PaarlSouth Africa

Try fresh produce from the orchards, vineyards and farms in this picturesque and historic area where Mandela was imprisoned.

Paarl is among South Africa’s prominent providers of wine and fruit. It stands in its namesake valley surrounded by rock giants that generate a dramatic and scenic setting. Learn about the country’s distinctive grape varieties at historic wineries around town.

Come for tastings at Vrede en Lust Estate, which offers acclaimed vintages from grapes growing in its two vineyards. Take a guided tour of the cellar for an understanding of the fermentation process and the history of the winery. Enjoy local products and artisan menus at the Lust Bistro and Bakery.

Dine at high-end restaurants at Laborie Wine Farm, among the oldest wineries in the country. The winery, known for its excellent Méthode Cap Classique sparkling wines, takes its name from France’s La Bri district. Try various craft beers at its Bar di Bar, which has a 1970s ambiance with a jukebox.

Looming over the winery is the dominant Paarl Rock, a popular climbing challenge. Photograph its bulbous dome shape and smooth surface. Bring your kids on this fairly simple climb, where you will find many trails of varying difficulty. Climb from Paarl Rock to Bretagna Rock in about 1 hour.

Hear how Nelson Mandela spent 14 months in a private house within the walls of Victor Verster Correctional Centre at the end of his 27-year imprisonment. A bronze statue stands outside the prison, now known as the Drakenstein Correctional Centre. Marvel at the obelisks of the Afrikaans Language Monument and learn about its pride and identity.

Paarl is cited as a Southern Hemisphere equivalent to the Mediterranean for weather. Expect a pleasant climate with hot summers from December to March and mild winters.

The town is in the Cape Winelands area 37 miles (60 kilometers) east of Cape Town in southwestern South Africa. Fly to Cape Town International Airport and take a taxi to Paarl in less than 1 hour.

Visit Paarl, the pearl of South African wine, for intriguing monuments and a stunning backdrop of mountains.

Top hotels in Paarl

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Pearl Valley Hotel by Mantis
Pearl Valley Hotel by Mantis
3.5 out of 5

Situated in Cape Winelands, this golf hotel is 1.8 mi (2.9 km) from Cape Floral Region Protected Areas and within 6 miles (10 km) of Vrede en Lust Estate and ...

4.2/5Very Good! (5 reviews)
Irish couple

"Spent four wonderful days at Pearl Valley, the hotel is very close to Paarl and Franschhoek in the wine district. The rooms were excellent, very comfortable beds and kitchen facilities.Large balcony with great views of the golf course. Very secure / safe site, brilliant walking /running / cycling ..."…"

Reviewed on 12 Mar 2020

Pearl Valley Hotel by Mantis
Zeederberg Corner
Zeederberg Corner
3 out of 5
The price is £40 per night

Situated in the historical district, this apartment building is within 2 miles (3 km) of Laborie Wine Farm, Paarl Mountain Local Nature Reserve and KWV Wine ...

4.4/5Excellent! (5 reviews)

"Great Stay!"…"

Reviewed on 18 Feb 2020

Zeederberg Corner
Grande Roche Hotel
Grande Roche Hotel
5 out of 5

Situated in the historical district, this luxury hotel is within 2 miles (3 km) of Laborie Wine Farm, Paarl Mountain Local Nature Reserve and KWV Wine Emporium. ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (77 reviews)

"Delightful hotel. Quirky comfortable rooms. Helpful staff. Easy commute to the winelands but need a car. Would recommend this hotel. We thoroughly enjoyed our three-night stay."…"

Reviewed on 5 Mar 2020

Grande Roche Hotel

Reviews of Paarl


Top Destination

5 - Excellent
5 - Excellent 50%
4 - Good
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3 - Okay
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4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

8 Sep 2019

Afrikaans monument worth seeing

5/5 - Excellent


22 Feb 2019

Overall we had an excellent time, the accommodation was very relaxed and inviting and at the end of the stay we felt like one of the family that's how much we felt at home. Thank you to all.

Cities near Paarl

Victoria and Alfred Waterfront showing a lake or waterhole

Cape Town

Franschhoek featuring landscape views, mountains and a sunset




Boschendal Estate showing heritage architecture

Cape Winelands