The gem of the Cape Winelands, Franschhoek offers so much for visitors to see and do. While one could easily spend the days wining and dining at some of the best restaurants and wine farms in the country, there are also some adventurous activities and historical sites to keep both mind and body stimulated!
Keep reading to discover some of the best things to do in Franschhoek today.
Best things to do in Franschhoek
- Panna Cotta and Wine Pairing
With Franschhoek one of South Africa’s best foodie destinations, there is no shortage of delicious experiences to enjoy, and with more wine farms that one can count, aficionados will be spoilt for choice. However, Rickety Bridge’s newly introduced Panna Cotta and Wine Pairing experience is certainly one of a kind. The farm’s head chef Brent Malander has expertly created a series of six utterly delicious panna cottas to pair with Rickety Bridge’s award-winning wines. The flavours of each panna cotta are designed to accentuate the tasting notes of each of the wines, bringing out flavours of blueberry, passion fruit or cinnamon. Why not give desert a miss and instead enjoy this unique pairing when you are next in the winelands?
Find out more here: https://www.ricketybridge.com/winery/tasting-tours
- Horse Riding and Wine Tasting
Pieter Hugo, an ex-Springbok endurance rider, real-life French Huguenot descendent, and passionate horse lover, offers one of the only horse-riding experiences in the valley. Staring from Pieter’s farm, at Paradise Stables, which has been in the family since the mid-19th century, Pieter’s horse trails wind through the scenic Franschhoek valley. Choose from a shorter hour meander through the forests, vineyards and hillsides near to the farm, or opt for a longer four-hour adventure, stopping along the way for wine tasting at Rickety Bridge and Mont Rochelle. Pieter has around 40 purebred Arabian Horses on his farm, with placid ponies for beginners or faster beasts for the more experienced. As a Franschhoek local since birth, Pieter also has many a story to share about the surrounding area and just the honour of spending some time with this ardent horse man is worth the experience. You’d also be hard-pressed to find a horse-riding trail at better value for money!
Discover more here: http://www.paradisestables.co.za/
- Wine Tram
No visit to Franschhoek is complete without a trip on the Wine Tram. Although currently only operating on weekends, the Franschhoek wine tram is an experience not to be missed. Pick from eight different tram lines and enjoy a hop-on-hop-off experience to a variety of different wine estates. Enjoy cellar tours, stop for lunch, taste wines, stroll around the gardens, see some art, and just enjoy a fabulous day out and about. We highly recommend including a line that includes the double-decker traditional tram option which runs from the Franschhoek Terminal, past the Franschhoek Cellars and Grande Provence to Rickety Bridge.
Discover more here: https://winetram.co.za/
- Friday Sundowner Market
If you want to know where the local’s hang out on a Friday evening, head on through to Hey Joe Brewing Company. Here you can enjoy a fun family-friendly afternoon from 4:30 to 7:30pm. Sip on wine and bubblies from a number of estates, enjoy a gin cocktail or taste one of Hey Joe’s artisan style Belgian beers. R20 gets you through the door, with great pub grub on offer and live music to keep the vibe going. Your furry friends are welcome too and there are plenty of outdoor tables and a great grassy area overlooking a small dam to kick back and relax.
Discover more here: https://www.facebook.com/heyjoebrewingco/
- Hikes and Walks
The mountains surrounding Franschhoek offer a myriad of hikes and walks for those who would like to walk off some of that food and wine! The Berg River Dam and Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve offer a variety of easy to follow trails for the more active adventurer, while many of the wine farms also offer meandering walks around their vineyards and farms for the not so energetic. Dog walkers and runners can also get their kicks on the Franschhoek parkrun, a weekly free 5km timed run which takes place at Rickety Bridge Winery. Although the official Parkrun event is not happening at the moment, the trail is still open for visitors to enjoy.
- Huguenot Museum and Monument
Sitting proud of place at the end of Franschhoek’s main road (also aptly called Huguenot road), the Huguenot memorial is an iconic symbol of the town. The monument pays homage to the Huguenot’s who first established the area while the nearby museum provides more information about these first inhabitants and what brought them to the region. Inside the museum you will also find a book with a list of all the surnames of the Huguenots – you might even find your own name there or the name of someone you know!
Discover more here: https://www.museum.co.za/
- Wine Blending
What is better than tasting wine? Why, blending your own of course! Also, at Rickety Bridge, this unique experience offers an interactive way to spend your day. First you will learn about the different types of wines, before tasting them, and discovering how to create the perfect blend. Then you will move on to trying to concoct your own variety in a glass before finally creating your very own bottle, complete with personalised label. Cork your very own creation and you are good to go, with a unique wine you won’t find elsewhere. How awesome is that?
Discover more here: https://www.ricketybridge.com/winery/tasting-tours
- Franschhoek Village Market
The Franschhoek Village Market takes place every Saturday morning in the centre of town. Set under exquisite oak trees the market is home to a variety of traders selling everything from art, to clothing, jewellery, and of course, delicious food. The market runs from 9am to 3pm and live music creates a magical atmosphere. Everyone is welcome, including the children (even the furry ones), so make a family morning out of it as you enjoy some shopping in the great outdoors.
Discover more here: https://franschhoekvillagemarket.co.za/
What is YOUR favourite thing to do in Franschhoek? Let me know in the comments below!