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What to do in #heartWellington  

Wine | Eat |Stay |Ride | Walk | Run | Safari

The sleepy town of Wellington in South Africa is already firmly established on the international wine tourism stage. The region produces a multitude of award-winning red wines from a handful of boutique wineries in the surrounding valleys and it is safe to say that wine tasting takes top spot in terms of current tourist activities.

 While Wellington residents delight in the growth of wine tourism in the valley, the team at Dunstone would like to remind you that there is a lot more to Wellington than great food and wine. Next time you visit us, please don’t just come for the day. Take time to get to know Wellington. Wake up early and experience the serenity of sunrise on horseback. Enjoy a few sensational sunsets against the backdrop of our dramatic mountain landscape.

Here are a few suggestions for your next visit to #heartWellington from the Dunstone team.

Game Drives at Bontebok Ridge Reserve

The pristine Bontebok Ridge Reserve consists of over 400ha of fynbos vegetation and forms part of the Renosterveld Conservancy, an area developed to protect the Cape’s highly threatened indigenous Renosterveld.

Surrounded by the blue-hued Limietberg mountain range, guests are taken on a 2-hour guided game drive in an open 4×4 vehicle. The drive offers plenty of opportunity to view a host of antelope species, including eland, blue wildebeest, springbok, grey rhebuck, sables, bontebok as well as the revived Quagga. The reserve is part of The Quagga Project, which successfully recreated the previously extinct quagga – a subspecies of the plains zebra.

It is with pride that Dunstone sources our wild boar and venison meats from Bontebok Ridge Reserve, pasture reared animals that have never seen a tarred road, providing our customers with free range in its truest sense.

For more info on game drives, click here.

 

Horse Riding in the Bovlei Valley

Pony Joy Rides is a small, family run business that offers outrides on horseback in the tranquil Bovlei Valley near Dunstone Country Estate. Suitable for riders of all experience levels, a 1-3 hour morning ride will take you across vineyards and forested farmland, offering a unique perspective of the area.

For more info, click here.

Free timed run at Wellington parkrun

Every Saturday, a free 5km timed run takes place at Imbuko Wines in Wellington. Part of a global phenomenon that began in the UK in 2004, parkrun really taken off in South Africa. Wellington parkrun is a scenic farm run that winds through vineyards, forested areas and past farm watering holes and dams. If you haven’t registered for parkrun, you can sign up online and print out your barcode before arrival.

For more info, click here.

Mountain Biking in the Bovlei Valley

Wellington has gained international recognition in recent years within mountain biking circles due to the inclusion of some of its trails in the renowned ABSA Cape Epic Stage Race, attracting professional mountain bike riders from around the world. In 2018, the existing trails got a facelift with the birth of Wild Boar Trails. The area now boasts six routes of varying technical difficulty, which cater to a range of skill levels and offer flowing single track sections and wider gravel road surfaces.

For more info, click here.

Wellington Wine Walk

Finally, an activity that incorporates wine drinking with exercise and the great outdoors! The Wellington Wine Walk is a short, guided walking holiday of between 3-4 days that takes hikers through 70km of vineyards, olive groves, fruit orchards and fynbos veld, stopping over at a variety of wine estates en route to taste wines and/or stay overnight. The walk is set at an easy pace, giving guests a true escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

For more info, click here.

Dunstone Wins Silver at the IWSC Awards 2018

Dunstone Winery is proud to have been awarded Silver at the International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC Awards) 2018. The accolade was given to the Dunstone Shiraz 2015 vintage, which received between 80-85.9 points. Chief winemaker Danie De Bruyn says this is a fantastic achievement for the winery as it demonstrates that South Africa, and more specifically Dunstone, is able to compete with the rest of the world in the production of world-class wines.


According to the IWSC records, 2018 has been the best year yet for South Africa, as it saw a 13.5% increase on wine entries from the country compared to last year and an increasing number of silver and gold medals. De Bruyn is not surprised by these outstanding results, saying that both 2015 and 2017 have been described as the best SA vintages ever.

In its 49th year, the IWSC Awards remains a relevant competition for the wine industry through its scoring procedure that is based on both organoleptic judgement as well as chemical analysis. Entries are received from nearly 90 countries worldwide.

The Dunstone Shiraz has big, bold, red fruit flavours with sweet spice from the French oak barrels in which the grapes matured for 14 months. It has a smooth and juicy palate, well integrated tannins with a long, lingering finish. It is a wine that will only get better with age.

To read the full tasting notes for the Dunstone Shiraz and our other wines, including the Stones in the Sun range, please visit our winery page. Here you will also find information on all of our local and international stockists and our most updated pricelist. Click here 

To taste Dunstone wine locally, guests are welcome to visit Dunstone Country Estate (open 7 days per week from Monday 1st October 2018). Self-guided wine tasting takes place in our bistro on the estate, The Stone Kitchen, and costs R30 for six wines. Cellar tours may also be arranged via prior appointment only. Contact Danie De Bruyn at wine@dunstone.co.za for more info. 

A Cape Winelands Wedding: Where To Say “I Do” in Wellington

“May our love be like good wine, grow stronger as it grows older.”

The Cape Winelands wedding industry is big business. Every year, thousands of couples from South Africa and overseas alike tie the knot in one of a multitude of licensed wedding venues in the greater Cape Winelands’ area. Fairy tale scenery, a favourable climate (and a fantastic exchange rate for foreigners) are just a few reasons why the wine farm wedding trend is here to stay.

In the rolling countryside outside Wellington, there are several idyllic winelands wedding venues to consider for your big day. Just an hour’s drive from Cape Town, the area has as much of the charm of its big brothers Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, without the crowds or the price tag. Here are three of our favourites.

Grande Dedale

Set amongst 380 hectares of mountains, vineyards, riverbeds, fruit orchards and fynbos, Grande Dédale Country House on Doolhof Wine Estate has a ‘world of its own’ feel about it and is a unique and intimate location for a Cape Winelands wedding. Located at the very end of a long gravel road, tranquillity and privacy are guaranteed. A number of venue options for ceremony, reception or cocktail function are available, with the estate accommodating up to 120 guests. All catering is strictly in-house.

Bride Bronwyn B on TripAdvisor had this to say about Grande Dedale:

“We had our dream wedding at Grand Dédale Country House in Wellington! Excellent service, exquisite decor and a serene setting! We are in awe of this place and will be back to celebrate each anniversary there!”

 

Kleinevalleij

The popular Cape Winelands wedding venue NEO at Kleinevalleij lies within a vineyard at the foot of Bains Kloof, offering panoramic mountain views. It can accommodate up to 300 guests, with in-house catering provided by the creative team at Slippery Spoon Kitchen. It is equipped with a fully stocked bar, but guests looking to bring their own wines are charged a corkage of R35 per bottle. Venue costs in season range between R20 and R35k.

Contact: Margo at or visit  http://www.kleinevalleij.co.za/

Maryke on Facebook said this about the wedding she attended at Kleinevalleij:

“WOW! Absolutely beautiful…surrounded by those amazing mountains and blue sky… speechless!”

 

Leeurivier 

If you’re looking for a blend of the old and the new, this gorgeous restored Cape Dutch venue at Leeurivier offers charm and romance, while boasting breath-taking views of rolling vineyards and a delightful English country garden. The refurbished barn serves as a possible reception hall, accommodating up to 240 guests. As there is no dedicated caterer at the venue, bridal party can select an external caterer. All drinks, including wine, should be purchased externally and the venue does not have a corkage fee. Costs are calculated per person.

Contact: Demarlene Kruger at or visit http://www.leeuwrivier.co.za/


Sleep at Dunstone

While Dunstone Country Estate is not in the Cape Winelands wedding business directly, our family bistro is in close proximity to the three wedding venues above, which makes us an ideal option for both accommodation and functions outside of the main event. We can also cater for intimate weddings of 30 people or less.

The Stone Kitchen can cater for pre-wedding family functions the night before or post-wedding brunches for all wedding guests. Seating up to 150 people, it has indoor and outdoor kids’ play areas, a tasty menu and ample opportunity for photographs under the guava trees with a backdrop of the Hawekwa Mountains.

The 5* Dunstone Manor House serves as the perfect hideaway for the bride-to-be and her lovely bridesmaids, far removed from the stress and distractions of the wedding venue set up. For the wider wedding party, the estate sleeps up to a maximum of 24 adults (extra beds can be made available for children) in a cluster of beautifully furnished self-catering properties and B&B guest suites. All accommodation can be block booked for wedding guests, well in advance.

To discuss your Cape Winelands wedding arrangements with Dunstone, get in touch at