The leafy Southern Suburbs are home to Newlands, Claremont and the affluent Bishopscourt, as well as Constantia, South Africa's oldest wine producing region. They are a mix of colonial past, charming present and cosmopolitan future.
It was in Constantia that the Cape Governer Simon van der Stel built, conceived and laid out the countries first vineyards. Groot Constantia is definitely one of the country's most stateliest wine estates. Other wine estates in the area include Klein Constantia, Buitenverwachting and Steenberg.
The Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens were established in 1913 to preserve and propagate South Africa's rich floral heritage. Today they are recognised as one of the world's most respected and leading Botanical Gardens in the world. They're definitely worth a visit.
Newlands is home to Cape Town's leading rugby and cricket stadiums and is often the venue for national and international matches. There are also several golf courses for you to swing a 9-iron.
Constantia Valley Wine Route
Perhaps the most exciting part of the Southern Suburbs is the Constantia Valley, Cape Town’s own vineyard. It spans the southern slopes of the Table Mountain National Park, where coastal breezes and the influences of the fynbos combine with ancient soils to produce remarkable wines.
Conveniently located within the Cape Peninsula, this is the only South African wine land situated completely within a city, and it is backed by a World Heritage Site – Table Mountain. Sought after by royalty in the 18th century and surrounded by tales of duels, ghosts and spies, Constantia wines reflect the long history behind them. All five cellars – Groot Constantia, Klein Constantia, Steenberg Estate and Buitenverwachting – offer something unique to the visitor.
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
If you have time, exploring the magic of Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens is a must. Kirstenbosch grows only indigenous South African plants. The estate covers 528 hectares and supports a diverse fynbos flora and natural forest.
Check out the outdoor summer concert series and watch a variety of musical productions. During the summer you can enjoy concerts on the grounds of the gardens - pack a picnic, laze on the slopes against the backdrop of Table Mountain and listen to the music ranging from classical to jazz and local rock bands. Explore the indoor greenhouse, which even houses a gigantic Baobab Tree and plants from a number of different regions, including savanna, fynbos, karoo and more.
Outdoors the focus moves to plants native to the Cape Region, highlighted by the spectacular collections of Protea. From the gardens, several trails lead off along and up the mountain slopes and these are well used by walkers and mountaineers. One of the trails, up the ravine called Skeleton Gorge is an easy, popular route to the summit of Table Mountain. This route is also known as Smuts’ Track after Prime Minister Jan Smuts who used this route regularly.
There are several restaurants within Kirstenbosch Gardens, alternatively, bring your own picnic and enjoy al fresco dining on the beautiful sweeping lawns.