We were part of a group of 40 wine & food enthusiasts who invaded the Hemel & Aarde (Heaven and Earth) Valley near Hermanus just over one hour drive from our home, or 90 minutes from Cape Town, for a week-end of decadence!
The valley is situated in the Overberg Region and is near the popular coastal holiday resort town, Hermanus. Before you reach Hermanus travelling from Cape Town, there is a clear sign at the village of Sandbaai. The road through the Hemel & Aarde Valley takes you to the in land town of Caledon, which is situated n the N2 highway in the heart of the Cape wheat lands.
Our accommodation was a B&B, Sandbaai Country House, in a little coastal village conveniently situated at the base of the valley. It was quite ordinary, but provided all we needed….. a good night’s sleep, a fabulously refreshing shower and easy access to the next tasting! We also has a chance to walk off a little of the guilty indulgences along the scenic coastal path after a light breakfast. Sadly we saw no whales, yes this is whale country & season, but our objectives for the week-end did not include whale watching!
The week-end was all about food, wine and friends, but you can easily check into a guest house or do a day visit from Cape Town to enjoy whale watching and visit the beautiful wine farms and restaurants in the area, particularly in the Hemel & Aarde Valley.
Agriculture in the valley is mostly devoted to vines. The coastal influences and the soils are ideal for Pinot Noir and Chadonnay grapes, but other varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc, Grenache, Shiraz and Merlot are planted.
Many wine farms have beautiful restaurants. We have visited Newton Johnson and Creation many times as they are our favourites.
I am going to share the experiences in “bite sized pieces or sips” with you in separate blogs.