Elgin Valley is only 45 minutes drive from the Cape Town International Airport or about 70 km southeast of Cape Town city centre. Upon arrival, It immediately hit me that the Elgin Valley is truly an undiscovered treasure, It is nothing like Cape Town as I initially thought. It’s a large lush area of land, circled by mountains, in the Overberg region of South Africa.
Elgin Valley produces 60% of the national apple crop, it is now internationally known as the place in South Africa “where the apples come from”. Elgin Valley is fast becoming known for not just its top cool climate producing wine route, but also a romantic destination wedding region, family getaway spot as well as the outdoor adventure capital of South Africa.
The lush rolling hills of this agricultural valley offer plenty of places to explore. Outdoor fanatics have miles of mountain trails to discover on the doorstep and food and wine lovers will enjoy the wines and cuisine readily available. So whether you are an adrenalin junkie, a foodie or just looking to relax in the countryside, there is something for everyone.
Elgin Valley Accommodation
Our accommodation was at Old Mac Daddy part caravan park, part designer farm lodge – this little hotel is set on the pine-whispering slopes of a beautiful corner of the Elgin Valley, Old Mac Daddy offers trailer units with artist-themed bedrooms and uber-contemporary living spaces as well as comfortable glamping style. I stayed in one of the airstream trailer suites each uniquely designed by some of Cape Town’s top artists and designers. My room theme was life before colour. This room takes the ‘traveller’ back to a simpler, easier world with a slowed-down pace. The use of monochromatic colour pays tribute to the artists’ love of old black and white photography but also transports us to another time, through a filter of antique memorabilia pulling you in – as if you are a character in an old sepia photograph.
Lerato Lefafa my travel partner’s room was called give bee’s a chance the soft yellow of bee dust and the boldness of black are beautifully composed in this testament to the plight of the honey bee. Without bees the fruit orchards of Elgin would not pollinate and – although South Africa has to date averted the alarming disappearance of bees –Colony Collapse Disorder is threatening the world’s agricultural and floral kingdoms.
There are more trailer themes which you can check out on Old Mac Daddy website all trailers are equipped with: minibar, coffee station, air-conditioning & heating. Breakfast is included & served daily.
Elgin Valley Activities
Old Mac Daddy offers open spaces, mountain paths, a lakeside beach and plenty of outdoor activities for the whole family. In the chilly months enjoy sitting by the fire, reading books, playing board games and sipping on a glass of wine from their favourite local cultivars. Onsite they can arrange a variety of fun and family-friendly activities as follows.
We visited the Cape Segways the tour utilizes the latest offroad Segway, which is rugged and strong, clearly designed for off the beaten track fun. Safety is paramount with all gear and equipment fully certified and the tour SATIB is approved. The guides are professional, well informed and groups are kept small and intimate. At first, I was sceptical as it felt like I was going to fall but with help of the guides in a few minutes, I was a pro and confidence even got corky by increasing the speed and did I mention we were the fastest riders in the group we had so much fun on the segways.
Archery – Didn’t do the activity.
Fatcat Moutain Bike – Rode past the vineyards, apple farms, surrounded by mountains and allies It was so fulfilling to be surrounded by nature, I honestly think Elgin Valley makes a great natural escape, the scenery is unmatched.
Zorbing – The most fun yet challenging activity to date, Lerato said balance is a myth when you doing Zorbing, I couldn’t even stand, I was just run crawling inside the gigantic ball and gets a bit hectic after few minutes as the oxygen supply gets limited. It was a great experience and a new favourite outdoor activity.
Access to the Lebanon mountain biking trail nature walks – didn’t do the activity.
Stand-up paddleboarding – didn’t do the activity.
Kayaking – All we had to do was to master the paddling, this time around was so much easier because we had learned to kayak in Mpumalanga and were coordinating much better and our boat was just moving smoothly, I won’t lie I was a bit panicky as the private beach is abt 18m deep, but I did it anyway and I’m glad I did it, I had so much fun.
Tractor Rides – didn’t do the activity.
Fishing on a catch and release basis, depending on dam stock level.
Wine tasting – We visited South Hill Vineyards. They have 2 options on offer the South Hills wines and Kevin King wines yes you guessed right myself and Lerato opted for the South Hill wines as it had more wines haha 5 to be exact. We tried all of them dry rose, pinot noir. sauvignon blanc, cabernet sauvignon and syrah. Lerato and I usually enjoy the same things so it was no different as we both enjoyed the sauvignon blanc it had a fruity and crispy finish and a nice guava smell.
Cape Canopy Tour – We visited the canopy tours as which is nothing short of adventure surrounded by breathtaking Cape fynbos panorama and mountain escapes. It has 11 platforms that vary in distance 330 metres longest and height 110 metres highest. My favourite platform was the castle, the scenery and views were to die for.
Our last stop was Hickory Shack for lunch. The food there is slow-cooked to perfection they don’t use electric smokers they only use local woods and organic chips as everything is organic including meat and sauces, no chemical used. We also tried their craft beer and ciders which added a nice vibe to the whole experience. The owner’s Jay and Sacha took their time to show us the cooking process and gave us an exceptional experience never in my life have I tasted meat so good brisket and cheeses cake was the show stopper.
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