Dating back to 1692, Babylonstoren is a historic Cape Dutch farm that boasts one of the best preserved farmyards in the Cape. Beloved for its magnificent garden that is laid out over 3,5 hectares, every aspect of Babylonstoren – including the contemporary Farm Hotel & Spa, the Farm Shop and Bakery – are led by the ever-changing tapestry and botanical diversity of the garden.
Here's five things for you to do at Babylonstoren this weekend:
1. Stay at the Farm Hotel
At Babylonstoren’s Farm Hotel, the overall effect is relaxed yet well heeled with some of the existing farm buildings transformed into sophisticated guest accommodation. Set adjacent to a 3,5 hectare cultivated fruit and vegetable garden, the hotel is characterised by thick whitewashed walls, elegant gables and hearty fireplaces that emulate an authentic farmstay experience. There are six one-bedroom suites, as well as three one-bedroom cottages and four two-bedroomed cottages. Perfect for a local getaway.
2. Stroll Through the Garden or Take a Tour
Set within 3,5 hectares of cultivated fruit and vegetables, the big garden at Babylonstoren is at the heart of the farm. It was inspired by the historic Company’s Garden in Cape Town, which supplied sailing ships of the Dutch East India Company with fresh vegetables and fruit during the days when the Cape was a halfway station between Europe and Asia. But there is also a link back to the mythological hanging gardens of Babylon.
Book a tour through the stunning garden, for only R20 per person on weekends and public holidays and R10 during the week. All fees go toward the Babylonstoren Trust for the education of local children.
3. Get Pampered at the Garden Spa
Like everything else at Babylonstoren, the Garden Spa is inextricably linked to the garden and the ever-changing seasons. Set within a forest of bamboo with tranquil greenery and a myriad leiwater channels to set the tone. Some of their traditional treatment rooms are housed in a pavilion constructed of bamboo, which comprises a hammam, chill room and a gym.
4. Tantalise Your Tastebuds
With both a formal restaurant and a tea garden, foodies will not be disappointed with the selection of food offered at Babylonstoren. Babel Restaurant, housed in an old cow shed, is a wonderful mix of Cape Dutch architecture with contemporary glass walls that makes for a simple yet edgy environment in which to try their tasty yet often unconventional combinations. With a farm-to-fork philosophy, you will be served served seasonal foods which reflects their "pick, clean and serve" approach. Or find the Greenhouse tucked away between the oak trees which offers guests the perfect place to rest and enjoy delicious home-baked cakes, coffee, tea and fresh garden juices.
5. Wine Tasting and a Cellar Tour
The perfect spot for wine sipping and cheese nibbling. The Tasting Room sits adjacent to the Wine Cellar, offering views of the conical Babylonstoren Hill, Simonsberg and the Banghoek Mountains. Choose from a range of snack platters which are an ideal light bite while tasting the Babylonstoren range of wines.
For guests with a little more time to spare, cellar tours offer a behind-the-scenes look at how the estate’s wines are crafted. The tour includes a walk through the vineyards and a visit to the olive oil production plant.
For more information visit babylonstoren.com.