It would be difficult, if not impossible, to pit these two regions against one another. Each offers a unique and interesting take on the wine industry and social activities and both have a unique charm, exquisite views and delicious wines to enjoy.
Consider visiting both to really get a good idea, or suss which would be best suited for your next trip.
Stellenbosch is the oldest wine route in South Africa. Simon van der Stel landed there in 1679 and commented that it was the “most charming valley I have ever seen”. The town has taken on its founder’s name and it now boasts over 60 wine estates. Take a meander through the cultural and heritage centre, or set aside a full day to hike through the Winelands. The locals are extremely proud of their artistic heritage, so make some time to stroll through the art galleries or take home a souvenir from your trip. If you’re a fan of a bit of bubbly, Stellenbosch is the town for you. Visit the winemakers at J.C Le Roux and sample the sparkling wines that have made them famous the world over.
Franschhoek Wine Valley
“Franschhoek” means “The French Corner”. It was named after the settlers who first landed there, the French Huguenots. It was founded in 1688 and is one of the oldest towns in South Africa. A popular wedding destination, Franschhoek’s breathtaking vistas make it the perfect backdrop to your special day. Even in the heart of winter, many of the restaurants and hotels sport roaring fires, making it the perfect all-year holiday destination. If Stellenbosch gets a little crowded for you, Franschhoek might be a more cultured, choice. If you’re looking to be pampered, this is where you should be. There are plenty of spas to indulge in, incredible restaurants, exciting adventure tours and, of course, the wine-tasting! The valley is famous for its full-bodied reds, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Pinot Noir. Hire a car in Cape Town to accommodate your travel.