Vergelegen wine estate

The wines of Vergelegen have garnered accolades from far and wide. Photo courtesy slack12

Although its translated name means “situated far away”, the Vergelegen wine estate, historical homestead and grounds are only a 40-minute drive from the Cape Town city centre, near the town of Somerset West on the Helderberg Wine Route. Internationally acclaimed for its superb wines and the preservation of its beautiful homestead and grounds, Vergelegen welcomes visitors, both domestic and foreign.

This magnificent historical landmark dates back to 1685, when the Dutch East India Company instructed Governor Simon van der Stel to relocate the company’s outpost to the Hottentots Holland. Van der Stel set about his task with vigour and began his meticulous transformation of the previously uncultivated piece of land. In his wake, his son Willem built upon the foundations laid by his father, introducing cattle and sheep, and planting vines, camphor trees, oaks, fruit orchards and orange groves. Over the years a succession of owners has restored and refurbished the home and gardens.

Testament to Van der Stel’s foresight, Vergelegen’s exquisitely laid-out grounds, with their enormous oak trees and octagonal garden, continue to be admired by visitors some 300 years later. The large lawns and massive trees provide a perfect setting for the stately homestead. In the valley, lines of grape vines produce wines of exceptional quality.

The wines of Vergelegen are legendary and have garnered accolades from far and wide. One of these noteworthy achievements includes being voted Best South African Winery from 2004 to 2008 by Wine Magazine SA.

Entrance to Vergelegen costs R10 for adults and R5 for scholars and pensioners. Entrance for pensioners is free on Mondays. Vergelegen is open daily from 09h30 to 16h00, except for Christmas Day, Good Friday and Workers’ Day. The Wine Tasting Centre is open from 09h30 to 16h00. Book for larger groups. The price per glass of wine is R30 (for any of the six wines available, excluding Vergelegen red and white, which cost R10 each). Cellar tours are conducted from November to April at 10h30, 11h30 and 15h00 daily, at a cost of R20 per person. They include tastings of four premium-range wines. Bookings are essential. During winter (May to October) there are two tours daily, at 11h30 and 15h00.

The Vergelegen Restaurant serves tea from 10h00 and 14h30, lunch from 12h00 to 14h30, and legendary seasonal picnics on request. Booking is essential. The Rose Terrace is open from November to April from 10h00 to 16h00 daily. No bookings are required.

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