A must-do destination for nature lovers
The Cape Winelands are crisscrossed by steep mountain ranges, giving each valley and wine region a unique character. Situated on the red canna-lined R317 road, Van Loveren is not only a premium wine tasting hub, but a must-do destination for people seeking a vacation in beautiful country surroundings.
With vast natural areas relatively untouched, our farm offers the ideal base to explore and see some of the Cape’s finest examples of rare fauna and flora. With the eight kilometres of river frontage running through the family-owned property alone, some of the truly remarkable experiences visitors can enjoy include hearing the call of fish eagles.
A resident breeding pair successfully raised ten chicks over the past nine years. The local bird club visits the area and up to 92 species have been spotted during a single morning – the most ever in the Breede River Valley.
The Fish Eagle Hiking Trial starts on the estate and takes visitors along the river, as well as through the various veld types found here. A very rare feature on the farm is the special rock formation shaped some 1.3 million years ago and which is only found on this farm and near Sutherland. The Goedemoed (or Klaasvoogds) Olive Melilitite intrusion forms a conspicuous dark triangle on the Elandsberg hill south of the Van Loveren Private Cellar.
The Witteberg quartzite capping the hill appears to have stopped the intrusion that has subsequently been exposed by weathering. The vegetation on this section of the hill also appears quite different to the surrounding vegetation. ?
Conservation of the region’s natural heritage is a priority for us and also reflected in both our products and initiatives. In May 2006 Van Loveren introduced a new range of wines, called the Five's Reserve, which features South Africa’s “Big Five” game animals on the label. Part of the grapes, from which this wine is produced, comes from our black economic empowerment farm, of which 52% is owned by the farm workers themselves. A percentage of the income generated from this wine is used for future conservation projects, such as the rehabilitation of the riparian zones that has been identified as a priority.
We also received Fair Trade accreditation in July 2009 – the very first farm in the Robertson Wine Valley to receive such accreditation from the global organisation that recognises Van Loveren as a contributor to the improvement of production and trading conditions for workers and disadvantaged employees.Van Loveren remains committed to the conservation of the natural environment on this estate. This area comprises mountain fynbos, renosterveld, succulent Karoo as well as some riparian areas along the Breede River.
As a member of the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative, we remain committed to minimising the further loss of threatened natural habitat, and to contribute to sustainable wine production, through the adoption of biodiversity guidelines by the South African wine industry.
More than 500 hectares have been set aside for the conservation of the natural environment and the natural resources, for its utilization in a balanced way on the basis of an integrated management plan.
In addition, tree-planting has been a priority since 1937 when Jean Retief and her husband, Hennie Sr, started commemorating special family and historical occasions. We proudly continue this tradition today with more recent plantings that celebrate South Africa’s hosting of the 2010 Fifa World Cup and Van Loveren’s 30th birthday.