Get to Know One of the World’s
Most Stunning Wine Regions

Almost like a Mediterranean city, Cape Town is surrounded by vineyards. Nestled in hilly valleys just outside the city, these beautiful Winelands share a similar sunny climate with Tuscany, Napa and Perth. Uniquely however, Cape Town sits between six hundred million-year-old granite mountains, on soil that’s three times older than California’s. It’s that special terroir that experts say characterizes the most fabulous wines coming out of South Africa.

This region has been in production for over 300 years, since the early days of the Dutch settlement. Adhering to old world practices, for a time in the early 18th century South African wine was highly regarded in Europe. More recently it’s enjoying a comeback, with a growing reputation for excellent quality and value on the world stage.

Curious to know more about this majestic wine region? Whether you’re planning a South African holiday or picking up a special bottle for tonight’s dinner, our Girl’s Guide breaks down everything you need to know.

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Groot
Constantia
Constantia Valley

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Founded in 1685, this is the oldest and most famous wine estate in all of South Africa. In the last decade alone, the winery has won 66 gold medals, many of those from foreign shows.

Must Try

Their signature Grand Constance. Once a favorite of Napoleon Bonaparte and Baudelaire, it’s still earning top awards.

Visit for…

Classic Cape Dutch architecture, excellent restaurants and views of Table Mountain.

 

MULLINEUX & LEEU
Family Wines
Franschoek

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Over the last decade Mullineux has emerged as one of the most buzz-worthy wine labels in South Africa, with co-founder Andrea Mullineux winning 2016’s award for Winemaker of the Year.

Must Try

Something from the Single Terroir range. Made only in exceptional vintages, these unique wines are made to be a deep expression of the landscape.

Visit for…

The gorgeous new resort and spa, complete with fabulous restaurants.

 

Vergelegen
Stellenbosch

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Dutch for “situated far away,” Vergelegen has been making wine since the 1700s and remains highly acclaimed by critics.

Must Try

Their Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve. The Cape Town Winelands are famous for perfecting this grape and few do it better than Vergelegen.

Visit for…

The scenic vistas of the Heldeberg Mountains, a stroll through the lovely manicured gardens and lunch at the Camphors restaurant.

 
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Tokara
Stellenbosch

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Set against the Hottentots Holland Mountains, this premiere estate invests in the most cutting edge technologies, superior raw materials and expert care in growing an impressive range of grapes.

Must Try

This brand is perhaps best known for their award-winning Reserve Collection Sauvignon Blanc, with fresh, opulent aromas and an elegant dry finish.

Visit for…

Free wine tastings and a tour of the modern cellars featuring avant-garde art and architecture.

 

Rust en
Vrede
Stellenbosch

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According to Travel & Leisure, Nelson Mandela had wines from this estate served at his Nobel Peace Prize dinner.

Must Try

Bring on the robust reds! This winery’s top wines are full-bodied Merlots, Shirazes and Cabernet Sauvignons.

Visit for…

This winery’s namesake restaurant consistently ranks among the top 10 in the country.

 

LA
Motte
Franschhoek

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This French-inspired winery in the historic village of Franschhoek has been recently redesigned and revamped, becoming a destination for not only wine but cuisine, floriculture and art.

Must Try

Any varietal from their classic collection. These elegant-style vintages are designed to express the distinctive character of the grape and the best of what the climate has to offer.

Visit for…

Dinner at the beloved Pierneef à La Motte to experience the height of Cape Winelands cuisine.

 

Delaire
Graffe Estate
Stellenbosch

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Opened in 2009 by Laurence Graff, the jeweler and founder of Graff diamonds, this newer winery and luxury lodging quickly began earning accolades for excellent vintages and superb accommodations.

Must Try

A gorgeous bottle of Cabernet Franc Rosé, displaying flavors of ripe strawberries, cassis and cream with a crisp and dry finish.

Visit for…

A tour of the splendid manicured gardens and Laurence Graff’s incredible art collection.

 

Boekenhoutskloof
FRANSCHHOEK

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Established in 1776, this winery tells a story about the land and its history with every vintage. Sip their Porcupine Ridge wine, and you’ll learn how they’re investing in the crested porcupine’s conservation.

Must Try

The Chocolate Block red has taken the States by storm. It’s an effortless choice for an every day dinner or barbecue.

Visit for…

A lovely tasting room with views, booked by appointment only.

 

Wine Regions

Constantia
Valley
20m drive

In the foothills of Table Mountain, this historic valley was the first in the country to be planted with vineyards. Here you’ll find eight historic wine estates, all close together and easy to tour.

STAY
The Alphen

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The Cellars-Hohenort

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Stellenbosh
45m drive

Home to an important wine university, Stellanbosch produces the most highly-renowned bottles of wine in South Africa. With a number of micro-regions nestled in the granite mountains, there’s plenty here to see and taste.

STAY
Delaire Graffe
Estate

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Lanzerac
Wine Estate

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Franschhoek
1hr 15m drive

Afrikaans for “French corner,” picturesque Franschhoek is perhaps the number two destination in the winelands and home to one of the oldest European towns in the country.

STAY
LeEU House

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La Résidence

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Cape Wineland’s
Best Luxury Tours
Boutique Wineries

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Luhambo Tours

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Explore Sideways

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