velvet | cape town
grootbos-floral-safari-photo

Finding paradise in Grootbos

Grootbos is a private nature reserve near the southernmost tip of the African continent. Nestled between the mountains and the ocean, Grootbos is a two-hour drive southeast of Cape Town and a short 30-minute drive from Hermanus, the premier destination for land-based whale-watching in South Africa. Literally translated, Grootbos means ‘big forest’ in Afrikaans (or […]

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aerial-view-cape-town-photo

Plane views: Cape Town

When I published a post a while back on airports you must book a window seat for, I received various comments from readers saying that I should include Cape Town in that list. I’d flown to Cape Town quite a few times previously but I’d always arrive at night (direct flights from Amsterdam arrive in […]

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scenic-flight-walker-bay-photo

An awe-inspiring flight tour along the Western Cape

“I have a surprise for you”. We stood on a dirt road surrounded by mile upon mile of fynbos, a shrubby vegetation found in the Western Cape of South Africa. In the distance, I could see the Atlantic Ocean and its pounding surf. The air was heavy with a heady mix of salt and floral […]

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dornier-wine-scenery-photo

Six Stellenbosch wineries to visit

Stellenbosch (map) is a picturesque university town in the Cape Winelands, a 45-minute drive from Cape Town, filled with historic Cape Dutch buildings, ancient oak trees, art galleries and laid-back cafés. A short drive in any direction, along one of the many Stellenbosch Wine Routes, will take you through gorgeous vineyards and imposing mountains. Nestled […]

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wine-tasting-boeretapas-middelvlei-photo

Wine-blending at Middelvlei Wines

It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. Almost every time I take a sip of a white or red blend, I try to differentiate the different grape varieties that have gone into the wine and their specific impact on the resulting bouquet, taste and finish. I’ve often wondered what my perfect wine would be and […]

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v&a-waterfront-cape-town-photo

Ten cities I would visit again

and again… and again… and again. There are some cities that I just can’t get enough of. It could be for any particular reason: the energy, a lively culinary scene, a spectacular setting, a melting-pot of cultures, history, architecture, a laid-back pace or a mix of everything. These are cities that I would never tire […]

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Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren – a heavenly Cape Dutch wine farm

A special guest post by Lezaan Roos. Don’t ask me to compare Babylonstoren with other Cape Dutch farms. That would be tricky. For starters, it produces wine – a feature typical of estates. It offers a variety of unique food experiences, which could put it firmly in the restaurant category. It has a hotel, it’s […]

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Exploring Bo Kaap in Cape Town

The Bo Kaap neighbourhood in Cape Town is a historic enclave that graces the slopes of Signal Hill. The first thing anyone will notice about this neighbourhood are the gorgeous, brightly-coloured houses lining steep cobbled streets. The second thing: the faint scent of spices such as cardamom and cloves in the air. Bo Kaap is […]

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apostles-edge-villa-cape-town-photo

A dream home away from home

I walked into the living room and I gasped. Right there before me was one of the most stunning views from any house I’ve ever been in. The cloudless blue sky stretched into the distant horizon whilst the azure waters of the Atlantic Ocean shimmered in the afternoon sun like a blanket of diamonds. I […]

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chapmans-peak-drive-photo

A spectacular drive around the Cape Peninsula

m4s0n501 The drive around the Cape Peninsula near Cape Town is one of my favourite routes in the world. I’ve driven this loop several times and each time was simply unforgettable. I once watched pods of whales frolicking in False Bay just fifty yards away from the shore. Another time, I stopped at the beach […]

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