The best tea tours along South Africa’s ‘Rooibos Route’

Posted on 4 March 2024 By Savanna Douglas

As wonderful as a wine tour and tasting can be, this activity is a popular pastime in the Western Cape. If you’re looking for a more unique tour experience, spun across an approximately 60,000-hectare belt in South Africa’s Western Coast, lies the tea route – home to Mzansi’s world-famous Rooibos tea, otherwise known as African Red Bush tea.

Today, we’re sharing a pick of local tea tours to take part in, on the Rooibos Route:

Tour the Groenkol Rooibos Tea Estate with Elandsberg Eco Tourism

The Cederberg is home to South Africa’s Rooibos Route. In the region lies one of the largest tea plantations, Groenkol Rooibos Tea Estate. This spot is home to an array of Fynbos (including Rooibos) that make up a great deal of the Cape Floral Region. Join tour operator and accommodation provider Elandsberg Eco Tourism for a one-hour guided tour of the tea farm, a seasonal Fynbos safari, or both. Guests can also visit the farm’s beautiful rock formations, which play a vital part in the ecology of the Cape Floral Region. Once the tour has wrapped up, guests are treated to special spiced Rooibos tea and a browse through the estate shop’s selection of rooibos products.

For more information, visit Elandsberg Eco Tourism website.


A trot through tea plantations with Cederberg Ridge

Cederberg Ridge Wilderness Lodge, known for their citrus and grape farm, offers visits to a nearby rooibos farm twice a week, where you’ll learn how the plant is grown and processed, and why the Cederberg region is known as ‘the spot’ for Rooibos production globally. You may also pop into the House of Rooibos for a video presentation, some tea-tasting and to browse a remarkable array of Rooibos products on sale. We enjoy this tour option combined with a Cederberg Ridge rock art excursion, a walk on the farm, and a sunset boat cruise to round the day off nicely.

For more information, visit Cederberg Ridge website.

Tea walks and tastings with Skimmelberg

The Cape Floral Kingdom was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 2004, and Fynbos is rich in species in this region. The two crops grown on Skimmelberg farm – namely Buchu and Rooibos – both occur naturally on the mountain slopes of Skimmelberg. The farm produces, exports and sells organic Buchu and Rooibos tea products grown on the land. Visitors will see these two plants as they occur naturally in the wild, as well as how they are farmed organically and sustainably. Once the tour is over, guests may join the Skimmelberg team for a unique tea tasting before delving into the pioneering world of Buchu-based products. If you’d like to grab a keepsake, the farm has a shop stocked with Buchu and Rooibos goodies. Bonus: If you visit during flower season in September and October, the wildflowers in bloom make a remarkable attraction for guests.

For more information, visit Skimmelberg website.


A Bergendal tea tour with Carmién Tea

On route to Bergendal lies the home of Carmién Tea, a local producer, exporter and manufacturer of Rooibos. Carmién offers a visit to the Rooibos fields during weekdays, where you’ll learn about Rooibos production on the farm, from crop to cup – including the subtle varieties in species there, and traditional harvesting practices used. You’ll then head to the tea factory to get an inside scoop on how Rooibos is refined, from fermentation to sorting. Guests may also enjoy tea tasting and a special video screening during the Harvest Season (January – April).

Carmién also stocks a Tea Shop at De Tol Farm Deli, outside of Citrusdal on the N7. There, guests enjoy pairing tea with food and wine – a unique experience not to miss out on.

For more information, visit Carmién website.


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