Exploring Huguenot History – Franschhoek’s Historic Spots Uncovered

To walk the streets of Franschhoek is to step into another world, one steeped in 329 years of rich Huguenot history. Between the quaint streets and ornate Cape Dutch architecture, it’s quite easy to feel as though you’ve taken a step back in time, to an age where life was peaceful, and the ultimate joys were derived from sipping the perfect wine or spending quality time with loved ones.

While many centuries have passed since the first Huguenots settled Franschhoek, the town’s old world charm and rich heritage remain very much intact, and there are plenty of intriguing artifacts dotted around the valley that beg to be explored.
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Franschhoek’s Finest Wine Estates

Franschhoek and wine have been synonymous ever since the French Huguenots settled in the valley back in 1688, bringing with them a flair for viticulture that has since seen the formation of one of the most accoladed wine growing regions in the world.

Thanks to its dry and sunny Mediterranean climate, Franschhoek’s grape growing conditions are near perfect, and the valley is home to vast swathes of vines, producing everything from Chenin Blanc to Shiraz.

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Five Secrets of Franschhoek

Franschhoek is a place well known for its culinary attractions, drawing countless visitors to its vineyards and eateries in search of epicurean nirvana. Yet despite the town’s relatively small size, there’s in fact plenty more on offer for those keen to venture off the beaten track.

Known only to locals and regular visitors, Franschhoek’s more offbeat attractions cater to art lovers, outdoor enthusiasts and even petrol heads, with a diverse range of unexpected and well guarded secrets for the intrepid traveller to explore.

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Uncovering Franschhoek’s Foodie Hotspots

Home to some of South Africa’s finest eateries, Franschhoek is widely regarded as the country’s gourmet capital, offering up a wide variety of culinary experiences unmatched elsewhere. From five-star dining to cosy coffee shops and casual bistros, there’s something to suit everyone’s tastes in this verdant valley.

But where to start? After all, unless you’ve planned a month-long stay, you’re unlikely to make it to all the town’s most talked about hotspots. Luckily, help is at hand, and we’ve handpicked some of our favourite foodie destinations to help make those all-important gastronomic decisions a little bit easier.

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Franschhoek By Bike: Three Top Trails

While the culinary attractions of Franschhoek might be what draw the crowds, there’s far more to this beautiful little town than food and wine. Surrounded by some of the most scenic landscapes this side of the equator and blessed with close to 3,000 hours of sunshine each year, Franschhoek is custom-made for the outdoor enthusiast.

Whether you’re an MTB maniac, cycling enthusiast or just an avid wanderer, there’s no better way to get acquainted with Franschhoek than on two wheels. Quiet country roads, spectacular mountain passes and panoramic vistas beckon the adventurer in you to get saddled up and start exploring.

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