The Cape Winelands
Combine a trip to Cape Town with a few days exploring the Cape Winelands. It’s a huge area, with almost 100,000 ha of wine-producing grapes under vine. There are hundreds of wine farms to visit from the West Coast to the Overberg and the Little Karoo, and most offer free or inexpensive tastings and on-site sales. Many estates also have excellent restaurants and a few have rooms and cottages with magnificent views of the surrounding mountains and vineyards, in case you fancy spending a day or two in the area.
Wine Farms Close to Cape Town
If you have limited time, then the areas nearest Cape Town will suit you best. These include Cape Point, Constantia, and Durbanville in Cape Town’s southern and northern suburbs respectively, plus the traditional wine-growing towns nearby: Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, and Wellington. There are established routes to follow through all of these regions, but with so many to choose from it’s a good idea to head for a well-known estate and explore outwards from there. Groot Constantia, Boschendal, Solms-Delta, Warwick, and Delheim are just a few good starting points to aim for. Each is within an hour’s drive from central Cape Town so you can make day trips, or book yourself a vineyard cottage and stay in the countryside for longer. Franschhoek, in particular, is highly regarded for its quality restaurants, hotels, and farm-style accommodation, and makes a great base for exploring the surrounding estates.
Western Cape Wine Routes
Constantia Wine Route
Constantia is home to the oldest wine farms in South Africa, dating back to the 1600s. Just 20 minutes outside of the city center, it’s a popular destination for both locals and tourists. The picturesque vineyards in Constantia are overlooked by the Constanstiaberg mountains which make for a very Instagram friendly setting. There are several wine estates in the area each with its own character.
Stellenbosch Wine Route
The first region to establish a formal route and one of the countries leading tourist destinations. 148 wine farms can be found in the area with an endless list of activities from wine safaris to hot air balloon rides and wine festivals galore come harvest time.
Route 62 Wine Route
Route 62 is the world’s longest wine route. Starting an hour outside of Cape Town the region is characterized by scenic views from the surround valley’s, vineyards and mountains.
Hemel-en-Aarde Valley Wine Route
The Heme-en-Aarde Valley is located close to the seaside town of Hermanus that is popular for whale watching. This region is not as popular as some of the other wine routes closer to Cape Town but it is just as beautiful with ocean and mountain views. The region conditions make it the optimal place to produce Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays.
Paarl Wine Route
The Paarl Route has an excellent selection of award-winning red wines and restaurants to match. The area also has historical building antique shops and national monuments.
Riebeek Kasteel Wine Route
Located an hour outside Cape Town in Swartberg, Riebeek Kasteel is one of the oldest towns in South Africa. The area is characterized by wheatfields and oliva plantations. The vineyards in the Riebeek Valley produce excellent red wines. It may be worth your time exploring the region for a relaxing weekend.