Visiting the Wine Country
Winelands Tour | A visit to the Cape Winelands, South Africa, is an absolute 'must do' when one finds themselves in Cape Town, wine lover or not, each place has something unique to offer to its special guests. The region is one of breathtaking vistas and majestic farms topped with its rich history and diverse culture.
Cape Town has some of the oldest wine estates which are located 20 minutes drive from the city centre. The area of Constantia dates back to the late 1600's when the Cape was a Dutch colony. Constantia is also a great place to stay. It has some of the countries finest bed and breakfasts, guest houses and boutique hotels. Take for example Steenberg Estate which is located on the southern slopes of the Constantiaberg mountains. The Steenberg cellar produces award winning wines, boasts an 18 hole championship golf course and has two of the Cape's finest restaurants on their property, namely Catherina's and the hip and happening 1682.
South Africa's wine making heritage started with the arrival of French Huguenots back in 1688. They ended up in Franschhoek (The French Glen), which is about an hours drive from Cape Town. Stellenbosch, which is a short scenic drive away is probably the best known area of the Cape Winelands, but the wine producing areas of Wellington, Paarl, Robertson should not be overlooked.
The fertile green valleys of the Cape Winelands are surrounded by proud mountain ranges. Towns and villages have many historic homesteads and monuments, and every so often fruit orchards are to be seen, whose produce may be found in all corners of the world. It is the Mediterranean climate and winter rainfall of the south-western Cape that produces some of the best wines in the country.
The rich, fertile soils along the Breede River Valley and especially the areas of Somerset West, Paarl, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, have become world famous for their whites, reds, sherries, ports and brandies. View the Wine Routes of the Cape for a detailed overview of all of the wine routes which includes the Constantia Valley, Coastal Routes, Little Karoo and Olifants River Wine Routes and more.
Not only wines are produced in these Cape Winelands. It is the bread basket of the Western Cape and some of the best cheese, olives and even chocolate in the county are also produced. Why not make a day of it and spend time visiting some of the most beautiful countryside in the world.
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