Cape Town day tours – Off the Beaten track

As well as all the common-or-garden Cape Town day tours such as city and Table Mountain tours, winelands tours and tours of the Cape Peninsula, we also try to cater for a variety of interests. (If you have a very specific interest, discuss your needs with us and we will source a specialist guide for you.)  Here is a summary of some of our ‘off the beaten track’ Cape Town day tours. Nearly all are offered as private tours. Be warned that these are fairly expensive for 2 people but becomes more reasonable if there are 4 or 6 people.

 

As they are private tours, you can adapt the tours to some degree to suit your own interests. Of course if you add something to the tour, you have less time elsewhere, so discuss what’s possible with your private guide on the day…

COUNTRY & GOURMET Cape Town day tours

 

Cheese, Wine & Chocolate full day tour

Cape WinelandsEnjoy a day that celebrates the culinary delights of the Cape’s oldest wine region with a delicious, wicked mix of cheese, wine and chocolate tasting. A combination of the favourable effects of the two major ocean currents meeting off the Cape makes the climate in the area perfect for the acres of vineyards. Add to this the stunning backdrop of the mountains, the tree-lined streets and the white gabled Cape Dutch homesteads and you have a really enjoyable scenic tour.

 

We collect you from your hotel and head to the Cape Winelands region. First you will visit Fairview Estate which produces a range of cheeses from Goats milk as well as Jersey cow milk. They have scooped up numerous awards at local and international competitions.  You then move on to Tokara for some wine tasting.  Last but not least you will visit Bilton. Rare in distinction and rare in character, Bilton uses fine dark Belgian chocolates to complement and accentuate the flavour of their wines. Here the wine-maker has collaborated with a Belgian chocolatier to concoct the perfect chocolates to complement his wines. Enjoy a relaxed gourmet lunch at a top Winelands restaurant (for your own account, unless you request it to be included) as well as scenic meanders through the picturesque wine regions of the Cape.

 

As this is a private tour, you have the freedom to adapt this tour by adding optional excursions such as horse-riding or walking through the vineyards, visiting the Franschhoek Motor Museum or Spier Wine estate with its Eagle Encounters tour and arts & crafts market. Alternatively you can enjoy the Cheetah Encounters programme.  Remember that if you add too much, you may have to rush. All additional entrances or excursions are for your own account.

 

Green Winelands full day tour

Green MountainThis is a full day private winelands tour with a difference. Yes we enjoy the stunning backdrop of the mountains, the tree-lined streets and the white gabled Cape Dutch homesteads but the Green Winelands tour incorporates The Green Mountain Eco Route (GMER). The route which meanders through the beautiful Elgin Valley and Bot River region is the world’s first biodiversity wine route i.e. a wine route that is marketed on the biodiversity, wine and the eco-tourism merits of the area.

 

This tour will offer breathtaking views, majestic mountain backdrops and is full of rich culture and history. Rolling vineyards and quaint Cape Dutch homesteads await you. You will visit award winning wine estates and taste some of the best wine in the country. You can learn about the history, environment/terroir and bio-diversity as each wine estate has both a unique history and a different management approach. This is a unique opportunity to get behind the ‘brand’ of the winelands and to learn more about the intricacies of wine farming and its marketing.

 

This area is also known for its soft adventure activities. So if you like the sound of combining a tour of the wine estates with something a little more active, you can add on various optional activities such as quad biking through the vineyards, 4×4 tours, clay pigeon shooting and mountain biking. All additional entrances or excursions are for your own account.

 

 

Olive & Vine full day tour

MorgensterThis is another unusual private tour combining glorious winelands country with both wine and olive tasting. It’s a little known fact that South African olive oil has once again walked off as winner of the most prestigious olive oil awards in Italy. This tour is perfect if you have a little bit more time to get to know the more off-the-beaten-track vineyards, villages and farms of the Cape.

After you are collected from your hotel at 9am, we head for Morgenster for an olive oil, olive and wine tasting. Morgenster is rated one of the top olive oil estates in the world, and the tour is a little gem.  You then travel only a short distance to Vergelegen, one of the oldest Cape Dutch homesteads in South Africa, for a walk in their beautiful gardens, a visit to the homestead and a taste of their award winning wines. An optional extra is to pre-book for a fascinating tour of their spectacular gravity fed cellar.

 

All this is washed down with a gourmet lunch at one of the top Winelands restaurants (for your own account, unless you request it to be included). After lunch, the wine and olive-tasting is complemented by a short historical tour of Stellenbosch – the second oldest town in South Africa. It is easy to see why Simon Van Der Stel decided to build a village in such an idyllic spot.  The Cape Dutch architecture, the oak-lined streets and the many alfresco cafes give Stellenbosch a charm that will not be quickly forgotten.  You will have the opportunity to explore some of the little shops and do some shopping.

 

As this is a private tour, you have the freedom to adapt this tour by adding optional excursions such as visiting the Spier Wine estate with its Eagle Encounters tour and arts & crafts market, or Cheetah Encounters programme.  Remember that if you add too much, you may have to rush. All additional entrances or excursions are for your own account.

 

 

Private Champagne Crazy full day tour 

 

Haute Cabriere Wine EstateThis is another unusual private tour – mellow and sybaritic combining glorious scenic countryside with the champagne and characters of the Winelands.  Generally this tour is only available on Saturdays. After you are collected from your hotel at 9am, we travel to one of the original estates granted to the French Huguenots for a memorable champagne cellar tour given by the eccentric globe-trotting owner and winemaker, Achim von Arnim, if he is available, at Haute Cabriere wine estate. Achim’s passion for his region, his farm and his champagne are infectious. You’ll not escape without experiencing the whole fountain of house ‘bubblies’.

 

Every Saturday Achim calls for volunteers to assist him with sabrage when the champagne bottles are elaborately opened with a sabre! After the tour you enjoy a leisurely gourmet lunch (for your own account) at one of the spectacular award-winning winelands restaurants. After lunch, we meander to one or two other wine tastings at nearby wine estates depending on your preferences in wine.  We return to Cape Town in the late afternoon.

 

As this is a private tour, you have the freedom to adapt this tour in the afternoon by adding optional excursions such as horse-riding or cycling through the vineyards or visiting the Franschhoek Motor Museum. On the way back you can visit Spier Wine estate with its Eagle Encounters tour and arts & crafts market.  Remember that if you add too much, you may have to rush, and you will probably have to miss the second wine estate. All additional entrances or excursions are for your own account.

 

SPECIAL INTEREST Cape Town day tours

 

Sunday Gospel Half Day tour

This is an unusual religious tour which gives you the unique opportunity to attend a church service in the Townships.  After we collect you from your hotel, we head to a Church service in either Langa or Khayelitsha.  You will witness the important role these churches play in the community’s lives and hear the beautiful and moving sounds of gospel choirs.

 

If you wish you are welcome to bring any supplies that you wish to donate. Particularly appreciated are school supplies for children (stationery, pens etc) or old clothes/blankets. You can hand these over to the church that you visit who will distribute them. However please note that this is NOT expected of you and is entirely voluntary.

 

Private Surfing & Wine-tasting full day tour

 

MuizenbergSurfing and wine tasting may sound like an unusual combination but this is one of our most popular tours for the adventurous and young at heart.  After you are collected from your hotel, we head straight to Muizenberg, one of Cape Town’s many beautiful beaches.

 

Your day starts at the beach with a surfing lesson.  Your surf lesson will be conducted at a beach break that has ideal waves for beginners as well as intermediate surfers.  The experienced instructors have helped many people to find their surfing feet. After a few hours hopefully learning how to master the waves, you will have some lunch at one of the beachside deli’s (for your own account). After lunch, we will head to the beautiful Constantia Valley Wine route where you will enjoy wine tasting at the world renowned wineries such as Klein Constantia and Steenberg.

 

Table Mountain Walk – Half to Full Day

 

Platteklip GorgeWe transfer our intrepid guests to the starting point of our walk up Table Mountain.   

The Platteklip Gorge Trail is a private guided walk up Cape Town’s most famous landmark, Table Mountain.  This is a steep walk but involves no rock scrambling (You need to have a fairly good fitness level as it is a 2½ hour hike up steep paths and along uneven steps.  We ascend the mountain stopping en route to admire the view, forests, flowers, rock formations, rivers and lakes. The walk will be led by a guide who has intimate knowledge of the mountain: its paths, its famous fynbos vegetation and its fauna.At the summit, you have the option of walking on to Maclear’s Beacon, at 1 086 m, the highest point on Table Mountain.  This would take an extra 1 hour to 1½ hours in total. From there, you will retrace your footsteps to the top cable car station where you can enjoy absolutely spectacular views towards Robben Island, over Camps Bay and the beach and along the Twelve Apostles mountain range, in the direction of Hout Bay.  The trail ends by you descending by cable car (The one way cable car ticket is included) as is return transfers from your hotel.

 

Other walking trails such as Skeleton Gorge to Maclears Beacon or Constania Nek to the Upper Cable Car are also possible.

 

Private Shopping and Sightseeing Tour – Half or Full Day

 

Cape Town is a shopping Mecca with something to suit everybody’s taste and style.  Whether you want to shop for clothing, fabric, furniture, diamonds, spices, African art or crafts,Cape Town will appeal to all lovers of shopping. Our guide combines some serious shopping with some gentler sight-seeing around the city today. She’s extremely knowledgeable about where to find the most interesting African artifacts, fabrics and furnishings at good prices. She can also introduce you to some of our innovative South African fashion designers. (We have included a small amount for entrances in case you wish to take a break from shopping.) Half or Full Day Tours are possible.

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Kate Bergh is co-founder of Cedarberg African Travel, a specialist tour operator for Southern and East Africa.

She heads up the South African office, having lived in South Africa since 1993. Her home looks up to the Cedarberg Mountains, where she enjoys hiking and cycling, when she’s not out discovering new places to visit, with her three children in tow. Kate has travelled extensively throughout the region to Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique and Zimbabwe as well as most areas of South Africa. She also loves history, meeting people and a good thriller...

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