World famous for crisp white and French-style red wines, the fertile wine valleys of the Cape are also a treasury of rustic beauty and sprawling estates shaded by giant oak trees. Travel into the heart of the winelands, starting in historic Paarl and Stellenbosch and on to the beautiful town of Franschhoek, founded in 1688 by French immigrants fleeing the Huguenot religious persecution in Europe. These very settlers produced the fine wines once sought after by Napoleon, Bismarck and royalty such as Edward VII, the Prince of Wales. Wander through the lovely gardens of the Vergelegen Estate, appreciate the Cape Dutch architecture of the manor house and enjoy a private wine tasting hosted by the estate's winemaker in a private cellar.
Continue on to the Boschendal Wine Estate, one of the oldest farms in the country, for a delicious seasonal Farm-to-Table lunch served at The Werf Restaurant, located in the beautifully revamped cellar of The Manor House. Guided by the rhythm of the seasons, Chef Allistaire Lawrence creates a contemporary menu from the best available local and ethically sourced produce. Organic vegetables are harvested daily from the Werf Food Garden, which can be viewed from the restaurant balcony. Relax and enjoy a scenic drive, as you are chauffeured back to your hotel in a vintage car. With an evening at leisure, your Travelling Concierge is on hand to assist you with restaurant recommendations and reservations. (B/LW)