Acres and acres of vineyards, as far as your eyes could see. South Africa is one of the largest producers of wine around the world. And the vineyards and distilleries are only an hour to two hours drive from Cape Town.
A vacation in South Africa would not be complete without a trip to the Winelands. There is a miscellany of things to do, visit, and eat as you explore the rich highlands. To maximize your trip, make sure to stay a night or two.
Book a home with the best views
Live your best life with good food and wine, and even greater views. Grand Dedale in Wellington is a six-bedroom manor with the Groenberg Mountain as its backdrop. Tucked in the quiet Stellenbosch suburb, Majeka House is a full-service boutique hotel with a fine dining restaurant and spa.
Another option is to stay at the Leeu House, a charming 12-room boutique hotel in the heart of Franschhoek. Upon checking in, you have full access to the Leeu Estates, which includes of the winery and wellness spa. It easily combines the old world Cape Dutch architecture and contemporary South African design in the space.
Pick a tour
Explore Stellenbosch on foot, ride the wine tram across Franschhoek, or book a private wine tour, There a number of ways to go around and explore the vineyards.
One way is to take a guided bike tour in Stellenbosch. This includes the guide, bicycle and helmet rental, one wine tasting, one wine and chocolate pairing, a cellar tour, and individual snack packs and drinks. The entire tour could take around four to five hours.
Here, there is no wine tasting involved. Horse About Trails takes you to the foothills of the Witzenberg Mountains and through farmland, vineyards, and forests. If you’re feeling a tad more fancy, a gourmet picnic can be arranged.
The Constantia wine tour is one of the more famous tours as it is said to be where South Africa’s wine culture started. This is a full-day tour inclusive of wine-tastings, picnic or sit-down lunch, a 4×4 trip to the highest vineyard in Constantia, and additional site tours.
Where to eat
Apart from the finest wines and its magnificent estates, the Winelands also offers a wide selection of casual to fine dining restaurants.
The Table sits on a family-owned boutique winery in Stellenbosch. They offer a farm-to-table menu with every ingredient sourced locally or grown at their own farm. Only open for lunches, this is a good setting for an intimate three-course meal with the family.
On the other hand, Jordan Restaurant, also located in Stellenbosch, offers South African flavors. Top chef George Jardine brings local flavors and ingredients into world-class dishes with his impeccable taste and technique. His food is best paired with vintage wine also from the Jordan Wine Estate.