A Franschhoek Fling

by Jared

With the opportunity to take the daring and punchy new Hyundai i30N for a drive-about, I reckoned the best match for this racy beauty was Franschhoek. Here’s a little preview of what to do on a brief trip to the gorgeous village, and how the i30N fared on the drive.

Drink in both Views and Wine

A frequent visit for me is Haute Cabrière – a farm that offers arguably one of the best views of Franschhoek. As you sit and taste your way through a flight of their award-winning wines, the vistas simply unfold below and come winter or summer, you won’t be disappointed.

Regular visitors will be excited to hear that the public space at the farm has undergone a very recent renovation, and the result is a chic and world-class tasting room and dining experience. The outdoor area now features a glassed-in infinity deck from which to enjoy the views. A must-taste is the Ratafia – a fortified dessert wine that often features in my desserts and cocktails.

Stretch the Legs on a Hike

Further up the hill, you’ll find Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve, which provides easy access to the mountainous playground that awaits intrepid explorers. For fitness-fundies I highly recommend the Perdekop Hike – a circular trail that rises 850m from its starting point to peak halfway at 1575m – the highest point in the Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve.

Day permits cost R50 and are obtainable from the entrance to the reserve from 8 am-5 pm. Make sure to look out for some of the famed Proteas, an integral part of the Fynbos vegetation which has earned the Cape Floral Kingdom a place in the list of prestigious UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Gorgeously Gourmet Dining

It’s no secret that Franschhoek is the culinary capital of South African, offering an abundance of classy dining options. My local favourite has to be Chefs Warehouse at Maison estate. Be treated to some exceptionally fine dining every lunch from 12-3 or dinner from 7-9 pm by chef David Schneider and his team.

The Tapas for two, is a series of 8 sharing plates, giving an enticing and masterful feast to work your way through. At R1000 for two, it’s also surprisingly more affordable than some similar experiences.

Where to Stay

Here is a list of my top five Franschhoek stays:
Holden Manz for an exclusive and luxurious stay in one of only five suites on a wine estate
Le Franschhoek Hotel for a plush stay in this sprawling hotel
Petit Bijou Apartments for your home away from home, in the center of the village
theLAB for an eco-friendly and tech-savvy stay
7 Koppies for an unforgettable farm stay in one of South Africa’s best-kept secrets

Hyundai i230 N: Dare to Feel

What better way to hit the mountain passes of the Western Cape than in the powerful and brand new Hyundai i30N. The first in the family of high-performance vehicles for Hyundai – and she’s coming soon to our shores. Thanks for the invitation team Hyundai SA for the early look.

Top Gear has hailed the vehicle a ‘massive success’, and with 202kW and 353Nm from its turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine, I could quickly feel why. The N brand adds a dynamic and creative touch to the Hyundai brand, and the i30N sets the path for others to follow.

The punchy performance made navigating the passes and backroads of the Winelands an absolute breeze and the vehicle was the perfect companion for this quick trip to Franschhoek. I also had the nerve-racking opportunity to be taken around a racing track by a professional driver. You can catch the clip below and see how my heartbeat rises as we race along:

#i30NLaunch #DareToFeel #sharetheNfeeling

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south african travel journalist