Whale season is well and truly here as the gentle giants make their way along the Cape Coast. If you are heading to some of the best whale-watching spots in the country (and, dare I say, the world), you’ll want to add a few of these wine farms and estates to your itinerary. Before we dive in, why not also check out romantic getaways in KZN?
1. Whalehaven Winery
Whalehaven Winery was named after the bay that protects breeding Southern Right whales in the winter months, fitting in perfectly with the whale-watching theme. It’s Hemel-en-Aarde Valley’s third-oldest wine producer and has been in business since 1995. If you’re looking for an exceptional Cabernet Franc or Merlot, Whalehaven serves some of the best.
2. Benguela Cove
Benguela Cove is where you go if you want a slow day out, snacking on platters and small meals as you sip your wine and look out over the Lagoon Nature Reserve. The farm produces premium wine and is the largest wine producer in the Walker Bay region. The food is divine, the wine exceptional, and the view is almost the star of the show. Make sure you also check out the amazing things to do in Morocco.
3. Hermanuspietersfontein Wines
Hermanuspietersfontein Wines is often known as HPF Wines and sits within the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. It produces high-quality, terroir-driven wines with distinct and quirky names that often reference parts of the estate and local history. The tasting room shows off the picturesque views of the region and is the perfect addition to your whale-watching and wine-tasting route.
4. Southern Right
Do good and purchase a couple of wine bottles from Southern Right in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. This small winery was founded in 1994 by Anthony Hamilton Russell and specialises in Sauvignon Blanc and Pinotage. The wines have been named after the Southern Right whales, and with each bottle sold, the winery contributes towards the Southern Right whale conservation efforts.
5. Rivendell Wines
The story of Rivendell Wines began in the early 1900s with a wine farm in Styria, Austria. The vineyard owners subsequently lost their farm, but their passion for top-quality beverages was passed down to their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. In 2006, Heimo and Maria purchased an 8.5Ha estate, Rivendell, where they offer cellar door sales, wine tasting, and an outsourced restaurant. Stop over at the restaurant for something tasty to eat and wine tasting.
6. Creation Wine
For something truly special, why not visit the fourth-place winner of the World’s 50 Best Vineyard Awards 2023?
Creation Wines was founded by a Swiss winemaker and his South African wife, JC, and Carolyn Martin, in 2002. The winery is known for its decadent Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs, and World’s Best Vineyards believes that ‘the couple’s combined viticultural pedigree, combined with a thoroughly modern approach to farming, winemaking, and hospitality, has turned Creation into an unmissable destination.’
7. La Vierge Winery
La Vierge Winery’s location is the perfect stop along your whale-watching route. The B’s Stro at La Vierge, the restaurant, has the most incredible views, beaten only by the unique menu that excellently compliments their wine range. The floor-to-ceiling windows mean you can still sit inside without missing the views of the valley while you enjoy your meal and wine.
8. Newton Johnson Vineyards
Newton Johnson Vineyards is situated in the upper region of the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley and boasts unbelievable ocean and mountain vistas. Take a tour of the estate, visit the tasting room on the mountain slope, or grab a meal at their restaurant when you visit Newton Johnson Vineyards.
9. Restless River Wines
Restless River Wines is only 5 km from the South Atlantic Ocean, the perfect wine farm to visit along the whale-watching route. Their unique wine range is lighter and more elegant than others due to Walker Bay’s cool maritime climate and their rare ‘ancient, granite-based, rocky, deep clay soils.’
10. Bartho Eksteen Wines
The Walker Bay Wine Region is one of the world’s best land-based whale-watching locations, making Bartho Eksteen Wines an excellent wine farm to stop at on your whale-watching route. Stop in for a wine tasting and finish with a delicious lunch at their restaurant, Maná – Deli and Lunches. Their dishes are all homemade, using fresh ingredients from their garden or locally sourced from trusted suppliers.
ALSO SEE: 5 of the best restaurants in Hermanus
Pictures: Getaway Gallery
Feature Image: Getty Images