You can’t visit Cape Town without exploring the Cape Winelands by tasting wines, touring cellars, indulging in excellent cuisine and taking in the magnificent scenery. There are several exciting attractions to visit in the Cape Winelands. Begin your journey discovering some of the 150 wine farms in Stellenbosch, including Spier Wine Estate, home to one of the oldest wine cellars in the region and an incredible collection of South African art.
Next up, the Franschhoek Valley, aptly named the ‘gourmet capital of South Africa’ is famous for its cuisine and spectacular views. Hop on the Franschhoek Wine Tram and discover the beauty of the vineyards and enjoy a variety of wines. There’s also Paarl, home to the internationally renowned Nederburg Wine Estate and numerous other premier brands. Combine your time in Paarl with more than just wine tasting, by visiting the Afrikaans Language Monument.
Just 159km from Cape Town, you’ll find Robertson — known for its wine and roses. The best way to experience its beauty is by cycling through the town. And in Cape Town itself, Constantia is the closest wine region to the city, where you can visit some of the oldest wine estates in the Western Cape to sample wine or stay over and enjoy a country experience.
Why tour the Cape Winelands
- To enjoy a tasting experience of some of South Africa’s legendary wines.
- To savour gourmet food in Franschhoek, renowned for its superb restaurants.
- The scenery is breathtaking.
- To learn about the country’s fascinating wine-making history.
- To sample a glass of pinotage, a red wine blend that is unique to South Africa.
- To explore different wine routes, including the Helderberg and Durbanville Wine Routes.
A Cape Winelands tour is an opportunity to visit different parts of the Western Cape. Enjoy world-class wines in a landscape full of Cape Dutch homesteads, lush mountains and excellent restaurants. Aside from the superb wine, you’ll also discover a variety of locally produced foods, including cheese, olives, fruit and organic produce. With its iconic Cape Dutch-style architecture, rolling vineyards and picturesque mountains, the Cape Winelands in South Africa is an absolute must on your holiday itinerary. In the Cape Winelands, it is always wine-o-clock, so what are you waiting for? Book your affordable Cape Winelands holiday package with Thompsons Holidays.
Located only a short drive from Cape Town lies the Cape Winelands, South Africa's renowned wine region. Popular activities here include visiting various wine estates to sample their wines and other produce, including organic vegetables, cheese, chocolate and olives. Some wineries also offer bicycle tours, spas, garden tours with farm-to-table dining, and luxury Cape Winelands accommodation from which to enjoy it all.
In the charming town of Franschhoek, with scenic mountains as its backdrop, there are quaint shops to explore, French Huguenot influences everywhere and the country’s best restaurants offering sublime dishes. The Cape Winelands in South Africa offers a variety of places to visit and exciting things to do – and best of all, it’s just outside the Mother City, making this magnificent destination easily accessible.
Things to do in the Cape Winelands
- Travel on the Franschhoek hop-on hop-off wine tram and tour numerous wine estates.
- Take a scenic drive up Bain’s Kloof Pass to visit Robertson.
- Explore the vast grounds of Spier Wine Farm in Stellenbosch on a Segway.
- Take the kids to Butterfly World to see 24 different species.
- Try your hand at wine blending at Middelvlei Farm.
- View world-class art in Stellenbosch galleries.
- Classic car enthusiasts will love the Wijnland Auto Museum.
- Discover Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek on a bicycle tour.
- Explore the exquisite gardens at Babylonstoren and enjoy an unforgettable meal.
- Enjoy wine and chocolate pairings in Franschhoek.
The Winelands are not only spectacular, but they are also full of fascinating things to see and even more exciting things to do, and perfect for romantic getaways, family holidays and social gatherings with friends.
When is the best time to visit?
- The Cape Winelands is a year-round destination with each season offering something unique.
- The hot, dry summer (November to February) is excellent for long, lazy al fresco dining.
- Autumn is an exciting season to visit the Cape Winelands as it is harvest time, and the vineyards are abuzz with activity.
- For romantic holidays, nothing beats a Winelands getaway, staying in cosy accommodation and dining on comfort food beside the fire.
- In spring, when the flowers are blooming, the landscapes transform into blankets of colour.
Getting there & getting around
- Flight duration from Johannesburg to Cape Town: 2 hours, 5 minutes.
- It takes approximately 2 hours to get to the Winelands from Cape Town by car or coach.
- You will need to travel by car or coach from one wine estate to the next.
- In Franschhoek, you can use the Wine Tram.
- Visiting the Cape Winelands is mostly a relaxed affair. You can get by with casual, comfortable clothing on most wine tasting tours. However, be sure to check the dress code at any fine dining establishments you plan to visit.
- Flat, comfortable walking shoes are a must.
- Take along a sunhat, sunscreen and sunglasses – especially in summer, when temperatures soar.
- Be water-wise. The Cape Winelands are water scarce and visitors need to use water sparingly.
- Support local where possible in buying food, artisanal products and souvenirs.
- Be safety conscious: don’t display cash or valuables. Leave anything of high value at home.
- Keep your belongings safe – use the hotel safe for valuables.
- Contact the Thompsons Holidays 24-hour care line to assist in any travel related emergency.