Living in Cape Town is truly a fantastic privelege. I am not sure that there are many places in the world where one can within half an hour’s drive literally be in another world.

One could be transported literally and figuratively form the hustle and bustle of the city with its incumbent sights and sounds to the serenity and natural beauty of the winelands regions of Stellenbosch, Franschoek and Paarl. As a local I am able to feel like a tourist and explore the various wine farms, do multiple wine tastings and enjoy the cuisine in really amazing surroundings without necessarily having the budget of a tourist.

Just walking around in these areas and soaking in the history which is as diverse as the influence of the Dutch as is evident in the architecture, the French with the Huguenot Monument, in the names of places and farms in Franschoek which when translated means French corner, the slaves and their influence on our language at the Taal monument in Paarl and of course the father of our nation, Nelson Mandela who was incarcerated at Victor Verster Prison in Paarl. A stop at the entrance to the prison where he took his first footsteps to freedom is a must. And most of this is free !

There is also the exciting addition of the wine tram. Imagine taking a tram journey through the vineyards, stopping off at a wine farm and sipping wine on the veranda while overlooking the vineyards…lifestyles of the rich and famous ?

Not really, just the benefit of living in or visiting Cape Town. Of course all this could be done by doing and guided winelands tour, where in a day of half a day, depending on how much time you have or your budget, you could get to experience all this. It is a great idea even for a local.