Babylonstoren: 10 Reasons To Visit This Award-Winning Wine Farm

Babylonstoren: 10 Reasons To Visit This Award-Winning Wine Farm

A veritable Garden of Eden in the Cape Winelands…

Dating back to 1692, this 200-hectare farm, lies in the Drakenstein Valley in the heart of the Cape Winelands, almost halfway between Franschhoek and Paarl. Here, owner Karen Roos has masterfully created the ultimate farm haven, where the luxury is in the integrity and authenticity of the setting.

Excellent wine aside, Babylonstoren is also home to a stylish hotel, a 3.5-hectare garden that supplies three restaurants and a juicery, a serene spa, modern wine-tasting centre, boathouse with row boat, endless dirt roads (which hotel guests can explore on available mountain bikes) and a pervasive sense of tranquility that follows you everywhere.

Here are 10 reasons it should feature on every visitor to the Cape’s hitlist. (If we’ve left out a reason, please add it in the comments below; we’d love to hear from you.)

1. The Garden at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Wine

The 3.5-hectare garden, modelled on the famous Company’s Garden in Cape Town, is probably the farm’s main attraction, providing the central backdrop to everything that happens on the farm. The Garden of Diversity pays tribute to the gardening traditions of the Cape; for centuries the halfway station between Europe and Asia, where ships would replenish with water, vegetables and fruit. There are over three kilometres of paths through the garden, which provide hours of walking pleasure, or join the daily guided garden tour led by one of the gardeners.
Good to know Regrettably no dogs are allowed (except for guide dogs), and be sure to wear comfortable shoes.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 9am – 4pm
Cost R20 per adult
R10 per child (under 12 years)
Free (RHS members only)
Good to know Entrance fees are payable at the ticket office. Babylonstoren Garden Membership is a one-off entry fee that allows you to register for membership using the free Candide app. This will give you unlimited admission to Babylonstoren for 12 months. Your annual membership allows four friends or family members to join you on the day of your visit.

2. Babel

Babylonstoren Garden

Housed in the homestead’s original cowshed, Babel is a laidback yet sophisticated restaurant, dressed in a delicious blend of Cape Dutch architecture and contemporary decor. During winter expect comforting dishes, such as slow-cooked leg of lamb in red wine jus, while in summer, be bowled over by a vibrant colour-coded salad made with produce from the garden. Naturally, there’s a superb list of wines to accompany your meal.
Opening times Breakfast: Daily, 8am – 9.30am
Lunch: Wednesday – Sunday, 12pm – 3.30pm
Dinner: Daily, 7pm – late

3. Wine-Tasting at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Wine Tasting

Next to the vintage wine cellar is a warm yet modern tasting centre, with floor-to-ceiling glass panes that maximise the breathtaking views of Babylonstoren Hill, Simonsberg and the Banghoek Mountains. Sit back, relax and enjoy this stylish space with a glass of excellent Babylonstoren wine. And, maybe a platter to share – our favourite is the Cellar Master’s Platter: bresaola, salami, Leyden cheese, Babylonstoren fior di latte, Caprese salad, olives and homemade preserves.
Opening times 1 May – 31 August: Daily, 10am – 5pm
1 September – 30 April: Daily, 10am – 6pm
Cost R80 per person (tasting of seven wines)
R40 per person (express tasting of 3 wines)
R295 per person (75-minute long cellar tour and visit to new wine tunnel. 10am; 1pm; 4pm)

4. The Garden Spa at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Spa
Paarl Online

Set within a forest of bamboo, greenery and flowing water channels, the Garden Spa offers a world-class oasis of peace and relaxation. Complete with an outdoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room, indoor heated vitality pool, tropical rain showers, a salt room (built with blocks of Himalayan salt) and a gym, the spa promises to meet your every need, and more. Enquire about the variety of treatments, including the hammam: an ancient cleansing ritual aimed at relieving stress; massage; wraps; facials and reflexology. The spa is open to hotel guests as well as day visitors.
Opening times Daily, 12pm – 4pm (day visitors); 8am – 7pm (hotel guests)
Contact 021 300 3929,

5. The Spice Garden at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Spice Garden

Situated within a domed conservatory, this exotic space contains an array of aromatic spices associated with the spice trade, such as turmeric, ginger and nutmeg cloves. Tropical Asian fish swim about in two glass aquariums (and beneath the deck) – an homage to the continent from which these spices originated.
The Spice Garden is available to host private functions for between 13 and 24 guests. There are different menus for winter and summer, but each will feature spiced tea or coffee, freshly baked bread, handcrafted butter and Babylonstoren olives, salad, soup, various herbs and vegetables from the garden, and a delicious dessert.
Opening times Daily, 12pm – 4pm (booking is essential)
Cost R290 per person
Contact 021 863 3852,

6. The Bakery at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Bakery

On Monday and Friday evenings, The Bakery hosts Buonissimo Italian evenings. The three-course set menu starts with an antipasti or salad offering, followed by a woodfired pizza or a homemade pasta for mains, with a delicious dolce and coffee for dessert.
Opening times Mondays & Fridays, 7pm
Cost R340 (adults)
R175 (children)
On Wednesday evenings, The Bakery turns into a meat-lover’s paradise, with Carnivore Evening. The meat comes from grass-fed Chianina cows (an age-old Italian breed of cattle). Chefs Jaco Koegelenberg and Eddie Plaatjies braai the meat to perfection while you sit back and enjoy the strains of live accordion and a glass of wine.
Time Wednesday, 6.30pm
Cost R490 (adults, includes two glasses of wine)
R175 (children)

7. The Healing Garden and Tea Ceremony at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Tea Ceremony

Created for quiet reflection, this restful space in the garden has a central layout that intuitively follows the form of the human body, with herbs to heal various parts of the anatomy. During the Tuesday tea ceremonies, you’ll learn how to brew your own herbal tea, while learning about the healing properties of the plants around us.
Good to know Children under 10 years are not permitted in the Healing Garden.
Opening times Tuesday, 9.30am
Cost R335 (50% deposit is required to secure your booking.)

8. Greenhouse Restaurant at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Restaurant

At the far end of the garden is a greenhouse conservatory that was custom-built in France for Babylonstoren. Here, no-fuss food is the order of the day. Expect home-baked treats, fresh garden juices, artisanal breads with handcrafted cheeses and cold meats, as well as fresh garden salads and, of course, teas and coffees.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 10am – 4pm

9. The Juicery at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Juicery

Staying true to Babylonstoren’s farm-to-fork mission of utilising fresh, local produce, their cold-pressed juices are made from fruit and vegetables sourced directly from the garden and surrounding farmland. In their state-of-the-art juicery, the produce is cold-pressed, mixed together, and then preserved using High Pressure Processing (HPP), which keeps the product fresh without using any heat, thereby preserving the flavour and nutritional value.
A viewing deck in Babylonstoren’s factory allows guests to see the meticulous processes taking place here. You can also take part in one of Babylonstoren’s Juice Jamming workshops, where guests pick fresh fruit and vegetables from the garden, create their own juice in The Juicery, and end off with lunch at The Greenhouse.
Opening times Daily, 9am – 5pm (The Juicery)
10am – 3pm on scheduled dates (Juice Jamming workshop)
Please note No further juice jamming workshops are scheduled for 2019, but they will return in 2020, so watch this space.
Contact 021 863 3852,

10. Luxurious farm accommodation at Babylonstoren

Babylonstoren Pool Winelands Accommodation

For those who wish to immerse themselves in this garden paradise overnight, the hotel at Babylonstoren offers a delicious taste of idyllic country life: from Provençal-inspired gardens bearing fruit that made the Cape of Good Hope a vital pitstop, to luxurious suites that are replicas of the old farm workers’ cottages, to food fit for the gods.
This heavenly mixture of laidback farm-style delights and world-class creature comforts comes courtesy of owner Karen Roos, who has drawn on her extensive travels abroad, and masterfully merged those with the very best local flavours. Karen’s inimitable sense of style (nonchalantly teaming a Kartell side table with a deep, old-fashioned bathtub) and her scrupulous attention to detail puts some of the city’s most lavish hotels to shame.
Cost From R6 600 (depending on season)

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The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

Time of publication: 29 August 2019

23 Responses to “Babylonstoren: 10 Reasons To Visit This Award-Winning Wine Farm”

  1. Karin Weisensee

    Outstanding article on Babylonstoren ! Keep up your excellent work.

    • The Inside Guide

      Hi Karin. Thanks for your message.
      We recommend subscribing to our newsletter for up-to-the-minute news about cool happenings in and around Cape Town. Let me know if you’d like us to subscribe you.

  2. Estelle Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen

    Babylonstoren is out of this world. The gardens, food everything. Next time we will do the Spa and hotel.

  3. Adrienne Bartlett

    Everything about this farm is beautiful. You need a good few hours to do your visit justice. The Clivia garden is amazing. I can’t remember when they are in flower, but it was spectacular. You also use part of the entrance fees for uplifting the community. Is that correct? We will be visiting again in mid April . Can’t wait.

  4. Khosi Zondi

    Please put my name down for the weekly newsletter

  5. Deborah

    Never been would love to get away to somewhere so serene

  6. Belinda Karsten

    Weekly News letter on special

  7. helene vandermerwe

    always for a day visit!

  8. Marie Hoadley

    We are going to spend a few days in CT and surrounds and would like info.

    • The Inside Guide

      Hi Marie, we’ve subscribed you to our newsletter.
      Stay tuned for updates!

  9. Louise Fitzsimons

    Good morning
    I’d like to make a reservation for lunch at the Babel, on Thursday 29th May at 12.30

    Booking is for 2 thanks

    Please confirm if this is ok.
    Kind regards
    Louise 0834550880

    • The Inside Guide

      Hi Louise,
      You’re through to The Inside Guide. Kindly contact Babel directly: 021 863 3852
      Best wishes

  10. Janet Sawkins

    Visiting next month so would love foodie ideas in and around CT please.

    • The Inside Guide

      Hi Janet, we’ve subscribed you to our newsletter.
      Stay tuned for updates!

  11. Irene anthony

    Interested in this awesome place

  12. Zeenat

    Visited your place today. Beautiful, quiet, clean atmosphere

  13. Mariana Weigelt

    Goeie môre
    Is julle tans met level 1 oor naweke ook oop- restaurante- vir eet en wyn saam met dié ete.

  14. Nancy

    Good afternoon,

    Do you allow day visitors and packed picnics?

    • The Inside Guide

      Hi Nancy,
      Yes Babylonstoren is open to day visitors now! You’re not allowed to bring your own picnic, but the Greenhouse serves delightful light meals and snacks – they’re open daily, 10am – 4pm.
      The Farm Shop, Scented Shop, Babel restaurant and Garden Spa are also open.
      Enjoy your visit!

  15. Louise

    Gorgeous photos. Would love to visit.

  16. Matt

    no access to internet, but I have wattsup.

  17. Lisa Canty

    Would like to visit for a day we will be based in Cape Town what is the best way to get to you.

    Lisa Canty