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5 Hidden Gems in Stellenbosch

There is not a better way to spend a long hot Sunday than in the Cape Winelands. This wine-making land is sprawled out at the foot of the Jonkershoek, Drakenstein, and Simonsberg mountains an hour out of Cape Town. With some of South Africa’s finest estates and endless vineyards, the region offers a plethora of things to choose from to do. If you, however, are tired of the usual wine-tasting experience, we put together a guide of some of the best little gems tucked away Stellenbosh. Don’t panic, however, most of them still involve wine.

Clos Malverne

This estate is tucked into the gorgeous Devon Valley, a less frequented part of Stellenbosch. It boasts some of the most exquisitely luscious views from the wrap-around balcony and garden seating. Don’t think blueberry and chocolate ice-creams though. Executive chef, Nadia Louw Smith, is an inspired and creative genius and creates the most unusual ice-creams to complement the estate’s wine. Think passion fruit, chilli and coconut ice-cream paired with Sauvignon Blanc Brut. There is also a highly unusual, but absolutely flavoursome sweet potato and dill ice-cream with the limited edition of Spirit of Malverne. This is an absolute must-do seasonally as the Chef often changes the menu and brings out her new ranges of ice-cream!

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Stellenbosch Street Soirees

Hosted twice a month on a Wednesday, is this great excuse for locals to hit the streets and enjoy the warm evenings of the Cape. Drosty Streets opens up to mid-week revellers who are looking for a street market experience to break up the week. You can expect food trucks with some delicious street food, live music and wine tastings. Entry is free, but R70 will get you a glass that will allow to taste all that the estate’s have to offer. Take a wander down the bustling street under the oak trees and sip on delicious local wines. Participating estates, include Delheim, Lanzerac, Hartenberg, Muratie, Middelvlei, Louisvale, Bilton, Asara and Fleur Du Cap at Die Bergkelder.

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Strawberry Picking at Polkadraai

Not only is the wine region packed with rolling hills of vineyards, but you can find a strawberry field here and there too! Polkadraai offers a great day out for the whole family. Spend the day picking delicious plump strawberries and popping into the restaurant for a healthy lunch and a few bottles of wine. There is plenty to keep the kids busy while you laze back and take in the gorgeous wineland sun.

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Solms Delta

This estate lies just outside Stellenbosch, as you are about to enter Franschhoek. It’s open rolling lawns are ideal for a family picnic and wine Sunday. However, the estate also offers a cultural experience for your visit. On the estate’s grounds, you can find two museums dedicated to celebrating local history. Museum van die Caab is an interesting insight into the farm’s slave heritage. Fascinating displays and stories covering individual people who lived and worked on the farm give an insight into the farm’s yesteryear. The second museum dedicated purely to music from the region. Music van die Caab is a thoroughly researched look into the musical history of the region. It offers replicas of instruments as well as interactive screens that allow you to hear specific sounds. Visit both museums and do a full wine tasting for only R70 at this estate.

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Wine Safari at Jordan Wine

Why not experience wine tasting in true South African style; on a Land Rover! This wine safari is a truly unique experience, allowing you to take in the full magnificence of the estate. You will enjoy the views of the rolling vineyards as well as False Bay in the distance. You will be taken through the unique terroir of the estate and then be led through the cellar where you can taste wine straight out of the barrel! This experience is R400 per person.

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