Vergelegen Heritage Sites

The over 300 year old majestic camphor trees and magnificent homestead and library bear testimony to Vergelegen's grandeur.

Camphor Trees

They are the oldest living, officially documented trees on the sub-continent. Introduced to the Cape from China and Japan around 1670, they were planted at Vergelegen during the van der Stel era (1700 - 1706). The five remaining giants were proclaimed National Monuments in 1942 and are expected to live for another 150 - 200 years. The other camphor trees at Vergelegen are seedlings from these five magnificent species.

Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - gardens : camphor trees - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2005 © Vergelegen Estate - vergelegen.co.za]Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - gardens : camphor trees - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2005 © Vergelegen Estate - vergelegen.co.za]


Homestead

Open to the public since 1992, the homestead offers a glimpse into a fascinating bygone era. It has undergone many changes since its first owner originally built it, from a dilapidated remnant of the past to a fashionable entertainment hub for high society and artists. Today, the homestead is a showcase of select treasures of early Cape Furniture, objets and textiles and provides a layered historicism of the 300 years of Vergelegen's existence.

Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - gardens :  - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2005 © Vergelegen Estate - vergelegen.co.za]Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - homestead : room - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2005 © Vergelegen Estate - vergelegen.co.za]

Library

The original winery was built in 1816 and converted into a library during the Phillips era. Up to this date, the library is still home to the priceless collection of Sir Lionel's 4500 books, including ancient and modern history, travel journals and a small collection of Africana and 168 French volumes.

Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - gardens : pond with koi fishes in front of library - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2004 © paulgodard.com]Vergelegen Heritage Sites - Vergelegen Estate - Somerset West, Winelands, South Africa - gardens : pond with koi fishes in front of library - Vergelegen Wine Estate, Western Cape, Helderberg, South Africa [2004 © paulgodard.com]