Nearby farms: Walker Bay Estate ,
Stanford Wine Route
The quaint village of Stanford in the Cape Overberg, two hours from Cape Town, is surrounded by ten wineries, ranging from large well-known farms to charming micro establishments. Here, you can taste the unique wines of the cool-climate terroir, sample wholesome, delectable country cuisine, relax into laidback village life and soak up the tranquil landscape, book into a wide range of accommodation from five-star to home-from-home, and make lifelong wine friends.
Stanford is located on the banks of the Klein River in the heart of the Overberg, just 16km from Hermanus and 22km from Gansbaai. While the drive out of rush-hour Cape Town is less than two hours, by the time you arrive Stanford will feel uncannily like home.
Why? A combination, perhaps, of the charming Cape Victorian and Edwardian-styled architecture, smiling faces and free-flowing conversations, and the flair of Mother Nature.
Stanford also offers cycle and hiking tours, cycle slackpacking, boat cruises and mountain biking.
Foods range from family fare, gourmet delights, country comfort cuisine and pub grub to fine dining. Under the Food Heroes Banner, restaurants source ingredients that are seasonal, local and environmentally friendly.
Delicious market goods can also be bought at the local Wednesday and Saturday morning markets, and directly from local farms.
The up-and-coming Stanford Wine Route was officially launched in October 2015, and offers a wide variety of wines, from dry rosés and MCC to full-bodied reds.
Some farms have even diversified to add crafted beers, infused gins and grappa-based liqueurs to their repertoires, and visitors would do well to add these to their tasting schedules.
Stanford offers weekend markets, picnics on various farms and arts and crafts shops in the town itself.
- Go on a cruise down the Klein River on the African Queen or the River Rat, enjoying a magnificent sunset with a glass of Stanford wine in your hand
- Pay a visit to Panthera Africa, an educational sanctuary for big cats, where you will learn about each species and its uniqueness, in addition to its heart-warming personality! Expect to observe, photograph and enjoy the majestic lions (brown and white), the cheeky leopards (spotted and black) and the powerful Bengal tigers, in addition to the striking caracals
Catch a ride through the vineyards on the Vineyard Tram and enjoy some of the most spectacular views Stanford has to offer
- Go on a tutored tasting of craft beer at one of Stanford’s numerous brewers, or grab a bottle of grappa or exotic liqueur at the Fynbos Distillery
- Sample and fill your basket with the delicious range of cheeses produced by Klein River Cheese Factory
- Join a walk through the tree-lined streets of this quaint little town to discover the magnificent historical buildings that bear testimony to significant British influence, and mark Stanford as the third-most historically important village in the Western Cape
- Find out why Stanford’s renowned ice cream parlour, Don Gelato, is something not to be missed!
From Vine to Glass: South African Wine & Traceability
In the Middle Ages wax seals were used to authenticate documents. South Africa’s own sustainability wine seal does a similar job. The seal guarantees that the information on the bottle label about the variety, vintage and origin of the wine is accurate and that the wine has been grown and made in an environmentally friendly way. To date, South Africa is the only country in the world with such an all-encompassing guarantee.
Explore the wineries of Stanford
Stanford has always been a popular break-away destination thanks to a combination of factors. It’s a mix of well-preserved historical buildings, lush gardens, muted CBD, diversity of activities on surrounding farms and distance from the city all conspire to make it so. This month we visit the relatively young Stanford Wine Route and explore what its members have to offer visitors on the look for a country retreat.