A trip to South Africa’s world-renowned Cape Winelands is a treat for any wine lover. For many people this means a day trip by car or on a tour bus to enjoy some of the most scenic attractions (and some of the best wines) in the world.
However, there’s another way to enjoy the sites, scents and sounds of South Africa’s famous wine destinations such as the Franschhoek Valley, Paarl, and Stellenbosch – and that’s on a Cape Town bike tour through the winelands.
These areas offer numerous trails and gentle meanders through the vineyards and green tree lined roads that make any wine tour a delight for the senses. These bicycle routes and tours are ideal for the nature lover and the family that is looking to spend some quality time in the fresh air of these unspoiled areas.
There are a number of different tour operators that make bicycle tours of the Cape Winelands accessible for visitors. The routes vary in intensity and range from gentle meanders suitable for all ages to more challenging and longer routes that take in a wide variety of different vineyards.
Tour operators will provide transport in an air conditioned bus to the Winelands, as well as provide a qualified and professional guide. The operator will also provide mountain bikes – suitable for the smaller gentle dirt roads that are found in many vineyards, as well as arranging entrance fees and wine tasting fees at the wine estates that are going to be the focal point of the vineyard cycling experience.
Some of the most popular tours are of the Stellenbosch region where those taking part can enjoy visits to up to four different wine estates. Included in these tours are visits to cellars, wine tasting and access to experts from the various estates who will be on hand to educate and inform riders about the wine making process and the finer points of wine tasting.
A sample itinerary for a day exploring the Winelands could consist of a gentle cycling experience suitable for the whole family. This would take in between two and three vineyards and usually take a day on a route that is up to 5 miles in length. This short excursion is suitable for all ages and is ideal for families with younger children. This sort of day out will sometimes include lunch at one of the world-class vineyard restaurants – often enjoyed under majestic Oak trees.
For a more strenuous exploration experience, there are also tours which can range up to 13 miles in length. This is adventure biking and wine tasting at its best. Many tour operators will offer three (or more) vineyards, as well as one of Stellenbosch’s famous Van Ryn brandy distillery. During this route, riders will be exposed to some of the Cape’s most scenic vistas – including the internationally acclaimed views over False Bay. In addition, riders will also be exposed to the culinary expertise of some of South Africa’s most well-respected chefs and some of the most beautiful places to enjoy a relaxing and invigorating lunch in the beautiful surroundings of wine estates that can trace their heritage back to the 17th century.
A wine tour combined with a relaxing day of bicycling is the perfect way to enjoy some of the world’s best wines and some of the best scenery in on the globe. With the wide variety of bicycling options available, this is an option that should be of interest to the whole family. If you have your heart set on the Cape Winelands this is well worth investigating.