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Words: Belinda Mountain

Exhausted by the prospect of an overpriced, crowded and noisy New Years’ eve party come 31 December? If you’re keen to see in the New Year in a more relaxed manner, here are some ideas of areas close to Cape Town that offer so much more.


Picture orchards of fruit trees, the Olifants river flowing gently past you, and the soulful Cederberg mountain range for your eyes to feast on in the distance. Citrusdal is just over two hours’ drive from Cape Town and while this sleepy farming village may not be the most picturesque one in the country, the area surrounding it is packed with natural beauty. We recently stayed at Wolfkop luxury camping villages, where you get all the benefits of camping, with none of the hassle. Rock up with your food, drinks, lilos and cricket bats, and they’ll take care of the rest (including ice delivered each day). Spend lazy days with the kids catching tadpoles, floating down the river with drink in hand, or braaiing on the lawn under the trees.


Close enough to the seasonal bustle of Hermanus but peaceful enough for some proper R&R, if you can find a spot in the Hemel-en-Aarde valley over this time period, you’ll be set. High Season Farm offers self-catering cottages that give you ample privacy in a relaxed rural setting. Think the best of farm life: soaking up pastoral scenes as Nguni cows stroll past, while the kids run wild in spacious fields and you soak up the (relative) silence. Perfectly situated in the middle of wine country, you can also pop out to Creation Wine Farm or Spookfontein to pick up a few bottles for your end-of-year celebrations.


An underrated area that oozes country charm, the Robertson region is famous for its wine and roses. Visit Excelsior wine farm for a lazy lunch by the lake or to bottle your own wine, then stop in at Zandvliet for some ClemenGold gin tasting. Stay at the rustic Windfall Wines off the beaten track in the Agterkliphoogte valley. There are five cottages on the farm surrounded by mountains and vineyards, making this the perfect family-friendly destination. Ride your bikes, go for walks, watch the stars, or play some board games with an award-winning glass of vino in hand.

Wolfkop |
High Season Farm |
Windfall Wines |

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