- Learn about the history of Franschhoek dating back to the 1800s
- Take in the spectacular views of the mountains surrounding the village
- Discover the locals’ favourite hidden gems and best places to go
Uncover the charm and history of Franschhoek on a one-hour Historical Village Walk. Taking you through the picturesque town, you’ll visit numerous national monuments and places of interest, some dating back to the early 1800s. Along the way, you’ll learn about the first inhabitants of the area, hear about the iconic animals they shared the valley with, how the wine industry came about and why French isn’t spoken despite being a village inspired by France. Spectacular views of the surrounding majestic mountains greet you along the way alongside the friendly local community.
The Franschhoek Valley was established in 1688 by French Huguenot refugees who were forced to evacuate France or face persecution. With a lot of experience in agriculture, they settled in in the valley and began farming along the Berg River. Many of the settlers named their farms after areas in France from which they came. In 1938, the Huguenot Memorial was constructed to commemorate the 250th anniversary of their arrival. Many of the farm estates that exist in the valley today have kept their French names as a reminder of the contribution of the French Huguenots to the wine industry. Now home to around 6,600 people, the Franschhoek Valley is famous for its world-class wineries and restaurants.
Unit 4 Fabriek Nationale, Fabriek Street, Franschhoek, 7690
Advice for visitors
The village historical tour is a one-hour, easy walk through town. You don’t need to be super fit, but you do need to be able to walk comfortably for a minimum of one hour. The group meets in the Main Road of Franschooek and you are encouraged to bring a camera, an inquiring mind and a R5 donation for the church. Wear comfortable walking shoes and, no matter the weather forecast, it’s always a good idea to have a hat, sunscreen and light wind or rain jacket handy. Make sure to ask about the many other activities and services on offer such as hiking, mountain biking, wine tours, art routes, township tours and more. Also, make a mental note of the best places to wine and dine in Franschhoek and enjoy a meal or a wine tasting at one of the many incredible wine farms and restaurants in the valley.
Did you know
The Franschhoek flag is a French flag with a grey elephant in the centre. The elephant is a reminder of the herds which originally roamed the Franschhoek mountains. The last herd was seen departing the valley in 1850.