Pniel, Cape Winelands
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If you have ever driven the R310 from Stellenbosch along Helshoogte, a lovely alternative route through to Franschhoek, then you've passed through the little village of Pniel. Linking the two major wine towns in this way makes for a more than pleasant weekend filled with good food, gorgeous views, and wine enough to fill the boot of your car.
The town of Pniel, nestled at the foot of Simonsberg, lies just outside Stellenbosch. Not only does the little village lie surrounded by vineyards and mountains in one of the most wonderful spots in the Western Cape, but its history is very interesting. Pniel started out as 19 hectares of land donated from the farm De Goede Hoop established as a mission settlement for the landless and homeless slaves of 1842 (the British Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 abolished slavery throughout most of the British Empire, including 40 000 slaves in SA).
Today its oak-lined main road is filled with quaint houses, some of the them built for the freed slaves by Sir Herbert Baker (hence the humps in the road, to make sure you take the time to look around you!), whilst its name, which means 'face of God', is taken from Genesis 34 verse 30. In 1843 a further 43 hectares were added to Pniel from the neighbouring farm, Papier Moulen, and the whole area was subdivided into plots and granted to emancipated slave settlers on a permanent tenure basis, to be inherited by their children.
One can organise tours by local residents that include the history and the significance of the 160 year old church.
Get the Scoop
"As you drive through this little town you get a feeling to just no more and more about this place and it is really located in the most beautiful spot in Cape ..." - Bernadette, cape Town
Featured Attractions in (or near) Pniel
Just outside Stellenbosch, lying in the beautiful Jonkershoek Valley, is Assegaaibosch Nature Reserve. It is a particularly scenic nature reserve set on the Eerste River with the Stellenbosch Mountain in the background and SAFCOL plantations and vineyards the immediate neighbours to the reserve ... more information
Lying within the Western Cape's Cape Floral Kingdom, the 322 030 hectare Cape Winelands Biosphere Reserve (CWBR) lies roughly 40 km east of Cape Town. It was officially registered by UNESCO in September 2007. The Cape Winelands Biosphere Reserve is bordered in the south by ... more information
Greater Simonsberg is a wine region within Stellenbosch, which remains one of the world’s top wine producing destinations. Being situated within the idyllic beauty of the Western Cape and its Winelands, Greater Simonsberg is ultimately beautiful, and the views never fail to impress... more information
Helshoogte Pass, one of the most loved and travelled roads in the Western Cape, links Stellenbosch with the Drakenstein Valley, a scenic pass that transports one over the saddle that separates Simonsberg from the Jonkershoekberge and wends its way past fruit farms and vineyards en route. The ... more information
Stellenbosch is an integral part of the Cape Winelands, being the home of a vast array of the wines that have earned this region such acclaim amongst wine connoisseurs. It has a mountainous topography, with a number of the exquisite wine farms situated both in the valley and in the ... more information
A championship course in a parkland setting surrounded by mountains and vineyards. Scenic and in excellent condition, Stellenbosch presents a fair challenge with some memorable holes. The stroke index 1 hole does not give up par easily. To reach this par four in two you need a long drive followed by an ... more information
Well-known wine labels along the Stellenbosch Valley Wine Route include Zevenwacht, JC Le Roux, Amani, Bottelary Hills, Meerlust, Bergkelder, Oude Libertas, Spier, Neethlingshof, and Welmoed. However, there are many more estates, each offering something ... more information
Just 45 minutes from Cape Town, the Stellenbosch wine route is the oldest in the country and represents over 300 wineries. Because of this it is divided into a number of sub-routes to make it easier to travel: Bottelary Hills, Devon Valley, Helderberg and Simonsberg ... more information
Things To Do in Pniel