Monday, November 26, 2007

The most beautiful drive in the world


To my right thoroughbred horses glisten in the light that is breaking through the clouds this morning. The vineyards around them are bursting with leaves and the last of the spring flowers add a splash of colour here and there.

I’ve driven along the R44 through the Stellenbosch Winelands so many times. It’s always beautiful but during early summer everything is so lush and green and washed clean by the winter rains. The Cape got a lot of rain this winter. The dams are full to the brim.

Today the skies are not able to contain itself and as I pass the horses at Avontuur Estate the rain pours down like a moment of joy.

Even the scarecrows at the strawberry farms along the way look like they are laughing. It’s no wonder as it’s the perfect time for strawberries. They are sweet and fresh right now – a perfect accompaniment to Simonsig Brut Rosé which I pick up at the farm where this sparkling wine is produced, just on the other side of Stellenbosch.

Perhaps I will come back another day and stop at Simonsberg in Stellenbosch for French cheeses and pick up some plump olives at L’avenir to have with Laibach’s organic wines.

There is a real sense of abundance in this part of the world… the freshest produce, the best wines, some fantastic sparkling wines and a beauty that is too much to take in all at the same time.

When the skies clear the bright sun highlights the visual pleasure that is the Stellenbosch area. Sure, Tuscany has its charm and Champagne is enchanting, but the R44 between Somerset West and Paarl is simply the most beautiful drive in the world.

2 comments:

Tim said...

I will have to politely disagree. Chapman's Peak on an early Sunday morning on a bicycle comes up tops in my book.

Anonymous said...

I want to support you both, there are a few roads in the Western Cape that whether you are a first time visitor or a weathered and wind blown resident, roads such as the R44, Chapmans Peak, Kloofnek looking down on Camps Bay and Clifton at sunset and the list can go on...these roads are just visually stunning