Franschhoek, also known as the "French Corner," is a charming little town nestled in the Cape Winelands of South Africa. With its picturesque landscapes, delightful cuisine, and rich cultural heritage, Franschhoek is a must-visit destination for any traveler looking for a memorable experience. In this blog post, we'll explore what to do, where to stay and which restaurants to go to in Franschhoek.
What to do:
- Go on the Wine Tram: One of the best ways to explore Franschhoek's vineyards is by hopping on the Wine Tram. The tram offers a few routes that allow you to taste different wines and enjoy the stunning wine farms.
- Scenic Drive up the Franschhoek Pass: Take a scenic drive up the Franschhoek Pass and be prepared to be blown away by the breathtaking views of the valley.
- Guided E-bike Tour: Explore Franschhoek's vineyards on an E-bike tour that takes you through the wine farms and stunning scenery.
- Hike Mont Rochelle: If you're up for some adventure, take a hike up Mont Rochelle, just remember to stay hydrated!
- Visit the Hugenout Monument: Learn about the history of Franschhoek and the Huguenot settlers by visiting the Huguenot Monument, which is a tribute to the town's French heritage.
- Stroll Through the Main Street: Take a leisurely stroll through the Main Street and browse the charming boutiques and art galleries.
- Visit the Perfume Museum: The Franschhoek Perfume Museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in the history of perfume making.
- Go on a Garden Tour at Babylonstoren: Explore the beautiful gardens at Babylonstoren and learn about the different plants and herbs that are grown on the farm.
- Visit the Motor Museum: Car enthusiasts will love the Franschhoek Motor Museum, which is home to a collection of vintage cars and motorcycles.
- Go to a Wine Blending Workshop: Learn about the art of wine blending and create your own blend at one of the many wine blending workshops in Franschhoek.
Where to stay:
La Residence: Situated on a private 30-acre estate, La Residence is a luxurious and opulent hotel that boasts spectacular views of the surrounding vineyards and mountains. Each of the 11 individually designed suites features plush furnishings, beautiful artwork and lavish bathrooms.
The Lab Franschhoek: A boutique hotel that combines sleek, contemporary design with warm hospitality, The Lab Franschhoek offers six stylish suites that are perfect for a romantic escape. The hotel is located just a short walk from the towns top restaurants and shops.
Leeu Estate: A five-star property set on a 68-hectare wine farm, Leeu Estate features a collection of spacious and beautifully appointed rooms, suites and villas. The hotel also has a world-class spa, a heated outdoor pool and a fine dining restaurant.
Akademie Street Boutique Hotel: A chic and sophisticated hotel set in a restored Victorian house, Akademie Street Boutique Hotel offers four luxurious suites and two cottages, each beautifully decorated and with their own private outdoor spaces.
Camp Canoe: If you're looking for a more adventurous stay, Camp Canoe is the perfect choice. Situated just outside town on the Boschendal estate, the eco-friendly camp offers a range of tented accommodation options.
Chapter House Boutique Hotel: A boutique hotel located in a historic building in the heart of Franschhoek, Chapter House offers five elegantly furnished rooms that blend traditional Cape Dutch style with contemporary design. The hotel also has a charming courtyard and a swimming pool.
Lavender Farm Guest House: A charming guest house set on a working lavender farm, Lavender Farm Guest House offers six cozy and comfortable rooms, each with its own private entrance and patio. The guest house also has a beautiful garden and swimming pool.
Protea Hotel by Marriott: Located just a short walk from the village center, Protea Hotel by Marriott is a comfortable and convenient option for travelers. The hotel features spacious and well-appointed rooms, a restaurant and bar, and a swimming pool.
Franschhoek Boutique Hotel: A stylish and elegant hotel situated in the heart of the village, Franschhoek Boutique Hotel offers nine luxurious and individually designed rooms, a beautiful garden, and a swimming pool.
Babylonstoren: A historic farm dating back to 1692, Babylonstoren is a unique and unforgettable place to stay. The farm offers a range of accommodation options, including beautifully restored cottages and suites, each with its own outdoor space. Guests can also enjoy the farm's renowned gardens, farm-to-table restaurant, and winery.
Where to eat:
- Tuk Tuk Microbrewery: A popular microbrewery in the heart of Franschhoek, Tuk Tuk offers an impressive selection of craft beers and delicious bar snacks. This brewery is the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the ambiance of the town.
- Babel: Situated at the famous Babylonstoren farm, Babel is renowned for its fresh and locally sourced ingredients that create exceptional farm-to-table cuisine. With a chic ambiance, a colorful garden, and a relaxed atmosphere, Babel is a popular dining destination.
- Lust Bistro and Bakery: A trendy eatery that serves delectable baked goods and scrumptious brunch dishes. Lust Bistro is a great spot for a quick bite or a leisurely lunch.
- La Petite Colombe: One of the top fine-dining restaurants in Franschhoek, La Petite Colombe is an absolute must-visit for food enthusiasts. The restaurant serves exquisite French-inspired cuisine that is a feast for the senses.
- Orangerie at La Lude: The Orangerie at La Lude is a hidden gem that serves classic French cuisine with a South African twist. The restaurant is set in a beautiful garden, and the dishes are as colorful as the surrounding blooms.
- Le Coin Francais: A restaurant that fuses French and South African flavors to create a unique culinary experience. Le Coin Francais is a fantastic choice for anyone who wants to try something different.
- The Werf: Located at the iconic Boschendal estate, The Werf offers a farm-to-table experience that showcases the best of the region's ingredients. The restaurant's cozy ambiance and scenic views make it a popular destination for couples.
- Chefs Warehouse at Maison: An exciting tapas-style restaurant with an extensive wine list, Chefs Warehouse at Maison is the perfect spot for an intimate dinner or a casual catch-up with friends.
- Protégé Franschhoek: This contemporary restaurant serves modern cuisine that is simple yet exquisite. The dishes are beautifully presented and showcase the best of the region's ingredients.
- French Connection Bistro: If you're looking for a taste of authentic French cuisine, the French Connection Bistro is the perfect choice. The bistro offers classic dishes like escargots, bouillabaisse, and coq au vin, in a cozy and inviting atmosphere.