Have you done the Franschhoek Wine Tram? My brother told me about it AGES ago and I’ve FINALLY managed to make it happen. Mr John and I were staying at the Franschhoek Boutique Hotel and invited a bunch of friends to join us on the tram; a perfect way to spend a spring Saturday.
Franschhoek Wine Tram
(Watch the video or keep reading below…)
We arrived at the ticket office in the village center, collected our tickets and climbed upon the bus. We had prebooked well in advance as it sells our very quickly. Because the tram is old school and only connects a few places, they’ve expended the route by adding a bus (that looks like a tram)!. This means you can visit up to 6 places, depending on what time you start the route. We chose 10:30 and to visit 5 places.
We picked the following stops:
- La Bri
- Dieu Donne
- Grand Provence
We chose these 5 locations although Reubens, Leopard’s Leap and Rickety Bridge were also available. Our feelings was that we didn’t want people to feel obliged to buy an expensive lunch at Reubens. Leopard’s Leap is very modern & has a chicken rotisserie and we wanted something a bit more varied and our last two choices between RB and GP – I knew GP had lovely art and that suited the interests of our friends. If art isn’t your thing then maybe RB would be better for you? I’d only ever been to one of the farms before, Grand Provence so I was really excited to visit more venues in Franschhoek. We had a lovely tour guide, JJ and a great driver, Mack.
La Bri is a beautiful farm with views towards the mountains. Although it was misty on the day we visited, the vineyards and slopes were still a lush, beautiful green and it felt adventurous to visit on an overcast day. It has a really large table, which is great for a large group of people to use, and the staff were very welcoming. They told us all about the wines and I paired mine with chocolate, although biltong was also an option.
Dieu Donne is located high up on the mountain side and has a incredible views across the Franschhoek valley. Their award winning wines are delicious and again, this is a lovely spot to stop. They also serve MMC so if bubbly is more to your taste, keep this venue in mind. It’s not the most well decorated venue on the inside, but their garden is a wonderful place to rest for a moment. I prefer places with less foot traffic so I enjoyed that we could relax and take our time at Dieu Donne.
Maison is a little farm house that has been converted into a modern, wine tasting venue and restaurant. The website said there was a deli so we chose this venue for lunch as we thought everyone could pick what they felt like. But when we arrived there was no deli! None the less, we still had an awesome time because Maison kindly gave us their tasting room table, free wine and we ordered a number of cheese platters which were REALLY delicious. They go for about R150 a platter if my memory serves me. We learnt about the wine and had a great, great time.
Eikehof is a farmy-farm much like Delheim or Hartenberg. The owners pours your wine and teaches you all about the wine, their history and the farm, really lovely people. Eikehof also has a nice patch of lawn and park benches so if you’re a big group like we were, it was a lot of space which is helpful (good for big groups or kids!). The really big, old truck parked in the front yard adds to the charm of the farm and the wine was good too; the red was very popular here.
I once worked at a wedding at Grande Provence and the guests were so obnoxious, it didn’t really leave a good impression on me. But it’s the last stop on the tram and made sense to visit as I knew the artwork would really impress everyone. We passed Rickety Bridge on the way and loved the tram section of the tour. We jumped onto a tracker, after the tram, and were motored down to the venue.
On this occasion, I enjoyed going to the gallery and, of course, the garden sculptures. Unfortunately, we were only there for about 20 minutes so I focused on seeing the art and not wine tasting, as it is a wonderland of a venue and I wanted to enjoy that aspect (see the art in the video above). I decided to jump off the tram on the way back, so I could sit with Mr John, and went rolling the road because it was going MUCH faster than I thought it was! The poor driver had heart failure and I had to convince him that I jumped, not fallen, off. Ooops!
The wine tram is an AWESOME way to taste a range of wines without having to self drive. And if you buy wine at any of the farms, JJ & Mack will keep it for you and deliver it to the ticket office for you to collect on the way home. Enjoy a great day out in the Franschhoek Valley and spend time with friends and family. Buy tickets online for R200 per person, select a route and ching ching! Don’t forget to book well in advance to avoid disappointment and make sure you tell the people that Boring Cape Town Chick, the blogger, sent you 😉 M