Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

Winona Griggs


Top 10 things to experience in Bot River

In the past, even before wine, wheat, lavender, and sheep farmers settled in the region now known as Bot River, the Khoisan people roamed these lands with their livestock, reveling in the bountiful grasslands along the river. The Khoisan produced butter, or “botter” in Afrikaans, which the early settlers traded, eventually giving the area its name – Bot River.

Today, while you can still find fresh farm butter here, Bot River offers an array of other experiences. Instead of just passing through on your next trip to Hermanus, I urge you to explore this vibrant farming community. Let me share with you ten exciting things you can do during your visit.

1. Indulge in a delightful meal or host your dream wedding at Gabrielskloof Wine Estate

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

When I first laid eyes on this beautiful land in 2001, it was like a dream come true. Avontuur farm was everything I had imagined and more. I knew right then and there that this was the place where I wanted to build my legacy.

But a name change was in order. The original owner, Gabriel Le Roux, had made his mark on this land, so I decided to pay homage to him by renaming the farm Gabrielskloof. It felt like the right thing to do.

With a sense of purpose and excitement, I rolled up my sleeves and got to work. Planting my first vines in 2002 was a momentous occasion. It marked the beginning of a new chapter, one filled with passion, dedication, and the promise of crafting exceptional wines.

Fast forward to today, and Gabrielskloof Wine Estate is a thriving winery, thanks to the expertise and artistry of our award-winning winemaker, Kobie Viljoen. Together, we have created a range of blended wines that embody the essence of tradition and craftsmanship.

Our winemaking process is steeped in tradition, with each step carefully executed to ensure the highest quality. From the careful selection of grapes to the meticulous blending of flavors, we pour our heart and soul into every bottle of wine we produce.

At Gabrielskloof, we believe that wine is more than just a drink. It is an expression of the land, the people, and the stories that have shaped us. Our wines are a testament to our dedication to this craft and the love we have for what we do.

So whether you’re a wine lover or just curious to try something new, I invite you to experience the magic of Gabrielskloof Wine Estate. Your taste buds will thank you.

When it comes to delicious food and stunning views, Gabrielskloof Wine Estate has it all. They pride themselves on sourcing their ingredients locally, ensuring that every bite is fresh and full of flavor. Start your day off right with their mouthwatering breakfast options, like the heavenly French toast with bacon, banana, and syrup. Not only will your taste buds thank you, but you’ll also get to enjoy a beautiful view while enjoying your meal.

If you’re in the mood for lunch, Gabrielskloof Wine Estate has you covered there too. Their menu features a variety of options, from platters to burgers to wraps. No matter what you’re craving, you’re sure to find something delicious to satisfy your hunger.

But it’s not just the food that makes Gabrielskloof Wine Estate special. They also have a deli that offers a wide range of farm produce. From olive oil to cheese to lavender soap, you’ll find all sorts of goodies to take home with you.

Looking for a venue for your wedding? Gabrielskloof Wine Estate has got you covered there too. They have their own chapel, making it the perfect place to say “I do.” Whether you’re looking for a small, intimate ceremony or a grand celebration, Gabrielskloof Wine Estate can accommodate your needs.

2. Taste wines from the region’s oldest wine cellar at Beaumont Wines

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

Welcome to Beaumont Wines, located on the historic Compagnes Drift Farm. This beautiful estate, once an outpost for the Dutch East India Company in the 18th century, is now a family-run winery that holds on to traditional values.

When you visit Beaumont Wines, you’ll step back in time as you explore our vineyards and cellars. The vines were planted many years ago, and in the 1970s, we carefully restored the cellar, preserving its antique machinery. Today, we continue to honor this heritage as we craft our range of exceptional artisanal wines.

When you visit Beaumont Wines, you’ll get to experience their warm and welcoming atmosphere firsthand. They are open from Monday to Friday, between 09h30 and 16h30, and on Saturdays from 10h00 to 15h00. The whole family, including their friendly dogs, will be there to greet you with enthusiasm. While you’re in the tasting room, keep an eye out for a special framed certificate from the Decanter World Wine Awards. It’s been proudly scribbled on by their daughter, a clear indication that the entire family is involved in the winemaking process at Beaumont Wines. Not only do they create exceptional wines, but they also produce jams, preserves, and stone ground flour from their historic watermill. You can even purchase these delicious treats alongside their wonderful wines in the tasting room.

I’m pretty excited to tell you about this amazing place called The Barrel Cellar. This place has been around since the early 1900s and has recently been fixed up and made super fabulous. It’s the perfect spot to have a fancy lunch or dinner party for a special event. And that’s not all! You can also have your wedding on this farm, have a picnic by the dam or under the big gum trees. And guess what? They even have places for you to stay overnight. How awesome is that?!

3. Let’s check out the super cool watermill at Beaumont Wines

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

Hey there! Let me tell you about the incredible watermill at Beaumont Wines. It’s been around for over 200 years and thanks to the hard work of Andy Selfe, it’s been restored to its former glory after 80 years of being out of order. Now, we’re able to produce a limited amount of stone ground flour right here on the farm. You can even buy it in our tasting room if you’re interested!

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But that’s not all. The watermill has been transformed into a living museum that you have to see for yourself. It’s a unique and captivating experience. And guess what? It’s one of the top five reasons why people love the Green Mountain Eco Route.

Now, imagine hosting a party or having a picnic at this incredible spot. It would be a one-of-a-kind experience, right? Well, you can make it happen! You can even have a romantic dinner for two inside the mill house itself, surrounded by ancient machinery and the aroma of freshly ground flour. It’s truly magical.

If you’re looking to make some unforgettable memories with your friends, why not gather them up and spend a night or two at the mill house? It can accommodate up to six people, and on top of that, you’ll receive a complimentary bottle of Beaumont wine. Sounds amazing, doesn’t it?

4. Join me for a delightful tea session with Elrieda Pillman at Goedvertrouw Wine Estate.

Picture this: as you step into the serene beauty of Goedvertrouw Wine Estate, you’re greeted by the warm smile of Elrieda Pillman. Her expertise in tea brewing is legendary, and she’s ready to share her secrets with you. We’ll indulge in a delightful tea session, where I’ll guide you through the intricacies of the process, and we’ll savor the rich flavors together.

Forget the hustle and bustle of our busy lives for a while as we embark on this unique experience. Elrieda’s passion for teas is contagious. She’ll take you on a journey, introducing you to the finest teas sourced from around the world. From the delicate aroma of white tea to the robust flavors of black tea, each sip will transport you to far-off lands.

As we sit down at the charming tea garden, Elrieda will teach us about the art of proper brewing. With her guidance, you’ll learn the ideal water temperature for various types of tea, helping you achieve the perfect cup every time. We’ll explore the different tea-making techniques, whether it’s steeping, boiling, or using infusers, allowing you to find your favorite method.

But our tea session isn’t just about sipping on delicious brews. Elrieda will regale us with captivating tales of the history and culture behind each tea. Expect to be immersed in stories of ancient traditions, mystic rituals, and the impact tea has had on various civilizations throughout the ages. By the end of our time together, you’ll be a true tea connoisseur.

So, what are you waiting for? Come and join me for an enchanting afternoon at Goedvertrouw Wine Estate, where fond memories and fragrant teas await. Reserve your spot now, and let’s embark on a tea adventure that will elevate your appreciation for this remarkable beverage. I guarantee that after this experience, your love for tea will reach new heights.

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

When you visit the Van der Stel Pass, you’ll come across a charming cottage that dates back to 1820. It’s one of the oldest houses in the area and is easily recognizable with its lovely thatched roof. But what truly catches your eye is the stunning rose garden surrounding the cottage.

Don’t make the mistake of driving past without stopping. Trust me, you’ll regret it! Take the time to pause and enjoy a cup of tea and some delicious homemade treats at this historic place. The owner, Elrieda Pillman, will warmly welcome you and make your visit even more delightful.

When I first arrived at this place, I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was a huge pile of fresh vegetables right by the kitchen door, and I later found out that most of them came from the farm. As soon as I stepped inside, the whole place smelled incredible, thanks to Elrieda’s amazing baking skills. She still uses her AGA stove for baking, and let me tell you, the smell of bread filled the air and instantly made my mouth water.

This is the kind of place where you can just sit down with a nice cup of tea and have a chat. We all know that a good cup of tea has the power to soothe any troubles, and boy, did I need that on a chilly day like this. As I sipped my tea, I was served with some delicious home-made scones, fresh bread, and butter and jam from the farm. It was the perfect combination of flavors.

If you’re lucky enough to visit on a sunny day, you can enjoy your tea on the stoep. From there, you’ll have an amazing view of the roses, a duck pond, and some adorable grazing livestock. It’s a truly idyllic setting that will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a fairy tale.

Did you know that everything on this farm is done by hand? That’s right, from churning butter to raising piglets and lambs to bottling the wine, it’s all done the old-fashioned way. There are four different types of wine crafted at Goedvertrouw Wine Estate, and one of them is a special blend called Pardoemps, made from Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Pinotage grapes.

But here’s something really interesting – the wine cellar still has bullet holes in it from World War II! Can you imagine the stories those walls could tell?

Let me tell you about Elrieda, an absolutely fascinating and hard-working woman I had the pleasure of meeting in Bot River. She’s a true inspiration! When you visit her, you’ll be greeted with such warmth and hospitality. If you’re lucky, she might even cook you a delicious breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Just make sure to give her a call ahead of time and make arrangements. It’s important to note that this isn’t a sit-down restaurant, so don’t expect a fancy 3-course meal without prior communication.

Once you step foot in Elrieda’s homely little spot, you won’t want to leave. It’s such a cozy and inviting place. If you really want to make the most of your time there, I highly recommend booking a night or two in one of the three en-suite bedrooms. Trust me, it’s totally worth it.

And here’s something that truly amazed me about Elrieda – she might just go and milk the cows first thing in the morning to make sure you have fresh milk for your coffee and homemade rusks. How incredible is that? It’s these little touches that make her place so special.

If you’re interested in visiting Elrieda, you can reach her at 028-284-9769 or email her at [email protected]

5. Sleep in a log cabin at KolKol Mountain Lodge

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

Imagine being surrounded by breathtaking mountains, blooming fynbos, and vibrant flowers. That’s the setting you’ll find at KolKol Mountain Lodge on the Van der Stel Pass. Whether you’re seeking a romantic escape or a weekend getaway with loved ones, these Canadian-style log cabins are an idyllic retreat.

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What sets these cabins apart are their unique plunge pools, heated by a cozy wood-fired stove. Picture yourself taking a dip in warm waters, enveloped by nature’s beauty. And if you’re looking to stay warm indoors, you’ll find inviting fireplaces that will keep you cozy throughout your stay.

When it comes to entertainment, these cabins have you covered. Soak up the sun on your own private deck while enjoying a delicious braai. Inside, you’ll find games to keep the whole family entertained, as well as CD players for some uplifting tunes. And of course, the cabins are fully equipped with all the crockery and utensils you could possibly need.

For those seeking a touch of luxury, some cabins even feature an enchanting outdoor shower. Picture the thrill of showering under the open sky, surrounded by nature’s symphony, truly an experience like no other.

As for provisions, rest assured that you’ll have everything you need. Tea, coffee, milk, rusks, and butter are all provided, ensuring your mornings start off on the right foot. Depending on the cabin you choose, you might even find free range eggs or fresh farm herbs, adding that extra touch of flavor to your stay.

So why wait? Book your stay at KolKol Mountain Lodge and immerse yourself in the serenity of nature while enjoying the comforts of modern living. It’s the perfect combination for an unforgettable retreat.

When you visit Bot River, don’t forget to bring your hiking shoes and a picnic basket, because you’re in for a day of adventure in the mountains. And if you’re up for a swim, the dam is the perfect spot to take a refreshing dip. If you’re feeling more adventurous, hop on a bike and cycle down the Van der Stel Pass to Goedvertrouw Wine Farm for a lovely cup of tea, or make a stop at the Bot River Hotel for a well-deserved beer.

But that’s not all – nature lovers will be delighted to know that Bot River is home to a wide variety of bird species. If you’re an avid birdwatcher, be sure to bring along your binoculars for some up-close sightings.

6. Explore Bot River on horseback with Klein Paradys Equestrian Centre

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

I may not be the most experienced horse-rider (anything faster than a trot makes me a little nervous), but my friends were excited to hop onto their horses for a ride through the valley. When we got to Klein Paradys Equestrian Centre, their trusty steeds were already saddled up and waiting patiently. They took a few laps around the training ring to get comfortable with their horses and adjust their stirrups. Once they were ready, off they went – out the gate, across the road, and into the fields.

The two of us who didn’t ride decided to go to the Bot River Hotel for a cup of coffee. So unfortunately, I can’t give you a firsthand account of what the ride was like. But after two hours, my equestrian friends came back with big smiles on their faces. They couldn’t stop gushing about the beautiful views, vineyards, and the well-behaved horses. It sounds like they had an amazing time!

Hey there! Let me tell you about the awesome Klein Paradys Equestrian Centre and all the amazing things they offer. I’m Sue, one of the owners, and together with my husband, Manfred, we’ve been riding in this area for a whopping 17 years. We’ve created a bunch of trails that cater to riders of all levels, so whether you’re a beginner or a pro, there’s something for you.

Now, let’s talk about the rides. Some of them are short and sweet, just one or two hours long. Perfect if you’re looking for a quick adventure. But if you’re in the mood for a longer expedition, we’ve got you covered too. You can saddle up for a few hours and enjoy a delicious lunch at either Hoew Hoek Inn or Dassiesfontein. Can you imagine anything better?

But wait, there’s more! We also offer beach rides where you might even catch a glimpse of the wild horses chilling by the Bot River Lagoon. And if that’s not enough, we have wine tasting routes too. So, when you’re done with your ride, you can have a sip or two of our tantalizing local wines. How cool is that?

But hold your horses, because we’ve got something special for the daredevils out there. You can book our epic 5-day riding package. It’s a wild ride that takes you from the beautiful beaches to majestic mountains, and through lush orchards and vineyards. It’s like living your very own cowboy fantasy. Yeehaw!

7. Hang with the Locals at the Botrivier Hotel and Grab Some Pub Grub

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

If you’re looking to hang out with the locals and enjoy a refreshing drink, look no further than the bar at the Botrivier Hotel. This place has been around since the 1920s and is full of character and charm, just like the people who frequent it. Whether you prefer to sit inside or outside on the stoep with an umbrella for shade, you’ll have a great view of local farmers coming into town for supplies. And if you’re feeling hungry, Bellows Restaurant at the hotel has got you covered. They serve up delicious breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, and they can even cater to special events. On the menu, you’ll find mouthwatering steaks, juicy burgers, tasty ribs, and an assortment of light meals. And of course, they have a great selection of local wines to accompany your meal. Don’t forget to check them out for a scrumptious Sunday lunch, too!

I couldn’t believe it when I found out that the hotel itself was constructed over a century ago. Can you imagine? I even discovered entries in the guest book dating all the way back to 1929! That’s truly remarkable. To make things even better, the rooms have been completely renovated and they look fantastic. I managed to sneak a peek into some of them and I was pleasantly surprised by how tidy and spotless they were. With 11 rooms in total, each one equipped with its own en-suite bathroom and balcony, this place has everything you need for a comfortable stay. The best part? It only costs R320 per person per night, or just R290 from Monday to Thursday, and that includes breakfast. I don’t know about you, but I think a trip to the Botrivier Hotel with a group of friends would be an absolute blast. Oh, and if you’re lucky, you might even catch a live band performance. Be sure to check their website for upcoming events!

8. Have a Blast on Sundays with a Scrumptious Roast, Delicious Pizza, and Local Tunes at The Shuntin’ Shed

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

I’ve been to The Shuntin’ Shed before, and let me tell you, it’s an amazing place. In fact, I loved it so much that I even named it Pub of the Week. I knew I had to go back one day and try their famous Sunday roast. And boy, was I in for a treat!

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On my return visit, the roast of the day was pork, and it was cooked to perfection. It came with crispy roast potatoes and a side of vegetables. But the best part? It was the first time I ever had mushy peas! It was a delightful surprise.

Now, let me tell you a bit more about The Shuntin’ Shed. It’s located in a real train shed that was built back in 1909. And get this – freight trains still pass by! The owners have put in a lot of effort to maintain its authenticity, and the result is a vibrant and lively spot.

What’s even better is that they serve delicious food made from locally sourced ingredients. They have a great selection of wines from local wineries and a variety of beers on tap. And if you’re into live music, they regularly host local bands. You can check their website for any upcoming events.

All in all, I highly recommend paying a visit to The Shuntin’ Shed. It’s a unique and special place where you can enjoy good food, great drinks, and a fantastic atmosphere. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

Experience the Glamour of Barton Luxury Villas and Live Like a Movie Star

Welcome to Barton Luxury Villas, where you can indulge in the ultimate vacation experience. Our stunning properties offer the perfect blend of elegance, comfort, and luxury, allowing you to live like a movie star. Leave your worries at the door as you step into a world of opulence and extravagance.

At Barton Luxury Villas, we understand the importance of creating unforgettable memories. That’s why our properties are meticulously designed to cater to your every whim and desire. From the moment you arrive, you will be captivated by the breathtaking beauty and grandeur that surrounds you.

Imagine waking up to stunning panoramic views of the ocean, as sunlight streams through floor-to-ceiling windows. Picture yourself lounging by a private pool, sipping a refreshing cocktail and basking in the warm, gentle breeze. Indulge in gourmet meals prepared by our world-class chefs and served in the privacy of your own villa.

Each villa is a sanctuary of relaxation and tranquility, featuring spacious bedrooms with plush, king-sized beds and luxurious en-suite bathrooms. Unwind in the spa-like atmosphere of your own private bathroom, complete with designer fixtures and soothing aromatherapy products.

Explore the vibrant surroundings and immerse yourself in the local culture. From shopping at upscale boutiques to dining at world-renowned restaurants, there is something for everyone. Whether you prefer a leisurely stroll along the beach or an adrenaline-pumping water sports adventure, the options are endless.

When it comes to entertainment, Barton Luxury Villas has you covered. Enjoy movie nights in your own private cinema, complete with comfortable seating and state-of-the-art audiovisual technology. Indulge in spa treatments and rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.

Experience the epitome of luxury living at Barton Luxury Villas. Every aspect of your stay is carefully curated to ensure an unforgettable experience. From the moment you book your villa until the day you depart, our dedicated team is on hand to cater to your every need.

Are you ready to live like a movie star? Book your stay at Barton Luxury Villas and embark on a journey of unparalleled luxury and indulgence.

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

When I went to Bot River, I stayed at the Barton Wine Estate’s Barton Luxury Villas. They invited a few of my friends too, so we had a great time together. As I walked in after driving through a beautiful road surrounded by trees and vineyards, I put my bag down and looked around. I couldn’t help but think, “Wow, this is what it’s like to be rich and famous!”

When I visited the Tuscan-style villas, I couldn’t believe the breathtaking view. The design of the villas really emphasized the beauty of the surroundings. With floor-to-ceiling windows, I could see the expansive vineyards, the picturesque valley, and the majestic mountains.

The kitchen in the villas was amazing. It had sliding doors that led out to a braai area, where there was also an outdoor jacuzzi nestled among the rocks. It was the perfect spot to enjoy a braai and some bubbles while taking in the incredible view.

The lounge area in the villas was cozy and inviting. It had a fireplace that added to the warmth of the space. We sat around a 10-seater dining room table for our meals, which made it feel like we were all together, sharing special moments.

If you’re a fan of swimming, you won’t be disappointed at Heron Villa. Not only is there an outdoor swimming pool and jacuzzi, but the villa also has a massive indoor pool. It even comes with a changing room equipped with towels and loungers. It felt like we had our own private spa!

The bedrooms in the villas were luxurious. Each bedroom had its own en-suite bathroom, providing privacy and convenience. And every morning, when I opened my eyes, I was greeted by the magnificent sight of the mountains. It was truly a breathtaking experience.

On top of all the amazing amenities, the villa also had a dishwasher, DSTV, and Wi-Fi. It felt like we were living in the lap of luxury.

For two days, we felt like rock stars. We enjoyed the luxurious surroundings and the stunning view. And don’t worry, we didn’t cause any mischief like trashing the place or throwing the TV out of the window. We simply savored every moment of our unforgettable stay.

Top 10 things to do in Bot River MzansiBride

Hey there! When you visit Barton Villas, get ready for an amazing time! You can do so many fun things while you’re here. How about trying some birdwatching? Keep an eye out for the endangered Blue Crane while exploring the vineyards. It’s a real treat!

If you’re up for some adventure, why not go hiking in the Kogeberg Mountains right behind the villas? The views are breathtaking, and you might even spot some wildlife along the way.

Feeling sporty? Challenge your friends to a game of tennis at the villas’ facilities. It’s a great way to get some exercise and have a blast.

Oh, and don’t miss out on Barton’s wines! Head to their tasting room and treat yourself to a delightful experience of savoring their delicious wines. You won’t be disappointed!

Want to explore a bit further? Just a short distance away, you’ll find the Arabella Golf Course. Tee off and enjoy a game of golf in a stunning setting.

If you’re a nature enthusiast, Hermanus is the place to be! You can go whale watching or diving and discover the amazing underwater world. It’ll be an experience you’ll never forget!

For those who love hiking, the Kogelberg National Eco Park is a must-visit. Lace up your hiking boots and explore the beautiful trails in this natural paradise.

And if relaxation is what you’re after, simply grab a glass of wine, fire up the braai, and unwind in the jacuzzi while taking in the breathtaking valley views. It’s pure bliss!

10. Passionate winemakers, delightful weekends, and barrel rolling

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