South Africans are quick to plan a holiday in Cape Town’s central areas, posting selfies of the bright lights and towering skyscrapers on social media. All of which, mind you, are inextricably part of the Western Cape’s lure and have a rightful place in society.

But if you linger around the Cape for long enough, you’ll start to notice that many locals tend to gravitate towards the inner parts of the province to quiet their souls on weekends.

The Boland possesses an old-world charm and more rolling fields than you ever thought physically possible so close to a bustling metropolis. It’s not too far out of reach, so those coming from the cityside merely pop in for a day or two. They explore, eat, drink and are merry, and then pack up and go back to the never-sleeping Mother City.

The Bolanders leading slow-paced lives painting or writing are mildly amused but otherwise disinterested as the Capetonians descend on them, and they gladly lend their Boland to the masses for a day. The winemakers look up from their laborious winemaking, smiling to welcome the city folk because they know how much the southern suburbs dwellers are willing to spend on some really good wine. And good wine they will get, no less.

Once you’re out there, having a hearty brunch underneath an age-old oak tree in Franschhoek or strolling along the hills above Stellenbosch, you can almost imagine yourself in the French countryside. Except you don’t want to, because there’s nowhere else you’d rather be than right here in the Boland of South Africa.

Pictures: Anita Froneman

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