Somerset West is a small town situated just outside of Cape Town. This town welcomes visitors as they come over Sir Lowry’s Pass and begin a steep descent towards the Mother City, first passing Somerset West on the left. But, this town is more than just a precursor to the main attraction. Rather, it has its own beauty, fun and heritage to share with those that visit it. Being in the heart of the Cape Winelands, many of the local attractions include wine farms.
The exquisite Vergelegen Estate dates back to the 18th century. Today, it is the proud host to many celebrities and heads of state, including former South African president, Nelson Mandela. Vergelegen is set apart as a superior facility by its stunning gardens, historical homestead and excellent cuisine.
Of course, Vergelegen is best renowned for its variety of wines, which range from easy drinking table wines to premium vintages. Wine tastings are conducted every day from 09h30 to 16h30, while cellar tours vary according to the season (see the website for details). Tastings are affordable, and are an excellent way for couples, families or even corporate groups to spend the day.
The Magical Camphor Forest Picnic is, indeed, a magical experience. Other dining experiences at Vergelegen include the Stables Bistro or the esteemed Vergelegen Restaurant.
This estate is secluded in the lush greenery of the Helderberg Mountains and was founded more than 300 years ago, in 1700. Initially, this was part of the Vergelegen Estate established by Dutch settlers. Today, the wines that come from the Lourensford Estate are achieving international acclaim.
The beauty of the estate is largely based on its natural surrounds, but the historical features come a close second. However, in the midst of this old-world charm is state-of-the-art technology, not available anywhere else in the Southern Hemisphere.
In the foothills of the sandstone and granite Helderberg Mountains lies this reserve, which is abundant in gorgeous South African fauna and flora. The main aim of the Helderberg Nature Reserve is to immerse its visitors in the natural splendour of his country. Therefore, boardwalks and wooden walkways have been constructed to make walking through the reserve easier and safer, as well as to accommodate wheelchairs and prams.
The local vegetation includes Proteas, Ericas and other fynbos, found naturally only in South Africa. Disa Gorge is characterised by emerald-coloured forests and turquoise waterfalls, creating a true paradise on the outskirts of Somerset West.
The dam attracts a host of bird species and is situated alongside the restaurant (The Duck Inn), making for unbeatable views while enjoying delicious meals.
The Western Cape is a place of undeniable beauty, and the coastal town of Somerset West is no exception. Enrich your Cape Town experience by including it on your tour itinerary.
Somerset West Links
- Somerset West Attractions
- Things to Do in Somerset West
- Somerset West Hotels
- Cape Town & Western Cape Hotels