Perhaps the most romantic of honeymoons in the Western Cape can be had in the spectacularly beautiful Cape winelands. Here you'll find elegant Cape Dutch homes at the end of oak-lined avenues, against a backdrop of imposing mountains.
There are a number of wine routes to explore, including Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl, Worcester and Wellington. Take a slow drive along each of these, stopping off to participate in wine tastings, sampling some of the finest cuisine the country has to offer, and absorbing 300 years of wine-farming culture.
Then again, a honeymoon in nearby Cape Town has every element a romantic interlude should provide. The city’s setting at the foot of Table Mountain is dramatic. There are great beaches – trendy ones such as Clifton or Camps Bay for cultivating a tan, and beaches for warm-water swimming, like Muizenberg. And there’s culture, with a strong showing of museums, including the Iziko Museums and Robben Island, a World Heritage Site.
For nightlife there are theatres, clubs and acclaimed restaurants, and for shopping you can choose from the V&A Waterfront, and anything from large malls to flea markets. Adventure activities may see you paragliding off Lion’s Head onto the beach, or diving with sharks from the safety of a steel cage.
Locations such as the Bo-Kaap, Hout Bay, Chapman's Peak and Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, as well as coastal drives along the Atlantic seaboard or False Bay, will imprint themselves on your memory forever.
Some of the country’s most luxurious hotels are found in Cape Town, so you are spoilt for choice when it comes to accommodation.
Honeymoons on the Cape West Coast, however, are a far more solitary experience. This wild coastline is dotted with fishing villages, and as you move inland there are small towns to explore. Wine, wheat, rooibos and olives grow here, where tourist attractions include centuries-old rock art in the Cedarberg, the Langebaan Lagoon and Bird Island at Lamberts Bay.
Yet another prime honeymoon destination in the Western Cape is the Garden Route, running up the province’s eastern flank alongside the Indian Ocean from Cape Town to Knysna. Nature has performed marvels along this stretch, placing mountains, forests, beaches and bodies of inland water on the route to entrance the traveller.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
How to get here
The Western Cape can be reached by road, rail, air and sea. The luxury Blue Train, which travels between Pretoria, Johannesburg and Cape Town, would make a memorable holiday kickstart for honeymooners.
Best time to visit
Rain hits the Western Cape in the winter, so those wanting to experience the beaches would do best to holiday in the spring or summer (roughly from September to March). For honeymoons in the winelands, don’t discount the autumn though, when rusty colours add yet more colour to the scenery.
What will it cost
Honeymoons are meant to be special, so pay the extra if you can for a spoil at a luxury boutique hotel. (Note that there are often good off-season rates for the budget-conscious traveller. 'Off season' is in South African winter, from about May to September.)
Length of stay
One to two weeks in the Western Cape will give you the space and time to explore the attractions and enjoy some rest and relaxation.
Where to stay
The Western Cape has a wide range of accommodation on offer. Most high-end hotels have honeymoon suites on offer with all the little extras.
What to eat
Cape Town, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek are renowned for being home to some of the country's best restaurants. Try out Cape Malay cuisine in the Bo-Kaap and seafood along the West Coast.
When touring the Cape Winelands, stock up on South African wines that can be bought directly from the wine estates at prices below those in bottle stores. Most estates will happily arrange shipping to other cities and countries.