For a country escape that doesn't skip on taste and luxury, let African Experience host you on a day tour of the Cape Winelands. The winelands area offers unsurpassed scenery with mountains, vineyards and Cape Dutch architecture as a backdrop. The Cape Winelands are vast with the most popular regions being Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl. Within a 35 minute drive from Cape Town you will find yourself in Stellenbosch. The town and vineyards date back to 1679 making Stellenbosch the second oldest wine producing region in South Africa. The drive along Helshoogte Pass on route to Franschhoek offers spectacular mountain views. Franschhoek, Afrikaans for French Corner, is the undisputed culinary capital of South Africa. In 1688 French Huguenot refugees began populating the valley, bringing their experience in agriculture with them, experience we still enjoy to this day. Traveling towards Paarl the surrounding mountain ranges dominate the vista. Paarl, Afrikaans for Pearl, is the third oldest wine region in South Africa. Paarl boasts a unique cultural heritage in that it is here that the foundations of the Afrikaans language were laid. Visiting each region offers wine tasting experiences. With our experience and wide selection of estates, we will endeavour to accommodate the preferences of your group. Below are a few broad outlines of what each wine region in the Cape is renowned for producing.
A day tour of the Cape Winelands has much to offer and is not limited to experiencing wine and wine estates. Again, our experience of the area will assist you in planning you day out in this beautiful part of the Western Cape.
Rich in natural beauty, steeped in history and a diverse culture, this Cape Winelands day tour is highly recommended.
- Stellenbosch - Walking is the best way to explore this historic town. The oak-lined streets are dotted with white-washed buildings displaying the Cape Dutch architecture, many of them national monuments. Explore the unique speciality shops and art galleries in search of local designer clothes, jewellery or piece of art. Learn about the beginnings of the second oldest city of South Africa when visiting the museums.
- Franschhoek - A short wander down the main road uncovers world-class shops and boutiques for an intimate and relaxed browsing experience all the while surrounded by various mountains. Whether you are looking for wine, jewellery, artisan chocolate or special souvenir, you will find this and much more in Franschhoek.
- Paarl - On the slopes of the Paarl Mountains are numerous experiences to be enjoyed from chocolate tasting, craft beer to spirit tasting. All things artisanal including high end clothing, glass blowing and ceramics are to be found with Table Mountain off in the distance.
- Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon can be found on wine lists the world over, while Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz and Chenin Blanc are all planted here in quantity. Stellenbosch is also notable for being the birth place of Pinotage, a crossing of Pinot Noir and Cinsaut ( Cinsault ) also known as Hermitage.
- The fertile Franschhoek wine valley is home to noble cultivars and classic styles. These range from superb whites such as Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Semillon and Chenin Blanc, to the full-bodied reds of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Pinot Noir and Merlot. The area also produces Methode Cap Classique ( MCC ), a bottle fermented sparkling wine made in the traditional French method - method champenoise.
- The Paarl region has a huge variation of terroir which gives wine farms the opportunity to experiment with many different grape varietals and blends. The red wines from this region are rich and robust with a fruity intensity. The white wines are also fruit and tropical driven. Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Pinotage, Chenin Blanc and Chardonnay some of the important grape varieties of this region.
We offer a day tour of the Cape Winelands to suit your timing and interests and will happily host you and your group on a bespoke itinerary. Below are a few more sites and activities you may want to include during your tour with us.
- Enjoy lunch on a wine estate. From relaxing on a blanket under shady trees with a gourmet picnic basket, to fine dining at award wining restaurants headed by notable chefs.
- Most wine estates offer a cellar tour and it is best to book beforehand for this experience. We can make recommendations based on your preference of wine and will make the booking for you too. We may even be able to arrange a meet with the wine maker!
- There are numerous activities for non drinkers and children friendly experiences on a day tour to the Cape Winelands. It doesn't have to be all about wine. Contact us for more details.