Western Cape DestinationsTulbagh, Cape Winelands
Just 80 minutes’ drive north of Cape Town, at the northern edge of one of the most beautiful fertile valleys in the country, lies the historical town of Tulbagh. The village nestles in amongst the Winterhoek, Witzenberg and Obiqua Mountains, which surround it on three sides and provide one of the most beautiful settings in the Western Cape.
Proteas and herbs grow wild here and peaches, pears and 70 percent of the country’s plums are farmed in the shadow of the mountains. The valley is perhaps best known for its production of some of the country’s finest wines. Estate wines such as Twee Jonge Gezellen, Drostdyhof and Theuniskraal originate in the valley known as Het Land van Waveren where wines have been cultivated since 1906. (See Wine Routes).
Extreme day and night temperatures and the mountainous backdrop, which creates a number of different mesoclimates, together with extremely variable soils in the valley, create some notable wines. Interesting for the connoisseur is the valley’s unique ‘cold trap’ phenomenon - the horseshoe shape of the mountains creates a bowl in which cold night time air lies undisturbed forming a bubble, which is trapped under warming air during the day.
Tulbagh is perfectly placed for day trips to Cape Town, Franschhoek, Paarl, Malmesbury, Stellenbosch, Worcester and Rawsonville as well as the Cape West Coast and, if you plan your trip accordingly, offers some of the best displays of veld flowers between April and October, making local walks and hikes an utter pleasure.