Franschhoek has a Mediterranean climate which is generally characterised by dry, hot summers and cold, wet winters.
In the summer the prevailing wind blows in from the south east. This cool wind, known as the Cape Doctor, brings much needed relief from the high temperatures of mid summer, however when it blows, it blows hard at gale force speeds. It is when this wind dies down and is replaced by a north east wind, that the weather starts to get very, very hot with temperatures exceeding 40°C on occasions, then one begins to long for the Cape Doctor's return despite it's blustery strength.
Autumn in Franschhoek is the most pleasant and beautiful season. With the south easterly wind fading away, it is a time of gentle winds from the north and south west. The weather is neither too hot nor too cold, in fact it's just perfect. What's more the valley comes alive with rich colours. Russet hues of red as the leaves of vines and trees wither and fall amidst emerging greens as the first rains bring new life to the dried up fynbos and grasses. The sultry and calm evenings make for a delightful dining experience on the patios of the many restaurants in the village.
Franschhoek winters are characterised by a procession of cold fronts marching across the valley, accompanied by heavy winds from the north west and torrential downpours, followed by scattered rain showers and icy winds from the south west bringing snowfalls at times on the mountains surrounding the valley. Interspersed between the grey and wet weather are glorious sunny and warm days with crisp clear blue skies and frosty mornings. The cold nights make for cosy evenings by the fireplace and duvets and blankets on the bed.
Spring in the Franschhoek valley brings an added lushness to the greenery of winter as the vines and trees begin to flower and sprout new leaves. In the early spring the cold fronts continue to come and can be particularly cold, as the cold south easterly wind begins to pick up as the fronts move off to the east. These fronts gradually weaken and fade as the sun moves into the southern hemisphere and the days become longer and warmer and drier. Soon it will be summer again, when once again we will long for the Cape Doctor to cool off those very hot days.