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Riebeek-West, Swartland, South Africa

Riebeek West, Swartland, Western Cape

Riebeek West, the sister village to Riebeek Kasteel, only 4km distant, is set in the heart of the magnificent Riebeek Valley. The valley is known for its wheatlands, vines and olive groves, which of course, make for excellent scenery year round. Only 70km from Cape Town, this area is an ideal getaway from the bustle of the City, offering a treat for the gourmand and wine lover or the ideal setting for a wedding.

The Valley has become the mecca of artists and self-employed, who work from home and commute to Cape Town, which is only an hour away. Riebeek West is all about a laid-back, slightly bohemian way of life, tranquillity, bread, olives and wine. Predictably estate agents are calling it ‘the new Franschhoek’. Visitors can enjoy the fruits of the vine, with an excellent choice from several wineries. If you are a wine lover, then take some time to do the Swartland Wine Route.

Riebeek West Vineyards, Swartland, Western Cape

Ongegund, 3kms northwest of Riebeek West is the birthplace of one of South Africa’s most famous statesmen, Jan Smuts who was born in 1870. The thatched roof house in which he was born and the schoolroom, coach house, dairy and stables have been beautifully restored. An interesting collection of old photographs can be viewed in one of the outbuildings, which has been turned into a museum. +27(0)22 461 8000. Another president, Dr DF Malan, was also born here, on the farm Allesverloren.

The Riebeek West Fresh Funky Market is held on the first Saturday of every month, from 09h00 – 14h00.  It is the longest running Market in the Valley!  This market offers a great variety of fresh and home-baked delectable treats and eats and funky, quirky handmade crafts.

Riebeek West Scenery, SwartlandThe Valley is also the perfect location to explore the outdoors. The Thunberg Hiking Trail rewards with great views of Table Mountain and the Cape in one direction, and the Piketberg, Cederberg and beyond in the other. The Pieter Cruythoff Hiking Trail is suitable for the whole family and also offers magnificent views. There are a range of cycling trails set in beautiful scenery, mainly along farm roads.

There are many excursions to surrounding areas. Langebaan Lagoon and the West Coast National Park make for a special outing and the quaint village of Tulbagh with its charming Cape Dutch architecture and wine estates is only 25 minutes away. It is also the ideal base from which to explore the Cederberg, Paarl, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch.

Riebeek Valley Olive Festival is held annually in May – be sure to get there early, as this event is very popular. Equally popular are the Shiraz and Art Weekend in September, the Riebeek Valley Mediterranean Festival held in March and the PPC Marathon in August.

For more information about this area, visit ShowMe Swartland.

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