To the East of Cape Town surrounded by a semicircle of picturesque Boland mountains are the Cape Winelands. Dotted about in the fertile lush green valleys of the region are the vineyards of the Western Cape, the towns and villages everyday words to wine connoisseurs throughout the world. Here you will find Paarl, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch and many other world famous names. French Huguenots brought the art of wine-making to the Cape in the late 17th Century and it was here that the first experiments into finding out the best cultivars were carried out.
There are a number of tours that have been set up for the visitor to sample the superb wines of the Cape Winelands, to view the homesteads that have been handed down from generation to generation and to witness the wine-making process. The Cape Winelands are bordered by the Hottentots Holland, the Franschhoek mountains and in the North by the Wemmershoekberg. The former two mountain ranges form part of the Hottentots Holland Nature Reserve and the only way to see this reserve is to hike through it on the Boland Hiking Trail. Shorter hiking trails are available in the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve just east of Stellenbosch. This mountain reserve harbours one of the richest and most diverse populations of indigenous wildflowers in the world, and it is known that there are more than 35 threatened species in the region. The dominant vegetation in the reserve is fynbbos with patches of the original forest dotted about on the upper slopes. Leopard, caracal and genet have been seen in the area.
Butterfly World, just off the N1 on the R44, is well worth a visit, especially for the kids.
Franschhoek was originally known as the French Quarter or le Quartier Francais as it was in this region that the original Huguenots settled to escape religious persecution in Europe. The town has now become known as the food and wine capital of the Western Cape, and visitors flock here from all over the world to sample its products. The town houses a Huguenot Monument and museum.
Paarl in the Cape Winelands is known as the Pearl of South Africa and gets its name from the vast round granite rocks at the summit of the mountain overlooking the town, where Die Afrikaanse Taalmonument is located. The name Peerleberg or pearly mountain was give to the berg by Abraham Gabbema in 1657 because of the way the mountain glittered in the sunlight after a shower. The town was established in 1720 with the building of the first church. The Afrikaanse Taalmuseum houses the press where the newspaper de Zuid-Afrikaan was once printed.
The Cape Winelands town of Stellenbosch is the second oldest town in South Africa after Cape Town, and was founded in 1679. The town is famous for its wines, its university and its Cape Dutch architecture which can be seen in its many historic buildings, such as those found at the Burgerhuis Museum. The town is also known as Eikestad (Oak Town) because of its numerous oak trees. The university has produced six South African prime ministers and several Springbok rugby captains. Stellenbosch houses a Brandy Museum where many examples of old brandy stills can be seen. A food and wine festival is held here in the last week of October each year. Musical concerts play every summer at the Spier Summer Festival.
The town of Wellington in the Cape Winelands region lies in a valley known as Val du Charron, or Valley of the Wagon Makers after the trade of many of the early French Huguenots who settled in the area at the end of the 17th Century. There are several excellent wine cellars in the Wellington area where the visitor can enjoy wine tasting. Wellington offers the visitor a magical and captivating atmosphere and friendly people. Wellington was originally named Limiet Vallei or the Frontier Valley, but the name was changed in 1840 in honour of the Duke of Wellington and his defeat of Napoleon at the battle of Waterloo. There are several cellars in the area that offer wine tasting.
Heuwelsig Cottages is situated on a working wine farm, surrounded by lush vineyard, orchards and scenic landscapes, just 5 km from the well-known village of Franschhoek, about an hours drive from Cape Town.
Ladera-vista is nestled against Paarlberg offering panoramic views of the Paarl Valley and the Drakenstein Mountains. Five self-catering units in a rustic, country atmosphere that indulges the senses and rejuvenates even the most weary of minds.
Step inside a space created and styled to achieve the perfect balance of timeless luxury and comfort. Filled with sultry designer accessories to energise and welcome you after a long day of 'Live, Work and Play'.
Sherwood Lodge is a 6 sleeper self-catering home situated in the prestigious De Zalze Winelands Golf Estate in the famous Cape WInelands of South Africa. The Estate boasts a golf course that is one of the top rated in the country...
Whether you are looking for adventure or simply a break away from the city, let White Bridge Farm be your choice of destination. Situated between the R46 and the R43, we are well positioned to visit either Tulbagh, Wolseley or Ceres. We will guarantee tha
Soverby Guesthouse is situated on an old (1901) working cattle farm in the heart of the Stellenbosch Winelands and the popular Stellenbosch Wineroute. We are close to famous golf courses, sandy beaches, restaurants and 30 minutes from Cape Town Internatio
5 Konings Accommodation in Paarl offers relaxing accommodation in four stylishly decorated rooms. Three of the rooms with en-suite bathrooms have double volume ceilings and double doors opening onto the garden. The rooms offer comfortable queen...
Clementine Cottage is a beautifully appointed self-catering cottage on a working fruit farm. It has two tastefully furnished double bedrooms each with luxurious en suite bathroom and dressing room, and a spacious living area with fully equipped kitch
The house sleeps 10 to 12 people. The house has an open plan kitchen with a built in fireplace/braai. Firewood, linen and towels, coffee and tea, fresh bread and milk are provided. Breakfast and dinner as well as babysitting can be arranged on ...
Wild Olive Farm is a working wine and olive farm situated just outside the historic town of Tulbagh. We offer six fully furnished, self catering cottages and a grassed campsite, all with spectacular views of the surrounding Witzenberg Mountain Range.
The four star De Kleijne Bos Country House which nestles in the heart of the Drakenstein valley, features the well known Winelands region. Situated on the outskirts of the Paarl Village, only 3km from the main town, it is an ideal base to indulge tastes f
Caledon Villa embodies warm South African hospitality, culture and history. It is located within walking distance from the heart of historical Stellenbosch, from the vibrant campus of the University and from the peaceful flowing Eerste River.
The cottage consists of a main unit, and an outside flatlet, separated by a gardened courtyard. The main unit can accommodate 4 persons, two downstairs (extra length king size bed), and two upstairs (two 3/4 beds), en-suite. The flatlet has a ...
Recently restored and interior designed, this unique self catering "Barn House" is situated on the original road that leads into Franschhoek.
Nestled in the foothills of the magnificent Franschhoek mountains, only a few minutes' drive from the village centre, is a beautiful boutique guest house known for its warm welcome, tangible tranquility and ambience geared to your comfort.
Come and escape from the city stress to a place filled with birdsong, where the pace is relaxed and tranquility a high priority! Audrey's Vineyard Cottage & Homestead is on a working grape farm in the scenic Nuy Valley, at the foothills of...
Petit & Grande Plaisir self-catering cottages lies in the quaint little town of Franschhoek, a fine wine and dining hotspot and one of South Africa's truly beautiful localities. There is so much to see and do, that it's best if you don't rush your stay...
The building is a 1928 listed house that was restored in its original Art Deco style. The units are semi self-catering and most have their own lounges.
Our mission at Gecko Rock is to offer our visitors an unparalleled outdoor experience in the South African Karoo - one of the most unique natural areas on earth.