The Durbanville Wine Valley

The Durbanville Wine Valley

The Durbanville Wine Valley is often overlooked against its older brothers in Stellenbosch and the Constantia winelands, but it’s the one place in the Northern Suburbs you can almost always enjoy a view of the Mother City’s Table Mountain while wine tasting, picnicking and exploring the lush outdoors. Home to happy clay soils, pristine views and brisk Atlantic Ocean breezes, the area produces marvellous Chardonnay, Cabernet and Merlot varieties as well as an offering of great things to do – including events and a fine day’s wining, dining and sightseeing for the whole family.

And it’s easy to find. All you need is one road – The N1 – and twenty minutes. From the city centre to the heart of one of the youngest, most vibrant wine farm areas on the Cape Peninsula, it’s a day trip with a difference.

Discovering the Durbanville winelands is a bit like popping the cork of a favourite wine –the experience is dependable, delightful and promises a few surprises.  From hill top picnics to kiddies catering, from award winning wines to vintage farm houses, from documented terroir to Table Mountain view, its hills and dales have much to discover.

Find fine wine and good fun without the fuss

Follow our suggested route from De Grendel to Meerendal for a breakdown of the spaces and places to enjoy Northern Suburbs wine hospitality. Remember that some venues are only open to the public for limited times over the weekends.

De Grendel Estate

Off the M14 (which leads down to the beach, eventually), the quickest city break is the prestigious De Grendel Estate (Plattekloof Road). Definitively eco-conscious and insistent on quality, there’s a touch of timelessness and authenticity in its daily activities, from wine making to breeding of award-winning livestock.   See the Table Mountain from the tasting room and visit during one of its many annual activities.

Relax and unwind in the Wilderness National Park

The Wilderness National Park in the heart of the Garden Route, is an oasis consisting of lakes, rivers, fens, estuaries and beaches.

The Wilderness National Park in the heart of South Africa’s famous Garden Route, is an oasis consisting of lakes, rivers, fens, estuaries and beaches. The park is sheltered by forest and mountains.

Walk along one of the many nature trails and absorb all the beauty this region has to offer. Keep an eye out for the beautifully coloured Knysna Loerie, or one of the five kingfisher species.

This nature reserve in the heart of the Garden Route is the place to unwind and to relax.

Travel around and walk thought this landscape is a priority if you have the chance to travel to Cape Town

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Rocking the Daisies 8 – 10 October 2010

Rocking the Daisies is an eco-friendly music festival where visitors can pitch a tent, move to the beat of the music and make a lot of new friends. And the location – on a Cape wine estate surrounded by flowering daisies – couldn’t be better.

The Western Cape is filled with lots of treats for locals and visitors. They have excellent wine farms, a rocking night life and some of South Africa’s best musicians were born and bred in this part of the country.

This Darling rock festival is in its 4th year at the Cloof Wine Estate, and the numbers of festival goers have been growing like a well-watered plant. They are expecting a crowd of between 10 000 and 15 000 people this year.

The line-up of artists is superb, from the finest of local rock, dance and acoustic bands to the funkiest beats from several DJs that will entertain the crowds from dusk ‘till dawn. And when the hunger strikes, you will be looked after by a whole arsenal of festival restaurants and food stalls.

The best part of this Darling music festival is definitely its green status. Rocking the Daisies is mostly powered by bio-diesel generators. They even print the festival tickets on 100% hemp paper and provided festival goers with 100% biodegradable soaps and shampoos. At the 2008 festival, 19 of the 20 tons of waste that was collected, were recycled.

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CitySightseeing Cape Town

With the sun beating down on your shoulders and an elevated view of your surroundings, you’ll see why CitySightseeing is the popular official tour of Cape Town.

There are two routes covering over 20 of Cape Town’s iconic attractions and destinations, including Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, the V&A Waterfront, Camps Bay and Sea Point.
The buses depart from outside the Two Oceans Aquarium every 20 minutes seven days a week, starting at 09h10, and you can use your ticket to jump off at any of the stops near the attraction you wish to visit, and get back on the next bus after you are done.

The single-route R120 ticket is valid for one of the two tours on day of issue whereas the R200 two-route ticket is valid for 2 consecutive days so you can continue the tour the next day if you’ve been side-tracked at a particular destination
Buses are equipped for wheelchairs, and the audio tour comes in eight languages including German, Dutch and French. There is also a special “kids’ club” audio channel.

Get more information on the website of CitySightseeing Cape Town.

Sea Point Swimming Pool

Regarded by many as the most breathtaking public swimming pool in the world, the Sea Point Pool complex consists of an Olympic size pool, plus 2 splash pools for kids, and a fully equipped springboard diving pool.

Built on the beachfront, these filtered seawater pools are part of the scenic Sea Point Pavilion. Although the pools are not heated, the facility is open throughout the year, and a handful of Capetonians persist with their training at the Pavilion through Winter, when water temperatures drop to about 12 degrees Celcius.

On any given day in Summer you will find a colourful mix of locals and tourists soaking up the sun, professional and recreational swimmers ploughing up and down the pool, and children (and adults!) playing in the crystal-clear water.

Pool Hours:
Summer (10 October until 16 April): 07:00 – 19:00
Winter (17 April until 10 October): 08:30 – 17:00

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The Africa Café

Enjoy the Original African Feast!

Get to The Africa Café for a vibrant multi-cultural dining experience. Since 1992, chef Portia has been creating food infused with African soul and passion. Experience an exotic tapestry of flavours that will take you on a journey from North to South. Housed in an historic national monument, the restaurant is divided over 3 levels and 7 richly decorated dining rooms.

The Africa Café menu is extensive but it is a set menu, perfect for sociable dining with friends. Guests are served at the table where the dishes are explained to them and they can eat as much as they like. The current charge per person is R220.

And that’s not all, The Africa Café is a firm supporter of Responsible Tourism Initiatives. The restaurant is a large employer of unskilled labour from previously disadvantaged backgrounds as well as refugees from other parts of Africa seeking asylum in South Africa.

The Africa Café also funds a ceramic pottery studio teaching skills to people from disadvantaged backgrounds as its main charity initiative. Zig Zag, the restaurant’s retail shop, stocks various gifts and curios, 75% of which are sourced from empowerment projects operating in South Africa.

For more information check out the website of Africa Café.

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Cape Town International Boat Show 8 – 10 October 2010

More than just a boat show, this year’s event will capture the imagination of the whole family from the showcasing of  exotic boats, the best the boat building industry has on offer to the widest diversity of boating related products and technology available.

Designed to attract both local and international visitors, exciting events, demonstrations and competitions with fabulous prizes are planned for both the Cape Town International Convention Centre and at the V & A Waterfront.

Entrance fee is a mere R60 per person per day which is inclusive of transport and entry to all boat show related events. A bonus for families is that there is no charge for children.

Whether you are a boat owner or simply enjoy anything about Cape Town and the water, this is an opportunity to attend one
of Cape Town’s and great events – don’t miss the boat show!

For more information:

Hotel recommendations are welcome

To all readers of this blog!

We add a new section on this blog: “Our tip” to where we want to draw attention to the best hotels, lodges or other objects. For example

* Authentic South African accommodation or
* Perfectly situated or
* With a good relation of price/quality
* Something else, what stands out from the crowd

Preference is given to objects which can be found in a hard way from Germany. For example, which is found during a trip to South Africa and this would inform our readers. Just write us. Either write something into the comment box or send an e-mail to me: andre(at) Beautiful would be a few lines why this house is a tip and give me also the link to the homepage. We will publish at regular intervals to the tip.

Cape Town International Kite Festival

‘Uplifting Mind and Body’ is the theme for the sixteenth Cape Town Internatieric-miller-kite5770-foronal Kite Festival, which is happening on 23 and 24 October 2010 in Muizenberg and is proudly hosted by Cape Mental Health.

This is Africa’s biggest kite festival and attracts over 20,000 visitors, including some of the biggest names in kiting in South Africa and the world who fly in to show off their magnificent kite creations. With kite-making, kite-flying, food stalls, kiddies’ rides, a full programme of entertainment and an eclectic craft market, this is family entertainment at its best.

The Cape Town International Kite Festival will be open from 10:00 to 18:00. Entry is just R15 for adults and R5 for children.

All profits go directly to Cape Mental Health to support their mental health services for people in disadvantaged communities. For more information on the Cape Town International Kite Festival and Cape Mental Health visit

Bo-Kaap Museum in Cape Town

Outside of the city centre of Cape Town is the beautiful neighbourhood of Bo-Kaap with its Museum. It’s known for the Islamic community and you can have a view on its history and culture. And of course everybody link with Bo-Kaap the multi-coloured houses.

The Bo-Kaap Museum is located in the historic area that became home to many Muslims and former slaves after the abolition of slavery. Many of them hailed from South East Asia practicing the Muslim faith. Their also known as Cape Malay and it’s said that they were helpful in forming of the Afrikaans language. Everybody who has ever heard it would be reminded at the sound of Dutch.

The Museum was established in 1978 and it’s furnished as a house reflecting the lifestyle of a nineteenth-century Muslim family. It’s located in 71 Wale Street and it’s managed by Iziko Museums. They contain 5 national museums including the SA Cultural History Museum and its satellites. The museum is being changed into a social history museum telling the story of the local community with socio-political and cultural aspects.

The George Hallet Photographic Exhibition portrays one man’s impression of life in the Bo-Kaap. A second exhibition is pointing the social history of the Bo-Kaap and the influence of Apartheid. Older exhibitions show the culture of the Muslim community at the Cape.

When you have finished the visit of that museum, just take a walk at the cobbled streets and you will find more things being worth to see! If you’re at the right time there, you can hear the muezzin’s calls to prayer or you’ll locate the oldest mosque in South Africa. One thing is sure: You have to taste the Cape Malay cuisine!

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