Information

Welcome to Grabouw & Elgin

Grabouw is about an hour’s drive on the N2 highway from Cape Town. You will find it in the Elgin Valley just over Sir Lowry’s Pass, which connects the town of Somerset West to the interior of the Overberg region.

Grabouw is a predominantly agricultural area known for its apples and pears, and the well-known fizzy apple drink that is produced there. Although Grabouw is most famous for its apples, owing to the area’s specific geographical features and cooler wine-growing climate it has also become a well-respected wine-growing region in recent years.

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Since there are so many places around the town that fall into the Elgin Valley, the area encompassing the town of Grabouw and the Elgin Valley is often referred to as Elgin. Even towns as far East as Botrivier and the surrounding farming areas fall under the Elgin Valley tourism banner, and this stretch of the N2 offers a wide selection of restaurants, wine farms, outdoor activities and generous mountain scenery. It is also a very popular mountain biking destination.

Visitors to Grabouw / Elgin are immediately welcomed into the area by more than one roadside farm stall, which is a testament to the variety of fresh produce available in the area. When driving over Sir Lowry’s Pass, the Steenbras Dam on your right and the nearby Theewaterskloof Dam are key reservoirs and water suppliers to the Western Cape region.

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Historically, the area was settled by the renowned Molteno family and until recently, it was difficult to buy a farm in the area as these were traditionally passed down from generation to generation. However, although the area is predominantly made up of apple and pear farms, over the years farms have been sold due to the apple farming crisis in the early 1990s. This forced many farmers to sell their farms and is the reason many current wine farmers were able to set up boutique wineries.

Many local business owners have relocated from other parts of the country to set up restaurants, guest houses and wine farms, and the character of the area is greatly influenced by growth in tourism. This is due to the growing popularity of outdoor activities such as mountain biking in the area and the growth of the wine industry - an industry that was thought to have been impossible to develop in the area only decades ago.

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The area is framed by the Hottentots Holland Mountain range which extends to Botrivier in the East. Grabouw / Elgin is also located nearby nature reserves such as the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve, which is a UNESCO recognised reserve and contains many examples of endemic vegetation in the area, particularly certain species of mountain fynbos. Other nature reserves in the area include the Hottentots Holland Nature Reserve.

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Grabouw / Elgin is an ideal escape due to its proximity to Cape Town and Cape Town International Airport. The area also caters to a variety of holiday and accommodation preferences, from relaxed time with the family to an active getaway. For those looking to wine and dine, Grabouw / Elgin offers several restaurant options and a variety of wine farms where you can taste a selection of local wines. Outdoor enthusiasts also have a range of mountain biking and hiking trails to explore. For those looking to relax, there are a variety of different activities to suit any activity level, from fishing at local dams to taking a tour of the area with one of the many local tour operators.