"Van der Stel's forest" Top 5 Page for this destination Stellenbosch by Doempie

Stellenbosch Travel Guide: 103 reviews and 276 photos

Some history

Stellenbosch was founded in 1679 by the second Governor of the Cape Colony, Simon van der Stel. The name, Stellenbosch, may be directly translated as "(van der) Stel's forest" and is situated on the banks of the Eerste River about 50 km (30 mi) away from Cape Town, a mere 40 minute drive. It is also surrounded by the breathtaking mountain scenery of the Jonkershoek valley which supplies visitors with a variety of hiking trails.

Stellenbosch is the second oldest European settlement in the Western Cape Province of South Africa (after Cape Town) and is therefor rich in cultural heritage. Some of the most beautiful old buildings can be viewed by taking a simple walk down the peaceful Dorp Street.

It's all about the wine!

The Stellenbosch Wine of Origin area consists of over 100 wine cellars, most of which are open to the public for tasting or viewing purposes.

Stellenbosch is also situated close to the beautiful Franschoek, also known for its production of good quality South African wine. The areas of Paarl and Wellington also offer a large number of wine farms and is also less than 30 minutes drive from Stellenbosch.

A wide variety of wine tours can be booked through the Stellenbosch travel agencies.

Stellenbosch University

Stellenbosch is also home to one of South Africa's top Universities. The Stellenbosch University students are nicknamed Maties and has produced some of the countries top athletes and sporting heroes. But like most universities, campus is not only great place to start your tertiary education but also filled with vibrant inexpensive pubs and food shops. The main University campus also includes some of the oldest buildings in town. Simply taking a walk around campus is a must do!

On the university grounds there are also several hiking and Mountain biking trails.

Just be sure to check the University holidays depending on whether you want a quiet walk through campus or if you want to behold the hussle and bussle of the Stellenbosch student going about their usual routine.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful historic area with great wine!
  • Cons:Even though crime is not as bad as in most of SA, you should still be very aware of your surroundings...
  • In a nutshell:Beautiful wine country!
  • Intro Updated Dec 10, 2008
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Reviews (17)

Comments (10)

  • mvtouring's Profile Photo
    Apr 3, 2009 at 2:06 PM

    Hi Adri, Fairview is seker een van die beste wynplase hier wat my aan betref. Beste met jou studies by my ou alma mater ;-)

  • Hermanater's Profile Photo
    Sep 12, 2008 at 10:45 AM

    Happy Birthday Adri. Wish you the best and hope your future is filled with many more travels.

  • PierreZA's Profile Photo
    Aug 21, 2008 at 1:06 PM

    HI Adri, bly om te hoor jy is mal oor VT. Nice page, some great pics. Groete, Pierre

  • brewjohnson's Profile Photo
    Aug 7, 2008 at 7:24 PM

    Fantastic page. Really great tips. Can't wait to return to Stellenbosch. Its one of my favorite towns anywhere!

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Mar 12, 2008 at 6:40 AM

    Great tips Adri!

  • Kid-A's Profile Photo
    Feb 4, 2008 at 9:00 AM

    Hi Adri, I just returned from a long weekend in CT -- pity we had so little time and missed Stellenbosch. Great photos! Greetings from Germany, Brian

  • Jenniflower's Profile Photo
    Jan 21, 2008 at 9:08 AM

    What a delightful page!!! I have yet to write mine, better get going soon. LOVE your main pic! Makes me so homesick!!

  • y2ketan2007's Profile Photo
    Oct 26, 2007 at 10:54 AM

    Interesting place and nice pictures.Regards,Ketan.

  • canuck68's Profile Photo
    Oct 25, 2007 at 11:34 AM

    I visited Stellenbosch in 2004 and loved it. Sorry I missed the wine and chocolate tasting. One of our local doctors here is from Stellenbosch. Heard the Stellenbosch university choir and they were awesome.

  • nichole_521's Profile Photo
    Oct 24, 2007 at 1:34 PM

    I loved Stellenbosch when I was there. Next time (if there is) I hope to spend more time there. Fun to read your pages. :)

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