About the Tour
A wine-lovers tour of South Africa at a perfect time of year. Late summer temperatures and sunny skies in Cape Town are a perfect tonic after a long winter. For some of us, April usually means more snow, more cold, more ennui. What better time to fly across the oceans to South Africa's Cape Winelands? We’ll visit some of the country’s best wine producers, hang out with the winemakers, taste new wines in the cellar, eat at some exceptional places, and experience nature up close on an all-inclusive safari at game and nature reserve.
This tour is hosted by Tania Van Pelt, owner of Hi-Lo Beverage in Denver, CO.
You will visit wine regions on the Western Cape of South Africa that aren't usually featured on a typical tour of South Africa. We'll go to some of the more interesting and stunning areas of the Winelands. This tour includes 10 nights of luxury accommodations, a safari, most meals, wine of course, and all transportation.
March 31-April 11, 2024
April 14-25, 2024
1 night at Kalk Bay
2 nights Hermanus
2 nights in Franschhoek
2 nights in Cape Town
1 night Breede River Valley
2 nights all-inclusive on Safari at Nature Reserve
Air-conditioned motor coach transportation
Meals on tour, including:
Breakfast each morning
7 dinners, 8 lunches, all tastings, and sundowners/drinks out
All transport except in Cape Town and within the towns of Hermanus and Franschhoek
Your safari stay includes your meals and two safari excursions per day. Alcohol is not included but is available for purchase.
This tour is limited to 10 participants.
We have chosen these dates at the end of March through April because they allow direct flights from Newark, NJ to Cape Town, significantly reducing travel time. We strongly recommend booking this direct flight to Cape Town out of Newark, NJ March 31-April 11; or April 14-25, 2024. The tour begins the evening of your arrival. We have also focused on April as the month to visit these wine farms and their winemakers because harvest will have just ended and we'll have their time and attention. Not to mention cellar tours with that year's vintage in tanks and barrels!
For the free evenings or days in Cape Town and Franschhoek, we will follow up with a list of favorite spots to eat, shop, explore, and visit.
You'll land at Cape Town Airport in the late afternoon, after clearing customs and grabbing your bags we go to the charming seaside fishing village of Kalk Bay, close to Cape Town and the airport. We will pick you up at the airport & shuttle you to the coast. We will stay in town at a lovely guesthouse and walk to dinner at a local seafood restaurant that happens to be one of the best seafood restaurants in the Western Cape. Overnight in Kalk Bay
Breakfast in Kalk Bay overlooking the sea. Leisurely morning in Kalk Bay followed by a scenic drive to Hemel-en-Aarde (Heaven on Earth) to Creation Wines for a 5-star lunch and tasting. We end the day in Hermanus, home of the Southern Right whales. Dinner at Perlemoen in the old harbor.
Morning in Hermanus, breakfast, and then free time for a beach walk at Grotto Beach, a walk along the cliffs, or a hike along the Fernkloof Nature Reserve. Drive to Elgin for a tasting at Iona, and lunch at a farm stall nearby. Return to the beautiful Hemel-en-Aarde for a bubbly tasting at Domaine des Deux. Sabrage for those who wish! We end the day next door, back at Creation for a special Harvest dinner with the winemakers & harvest crew.
Breakfast in Hermanus. Drive to Franschhoek, lunch at Le Lude, a free evening to explore Franschhoek.
Breakfast in Franschhoek, lunch at La Cotte, followed by mid-afternoon tasting with Clayton of Moreson Wines & LOKAIA & Craig of Stony Brook & LOKAIA at Stony Brook. For those who wish we can arrange an afternoon hike along the mountains surrounding Franschhoek. Your evening is free to explore the town and book a dinner at one of the critically acclaimed restaurants.
We depart Franschhoek shortly after breakfast for a drive to Stellenbosch and a visit to Villiera with a tasting and cellar tour. Lunch at a wine farm near Villiera. Next, we go to Cape Town, the Mother City. Check-in at the guesthouse followed by sundowners (evening drinks) on Bree Street at Culture Club Wine and dinner nearby.
Breakfast in Cape Town, a free day to explore, for those who wish we can hike the Pipe Track on Table Mountain. Free day & evening to explore this wonderful city.
Breakfast in Cape Town, leave the city by 10 am for the Breede River Valley. *Lunch and tasting with winemaker Alvi and his wife, master-of-wine, Junel of Alvi’s Drift at their 70,000-plus hectare farm which stretches from the Breede River to the mountains, vineyard tour with Junel. Drive to Robertson, tastings at Bon Courage. Stay overnight in Robertson. Group dinner.
*This will change depending on what Alvi & Junel have planned. We may have access to a special Braai event.
*Safari Time! Breakfast in Robertson, leave by mid-morning for the game and nature reserve. The is all-inclusive, which means that your welcome cocktail in the main lodge is just waiting for you.
12:30 pm: Arrival and welcome drinks
2 pm: Check in to accommodation
4:30 pm – 2-3hr Game Drive
7 pm – Buffet Dinner followed by Stargazing Safari
You may substitute one game drive with a complimentary horseback safari.
All guests enjoy free spa access to make use of the communal services and facilities - treatments are optional at an additional cost.
*Nature Reserves on the Western Cape are malaria-free. This safari camp offers deluxe accommodations, great food, knowledgeable guides, and excellent service.
Your first safari day begins with an early morning wake-up call for the morning game drive. We return to the lodge in the late morning for a big breakfast, followed by free time. Lunch is served shortly after noon. Your afternoon game time takes place just before dinner. Most of the action in the preserve takes place in the morning or late afternoon/early evening.
We’ll depart the lodge shortly after breakfast and have a final game drive if there’s interest before we head to Cape Town airport. You’ll have adequate time after check-in to stop for a bite in the terminal before boarding.
HOTELS ON OUR ITINERARY
Kalk Bay: Sonnekus
Hermanus: Whale Coast Inn
Franschhoek: Maison d’Ail
Cape Town: Rosedene
Robertson: Mo & Rose
Getting There: Flights to Cape Town
We recommend booking a flight from wherever you are on the same day as the direct flight from Newark to Cape Town (CPT). You will have plenty of time as these are always evening flights. If you are originating from another city, I can arrange flights that coincide with these flights. I can also arrange all your flights for you if you wish.
United offers the best schedule and fare with direct flights to Cape Town from EWR & IAD. Delta offers direct flights from ATL to Cape Town. I strongly urge everyone to book direct flights from the east coast to Cape Town for ease and efficiency.
Weather in Cape Town March & April
Expect ideal conditions with highs in the 80s, and lows in the mid-60s. It’s hard to imagine a better time to visit. As it gets into April we move into late summer, early autumn. Harvest will have just finished. April is my favorite time in South Africa.
You’ll need a passport with at least 30 days validity from your departure from the country. No visa is required at this time. No vaccines are required.
This tour is based on a maximum of 10 participants. Share cost, based on double occupancy, is $5,930 per person. The single-room supplement is $900. The price does not include flights from the USA, but assistance in booking is available for anyone needing it.
Complete the online registration. Once that is done, a non-refundable deposit of $2000 is due within seven days of confirmation. The balance of the tour payment is due November 15, 2023.
What if I need to cancel my flight or tour?
Because payments are non-refundable, it’s strongly suggested that you consider travel insurance for this investment. The exception to this is if a replacement is found to take the place of a canceling party.
Both of the companies listed below have a policy rate calculator online. Enter the cost of your tour and personal data to receive a no-obligation cost estimate.
Two recommended companies are:
Cancellation insurance will range in price based on the cost of your travel and the age of the applicant. Get a quote at the websites above before making a purchase. If you have a pre-existing condition to cover, you usually must purchase your policy within 2 weeks of the initial deposit.
MAKE YOUR RESERVATION
If you have any questions about this tour, please contact Tania at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 970.274.4523.