Western Cape

Discover the magnificent ‘French Corner’

Nestled in the foothills of the impressive Simonsberg mountain in the Western Cape is a gem you won’t want to miss on your travels to South Africa. Franschhoek, discovered by the Huguenots in 1688, is a little town with an old-world village feeling and the hospitality to match.

And there are so many exciting things to do there!

It’s probably best known for its gourmet food and exceptional wines, so it’s a must-see for any self-respecting foodie (especially since it’s only about 75 kilometres from Cape Town) but there’s so much more to discover.

Here are a few things we think will whet your appetite in other ways.

For the history buff

If you enjoy learning about the past, you really must pay a visit to The Huguenot Memorial Museum and Monument to learn about the early settlers in South Africa, and how their French culture impacted on the area. And while you’re there, check out the spectacular gardens including the protea displays. You could also mix your winetasting with your history at the Museum van de Caab on the Solms Delta wine estate. They have a small museum highlighting the local history from the Stone Age as well as the history of the farm itself and wonderful historical artefacts and recordings.

Huguenot_Monument
Credit: www.commons.wikimedia.org 

Another popular local attraction is Groot Drakenstein Prison, the low risk security prison where former President Nelson Mandela spent his last day in prison and took his momentous “Walk to Freedom”.

For the boys (and girls) who love their toys, definitely don’t miss the Franschhoek Motor Museum on the beautiful L’Ormarins property. Spanning more than 100 years of motoring history, this private collection of over 300 cars, motorcycles, bicycles and motoring memorabilia will transport you to a bygone era.

MercedesBenz540K_main
Credit: www.fmm.co.za (Franschhoek Motor Museum)

Looking for something a little more outdoorsy?

Franschhoek offers some of the most breathtaking walks and hikes in the entire country. The Franschhoek Pass, part of the UNESCO declared Cape Winelands Biosphere Reserve, and just a few minutes drive out of the village (or a hike up Cats se Pad trail if you are feeling more adventurous and energetic), boasts the most exceptional views over the whole valley. There are lots of places to stop along the way and take photos, but watch out for the cheeky baboons! You can also head into the Mont Rochelle Mountain Reserve from the top of the Pass and walk through the fynbos. We’d recommend an early morning or dusk adventure to take advantage of the cooler temperatures and stunning lighting.

61490584
Credit: www.panoramio.com

If you’re keen on feeling fit and healthy (or working off a delicious meal) but aren’t quite up for a hike to see the sights, why not hire a bicycle to explore the village or the trails around the Berg River Dam on the 7 kilometre purpose-built track? You can also go horseriding or take a garden tour or visit Franschhoek Medicinal Garden and learn about indigenous medicines.

garden_2
Credit: www.babylonstoren.com

And for the sporty types, if you’re visiting Franschhoek in summer, try to time it for a weekend and catch a cricket match at the Groot Drakenstein Games Club. Apparently it was the first turf cricket pitch laid in South Africa!

After a spot of retail therapy?

After indulging in the local fare, you might want to walk it off by taking a wander through the boutiques and picking up a little something for yourself, whether it’s clothing, antiques, jewellery or art. Franschhoek also has a delightful arts and crafts market from 9am to 2pm each Saturday where you can meet lots of the locals. And there are a number of working art studios you can visit too, including the Franschhoek Live Craft Centre where you can see the potter in residence at work.

2e
Credit: www.franschhoek.co.za

You could, of course, also book in for a spa treatment at one of the day spas instead.

Foodie fun for the family

While Franschhoek boasts wine estates and vineyards that are some of the oldest in the country and produce internationally renowned, award-winning wine that just has to be sampled, there are a few other foodie things to do in the village that will enthrall the whole family. Like taking a course in bread baking or going on a chocolate tour. And then there’s grabbing a picnic basket and simply lazing about, taking in the ambience of this amazingly rich and fertile land. Or going to one of the delicious choices of restaurants (bookings recommended from October-February).

3586893833_af08eac07d_z
Credit: www.flickr.com

Bread_Making_Collage
Credit: www.moreson.co.za

There really is never a dull moment in this exquisite part of the world. Whether you just want to sit on the stoep and sip wine or put on your tekkies and go hiking, Franschhoek caters for it all.

And, depending on when you’re visiting, you might even catch the Harvest Festival in February (and get to stomp on grapes), Franschhoek Literary Festival in May, Bastille Day celebrations in July or the Open Gardens Festival in late October.

6a0162fffe844e970d01a511dc6d4e970c-500wi
Credit: www.franschhoekbastille.co.za

Glitz and glamour

If dressing up to the nines and rubbing shoulders with high society is more your style, you won’t want to miss The Franschhoek ‘Magic of Bubbles’ Cap Classique and Champagne Festival held very late November. It’s the perfect place to sample the bubbles and cuisine from some of the top regional producers, as well as some of France’s best champagnes. Last year’s theme was black and white with an emphasis on parasols and panama hats. Take a look - it’s well worth the effort!

6a0162fffe844e970d01bb07b68069970d-800wi (2)

Credit: http://www.franschhoekmcc.co.za/

For more travel inspiration and the latest news and tools to plan your perfect South African holiday, join the conversation on our Australian or New Zealand Facebook page.

Discover the magnificent ‘French Corner’

Nestled in the foothills of the impressive Simonsberg mountain in the Western Cape is a gem you won’t want to miss on your travels to South Africa. Franschhoek, discovered by the Huguenots in 1688, is a little town with an old-world village feeling and the hospitality to match.

And there are so many exciting things to do there!

It’s probably best known for its gourmet food and exceptional wines, so it’s a must-see for any self-respecting foodie (especially since it’s only about 75 kilometres from Cape Town) but there’s so much more to discover.

Here are a few things we think will whet your appetite in other ways.

For the history buff

If you enjoy learning about the past, you really must pay a visit to The Huguenot Memorial Museum and Monument to learn about the early settlers in South Africa, and how their French culture impacted on the area. And while you’re there, check out the spectacular gardens including the protea displays. You could also mix your winetasting with your history at the Museum van de Caab on the Solms Delta wine estate. They have a small museum highlighting the local history from the Stone Age as well as the history of the farm itself and wonderful historical artefacts and recordings.

Huguenot_Monument
Credit: www.commons.wikimedia.org 

Another popular local attraction is Groot Drakenstein Prison, the low risk security prison where former President Nelson Mandela spent his last day in prison and took his momentous “Walk to Freedom”.

For the boys (and girls) who love their toys, definitely don’t miss the Franschhoek Motor Museum on the beautiful L’Ormarins property. Spanning more than 100 years of motoring history, this private collection of over 300 cars, motorcycles, bicycles and motoring memorabilia will transport you to a bygone era.

MercedesBenz540K_main
Credit: www.fmm.co.za (Franschhoek Motor Museum)

Looking for something a little more outdoorsy?

Franschhoek offers some of the most breathtaking walks and hikes in the entire country. The Franschhoek Pass, part of the UNESCO declared Cape Winelands Biosphere Reserve, and just a few minutes drive out of the village (or a hike up Cats se Pad trail if you are feeling more adventurous and energetic), boasts the most exceptional views over the whole valley. There are lots of places to stop along the way and take photos, but watch out for the cheeky baboons! You can also head into the Mont Rochelle Mountain Reserve from the top of the Pass and walk through the fynbos. We’d recommend an early morning or dusk adventure to take advantage of the cooler temperatures and stunning lighting.

61490584
Credit: www.panoramio.com

If you’re keen on feeling fit and healthy (or working off a delicious meal) but aren’t quite up for a hike to see the sights, why not hire a bicycle to explore the village or the trails around the Berg River Dam on the 7 kilometre purpose-built track? You can also go horseriding or take a garden tour or visit Franschhoek Medicinal Garden and learn about indigenous medicines.

garden_2
Credit: www.babylonstoren.com

And for the sporty types, if you’re visiting Franschhoek in summer, try to time it for a weekend and catch a cricket match at the Groot Drakenstein Games Club. Apparently it was the first turf cricket pitch laid in South Africa!

After a spot of retail therapy?

After indulging in the local fare, you might want to walk it off by taking a wander through the boutiques and picking up a little something for yourself, whether it’s clothing, antiques, jewellery or art. Franschhoek also has a delightful arts and crafts market from 9am to 2pm each Saturday where you can meet lots of the locals. And there are a number of working art studios you can visit too, including the Franschhoek Live Craft Centre where you can see the potter in residence at work.

2e
Credit: www.franschhoek.co.za

You could, of course, also book in for a spa treatment at one of the day spas instead.

Foodie fun for the family

While Franschhoek boasts wine estates and vineyards that are some of the oldest in the country and produce internationally renowned, award-winning wine that just has to be sampled, there are a few other foodie things to do in the village that will enthrall the whole family. Like taking a course in bread baking or going on a chocolate tour. And then there’s grabbing a picnic basket and simply lazing about, taking in the ambience of this amazingly rich and fertile land. Or going to one of the delicious choices of restaurants (bookings recommended from October-February).

3586893833_af08eac07d_z
Credit: www.flickr.com

Bread_Making_Collage
Credit: www.moreson.co.za

There really is never a dull moment in this exquisite part of the world. Whether you just want to sit on the stoep and sip wine or put on your tekkies and go hiking, Franschhoek caters for it all.

And, depending on when you’re visiting, you might even catch the Harvest Festival in February (and get to stomp on grapes), Franschhoek Literary Festival in May, Bastille Day celebrations in July or the Open Gardens Festival in late October.

6a0162fffe844e970d01a511dc6d4e970c-500wi
Credit: www.franschhoekbastille.co.za

Glitz and glamour

If dressing up to the nines and rubbing shoulders with high society is more your style, you won’t want to miss The Franschhoek ‘Magic of Bubbles’ Cap Classique and Champagne Festival held very late November. It’s the perfect place to sample the bubbles and cuisine from some of the top regional producers, as well as some of France’s best champagnes. Last year’s theme was black and white with an emphasis on parasols and panama hats. Take a look - it’s well worth the effort!

6a0162fffe844e970d01bb07b68069970d-800wi (2)

Credit: http://www.franschhoekmcc.co.za/

For more travel inspiration and the latest news and tools to plan your perfect South African holiday, join the conversation on our Australian or New Zealand Facebook page.

Celebrating NYE and NYD in South Africa

New Year’s is an event celebrated around the world. South Africans celebrate New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day similar to Australians. Both countries celebrate the last day of the year with parties and fireworks and New Year’s Day is generally spent outdoors.

If you’re spending New Year’s Eve in Cape Town you can ring in the New Year on top of Table Mountain. Pack a picnic and grab some friends and you can party until 12:30 a.m. This vantage point gives an unobstructed view of the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront fireworks. The party continues on January 1, with thousands heading to local beaches.

5581_gallery
Image source: A luxury travel blog- Table Mountain Sunset

VAWaterfront-capeletting
Image source: A luxury travel blog – V&A Waterfront

There are many popular nightclubs and areas to watch fireworks in Durban, Johannesburg and Victoria Falls to bring in the New Year.

South Africans love a good ‘jol’ and New Year’s Day is a public holiday in South Africa, making it the perfect opportunity to celebrate the beginning of 2015 and recover from the festivities the night before.

New Year’s Day occurs during the balmy African summer and is often enjoyed outdoors. The many beaches of the Eastern Cape and Western Cape are buzzing with locals and international visitors who want to start the year off with a dip in the ocean and relaxing with friends and family on the sand. This can lead to delays in finding a parking spot or getting a bite to eat along the coast.

2417710541_16e5f8eda0_o (1)Image source: Hobie Beach – Port Elizabeth

Many South Africans spend New Year’s Day having a braai (barbecuing) with friends and families in the gardens, parks and beaches of the country (where permitted). The warm, sunny summers of the country make it a perfect way to celebrate the first day of the New Year.

Braaing-on-the-plains
Image source: Yuppie Chef

Whatever you end up doing on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, South Africa Tourism Australia and New Zealand wish you a happy holiday season.

Celebrating NYE and NYD in South Africa

New Year’s is an event celebrated around the world. South Africans celebrate New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day similar to Australians. Both countries celebrate the last day of the year with parties and fireworks and New Year’s Day is generally spent outdoors.

If you’re spending New Year’s Eve in Cape Town you can ring in the New Year on top of Table Mountain. Pack a picnic and grab some friends and you can party until 12:30 a.m. This vantage point gives an unobstructed view of the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront fireworks. The party continues on January 1, with thousands heading to local beaches.

5581_gallery
Image source: A luxury travel blog- Table Mountain Sunset

VAWaterfront-capeletting
Image source: A luxury travel blog – V&A Waterfront

There are many popular nightclubs and areas to watch fireworks in Durban, Johannesburg and Victoria Falls to bring in the New Year.

South Africans love a good ‘jol’ and New Year’s Day is a public holiday in South Africa, making it the perfect opportunity to celebrate the beginning of 2015 and recover from the festivities the night before.

New Year’s Day occurs during the balmy African summer and is often enjoyed outdoors. The many beaches of the Eastern Cape and Western Cape are buzzing with locals and international visitors who want to start the year off with a dip in the ocean and relaxing with friends and family on the sand. This can lead to delays in finding a parking spot or getting a bite to eat along the coast.

2417710541_16e5f8eda0_o (1)Image source: Hobie Beach – Port Elizabeth

Many South Africans spend New Year’s Day having a braai (barbecuing) with friends and families in the gardens, parks and beaches of the country (where permitted). The warm, sunny summers of the country make it a perfect way to celebrate the first day of the New Year.

Braaing-on-the-plains
Image source: Yuppie Chef

Whatever you end up doing on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, South Africa Tourism Australia and New Zealand wish you a happy holiday season.

Coastal accommodation in South Africa

The coastlines of South Africa are some of the most beautiful in the world. This week we’ve narrowed down the best South African coastal hotels where the beach is in reach!

You’ll find all types of accommodation along to the coast ranging from five-star luxury hotels and resorts to more humble seaside B&Bs which offer hearty breakfasts, personalised service and a warm family atmosphere.

Morgan’s Bay located in the Eastern Cape is a popular spot amongst locals and tourists. Morgan’s Bay is known for its sea cliffs, lagoon and long white beach. When visiting, The Morgan Bay Hotel, established in 1946 is a great place to stay. Located right on the beach and boasting views of the Indian Ocean, this boutique hotel is designed to make you feel at home.

Standard double rooms start from R1310 ($136 AUD) per night.

Morgan's Bay Hotel

Image source: The Morgan Bay Hotel

Morgan's Bay

Image source: The Morgan Bay Hotel

Hout Bay, located just outside of Cape Town is one of the busiest harbours in the Western Cape. A working fishing village, Hout Bay is popular with tourists because of its variety of fine restaurants, picturesque scenery and great shopping. In addition to this, Hout Bay is home to “Dungeons” – one of the sixteen recognised big wave spots around the globe and surfers travel from far and wide to challenge themselves.

The scenery, friendly people and the laid-back ambience will make visitors feel right at home in Hout Bay. The Hout Bay Manor is a 5 star hotel which originally opened in 1871 and which has had a recent 18 month refurbishment, reopening in 2007. There are 16 rooms at the Hout Bay Manor, all beautifully decorated starting from R3905 ($400 AUD) per night. The hotel is also home to Pure Restaurant and Inzolo Spa, so there is no reason to leave!

There are many B&Bs and self-catering accommodation options in the area as well. Makuti Lodge offers 5 charming, self-catering cottages with prices starting from R700 ($72 AUD). The Makuti Lodge offers all the comforts of home including a private garden, patio and fully-equipped kitchens in a cottage setting.

Hout Bay Manor - 2

Image source: Hout Bay Manor

Makuti Lodge

Makuti Lodge

Image source: Makuti Lodge

If you’re looking to splash some serious cash on your summer holiday – you can’t look past the Birkenhead House, which is also located in the Western Cape. Set on a cliff’s edge,with stunning views over the beach, Birkenhead House is a special place to watch the waves and surfers come in. Between June and November, the view includes whales, which swim right in front of the hotel. There are 11 luxury suites in the hotel with double rooms starting from R12,200 ($1,285 AUD) per night with rates including breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Birkenhead House - Cliff

Birkenhead House

Image source: Mr & Mrs Smith; Birkenhead House

The Suncoast Towers in Durban is a stone’s throw away from Suncoast beach and is at the start of the Durban golden mile. Suncoast Towers offers exclusive, spacious, beautifully decorated rooms with attractions for every interest and standard rooms start from R1700 ($160 AUD) per night. The Suncoast Towers accommodation aims to provide a tranquil oasis amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

SuncoastTowers

Image source: The Suncoast Towers

Cape View Clifton perched high on a cliff above the trendy suburb of Clifton opened its doors in 2012. This is a truly spectacular, ultra-chic hotel located above Clifton’s 4 beaches, with spectacular views of Table Mountain and the 12 Apostles. There are 7 suites in the hotel (2 self-catering). This is an ideal spot for beach lovers and a good base for exploring the region’s national parks. It’s a short hop to the famous Camps Bay and Cape Town central is a 20-minute drive. The Junior Suite (3 bedroom) from Dec-Feb starts from R4620 ($485 AUD) per night. The large, luxurious suites with uninterrupted sea views from private terraces, in our opinion offer priceless views!

Cape View Clifton - Dining

Cape View Clifton

Image source: i-escape; Cape View Clifton

For more summer inspiration and the latest news and tools to plan your perfect South African summer holiday, join the conversation on our Australian or New Zealand Facebook page.

Coastal accommodation in South Africa

The coastlines of South Africa are some of the most beautiful in the world. This week we’ve narrowed down the best South African coastal hotels where the beach is in reach!

You’ll find all types of accommodation along to the coast ranging from five-star luxury hotels and resorts to more humble seaside B&Bs which offer hearty breakfasts, personalised service and a warm family atmosphere.

Morgan’s Bay located in the Eastern Cape is a popular spot amongst locals and tourists. Morgan’s Bay is known for its sea cliffs, lagoon and long white beach. When visiting, The Morgan Bay Hotel, established in 1946 is a great place to stay. Located right on the beach and boasting views of the Indian Ocean, this boutique hotel is designed to make you feel at home.

Standard double rooms start from R1310 ($136 AUD) per night.

Morgan's Bay Hotel

Image source: The Morgan Bay Hotel

Morgan's Bay

Image source: The Morgan Bay Hotel

Hout Bay, located just outside of Cape Town is one of the busiest harbours in the Western Cape. A working fishing village, Hout Bay is popular with tourists because of its variety of fine restaurants, picturesque scenery and great shopping. In addition to this, Hout Bay is home to “Dungeons” – one of the sixteen recognised big wave spots around the globe and surfers travel from far and wide to challenge themselves.

The scenery, friendly people and the laid-back ambience will make visitors feel right at home in Hout Bay. The Hout Bay Manor is a 5 star hotel which originally opened in 1871 and which has had a recent 18 month refurbishment, reopening in 2007. There are 16 rooms at the Hout Bay Manor, all beautifully decorated starting from R3905 ($400 AUD) per night. The hotel is also home to Pure Restaurant and Inzolo Spa, so there is no reason to leave!

There are many B&Bs and self-catering accommodation options in the area as well. Makuti Lodge offers 5 charming, self-catering cottages with prices starting from R700 ($72 AUD). The Makuti Lodge offers all the comforts of home including a private garden, patio and fully-equipped kitchens in a cottage setting.

Hout Bay Manor - 2

Image source: Hout Bay Manor

Makuti Lodge

Makuti Lodge

Image source: Makuti Lodge

If you’re looking to splash some serious cash on your summer holiday – you can’t look past the Birkenhead House, which is also located in the Western Cape. Set on a cliff’s edge,with stunning views over the beach, Birkenhead House is a special place to watch the waves and surfers come in. Between June and November, the view includes whales, which swim right in front of the hotel. There are 11 luxury suites in the hotel with double rooms starting from R12,200 ($1,285 AUD) per night with rates including breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Birkenhead House - Cliff

Birkenhead House

Image source: Mr & Mrs Smith; Birkenhead House

The Suncoast Towers in Durban is a stone’s throw away from Suncoast beach and is at the start of the Durban golden mile. Suncoast Towers offers exclusive, spacious, beautifully decorated rooms with attractions for every interest and standard rooms start from R1700 ($160 AUD) per night. The Suncoast Towers accommodation aims to provide a tranquil oasis amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

SuncoastTowers

Image source: The Suncoast Towers

Cape View Clifton perched high on a cliff above the trendy suburb of Clifton opened its doors in 2012. This is a truly spectacular, ultra-chic hotel located above Clifton’s 4 beaches, with spectacular views of Table Mountain and the 12 Apostles. There are 7 suites in the hotel (2 self-catering). This is an ideal spot for beach lovers and a good base for exploring the region’s national parks. It’s a short hop to the famous Camps Bay and Cape Town central is a 20-minute drive. The Junior Suite (3 bedroom) from Dec-Feb starts from R4620 ($485 AUD) per night. The large, luxurious suites with uninterrupted sea views from private terraces, in our opinion offer priceless views!

Cape View Clifton - Dining

Cape View Clifton

Image source: i-escape; Cape View Clifton

For more summer inspiration and the latest news and tools to plan your perfect South African summer holiday, join the conversation on our Australian or New Zealand Facebook page.

Wining and dining in South Africa

South Africa is home to some of the world’s exquisite cuisine and wine regions.

The food and wine route in South Africa offers culinary experiences which will awaken and excite.

Cape Winelands has 18 official wine routes and two brandy routes which are nestled among the most scenic and historic wine estates which date back centuries. The Cape is a premier Western Cape visitor attraction offering tours ranging from wine tasting to wine making. There is also excellent cuisine and magnificent scenery collectively creating an irresistible attraction for international and local travellers alike.

Stellenbosch

The Stellenbosch Wine Route, which is South Africa’s oldest, was founded in 1971 and is known to produce a world-renowned sparkling wine. It is located in Cape Winelands and has been awarded the Best Wine Destination in 2012 by Trip Advisor and just like a fine wine, the  town has only gotten better with age. There are a range of wineries to visit ranging from large estates to smaller independent wineries.

For elegant alfresco dining under the oaks, splendid vineyard views and sublimely prepared seasonal fare, try Terroir restaurant at Kleine Zalze wine. Similarly, the restaurant at Jordan winery offers panoramic views of Table Mountain, False Bay and Stellenbosch, with a daily blackboard menu to complement Jordan’s acclaimed wines.

Stellenbosch WineryIf your palate prefers white wine, we recommend visiting the town of Franschhoek which is commonly referred to as South Africa’s gourmet capital boasting dozens of award winning wineries and restaurants which source local produce to create their menus.

Franschhoek Valley

What makes this food and wine route in Franschhoek special is you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The heritage can be felt in this picturesque town and, yet, it’s only 45 minutes from Cape Town! The main road is lined with restaurants, some run by award-winning chefs like Reuben Riffel of Reuben’s Restaurant and Margot Janse van Vuuren of Le Quartier Francais, where it’s well worth trying to secure a table.

Franschhoek

In addition to its wine, the Wellington region in The Cape is famous for its brandy. The Schalk Burger & Sons Welbedacht Estate in this area is owned and run by former and current international rugby players, Schalk Burger snr and his son of the same name.

There are many beautiful wineries in The Cape which will steal your heart with amazing hospitality, delicious cuisine and beautiful drops of red, white or sparkling!

Restaurants

Terrior Restaurant at Kleine Zalze
Phone: +27 (21) 880-8167
Email: info@wineorders.co.za

Jordan Restaurant
Phone: +27 (21) 881 3612
Email: restaurant@jordanwines.com

Reuben’s Franschhoek
Phone: +27 (21) 876 3772
Email: reservations@reubens.co.za

Le Quartier Francais
Phone: +27 (21) 876 2151
Email: res@lqf.co.za

Wining and dining in South Africa

South Africa is home to some of the world’s exquisite cuisine and wine regions.

The food and wine route in South Africa offers culinary experiences which will awaken and excite.

Cape Winelands has 18 official wine routes and two brandy routes which are nestled among the most scenic and historic wine estates which date back centuries. The Cape is a premier Western Cape visitor attraction offering tours ranging from wine tasting to wine making. There is also excellent cuisine and magnificent scenery collectively creating an irresistible attraction for international and local travellers alike.

Stellenbosch

The Stellenbosch Wine Route, which is South Africa’s oldest, was founded in 1971 and is known to produce a world-renowned sparkling wine. It is located in Cape Winelands and has been awarded the Best Wine Destination in 2012 by Trip Advisor and just like a fine wine, the  town has only gotten better with age. There are a range of wineries to visit ranging from large estates to smaller independent wineries.

For elegant alfresco dining under the oaks, splendid vineyard views and sublimely prepared seasonal fare, try Terroir restaurant at Kleine Zalze wine. Similarly, the restaurant at Jordan winery offers panoramic views of Table Mountain, False Bay and Stellenbosch, with a daily blackboard menu to complement Jordan’s acclaimed wines.

Stellenbosch WineryIf your palate prefers white wine, we recommend visiting the town of Franschhoek which is commonly referred to as South Africa’s gourmet capital boasting dozens of award winning wineries and restaurants which source local produce to create their menus.

Franschhoek Valley

What makes this food and wine route in Franschhoek special is you feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The heritage can be felt in this picturesque town and, yet, it’s only 45 minutes from Cape Town! The main road is lined with restaurants, some run by award-winning chefs like Reuben Riffel of Reuben’s Restaurant and Margot Janse van Vuuren of Le Quartier Francais, where it’s well worth trying to secure a table.

Franschhoek

In addition to its wine, the Wellington region in The Cape is famous for its brandy. The Schalk Burger & Sons Welbedacht Estate in this area is owned and run by former and current international rugby players, Schalk Burger snr and his son of the same name.

There are many beautiful wineries in The Cape which will steal your heart with amazing hospitality, delicious cuisine and beautiful drops of red, white or sparkling!

Restaurants

Terrior Restaurant at Kleine Zalze
Phone: +27 (21) 880-8167
Email: info@wineorders.co.za

Jordan Restaurant
Phone: +27 (21) 881 3612
Email: restaurant@jordanwines.com

Reuben’s Franschhoek
Phone: +27 (21) 876 3772
Email: reservations@reubens.co.za

Le Quartier Francais
Phone: +27 (21) 876 2151
Email: res@lqf.co.za

Experience the Cape Winelands
South Africa boasts a number internationally acclaimed wines, and a visit to the Cape Winelands is a treat for wine connoisseurs and wine lovers alike.

18 May 2014 by Lethabo-Thabo Royds

Enjoy a delicious glass of wine at one of South Africa’s many wine estates. Image courtesy of jose romeu de abreu, aka Jose Romeu, shared with our Love South Africa Flickr group

A tour of the Winelands can easily be incorporated into a holiday to Cape Town – or visiting wine estates can be the main focus of the holiday.

Here is a selection of some wine-tasting venues…

Spier wine estate (pictured below) is situated in the Stellenbosch region. Here you can choose from four wine-tasting options (one of which is a children’s grape-juice tasting), view contemporary art, enjoy a Segway tour through the vineyards, learn about agricultural practices, enjoy a meal at Eight restaurant, and more. Delicious food platters to pair with your wine tasting are also available. Besides producing award-winning wines and being one of the oldest wine farms in South Africa (its history can be traced as far back as the late 17th century), Spier is concerned with sustainable tourism practices – evident in the fact that it is recognised by a number of fair trade and sustainable tourism organisations, including Fair Trade Tourism South Africa.

If you’re looking for award-winning South African sparkling wine, then look no further thanThe House of JC Le Roux in the Devon Valley near Stellenbosch. Here you can choose from four wine-tasting options, one of which is a tasting in which sparkling wines are paired with nougat and turkish delights. Another option is pairing of sparkling wines with a variety of marshmallow and meringues. Le Venue, the restaurant at The House of JC Le Roux, serves breakfast and lunches.

In the Robertson Wine Valley you will find the Graham Beck Robertson estate (there is also a vineyard in Stellenbosch and offices in Franschhoek, but tastings are only available at the Robertson estate). Here you can enjoy a wide selection of award-winning Graham Beck wines, including its world-class Cap Classique. Cellar tours are also available by appointment, so remember to book ahead of your wine tasting.

The Nederberg wine estate in Paarl is also a popular wine-tasting venue. Choose from a variety of wines to enjoy in beautiful and lush surroundings (pictured below). You can enjoy one of its cellar tours, which outline the history of Nederberg wines, the wine estate and more. Tours take place daily from Monday to Saturday. From July 2014 the estate will be open on Sundays too. The estate also offers food and wine pairings, and the Red Table restaurant, located in the Cape Dutch-style Manor House, offers Bistro-style dining. It is best to pre-book for tours and to make reservations for the Red Table to avoid being disappointed.

The well-known region of Franschhoek offers a number of great vineyards, restaurants and accompanying views. A visit to Franschhoek, even a short trip, will quickly make it clear why this region is so loved. The views in Franschhoek are magnificent, the wines are delicious, and the food exquisite. Try the  Boschendal Wine Estate – here you can indulge in some delicious wine and chocolate pairings, as well as cellar tours. Between November and March you can also enjoy vineyard tours. Booking for the vineyard tours is essential.

Image courtesy of Patrick Meier, aka herr meier aus frankfurt, shared with our Love South Africa Flickr group

Why not try some of these, and other, estates in the  Cape Winelands. You’ll be glad you did.

Image taken in Franschhoek. Image courtesy of Jon Reid, aka Nomadic Vision Photography

Experience the Cape Winelands

South Africa boasts a number internationally acclaimed wines, and a visit to the Cape Winelands is a treat for wine connoisseurs and wine lovers alike.

18 May 2014 by Lethabo-Thabo Royds

Enjoy a delicious glass of wine at one of South Africa’s many wine estates. Image courtesy of jose romeu de abreu, aka Jose Romeu, shared with our Love South Africa Flickr group

A tour of the Winelands can easily be incorporated into a holiday to Cape Town – or visiting wine estates can be the main focus of the holiday.

Here is a selection of some wine-tasting venues…

Spier wine estate (pictured below) is situated in the Stellenbosch region. Here you can choose from four wine-tasting options (one of which is a children’s grape-juice tasting), view contemporary art, enjoy a Segway tour through the vineyards, learn about agricultural practices, enjoy a meal at Eight restaurant, and more. Delicious food platters to pair with your wine tasting are also available. Besides producing award-winning wines and being one of the oldest wine farms in South Africa (its history can be traced as far back as the late 17th century), Spier is concerned with sustainable tourism practices – evident in the fact that it is recognised by a number of fair trade and sustainable tourism organisations, including Fair Trade Tourism South Africa.

If you’re looking for award-winning South African sparkling wine, then look no further thanThe House of JC Le Roux in the Devon Valley near Stellenbosch. Here you can choose from four wine-tasting options, one of which is a tasting in which sparkling wines are paired with nougat and turkish delights. Another option is pairing of sparkling wines with a variety of marshmallow and meringues. Le Venue, the restaurant at The House of JC Le Roux, serves breakfast and lunches.

In the Robertson Wine Valley you will find the Graham Beck Robertson estate (there is also a vineyard in Stellenbosch and offices in Franschhoek, but tastings are only available at the Robertson estate). Here you can enjoy a wide selection of award-winning Graham Beck wines, including its world-class Cap Classique. Cellar tours are also available by appointment, so remember to book ahead of your wine tasting.

The Nederberg wine estate in Paarl is also a popular wine-tasting venue. Choose from a variety of wines to enjoy in beautiful and lush surroundings (pictured below). You can enjoy one of its cellar tours, which outline the history of Nederberg wines, the wine estate and more. Tours take place daily from Monday to Saturday. From July 2014 the estate will be open on Sundays too. The estate also offers food and wine pairings, and the Red Table restaurant, located in the Cape Dutch-style Manor House, offers Bistro-style dining. It is best to pre-book for tours and to make reservations for the Red Table to avoid being disappointed.

The well-known region of Franschhoek offers a number of great vineyards, restaurants and accompanying views. A visit to Franschhoek, even a short trip, will quickly make it clear why this region is so loved. The views in Franschhoek are magnificent, the wines are delicious, and the food exquisite. Try the  Boschendal Wine Estate – here you can indulge in some delicious wine and chocolate pairings, as well as cellar tours. Between November and March you can also enjoy vineyard tours. Booking for the vineyard tours is essential.

Image courtesy of Patrick Meier, aka herr meier aus frankfurt, shared with our Love South Africa Flickr group

Why not try some of these, and other, estates in the  Cape Winelands. You’ll be glad you did.

Image taken in Franschhoek. Image courtesy of Jon Reid, aka Nomadic Vision Photography

Sunday Markets in and around Cape Town

Sunday is a day of rest, so grab the family and take a lazy drive and or walk to any of these Sunday Markets in and around Cape Town.

Sunday markets in Cape Town:

Spier’s Craft Market
Visit this market for contemporary and traditional artworks by local crafters. Open daily between 10:00 and 18:00 during summer and between 10:30 and 17:30 during winter, expect a selection of quality textiles, woodwork, ceramics, African bead work, crafted pottery and handmade Nguni-style tapestries woven by women from the Keiskamma Embroidery project (Eastern Cape).

The Red Shed Art and Craft Market
Visit South Africa’s largest indoor craft market for handmade merchandise and art. Open between 09:00 and 21:00 Monday to Friday and between 10:00 and 21:00 on Sundays and public holidays, the market offers a unique atmosphere that brings the shopper closer to the creator.

Victoria Wharf | V&A Waterfront | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 408 7840

The Waterfront Craft Market
For a diverse assortment of innovative designs, traditional handcrafts, antiquities and holistic lifestyle accessories look no further than this charming market, open between 09:00 and 21:00 Monday to Friday and between 10:00 and 21:00 on Sundays and public holidays.

Adjacent to the Two Oceans Aquarium | V&A Waterfront | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 408 7840

Constantia Craft Market
Set in environmental parkland in the heart of Constantia; this elite market offers goods which echo the beauty of the African continent. Visit during the first and last weekend of every month for 100 small shops selling individual work. The market has credit card, refreshment, wheelchair and restroom facilities, with parking next door.

Alphen Common | Constantia Road | Constantia (opposite Constantia Village Shopping Centre)

Green Point Flee Market
Are you not sure what you’re looking for? Visit the market that sells everything with over 400 stalls of cooking and electrical goods, antiques and bric-a-brac, books and magazines, and hardware. The market opens between 08:30 and 17:00 every Sunday and you can also get your chops around some tasty morsels at the Food Emporium including fish and chips, boerewors rolls and Cape Malay delicacies.

Main parking area | Cape Town Stadium | Bill Peters Drive | Green Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 439 4805

The Barrow Court
For unique, exciting and novel wares in intriguing colours, this market is not to be missed. Visit between 09:00 and 21:00 Monday to Sunday and you’ll meet inspiring entrepreneurs with big dreams and bright ideas.

Victoria Wharf | V&A Waterfront | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 408 7840

Millstone Eco-friendly Farm Stall and Cafe
Head to one of Cape Town’s best kept secrets for homely food in a relaxed setting with tables and chairs made from reclaimed timber. Visit between 09:00 and 17:00 from Tuesday to Sunday to enjoy lazy breakfasts or lunches, vegetables delivered via horse and cart and homemade preserves and jams.

Oude Molen Eco Village | Alexandra Street | Pinelands | +27 (0)21 447 8226

Kirstenbosch Craft Market
Join 190 crafters offering a variety of hand crafted goods, refreshments and even pony rides. Visit between 09:00 and 13:00 on the last Sunday of every month, from January to May, from September to November and the second and third Saturday of every month during December for gifts, curios, clothing and home ware. Why not take a stroll through Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens afterwards?

Rhodes Drive | Newlands (opposite main gates of Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens | +27 (0)21 799 8800

Khayelitsha Craft Market
Head to this market for a chance to interact with locals, buy crafts and souvenirs and enjoy refreshments and traditional African meals. The market operates between 09:00 and 14:00 on weekdays and between 09:00 and 12:00 every Sunday.

St. Michaels and All Angels Anglican Church | Khayelitsha | +27 (0)21 361 5246

Milnerton Flea Market
Visit an excellent junk and second-hand flea market where you can find t-shirts, car parts, computers, Tupperware, telephones, exercise machines, kitchen sets, CD’s, pancakes and ginger beer. The market with everything is open between 07:00 and 16:00 on Saturday and Sunday.

Otto du Plessis Drive | Paarden Island | Cape Town

Century City Natural Goods Market
Are you looking for a unique gift or a handmade treasure? Head to an outdoor market with 40 traders stalls selling quality products and produce. Open from between 09:00 and 15:00 on the first Sunday of every month the market is a relaxed environment where you can also enjoy a good cup of coffee and a bite to eat.

Central Park | Park Lane | Century City | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 531 2173

The Sunday Island Market
If you’re thinking of decorating your house look no further than Cape Town’s first dedicated indoor home and lifestyle market. Open between 10:00 and 15:00 every Sunday a host of shopping and lifestyle booths include delectable food, wine tasting, home and decor products and free and supervised children’s activities. It’s a day out for the whole family with free entry and parking.

1st & 2nd Floor | Northgate Island Shopping Centre | Section Street | Milnerton | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 511 4909

Family Farmers Market at Lourensford Wine Estate
Nominated in Eat In Magazines ‘Best Market’ catergory of its Produce Awards for 2011 this market is home to delicious foods including breads, pastries, trout, cakes, vegetables and Bratwurst as well as a variety of wine, jewellery, plants and clothing. Visit between 09:00and 16:00 on the first Saturday and Sunday of every month to relax in their stunning gardens with an alfresco lunch whilst listening to live music. There’s also plenty of kids entertainment. Read more about A One Day Holiday at Lourensford Wine Estate.

Lourensford Road | Somerset West | +27 (0)21 847 2259

Obs Holistic Lifestyle Fair
One of Cape Town’s oldest markets this market will satisfy those with a holistic and healthy appetite with therapist and life readers, vegan, halal, organic and slow food, green, eco, recycled, health and healing products and much more. Open between 10:00 and 16:00 on the first Sunday of every month the market is both dog and child friendly and offers patrolled parking.

Observatory Community Centre | Observatory (off Station and lower Main roads and Drake Street) +27 (0)21 788 8088

Don’t let the sunset on a Sunday be a sad thing – plan your week and following weekend by taking time to visit a market. Monday markets, Tuesday markets, Wednesday markets, Thursday markets, Friday markets, Saturday markets Part 1, Saturday markets part 2 and Saturday markets part 3 that happen throughout Cape Town and surrounds throughout the year.

Website: wwwcapetownmagazine.com

Unusual Places to Stay Cape Town

via capetownmagazine.com
An Airstream trailer for Urban Ursula and a tree house for Rural Ronnie

As a child, you may have imagined yourself as an American Indian, living in a tipi; a wood nymph dusting the windows of her tree house; a cowboy steering his wagon train along the trail; and a fearsome lion lazing on his rocky outcrop. Who says being a grownup means you have to abandon these dreams? Cape Town and surrounds are full of unusual places to rest your head.

Airstream Penthouses at the Grand Daddy Hotel 

Taking the ‘trash’ out of trailer park, seven vintage Airstream trailers have been hauled all the way from the USA, and hoisted onto the roof of an urban hotel.
The most unique thing about this establishment: individually designed trailers by local artists.
What you need to bring: “a trilby hat to watch live bands, who perform every Friday night. Some acts include, Hot Water and Little Kings,” says events and marketing manager, Christina Mac Echern.
The best time of year to stay: March.
Top tip: put on your party boots.
38 Long Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 424 7247

Healing Holidays: the tipi experience
“One of our tipis has a wooden platform and the other is based on lush grass,” explains owner, Deborah Hillairet. Onsite therapies include crystal healing and holistic massage.
The most unique thing about this establishment: living simply, in a vast open space, by the fire.
What you need to bring: turn up with food, they will provide the rest.
The best time of year to stay: winter.
Top tip: Leave your phone at home and just be.
R318 (12km after Avalon Hot Water Springs) | Montagu | Western Cape | +27 (0)23 614 2901

Aquila Private Game Reserve
Place your twinkle toes in A-list paw prints, at a romantic, Premier Chalet. ‘Wake up in nature’ rooms feature four poster beds, baths set into rock and outside showers. We enjoyed Aquila’s game lodge comfort.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “one of the Premier Chalets has an outdoor Jacuzzi, so you can bathe under the Karoo night sky,” says media manager, Mandi Jarman.
What you need to bring: bring a camera to capture Big Five memories.
The best time of year to stay: all year round: a swimming pool for summer and a fire for winter.
Top Tip: meet their baby rhino.
Touwsrivier | Ceres | +27 (0)21 431 8400

Teniqua Treetops
This tented tree house resort is high in the foothills of the ancient Outeniqua mountain range. Swim in the cola-coloured water of the Karatara River, picnic on its beautiful banks, or relax on a wooden deck by the pool.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “our eight, eco-friendly tree houses are like artworks in the trees,” says owner, Robyn Patz, “They are fully contained and spaced far apart, for privacy.”
What you need to bring: walking boots, a swimming costume, a waterproof jacket and a torch. Don’t forget your camera.
The best time of year to stay: summer.
Top Tip: leave the iPod behind and instead, listen to the birds.
N2 | Garden Route | Western Cape | +27 (0)44 356 2868

Dutch Manor Antique Hotel 1812
Unpacking your coat into a genuine Jonkmanskas, or sleeping on an authentic, 19th century, four-poster Stinkwood bed is like taking a step back in time. South Africa’s only registered antique hotel dates back to 1812 and has been tastefully restored and redecorated.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “It’s a home-away-from-home, where you must feel free to nip down to our kitchen and brew yourself a cuppa,” says chef and assistant manager, Helouise Smit.
What you need to bring: you’ll find everything you need including laundry and concierge services.
The best time of year to stay: winter.
Top tip: order from your own personal chef.
158 Buitengracht | Bo-Kaap | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 422 4767

Cape Town Carriage Company
Guided by a qualified trail boss, drive scenic Napier in a re-created wagon train, used by early settlers. Reach the campsite, cook supper over a communal fire and sleep in your wagon.
The most unique thing about this establishment: drive your own wagon.
What you need to bring: a hat, hiking boots, a warm jacket, waterproofs, insect repellant, sun block, a flash light, a sleeping bag and a camera.
The best time of year to stay: “during summer, we swim in lagoons and in September you’ll see blue cranes foraging among Protea flowers,” says owner, John Foster.
Top tip: Pay a visit to Napier Brewery.
Indicator Lodge | Schaapkraal Road | Ottery | Cape Town | +27 (0)82 575 5669

Langebaan Houseboats
Accommodating a minimum of six guests in three cabins, the Larus houseboat consists of a well-equipped, open plan kitchen with a braai, as well as cabins featuring high quality linen and bath towels.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “Langebaan is one of the most beautiful places in the world, with pristine beaches and turquoise water,” says owner, Tony Drayton.
What you need to bring: food, a torch and a swimming costume.
The best time of year to stay: during summer and flower season (August- September).
Top tip: book early.
70 Alma Road | Rosebank | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 689 9718

Kagga Kamma
Many ancient cave paintings by the Bushmen are visible today. Climb into a bed on a remote and rocky outcrop, in the middle of beautiful and dramatic rock formations.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “guests can sleep under the stars and we also provide picnic baskets with a choice of braai ingredients or cold meat,” says Susan Sykes, from the reservations department.
What you need to bring: an overnight bag.
The best time of year to stay: October-March.
Top tip: sleep in a cave room, discover rock art and San paintings on a cultural tour, or meet the antelope on a quad biking safari.
Kagga Kamma | Ceres | Western Cape | +27 (0)21 872 4343

By Lisa Nevitt

Unusual Places to Stay Cape Town

via capetownmagazine.com
An Airstream trailer for Urban Ursula and a tree house for Rural Ronnie

As a child, you may have imagined yourself as an American Indian, living in a tipi; a wood nymph dusting the windows of her tree house; a cowboy steering his wagon train along the trail; and a fearsome lion lazing on his rocky outcrop. Who says being a grownup means you have to abandon these dreams? Cape Town and surrounds are full of unusual places to rest your head.

Airstream Penthouses at the Grand Daddy Hotel 

Taking the ‘trash’ out of trailer park, seven vintage Airstream trailers have been hauled all the way from the USA, and hoisted onto the roof of an urban hotel.
The most unique thing about this establishment: individually designed trailers by local artists.
What you need to bring: “a trilby hat to watch live bands, who perform every Friday night. Some acts include, Hot Water and Little Kings,” says events and marketing manager, Christina Mac Echern.
The best time of year to stay: March.
Top tip: put on your party boots.
38 Long Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 424 7247

Healing Holidays: the tipi experience
“One of our tipis has a wooden platform and the other is based on lush grass,” explains owner, Deborah Hillairet. Onsite therapies include crystal healing and holistic massage.
The most unique thing about this establishment: living simply, in a vast open space, by the fire.
What you need to bring: turn up with food, they will provide the rest.
The best time of year to stay: winter.
Top tip: Leave your phone at home and just be.
R318 (12km after Avalon Hot Water Springs) | Montagu | Western Cape | +27 (0)23 614 2901

Aquila Private Game Reserve
Place your twinkle toes in A-list paw prints, at a romantic, Premier Chalet. ‘Wake up in nature’ rooms feature four poster beds, baths set into rock and outside showers. We enjoyed Aquila’s game lodge comfort.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “one of the Premier Chalets has an outdoor Jacuzzi, so you can bathe under the Karoo night sky,” says media manager, Mandi Jarman.
What you need to bring: bring a camera to capture Big Five memories.
The best time of year to stay: all year round: a swimming pool for summer and a fire for winter.
Top Tip: meet their baby rhino.
Touwsrivier | Ceres | +27 (0)21 431 8400

Teniqua Treetops
This tented tree house resort is high in the foothills of the ancient Outeniqua mountain range. Swim in the cola-coloured water of the Karatara River, picnic on its beautiful banks, or relax on a wooden deck by the pool.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “our eight, eco-friendly tree houses are like artworks in the trees,” says owner, Robyn Patz, “They are fully contained and spaced far apart, for privacy.”
What you need to bring: walking boots, a swimming costume, a waterproof jacket and a torch. Don’t forget your camera.
The best time of year to stay: summer.
Top Tip: leave the iPod behind and instead, listen to the birds.
N2 | Garden Route | Western Cape | +27 (0)44 356 2868

Dutch Manor Antique Hotel 1812
Unpacking your coat into a genuine Jonkmanskas, or sleeping on an authentic, 19th century, four-poster Stinkwood bed is like taking a step back in time. South Africa’s only registered antique hotel dates back to 1812 and has been tastefully restored and redecorated.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “It’s a home-away-from-home, where you must feel free to nip down to our kitchen and brew yourself a cuppa,” says chef and assistant manager, Helouise Smit.
What you need to bring: you’ll find everything you need including laundry and concierge services.
The best time of year to stay: winter.
Top tip: order from your own personal chef.
158 Buitengracht | Bo-Kaap | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 422 4767

Cape Town Carriage Company
Guided by a qualified trail boss, drive scenic Napier in a re-created wagon train, used by early settlers. Reach the campsite, cook supper over a communal fire and sleep in your wagon.
The most unique thing about this establishment: drive your own wagon.
What you need to bring: a hat, hiking boots, a warm jacket, waterproofs, insect repellant, sun block, a flash light, a sleeping bag and a camera.
The best time of year to stay: “during summer, we swim in lagoons and in September you’ll see blue cranes foraging among Protea flowers,” says owner, John Foster.
Top tip: Pay a visit to Napier Brewery.
Indicator Lodge | Schaapkraal Road | Ottery | Cape Town | +27 (0)82 575 5669

Langebaan Houseboats
Accommodating a minimum of six guests in three cabins, the Larus houseboat consists of a well-equipped, open plan kitchen with a braai, as well as cabins featuring high quality linen and bath towels.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “Langebaan is one of the most beautiful places in the world, with pristine beaches and turquoise water,” says owner, Tony Drayton.
What you need to bring: food, a torch and a swimming costume.
The best time of year to stay: during summer and flower season (August- September).
Top tip: book early.
70 Alma Road | Rosebank | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 689 9718

Kagga Kamma
Many ancient cave paintings by the Bushmen are visible today. Climb into a bed on a remote and rocky outcrop, in the middle of beautiful and dramatic rock formations.
The most unique thing about this establishment: “guests can sleep under the stars and we also provide picnic baskets with a choice of braai ingredients or cold meat,” says Susan Sykes, from the reservations department.
What you need to bring: an overnight bag.
The best time of year to stay: October-March.
Top tip: sleep in a cave room, discover rock art and San paintings on a cultural tour, or meet the antelope on a quad biking safari.
Kagga Kamma | Ceres | Western Cape | +27 (0)21 872 4343

By Lisa Nevitt

Hello Hermanus!

via capetownmagazine.com

This coastal town has something for everyone

I always perk up when entering Hermanus after the 90 minute drive from Cape Town. I’m curious to see the changes that have happened in this burgeoning town. I’ve been visiting Hermanus since childhood, and have seen a smallish village on the Cape’s Whale Route transform into a busy, thriving community. But, as developed as it’s got, Hermanus still has that wild, rugged coastal magic that has made it such a popular holiday destination.

Hermanus is most famous for its whale watching; take a walk on the cliff path to spot some of these giant mammals. The path stretches 10km from the New Harbour to Klein River, so you won’t run out of view in a hurry. We’ve compiled a how-to on what to look for, types of whales and best viewing spots.

She’s a natural beauty

The nature is truly beautiful in this Overberg town. A hike up Fernkloof Nature Reserve is a prerequisite when visiting. There is no other place on earth where so many different species, 1474 last count, grow in such close proximity. Call for more information (+27 (0) 28-3130819).

The outdoors is where it’s at. There are plenty of activities from boating to horse-riding, for those who prefer to spend a more relaxing time outside there are a few foodie markets: try the Fernkloof Country Market (Montessori school) and The Hermanuspietersfontein Market (+27 (0)28 316 1875) both happen every Saturday morning. There’s an abundance of other things to do in Hermanus, to keep all ages occupied.

There’s plenty to eat too. You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to restaurants, but for a truly unique experience book a table at Bientang’s Cave (+27 (0)28 312 3454), this seafood restaurant is carved into a century old cave, which extends over the rocks to the water’s edge. You’re bound to spy a whale while tucking into your calamari.

Or, try Mogg’s Country Cookhouse (+ 27 (0)28 312-4321) up in the Hemel en Aarde Valley. Run by Mrs Mogg herself, the restaurant is a cottage on a farm flanked by vegetable and herb gardens as well as a dam filled with ducks. The menu changes according to the produce they source, and is always very, very good. Make sure to book if you want a table, they can’t seat many people.

Speaking of the Hemel en Aarde Valley, it’s one of the Cape’s most famous wine routes. Literally translating from Afrikaans to ‘Heaven and Earth’, this valley is gobsmackingly beautiful. A winding road will take you into the mountains with wine estates dotted along the way. Some notable ones to try are; Hamilton Russell Vineyards (their chardonnay is world famous), Bouchard Finlayson’s range is also top drawer—try the Hannibal, a blend of noble Italian varietals, another good place to stop is Newton Johnson, their pinot noir is legendary. Or check out La Vierge’s champagne deck for unsurpassed views.

Save time and stop at the Wine Village at the foot of the valley before you taste, not only is it an amazing wine shop, but the staff will be able to help you with your route.

Surprisingly there’s plenty of shopping to do to too. Take a walk around the backstreets of town to find antique and bric-à-brac shops galore. Do a good deed while you spend and visit the Hospice Shop (028 313 1884) and the Animal Welfare Charity (028 312 1800) for second-hand clothes and household items.

And what a trip to Hermanus be without visiting one of its famous beaches? Each beach has its own special something, from that awesome surf spot to tidal pools for the kiddies.

Hermanus is definitely one beautiful getaway with plenty to keep everyone in the family occupied, but it’s the people that make this town truly special; from the whale crier blowing the conch shell in the market square, to the fishermen, winemakers and market people selling their wares. I recently met one such special couple, Cornell and Peter De Villiers, who make artisan chocolate from bean to bar.

There’s more adventure waiting for you around the corner, drive 2o minutes to Stanford and eat at Mariana’s ((028) 341 0272). This quintessential country eatery is set in the heart of the dorp. It has a blackboard menu that changes according to produce sourced from the nearby farms. After lunch head to Birkenhead Brewery for a tour and a tasting of local beer. Speaking of, drive just a little bit further to the town of Napier for a real beer experience at Napier Brewery that’ll knock your socks off. Or meet the Great White Sharks in Gansbaai.

By Malu Lambert

Tip: Stop for lunch and a wine-tasting at the Paul Cluver Estate on your way to or from Hermanus.

Looking for a place to stay? We compiled a few places for you from a camping spot to a five star hotel.


View Larger Map

Hello Hermanus!

via capetownmagazine.com

This coastal town has something for everyone

I always perk up when entering Hermanus after the 90 minute drive from Cape Town. I’m curious to see the changes that have happened in this burgeoning town. I’ve been visiting Hermanus since childhood, and have seen a smallish village on the Cape’s Whale Route transform into a busy, thriving community. But, as developed as it’s got, Hermanus still has that wild, rugged coastal magic that has made it such a popular holiday destination.

Hermanus is most famous for its whale watching; take a walk on the cliff path to spot some of these giant mammals. The path stretches 10km from the New Harbour to Klein River, so you won’t run out of view in a hurry. We’ve compiled a how-to on what to look for, types of whales and best viewing spots.

She’s a natural beauty

The nature is truly beautiful in this Overberg town. A hike up Fernkloof Nature Reserve is a prerequisite when visiting. There is no other place on earth where so many different species, 1474 last count, grow in such close proximity. Call for more information (+27 (0) 28-3130819).

The outdoors is where it’s at. There are plenty of activities from boating to horse-riding, for those who prefer to spend a more relaxing time outside there are a few foodie markets: try the Fernkloof Country Market (Montessori school) and The Hermanuspietersfontein Market (+27 (0)28 316 1875) both happen every Saturday morning. There’s an abundance of other things to do in Hermanus, to keep all ages occupied.

There’s plenty to eat too. You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to restaurants, but for a truly unique experience book a table at Bientang’s Cave (+27 (0)28 312 3454), this seafood restaurant is carved into a century old cave, which extends over the rocks to the water’s edge. You’re bound to spy a whale while tucking into your calamari.

Or, try Mogg’s Country Cookhouse (+ 27 (0)28 312-4321) up in the Hemel en Aarde Valley. Run by Mrs Mogg herself, the restaurant is a cottage on a farm flanked by vegetable and herb gardens as well as a dam filled with ducks. The menu changes according to the produce they source, and is always very, very good. Make sure to book if you want a table, they can’t seat many people.

Speaking of the Hemel en Aarde Valley, it’s one of the Cape’s most famous wine routes. Literally translating from Afrikaans to ‘Heaven and Earth’, this valley is gobsmackingly beautiful. A winding road will take you into the mountains with wine estates dotted along the way. Some notable ones to try are; Hamilton Russell Vineyards (their chardonnay is world famous), Bouchard Finlayson’s range is also top drawer—try the Hannibal, a blend of noble Italian varietals, another good place to stop is Newton Johnson, their pinot noir is legendary. Or check out La Vierge’s champagne deck for unsurpassed views.

Save time and stop at the Wine Village at the foot of the valley before you taste, not only is it an amazing wine shop, but the staff will be able to help you with your route.

Surprisingly there’s plenty of shopping to do to too. Take a walk around the backstreets of town to find antique and bric-à-brac shops galore. Do a good deed while you spend and visit the Hospice Shop (028 313 1884) and the Animal Welfare Charity (028 312 1800) for second-hand clothes and household items.

And what a trip to Hermanus be without visiting one of its famous beaches? Each beach has its own special something, from that awesome surf spot to tidal pools for the kiddies.

Hermanus is definitely one beautiful getaway with plenty to keep everyone in the family occupied, but it’s the people that make this town truly special; from the whale crier blowing the conch shell in the market square, to the fishermen, winemakers and market people selling their wares. I recently met one such special couple, Cornell and Peter De Villiers, who make artisan chocolate from bean to bar.

There’s more adventure waiting for you around the corner, drive 2o minutes to Stanford and eat at Mariana’s ((028) 341 0272). This quintessential country eatery is set in the heart of the dorp. It has a blackboard menu that changes according to produce sourced from the nearby farms. After lunch head to Birkenhead Brewery for a tour and a tasting of local beer. Speaking of, drive just a little bit further to the town of Napier for a real beer experience at Napier Brewery that’ll knock your socks off. Or meet the Great White Sharks in Gansbaai.

By Malu Lambert

Tip: Stop for lunch and a wine-tasting at the Paul Cluver Estate on your way to or from Hermanus.

Looking for a place to stay? We compiled a few places for you from a camping spot to a five star hotel.


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Township B&B’s Cape Town

via capetownmagazine.com

The best way to experience township life

“I was disappointed that tourists only saw Khayelitsha from behind glass, from their cars or from tour buses,” says owner of Kopanong B&B, Thope Lekau. Instead, Cape Town’s township B&B’s invite you into their homes. Experience real township buzz and interact with the community.

Langa (Xhosa for ‘sun’)

Established in 1927, Langa is the oldest township in Cape Town and has produced prominent sports and entertainment figures including the late musician Brenda Fassie and boxer Nika Khumalo.

Ma Neo’s Township B&B
Many of the original features of this family home have been kept intact, with space for four people in two spacious rooms. “We serve a traditional African breakfast of mielie meal, tomato and onion stew and, of course, homemade bread,” says owner, Thandiwe.
Why you should stay here: to be part of a family, sharing supper, breakfast and conversation.
What’s close by: Langa train station, post office, police station, taxi rank and information centre.
What guests are offered: township tours (including a visit to a traditional healer) as well as a visit to the Langa Baptist Church.
Zone 7 No 30 | Langa | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 694 2504

Radebe’s Bed and Breakfast (with Coffee Shack)
Minah Radebe’s guesthouse and coffee shack offers three, themed bedrooms: respectively Equnu, Kwandebele and Kwamashu (names of South African homelands). The guesthouse serves continental or African breakfasts; lunch and dinner are also available.
Why you should stay here: “to come and meet the real people of Langa and walk our streets,” says Minah.
What’s close by: views of the University of Cape Town, Rhode’s Memorial and Lion’s Head.
What guests are offered: “on our walking tours, you can play soccer with local children or a vibrant, Sunday church service,” says Minah.
23 PW Mama Way | Settlers Place | Langa | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 695 0508 / +27 (0)82 393 3117

Gugulethu (Xhosa for ‘our pride’)

Gugulethu was established in the 1960s, due to the overcrowding of Langa. Go see the Amy Biehl memorial, a reminder of the tragic stabbing of the American Fullbright scholar in 1993, also worth a visit is the Gugulethu Seven memorial, which commemorates seven young black activists from the township who lost their lives fighting for freedom in 1986.

Nowdays, you’ll encounter new developments including Mzoli’s restaurant and the Gugulethu Sports Complex. Life is flourishing.

Mbalentle
The modern township home offers four beautiful rooms including Ekuphumleni, meaning ‘a place of resting’ and Entle, meaning ‘beautiful’ in Xhosa.
Why you should stay here: “our ethnic guesthouse, combined with traditional and healthy African food, is a place where African cultures may meet,” says owner, Florence Bhunu.
What’s close by: the Amy Biehl Memorial and the Gugulethu Seven Memorial.
What guests are offered: a choice between B&B and full board, catering and hosting of house and garden parties, as well as township tours (with accredited tour operators).
23 Pallotti Road | Montana | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 934 0040

Lizewe’s Bed and Breakfast
Large groups can rent out a self-catering cottage, with tasteful African décor, and reserve the restaurant for an authentic, South African feast.
Why you should stay there: “the most distinguishing aspect of our stay was the level of customer service. The staff was attentive, responsive and willing to go the extra mile to make sure that everything we needed was available to us,” says guest, Lou Bergholtz, from Boston, America.
What’s close by: Mzoli’s restaurant.
What guests are offered: Walking township tours include visits to Mzolis and a sangoma, as well as a ride in a local taxi.
NY111 – No 121 | Gugulethu | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 633 7406

Khayelitsha (Xhosa for ‘new home’)

Khayelitsha is the largest and the fastest growing township in South Africa. There have been many developments including brick houses, schools and a central business district, but around 70% of residents still live in shacks.

Kopanong Bed & Breakfast
As you enter from the gate, the pathway is clean, the kitchen is hygienic and the beds are comfortable.
Why you should stay there: you can enjoy a nutritious breakfast of fruit, yoghurt and hot porridge on the covered terrace, while discussing Africa’s history and hopes for the future with registered tour guides, Thope and Mpho Lekau.
What’s close by: Lookout Hill offers a bird’s-eye view of Khayelitsha.
What guests are offered: “we want people to understand why we offer township tours,” exclaims Mpho, “Townships aren’t just about poverty – many people have worked hard to improve their lives.”
C329 Velani Crescent | Khayelitsha | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 361 2084

Malebo’s Bed and Breakfast
Not only is Lydia Masoleng fluent in English, Xhosa, Sotho and Afrikaans, but she sure knows how to cook. “It’s a Xhosa tradition to learn to cook before you get married,” she says, “I recommend Umfino – spinach with maize meal and chakalaka – washed down with my homebrewed, ginger beer.” After a filling meal, snooze in one of five guest rooms.
Why you should stay there: a firsthand experience of township culture and Xhosa cooking.
What’s close by: Lookout Hill.
What guests are offered: “we offer walking tours, visiting local shebeens (pubs), and arts and craft centres,” says Lydia.
18 Mississippi Way | Khayelitsha | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 361 2391

By Lisa Nevitt

Township B&B’s Cape Town

via capetownmagazine.com

The best way to experience township life

“I was disappointed that tourists only saw Khayelitsha from behind glass, from their cars or from tour buses,” says owner of Kopanong B&B, Thope Lekau. Instead, Cape Town’s township B&B’s invite you into their homes. Experience real township buzz and interact with the community.

Langa (Xhosa for ‘sun’)

Established in 1927, Langa is the oldest township in Cape Town and has produced prominent sports and entertainment figures including the late musician Brenda Fassie and boxer Nika Khumalo.

Ma Neo’s Township B&B
Many of the original features of this family home have been kept intact, with space for four people in two spacious rooms. “We serve a traditional African breakfast of mielie meal, tomato and onion stew and, of course, homemade bread,” says owner, Thandiwe.
Why you should stay here: to be part of a family, sharing supper, breakfast and conversation.
What’s close by: Langa train station, post office, police station, taxi rank and information centre.
What guests are offered: township tours (including a visit to a traditional healer) as well as a visit to the Langa Baptist Church.
Zone 7 No 30 | Langa | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 694 2504

Radebe’s Bed and Breakfast (with Coffee Shack)
Minah Radebe’s guesthouse and coffee shack offers three, themed bedrooms: respectively Equnu, Kwandebele and Kwamashu (names of South African homelands). The guesthouse serves continental or African breakfasts; lunch and dinner are also available.
Why you should stay here: “to come and meet the real people of Langa and walk our streets,” says Minah.
What’s close by: views of the University of Cape Town, Rhode’s Memorial and Lion’s Head.
What guests are offered: “on our walking tours, you can play soccer with local children or a vibrant, Sunday church service,” says Minah.
23 PW Mama Way | Settlers Place | Langa | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 695 0508 / +27 (0)82 393 3117

Gugulethu (Xhosa for ‘our pride’)

Gugulethu was established in the 1960s, due to the overcrowding of Langa. Go see the Amy Biehl memorial, a reminder of the tragic stabbing of the American Fullbright scholar in 1993, also worth a visit is the Gugulethu Seven memorial, which commemorates seven young black activists from the township who lost their lives fighting for freedom in 1986.

Nowdays, you’ll encounter new developments including Mzoli’s restaurant and the Gugulethu Sports Complex. Life is flourishing.

Mbalentle
The modern township home offers four beautiful rooms including Ekuphumleni, meaning ‘a place of resting’ and Entle, meaning ‘beautiful’ in Xhosa.
Why you should stay here: “our ethnic guesthouse, combined with traditional and healthy African food, is a place where African cultures may meet,” says owner, Florence Bhunu.
What’s close by: the Amy Biehl Memorial and the Gugulethu Seven Memorial.
What guests are offered: a choice between B&B and full board, catering and hosting of house and garden parties, as well as township tours (with accredited tour operators).
23 Pallotti Road | Montana | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 934 0040

Lizewe’s Bed and Breakfast
Large groups can rent out a self-catering cottage, with tasteful African décor, and reserve the restaurant for an authentic, South African feast.
Why you should stay there: “the most distinguishing aspect of our stay was the level of customer service. The staff was attentive, responsive and willing to go the extra mile to make sure that everything we needed was available to us,” says guest, Lou Bergholtz, from Boston, America.
What’s close by: Mzoli’s restaurant.
What guests are offered: Walking township tours include visits to Mzolis and a sangoma, as well as a ride in a local taxi.
NY111 – No 121 | Gugulethu | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 633 7406

Khayelitsha (Xhosa for ‘new home’)

Khayelitsha is the largest and the fastest growing township in South Africa. There have been many developments including brick houses, schools and a central business district, but around 70% of residents still live in shacks.

Kopanong Bed & Breakfast
As you enter from the gate, the pathway is clean, the kitchen is hygienic and the beds are comfortable.
Why you should stay there: you can enjoy a nutritious breakfast of fruit, yoghurt and hot porridge on the covered terrace, while discussing Africa’s history and hopes for the future with registered tour guides, Thope and Mpho Lekau.
What’s close by: Lookout Hill offers a bird’s-eye view of Khayelitsha.
What guests are offered: “we want people to understand why we offer township tours,” exclaims Mpho, “Townships aren’t just about poverty – many people have worked hard to improve their lives.”
C329 Velani Crescent | Khayelitsha | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 361 2084

Malebo’s Bed and Breakfast
Not only is Lydia Masoleng fluent in English, Xhosa, Sotho and Afrikaans, but she sure knows how to cook. “It’s a Xhosa tradition to learn to cook before you get married,” she says, “I recommend Umfino – spinach with maize meal and chakalaka – washed down with my homebrewed, ginger beer.” After a filling meal, snooze in one of five guest rooms.
Why you should stay there: a firsthand experience of township culture and Xhosa cooking.
What’s close by: Lookout Hill.
What guests are offered: “we offer walking tours, visiting local shebeens (pubs), and arts and craft centres,” says Lydia.
18 Mississippi Way | Khayelitsha | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 361 2391

By Lisa Nevitt

Baby Elephant rescue

Female elephants resuce a baby elephant from drowning in a waterhole. For Africa tour details visit www.gardenroutetrail.co.za.