The food & wine heartland of South Africa
The first settlers arrived in Franschhoek Valley in 1688. Initially 176 French Huguenot refugees, many of whom were given land by the Dutch government, set about dividing up the fertile land of the valley. At first the valley was called Olifantshoek ("Elephants' Corner"), so named because of the expansive herds of elephants indigenous to the valley.
The name of the area soon changed to le Coin Français ("the French Corner"), and later to Franschhoek (Afrikaans for "French Corner"), with many of the settlers bestowing names upon their new farms that reflected the areas in France from which they originated. La Dauphine, La Motte, La Cotte, Cabrière, Provence, Chamonix and Dieu Donné were among some of the first established farms. To this day many of these farms retain their original farmhouses.
Today Franschhoek has become well-known for its variety of excellent vineyards that produce some of South Africa’s finest wines.
In turn the area has an abundance of acclaimed restaurants and art galleries. Every year the area attracts discerning international visitors from around the globe.
Whether you are a gourmand, enjoy excellent wine, or simply wish to soak up some of the unmatched beauty of the region, Franschhoek is a must on the itinerary of any traveler who enjoys the finer things life has to offer.
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