The Cape Winelands are located an hour’s drive northeast from Cape Town in South Africa’s Western Cape region. This is an area of beautiful natural landscapes, including stunning mountains, picturesque valleys, lakes, and streams, interspersed with delightful historic villages. A real treat for foodies and wine lovers, the region is internationally renowned for its high-quality wine production.
Cape Wineries have perfected the art of a lovely day out with restaurants, walking trails, wine tasting and even the odd croquet pitch and jungle gym to enjoy. The attractions aren’t limited to the vine either, there are numerous art galleries and museums, artisanal chocolate factories and craft beer breweries. The surrounding peaks offer a host of wonderful hiking and mountain biking trails to help burn off those indulgent lunches.
Stellenbosch is the capital of the region and one of South Africa’s oldest settlements. Founded by the Dutch, this vibrant university town is a cultural hub with numerous art galleries and museums worth a visit, along with numerous bars, restaurants, and a variety of good value and upmarket accommodation. It boasts some lovely architecture including gabled Cape Dutch farmsteads surrounded by fertile meadows, and elegant Georgian mansions set along tree lined avenues.
Beautiful Franschhoek, meaning ‘French Corner’ is a charming small town which dates back to the 17th century when it became home to the French Huguenots fleeing persecution from Louis XIV. Lying in a valley flanked by the soaring Drakenstein and Wemmershoek mountain ranges, it is popular for its gourmet restaurants, art galleries, and whitewashed Cape Dutch architecture, along with some of the best wine estates in the country.
The Winelands can be visited as a guided day tour from Cape Town, but if you have the time, we recommend taking a couple of nights to stay and enjoy the Winelands.