A Tour Of Cape Town And The Winelands
Cape Town, Table Mountain National Park
South Africa is a country rich in diversity and culture. It is vast, and blessed with an abundance of natural beauty. The people, affectionately referred to as the “rainbow nation” are warm and friendly. Here is a 10-day guided tour itinerary promising you the best of Cape Town and its surrounds!
Cape Town is a multicultural city that offers a mix of urban and nature. The city is extremely popular due to its natural beauty and setting at the foot of Table Mountain. It offers a good climate and well developed infrastructure. The American New York Times and the British Daily Telegraph named it the best place in the world to visit in 2014.
Find your feet in Cape Town and explore the vibrant Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. It attracts more than 20 million visitors per year and hosts beautiful shops, museums, the Two Oceans Aquarium and many restaurants.
Ride the Cape Town wheel for a great view of your surroundings.
Walk past Nobel Square in the waterfront to view the statues of South Africa’s four Nobel Peace Prize winners – Albert Luthuli, Desmond Tutu, FW De Klerk and Nelson Mandela.
In the afternoon make your way towards Table Mountain and take the cable car up to the flat top. Table Mountain is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Cable cars depart every 15 minutes. The cars rotate very slowly to give you the best views of the city and the mountain, on your way to the summit.
There is a self-service restaurant to grab a bite to eat whilst enjoying the 360-degree view over the Cape Peninsula.
There are hiking trails on the summit to explore the fynbos vegetation and wildlife that inhabit the top of the mountain. On a clear day, you will be able to see Robben Island and the working harbor. Stay long enough to enjoy the spectacular sunset.
Today, your personal guide will take you to the many attractions the city has on offer. There are different options to choose from: The South African Museum, the District Six Museum and the famous Castle of Good Hope. These provide an excellent insight into the history of the Cape of Good Hope.
Stroll down the iconic Long Street and Breë Street and explore the many interesting shops and Art galleries along the way.
Visit the St. George’s Cathedral, the oldest in South Africa that is also known as the “people’s cathedral” for it’s role in the struggle against apartheid.
At night, Long Street turns into a hub of clubs and loud music with young people enjoying the nightlife – so if that is not what you are after, this is recommended as a daytime activity.
No visit to Cape Town is complete without a visit to the notorious prison on Robben Island – the place where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years of his life. Even before the apartheid era, this was a political prison used by the Dutch in the 18th century. It also served as a leper colony for a while and during the Second World War the island was used as a military base. Today the island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Other than its rich history, it is also home to a colony of African Penguins, and a variety of buck and tortoises.
Ferries depart from the Nelson Mandela Gateway at V&A Waterfront and takes visitors on a guided tour of the island and the prison. The tour lasts about four hours. You will go past the lime quarry, where prisoners performed hard labour, army bunkers and see leper graves.
The highlight is the visit to the Maximum Security Prison – which of course, no longer serves as a prison. The tour includes a visit to Nelson Mandela’s cell. You won’t return from that day without being deeply touched by the experience and the stories narrated by the tour guide.
Bo-Kaap - Sea Point Promenade
Today you will have a guided tour of the historical Bo-Kaap, also known as the Cape Malay Quarter. Translated from Afrikaans, Bo-Kaap means “Above the Cape”. Although this is one of the most photographed areas of Cape Town, there is much more to this area than the brightly coloured houses that line the streets.
Visit the Bo-Kaap museum for an interesting insight into the lives of the local Islamic history and culture. The museum is the oldest house in the area still in its original form
You will also find the country’s oldest mosque in this area.
It is highly recommended that you ask your tour guide to add the traditional lunch to your tour. You will be hosted by one of the ladies living in the Bo-Kaap, where you will watch her cook a traditional Cape Malay curry, whilst she relates stories of an era gone by in the Cape. This is not a full day excursion and your evening will be available for other activities.
Spend the rest of the day visiting one of Cape Town’s beautiful beaches or rent a bicycle and cycle along the Sea Point Promenade.
Cape Point - Chapman’s Peak Drive - Hout Bay
Today’s tour sees you head out of the city to Cape Point to witness the natural beauty of the Cape coastline. It is a 60 km drive from Cape Town city centre, but well worth the scenery along the way. There is no public transport to Cape Point, but it is an easy drive for your guide.
From the city centre drive past the popular Camps Bay beach and follow the coastline along the famous Chapman’s Peak Drive till you reach the Table Mountain National Park.
Once there, walk up to the old lighthouse, or take the Funicular for an easier journey.
Enjoy fresh seafood at the local restaurant, or pack a picnic and enjoy some of the best views in the world. Beware of baboons – they can be dangerous.
On your way back, stop at the Chapman’s Peak Hotel in Hout Bay for a sunset drink or enjoy some of the best calamari in the world on the informal and relaxed terrace.
Useful Information: The Hop on hop off bus offers an excursion to Cape Point as well, but this is a spectacular road to enjoy at your own leisure with your personal guide.
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
Visit Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens and experience the indigenous flora of the Cape. This 36-hectare garden is regarded as one of the best in the world and contains more than 6000 species of southern African plants. It is situated on the slopes of Table Mountain. It includes a protea garden, herb gardens, forest areas and a stunning conservatory. Walk along the Centenary Tree Canopy pathway, also called the “Boomslang”, for a spectacular view of the area. Boomslang, translated from Afrikaans, means Tree snake. It is an easy, 130 metre, elevated walk with great photo opportunities. Stroll past Lady Ann Barnard’s bath and have lunch at the African Moyo restaurant. Stop at the garden shop on your way out to buy beautiful souvenirs.
Depart for the Winelands in the afternoon.
Enjoy dinner in one of the famous restaurants in the village of Franschhoek.
Nestled in the majestic mountains of the Cape winelands sit the beautiful towns of Franschhoek and Paarl. Franschhoek is known as the “food and wine” capital of South Africa. When the French Huguenots settled in this valley, they brought their knowledge of winemaking with them and this tradition of producing great wines still lives on today.
Taste some of the best wines in the world and explore some of the oldest wine farms in South Africa. Add in some of the best restaurants in the country, and you are all set for a taste sensory overload. You will enjoy warm hospitality, beautiful vineyards and taste fine wines and world-class cuisine
Hop onto the Franschhoek Wine tram and enjoy a guided tour of the many wine farms in and around the village. On board the tram you will enjoy a narrated tour highlighting the culture and history of the valley. The tour is a combination of tram and bus and loops around the more than 50 wine estates in the valley.
Choose between one of four tram routes and spend the day enjoying some of the best wines in the world and have a leisurely lunch at one of the restaurants at the vineyard of your choice.
Stroll through the vineyards of join a guided cellar tour. The vineyards include the 18th century winery of Rickety Bridge, the 300-year-old Grande Provence, Mont Rochelle, owned by Sir Richard Branson, the family owned boutique winery and restaurant at Le Lude. This modern cellar was custom build to produce a Method Cap Classique in the underground maturation cellar.
Food and Wine
You need more than a day to experience the wine and food offering of this valley. Today, take a different route on the wine tram, or take a private guided tour. Start your day with a different food and wine experience
A short fifteen-minute drive out of town will bring you to the famous gardens of Babylonstoren. Join a guided tour of the 3,5 hectares of formal fruit and vegetable gardens. The garden was inspired by the historic Company’s garden in the Cape that supplied fresh produce to the ships that visited the Cape on their journey between Europe and the East. A new addition to their offering is a tour of the Healing garden, where your guide will tell you all about herbs and their medicinal uses. You pick your own herbs to infuse your own herbal tea at the end of the tour. If it appeals to you, you can put your feet in the pond where tiny little fish will nibble at your feet. Wear comfortable shoes and wear a hat in the summer months. Enjoy lunch and their delicious wines at the beautiful Babel restaurant, or continue to another of the many wine estates for lunch and afternoon wine tasting.
En route from Babylonstoren you will pass Boschendal, Noble Hill, Plaiser de Merle, Solms-Delta and the historic farm Vrede en Lust translated “Peace and Passion”. They offer unpretentious, delicious meals in a relaxed atmosphere. Join a cellar tour or just spend the afternoon tasting award-winning wines in their beautiful tasting room.
Paarl Town - Lion Park
Today, take a drive to the historic town of Paarl, just 20 minutes from Franschhoek.
On the way to Paarl, you will pass the Groot Drakenstein prison where Nelson Mandela spent the last few years of his incarceration.
Stop at the statue of Mandela by the prison gates where his long walk to freedom started. Tours of his accommodation at this prison can be organized by special arrangement.
Visit the gin distillery at Spice Route Farm and enjoy a tasting of their special “fynbos” gin collection.
If gin is not for you, you can do a chocolate and coffee tasting, or visit the neighboring Fairview Estate to taste their wines and sample a selection of goats’ cheeses produced on the farm. Stay for lunch – the menu offers the best of South African traditional fair.
If you are not extending your visit to South Africa to include a safari, visit the Lion Park in Paarl to see these magnificent predators. This is a lion sanctuary for abused lions and provides them with 50 acres of lion habitat where they are safe and can live free from persecution.
If you are adventurous, you can spend the night sleeping at the Ingonyama Tented Camp in the park and experience the roar of the lions under African skies.
Museum and Galleries
There is so much to do in the valley other than food and wine! Plan an extra day to spend at leisure and make your time in the valley even more memorable.
Ask your guide to arrange a visit to the Motor Museum at L’Omarins or visit the many art galleries.
Visit the Woman’s Monument and the Huguenot Museum for some insight into the history of the town from when the French Settlers arrived in the Cape.
The valley offers world class Spa’s at Leeu Estate, the spa at Babylonstoren and the spa at Delairre Graff, just a short drive through the village of Pniel towards Stellenbosch.
If you are a golfer, be sure to book a round of golf at the oldest club in the country, Paarl Golf Club, or the Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course at the Pearl Valley Estate.
There are the “doom prophets” who will caution you with safety concerns. As with many other countries in the world, you need to be alert and aware, but you can safely enjoy what the country has to offer. Your tour guide will advise you on where to go and areas to avoid.
Cape Town, Table Mountain National Park
Contributed By : Sandra BuysTourHQ Experiences
This itinerary is contributed by Sandra, an experienced traveler. If you request this tour, different guides will give you their versions of this itinerary. Be sure to confirm with them on what's included before booking.