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The Definitive Guide to Activities in the Area of Nature's Valley, Plettenberg Bay Area, South Africa


For beer lovers, Knysna offers tasting of ales, bitters, draft and stout at Mitchell's Knysna Brewery. Turn right off the N2 at George Rex drive, turn left at the traffic lights, left into Sandpiper St. and right into Arend.

North of Nature's Valley and the Garden Route lies the Klein or Little Karoo, perhaps the most diverse wine region in South Africa. The Route 62 is reputed to the longest wine route in the world with no less than 17 vineyards, among them the excellent Die Krans and Boplaas wineyards. The Klein Karoo is situated between majestic mountains and its vineyards grow mostly in the fertile soil next to riverbanks. The climate is in general drier than that of other wine regions, which contributes to the mostly organically cultivated vineyards. A diversity of microclimates allows winemakers to produce a variety of quality wines, including dry wines, fortified wines and brandies. World-class port and South Africa's champion white muscatel are produced here, as well as an extensive range of dessert wines. Members of the Klein Karoo Wine Route produce increasingly outstanding red and white wines, ranging from full-bodied cabernets to lighter drinking wines.

The wine route, www.kleinkaroowines.co.za lies some 250 km north of Nature's Valley and stretches along the R62 from Montagu in the west to De Rust in the east and Albertinia in the south.
Free wine tasting is generally offered daily Monday to Friday 8am - 5pm and Saturday 9am - 1 pm (3pm at Boplaas). The cellars are closed on Sundays and public holidays. Guided cellar tours are usually available if booked prior to visit.

Mampoer is South Africa's local 'fire water', a powerful fruit-based liqueur that at Nyati is made with double-distilled "naloop", fresh maroelas, "naartjies", lemons, limes, apricots, peaches or a secret blend of wild berries and infuses for at least six months before it is ready for bottling. With a hefty 60% alcohol by volume and the unique, piquant flavour of the bushveld, mampoer is one of South Africa's favourite drinks. The traditional Mampoer distillery and whitebaits products of Nyati , thrice been voted Best Mampoer in the Country, is situated between Plettenberg Bay and Knysna on the Wittedrift/Avontuur road. It is open from 9am to noon and 2.30pm to 4.30pm. Bookings recommended.

The R62 Brandy Route was launched recently, stretching from Worcester along the R62 including Montagu, Barrydale, Calitzdorp, Oudtshoorn and De Rust.

1. Uitvlucht Wine Cellar was founded in 1941 and registered as a co-operative in the same year. 023-614 1340
2. Montagu Wine Cellar is situated at the beginning of the Klein Karoo region, about 200 km north of Cape Town. The cellar was established on the 17th of March 1941 and in 1942 the first wine was produced. 023-614 1125
3. Bloupunt Hoffman Winery is the first privately owned winery in the village and its Chardonnay wines, under the Bloupunt label, are well known. 023-614 2385
4. Rietrivier Wine Cellar is 34 years old and has 46 members. The cellar is situated next to the Route 62, 20 km east of Montagu, in the shadow of the Langeberg Mountain. 023-614 1705
5. Follow the curves of the Langeberg along Route 62 for Joubert-Tradauw Wine Cellar 028-572 1619
6. Barrydale Wine Cellar, for wine and brandy, is situated between the Wildehondskloof Pass and Gysmanshoek Pass 028-572 1012
7. Die Poort, the only winery between the Outeniqua Mountain range and the Indian Ocean, lies at the foothills of the Langeberg mountains 028-735 2406
8. Nietverloren specializes in dessert wines and dry red wines for which they received numerous awards at the Southern Cape Bottled Wine Show. It is a small cellar near Herbertsdale in the Southern Cape. 028-735 2102
9. Ladismith Winery was founded in 1939 when 73 wine grape farmers came together to establish the distillery 028-551 1042
10. Boplaas has been crowned South African Champion in Ports and is situated in Calitzdorp at the foot of the Swartberg Mountains. 044-213 3326
044-213 3397
11. Fifteen farmers founded the Calitzdorp Wine Cellar in order to export Hanepoot grapes. Recognised as the "Port capital of south-Africa" and Class Winner SA Young Wine Show 2002 Blanc de Noir 044-213 3301
12. Die Krans vineyard has won more than 400 medals and awards since 1980. The route is a thirty-minute walk. 044-213 3314
044-213 3316
13. Just outside Oudtshoorn lie the vineyards of Sandkoppies, home of Grundheim wines. 044-272 6927
14. Kango Co-op was founded in 1926 and is the oldest organization of its kind in Oudtshoorn. Well known for excellent sweet wines, they also produce dry white and red, and brandy and liqueurs. 044-272 6065
15. Doornkraal lies at the foot of the Swartberg range in the Klein Karoo, a part of South-Africa also known by its original name, Kannaland 044-251 6715
16. The tasting room of the Mons Ruber Wine Estate is in a restored hotel of late 19th century fame. This building has been declared a National Monument 044-251 6550
17. Excelsior Winery on Vlakteplaas is approximately 55 km from Oudtshoorn, along the Willomore road northwards 044-272 6065
R62 Brandy Route, SA Brandy Foundation 021-887 3157
Nyati Mampoer 044-5359739
083-379 6313

For chauffeur-driven tours of the winelands see Organised Tours
For children's activities on the wine route click here
The Klein Karoo
Copyright 2003 Maaike Pypekamp. All rights reserved.
Questions or problems regarding this site should be directed to the publisher