Did you know?
Evidence of early Stone Age life has been found at Boschendal Wine Farm.
Boschendal wine farm is renowned for its award-winning noble red varietals. The modern winery incorporates the original cellar for Le Rhone Manor House built in 1795. Here the past blends with the future as winemakers use cutting-edge technology to create their wines.
Jean le Long, a Huguenot refugee, planted the majestic Boschendal wine farm, in Franschhoek's Drakenstein valley, with vines in the late 1680s. But the farm was occupied long before as attested by artefacts found on the mountain slopes dating back to the early, middle and late Stone Ages.
The Huguenot Abraham de Villiers bought this Franschhoek wine farm in 1715. It would remain in his family until 1879, and soon thereafter was purchased by Cecil John Rhodes. It changed hands a number of times after that before being acquired by Anglo American Farms in 1969.
In 1746 Jean de Villiers built a house on the Franschhoek wine estate that over the centuries developed into a typically magnificent H-frame Cape Dutch mansion with external wooden shutters. Soon after acquiring it, Anglo American restored the house and replanted the vineyards.
With baroque and neo-classical touches, it is furnished in the early Cape tradition, making it one of the few authentic historical buildings open to the public in the region. Of particular interest are the old-fashioned rose garden and the friezes exposed during the refurbishment.
The Boschendal Restaurant has for many years been a feature on the culinary map of the Western Cape. If you prefer lighter fare there is Le Café or a French-style picnic beneath the pines (Le Pique Nique). And before you leave, pop into the Waenhuiswinkel gift shop for a memento from this special place.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Boschendal Wine Estate
To book at restaurant or for a picnic
Tel: +27 (0) 21 870 4272/3/4/5
To book wine-tasting
Tel: +27 (0) 21 870 4210/11
How to get here
Boschendal wine farm is easily accessible by road, on the R310 from Stellenbosch. The area is well sign-boarded and there are maps readily available.
Best time to visit
All-year although it's prettiest in autumn and spring.
Around the area
You are in the heart of the winelands so don't make this your only stop.
Length of stay
Give yourself at least half a day for Boschendal. If you wish to visit other Franschhoek wine farms then set aside a full day or more.
What to pack
Comfortable clothes and walking shoes. In summer it is very hot so dress accordingly. Winters can be cold and wet, so warm clothes and an umbrella or raincoat are essential.
Where to stay
Franschhoek and neighbouring Stellenbosch have numerous establishments catering for all budgets.
What to eat
The Boschendal Restaurant offers a legendary Cape cuisine buffet while the more laidback Le Cafe offers light meals, refreshments and picnic baskets. Franschhoek itself is known as the culinary capital of South Africa so you will not starve.
Wine and mementos from the Waenhuiswinkel gift shop on the farm.