. View the scenery whilst horse riding through the valley or contribute to the wine making process by grape stomping. Shop for antiques or watch venetian-style glass blowing.
With so much on offer, it’s no surprise that the Cape Winelands is a perennial favourite among tourists and locals alike. With so many different accommodation options to choose from, why not make a weekend of it and enjoy waking up in these tranquil surroundings.
Speak to an experienced travel expert with local knowledge, as they have the best contacts and will be able to pair you with the most appropriate accommodation for your needs and budget.
Exclusive Getaways are South African travel experts with an extensive portfolio of accommodation in the Cape Winelands. Contact Exclusive Getaways for great value Cape Winelands travel specials and discounts across South Africa.