Wikipedia will tell you that “Malgas is a settlement on the right bank of the Breede River in the Overberg region of the Western Cape” and that the name “is probably an adaptation of the Portuguese mangas de velludo, ‘velvet sleeves’, referring to the Cape gannet with its black-tipped wings.” The key word here is probably. What Wikipedia doesn’t tell you is that when you separate out the syllables, ‘mal gas’ can be directly translated from Afrikaans as ‘crazy gas’. We might be crazy for planting the first vineyard in this region, but you'll find there is a lot to keep yourself busy with.
Located about 2.5 hours from Cape Town, we recommend staying for a weekend in Malgas if you'd like to visit Sijnn. There are several accommodation options in and around Malgas,here are our top picks:
De Hoop Collection offers a wide range of accommodation. From camping and caravan sites and affordable self-catering chalets to more luxurious self-catering cottages and upmarket fully catered lodges.
Half way between Sijnn Winery and De Hoop you will find the Potteberg Guest Farm. It is situated at the foot of the Potberg Mountain, on the boundary of De Hoop Nature Reserve. All are welcome.
The southern bank of the Breede River is lined with idyllic holiday homes that have boat jetties and motorboats to support the riverine lifestyle that is so special, and many holiday rentals are available for visitors.
When you visit Sijnn you may feel that you’re in the middle of nowhere but in the search for a good meal we’ve discovered some great restaurants within a 50km radius of the winery.
THINGS TO DO
There's plenty to see and do in the region of Malgas and Swellendam. Here are a few of our top favourites:
Few other reserves offer as complete an outdoor experience as De Hoop – sea, sand dunes, the vlei, a floral sensation of rare fynbos plants, diverse antelope and the Potberg Mountains. Every year, some 40% of the world’s southern right whales come to these shores to breed.
Situated at the mouth of the Breede River, Witsand offers 4km of white sandy beaches, surrounded by magnificent species of Cape Fynbos within this Cape Floral Region World Heritage Site. Ideal for family vacations during the summer time.
BONTEBOK NATIONAL PARK
Bontebok National Park is a place of simplistic beauty and peaceful charm. The majestic Langeberg Mountains provide a picturesque backdrop for this Park of colourful riches. Bontebok is also part of the Cape Floral Kingdom, now heralded as a world heritage site.
Enjoy the best pizzas in Malgas, right on the Breede River! There is a TV to watch sport, there is indoor and outdoor seating and as it is a bar they serve drinks too. Only 5 minutes drive from the winery by car. Access by boat also.
A relaxing and fun place to hang out and have a few drinks. For R10 pp you can braai here. Open weekends only, and in summer season only. 10 minutes drive from the winery or you can access the pub by boat. It's a local favourite!
Hire a boat at the Malagas Hotel. Stop off at Sijnn Winery first to stock up on wine, get your ice from the Trading Post, then head to the Boat House and Bush Pub before heading off for a few days on the river. It's a real trip!