Stellenbosch owes its existence and name to the former governor of the Cape, Simon van der Stel, who established this settlement on the banks of the Eerste River in 1679, making it the second-oldest formal settlement in South Africa. Today, it's a beautiful town, characterised by oak-lined streets and whitewashed buildings, many of Cape Dutch origin (although most of the town burnt down in 1710 and was rebuilt after that date), and lies between the imposing Simonsberg and more modest Papegaaiberg ('Parrot Mountain'). Visit on any given day, and you will immediately realise that this is a university town, with students whizzing by on bicycles and many sidewalk cafés and restaurants. It's an idyllic setting to explore on foot. The town is centred around the university, which is one of the leading universities in the country, renowned for its law and engineering faculties. It also offers courses in viticulture, the primary agricultural industry in the area, as it lies in the heart of the Cape winelands.