The fine, French flavour of Franschhoek
Located just 45 minutes out of Cape Town, the Cape’s French Corner, Franschhoek, is the unofficial foodie capital of the South African Winelands. The village’s quaint streets are lined with excellent restaurants, sophisticated art galleries, desirable clothing designs, chocolatiers and gleaming antique shops all cloaked in an atmosphere of refined Huguenot heritage.
Franschhoek is famous for its illustrious wine estates where you can learn about wine-making techniques while sampling the local product, but this fertile valley is also an ideal base from which to explore the nearby wine-routes of Stellenbosch, Paarl, Wellington and Somerset West. The Franschhoek Wine Tram offers hop-on, hop-off wine tasting experiences or multi-course meals paired with the finest wines and bubbles. Franschhoek is also part of the Four Passes Fruit Route.
The scenic walking trails winding through the surrounding mountains and the spectacular views from Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve attract nature lovers from near and far who come to commune with nature in one of the world’s most beautiful wine-growing valleys. Even the accommodation is exquisite in Franschhoek; you will find yourself spoilt for choice between authentic wine-farm stays in beautifully restored Cape Dutch cottages, elegant Bed and Breakfast and Guest Lodge options and 5 star luxury hotels and self-catering choices.
Best Time to Visit Franschhoek:
Some say you should visit Franschhoek between April to May and September to October, when the weather is at its most pleasant, but many prefer the warmer months of January and February just after the peak of the Summer season when the holidaymakers have left, but the climate is still heavenly.
Experience the farm-to-fork philosophy of Bablyonstoren, with its magnificent 5-hectare, sustainable gardens.
Paraglide over the winelands from Franschhoek Pass, with a seasoned instructor.
Visit Franschhoek Motor Museum’s carefully curated collection of vintage cars and bikes.