Since the storming of the Bastille during the French Revolution in 1789, the 14th July has been a celebrated French public holiday and in the decidedly French winelands town of Franschhoek it is of course one of the highlights of the year.
Translated as ‘French corner’, Franschhoek was given its name after a group of French Huguenot settlers made this area their home in the late 1680’s. Prior to this the valley was known as Oliphantshoek, meaning ‘elephant corner’ named for the vast herds of elephant which roamed the area – but that’s a story for another time! Back to all things French...
The Franschhoek Bastille Festival is traditionally celebrated on the closest weekend in July – meaning that for 2017 the weekend will take place on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 July. It’s a fantastic weekend to head to Franschhoek with bucket loads of eating, drinking, tasting, laughing and fun to be had (including activities for the kids)– and for those who like to throw in some exercise to balance out all the overindulging you can partake in the Porcupine Hills Barrel Rolling competition or a friendly game of Boules.
The main hub of the festival is within the Food & Wine Marquee in the grounds of the Huguenot Monument – with plenty more to see and do all the way up and down the main street. Festival tickets cost R280 which includes entrance to the marquee, a complimentary tasting glass and 5 tasting coupons. Additional coupons can be bought on the day – but it is best to buy your entrance ticket ahead of time as space is limited.
To really make the most of the festival, why not turn it into a weekend away – or even a winelands mini-break seeing as it is during the July school holidays. There is so much more to this part of the world than wine alone – from mountain biking and hiking trails to fly fishing, horseback trails, galleries, golf and plenty more. Visit RoomsForAfrica to book now. Purchase your festival tickets from Webtickets.