Love a good glass of vino? Australia, Europe and California aren’t the only regions producing world-class, exquisite wine. Indeed, you can see a wide variety of great produce coming from near Cape Town in South Africa. Even better, if you join an African safari expedition, you’ll get to sample some of these delights.
About Cape Winelands
The Cape Winelands municipality is around 22,309 square kilometres of pristine wine-growing terroir, with rows of lush vines growing beneath the country’s gorgeous mountains. It sits adjacent to the bustling city of Cape Town, incorporating towns such as Paarl, Stellenbosch and Worcester.
The Cape Winelands municipality is around 22,309 square kilometres of pristine wine-growing terroir.
So how did a premium wine region start life on this vast continent? Well, it all started with the Europeans and their early voyages to South Africa. In the 1650s, the Dutch East India Company was sending ships around the cape, and wanted to establish a port where they could safely stop and resupply. A man called Jan van Riebeeck got the inspiration to plant vines in the local area, and imported grapes from France, Germany and Spain.
Later, the second governor of the area, Simon van der Stel, arrived and brought with him a knowledge of viticulture, and an enthusiasm for good wine. The industry grew rapidly from here, and the product proved popular among European nobles, including Napoleon.
Modern popular labels
On your tour of Cape Winelands, you’ll have a chance to swirl, sniff and taste your way through popular labels such Anura and Tokara.
The former sits on the foothills of the stunning Simonsberg Mountains, and has a particular speciality in sumptuous red wine. As you venture through the company’s cellar, you’ll see a blend of tools being used from both nowadays and yesteryear, making it an educational experience as well as a tasty one.
The latter, Tokara, is higher in elevation, giving you great views of the local valley. It has a very sleek, contemporary feel, both in the architecture of the main building and the cuisine that its restaurant serves.
Perfect TOKARA sunset! #wine #visitstellenbosch #sunset @StellWineRoute #gotosouthafrica #tourism pic.twitter.com/WEKyxjPXTp
— TOKARA Wines|Olives (@TOKARA_ZA)
October 16, 2015
How to visit this great region
The ultimate way to see Cape Winelands is on an African tour with Aurora Expeditions. Not only will we drive you around the area to sample local wine, food and oils, but our trip also includes wilderness excursions, relaxing river cruises and more. On how many other wine tasting trips can you say you also saw lions, tramped through lush African bush and relaxed on a charming river boat? Not many, we’ll wager.