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Featured in our World Culinary Expo Edition

Stellenbosch Wine Festival lines up off the pitch festivities during soccer season and following the series

The beautiful game meets barrels of fun this year when the 9th annual Stellenbosch Wine Festival togs up to accommodate visiting soccer fans with a myriad of 'off the pitch' activities hosted in the Winelands from 1 to 5 July. Welcoming all football fans descending on the Mother City, the Stellenbosch Wine Festival happens a month earlier this year to give them a chance to visit and experience South Africa's first and foremost wine route &endash; rich in diverse wine estates and cellars.

Stretching way beyond 90 minutes of action on the field, this year's decentralised Stellenbosch Wine Festival will showcase its divine gems through an extensive network of shuttles between the participating farms. It is as simple as blowing a whistle...Just park your car at any of the allocated Park-and-Ride areas, or visit the Info Centre at Doornbosch in Stellenbosch, to purchase your festival pass and catch a shuttle to the wine farms of your choice. Participating farms are offering visitors wine tastings and untold activities including the opportunity to rub shoulders with your favourite winemakers.

Soccer enthusiasts will certainly not be left out in the cold as transport to and from this meandering wine extravaganza has been arrange from Cape Town. Visitors will also be able to experience the true history, culture and genuine hospitably of Stellenbosch and its wine routes in the comfort of their own vehicle and transport.

During the Festival's five-day celebration, participating wine farms situated along the popular Stellenbosch American Express® Wine Routes will open their cellar doors for a wide-ranging kaleidoscope of family-friendly activities and attractions to entertain the merry crowds en route.

This year's programme ranges from adventurous day trips to interactive winemaking experiences, unbelievable restaurant and accommodation offerings to rare vertical and varietal wine tastings and exclusive winemaker dinners, each offering a different yet unique

With more than 140 wine farms in and around the quaint town of Stellenbosch and various Park-and-Ride areas, it is your ticket to enjoy the true spirit of the Stellenbosch Winelands up, close and personal, without any hassle.

The Festival will also support the biggest sporting extravaganza to hit South African shores in true 'Winelands style'. Idiom Wines are inviting visitors to participate in a fun Supporters' Football Competition on their newly prepared mini-pitch in the middle of their vineyards in the Helderberg. This 5-a-side competition offers enthusiasts the chance to loosen up and emulate their heroes in a relaxed Cape Winelands setting, complete with friends and families cheering at the sidelines with their Vuvuzelas. For the less energetic, Idiom will host a Supporters' Boules Competition on their brand new courts adjoining the soccer field, as well as wine tastings in their hillside bomas, overlooking the vineyards and False Bay in the distance.

Delheim, Jordan Wine Estate and Webersburg are some of the estates who will be carrying the fans' interests at heart by having big screens showing the soccer.

Outdoor lovers can soak up the beauty of the Boland by signing up for game drives at Villiera, with plentiful birdlife and antelope to see whilstending their scenic expedition with a Méthode Cap Classique tasting. Or why not saddle up at the new spectacular 'cellar in the sky' Waterkloof, with its arresting architecture and its panoramic views, for a picturesque wine tasting on horseback.

L'Avenir Estate goes all out French during the festival with a host of activities celebrating the culture, culminating with an awe-inspiring performance by The Matthew Kruger Band, South Africa's very first composers and performers of original rock music in French, at the farm. Simonsig will also get their grapes and gourmet vibe going with live music offered at their estate throughout the duration of the festival.

The Stellenbosch Wine Festival has become a tradition during the winter months in Stellenbosch and is a popular destination for both local and international visitors. The 2009 extravaganza attracted more than 13 500 visitors with another record attendance anticipated this year.

With a host of wine experiences, entertainment, participating restaurants and exclusive winemaker encounters galore, book your Stellenbosch Festival pass now!

Stellenbosch Wine Festival a travellers delight three and last.../

Tickets for the Stellenbosch Wine Festival are available on-line at R150 per person per day, and R500 for the Golden Pass for the entire duration of the festival. Under 18's are free!

For more information on the Stellenbosch Wine Festival and its 2010 programme, contact 021 886 4310 or visit

Issued by: GC Communications

Tel: +27 (0) 21 462-0520

Contact: Leanne Loots


Issued on behalf of: Stellenbosch American Express® Wine Routes

Tel: 021 886 4310

Contact: Annareth Bolton



Cape Wine Collection Tour Packages

Breath-taking scenery, warm hospitality, world-class cuisine and the finest wines. This is the world-renowned Cape winelands, situated on the southwestern tip of Africa. The picturesque region with its spectacular vineyards, has become a magnet ˆ drawing both local and international tourists who wish to explore this inspiring rich cultural and historical heritage. To avoid making a visit to the Winelands with its vast number of wine estates and diverse facilities a daunting task, a range of customised tour packages under the Cape Wine Collection banner has been launched. The route and location of each facility has clearly been mapped out in an illustrated and user-friendly Cape Wine Collection map.

Comprising some of the finest wine estates in the Winelands, the Cape Wine Collection covers everything from ultra modern cellars to 300 year old homesteads as well as allowing visitors to experience the age old tradition of a working brandy cooperage. The concept of the self-guided tour packages is aimed at facilitating and assisting tourists by providing visitors with an easy yet comprehensive method of enjoying the best the Cape Winelands has to offer.

Tailor-made packages offer visitors the choice of one - or half day tours ˆ depending on how much time they have available or on their personal preference. The tours include the option of a sparkling breakfast at the House of JC Le Roux, a picnic lunch in the shadow of the Cape Dutch homestead of Nederburg Estate, or a gourmet lunch at the spectacular @ The Hills at Durbanville Hills winery, overlooking Table Mountain and Table Bay. Two of the packages, the Historic and The Connoisseur‚s Tours also include an overnight stay at the original Plaisir de Merle homestead and each package offers tours and tastings at some of the finest wine estates in the world.

The World Wine Tour takes you on a journey around the world ˆ starting off with the French culture at Plaisir de Merle and continues on to Nederburg Estate, steeped in German tradition. Enjoy a pleasurable lunch at @ The Hills and end the day with a tour of Durbanville Hills winery, producers of award-winning New World style wines.

The Complete Winelands Tour offers tours and tastings at the world-renowned Nederburg Estate and South Africa‚s leading house of sparkling wine, The House of JC Le Roux. Discover quality and sparkling wines before enjoying an indulgent lunch. End the day with a tour and sundowner at Van Ryn brandy distillery.

If you are pressed for time the Half Day Winelands Tour provides an all round Winelands experience in only half a day. Enjoy a tour and tasting at The Bergkelder, the wine cellar in the mountain at the foot of the historic Papegaaiberg on the outskirts of Stellenbosch and experience the tranquil ambience of this awesome cellar. Indulge in a relaxing cheese lunch under the trees, next to the river and end the day with a tour of Van Ryn brandy distillery and a glorious brandy cocktail next to the fountain.

Experience the rich culture and historic nature of the Cape Winelands with the Historic Tour. Visit the 200-year-old Drostdy Hof Estate and museum in Tulbach before heading back to Paarl for a tour of the Cape Dutch style Nederburg homestead. End the day back in Simondium, outside Paarl with a tour and overnight stay at the 300-year-old farm of Plaisir de Merle. This trip down memory lane is one not be missed by any wine connoisseur.

facility tour packages: There are 8 of these exciting packages to choose from, highlighting the splendor and magnificence of South Africa‚s premier wine regions. Explore the possibilities, choose one that is most suitable for you and enjoy the best wine, food and hospitality in the Cape this festive season. Most local tour operators offer the tour packages and The Cape Wine Collection map is available at leading tourist information centres, tour operators, filling stations and wine estates. For reservations and further information please contact the relevant wine estate:

 I love Cape TownPlaisir de Merle Tel: (021) 874 1072

Nederburg Tel: (021) 862 3104

JC Le Roux Tel: (021) 865 2590

Drostdy Hof Tel: (023) 230 1086

Bergkelder Tel: (021) 809 8492

Neethlingshof Tel: (021) 883 8988