We often have people enquiring about family friendly hotels in the Western Cape and Love My Cape Town recently visited the very well-known Spier Wine Estate near Stellenbosch. This is an affordable, activity filled, child friendly, foody heaven, nature loving break-away the entire family will enjoy. It has been almost more than 14 years since I last visited Spier, and despite having fond memories, our recent visit exceeded all my expectations on so many levels. Let me take you on the journey….
We checked into our rooms (yes, the kids had their own room with an inter-leading door to ours), which were spacious and comfortable and opened onto a little veranda leading to a private garden courtyard with an enclosed private swimming pool. We had a lazy day, meandering around the expansive Spier grounds and gardens followed by dinner at the Eight Restaurant. The food is wholesome and well prepared and directly from the farm, organic, grass-fed, happy chickens the works – heavenly to say the least.
The next day we did a wine tasting with the kids. Did you know that Spier offers a grape juice tasting for the kids whilst the adults do a wine tasting? This is complete with a goody bag filled with crayons, stickers and paper. This made the wine tasting experience an absolute treat as a family outing.
Our lunch was a gourmet picnic on the lawns under huge old trees, which the kids climbed to their hearts content. The picnic basket was stuffed with scrumptious eats, enough to feed two adults and two kids properly. We finished lunch and then swam for the rest of the afternoon, followed by an afternoon nap. All holidays should have at least one of those, if you are lucky enough to achieve it.
One of the highlights for the kids was a 5 km bicycle ride on the Spier premises. There is a 5km and 10km path, which you can run, walk, cycle or just ignore depending on your preference. We noticed the bicycles at reception when we checked in and then decided to indulge. If your children are still on balance bikes, I would recommend you take your own, as they only provide pedal bikes for the young ones. We concluded our cycle with dinner at the recently opened Vadas Smokehouse and Bakery. The chef, PJ Vadas, worked with Gordon Ramsey in New York as well as in London and comes from a family of successful restaurant owners, the dishes are expertly prepared with a focus on sharing dishes. The food is exceptional. We highly recommend their beef brisket and pasteis de nata.
We spent our last day at the Eagle encounter where the kids got to hold bearded dragons, owls, baby tortoises, snakes and we even played with 2-month-old fox cubs.
All in all this was a magical weekend and an easy-to-enjoy venue. You don’t need to drive anywhere in search for “child-friendly” activities whilst residing at the hotel and they offer a variety of babysitting options. It’s like being on a resort but only 50min from Cape Town.