Things to do in Cape Town
Our guests often ask us about activities and restaurants in and around Cape Town, so here is the list of our favourites – some well-known, and some a local secret….
Places to Visit:
Table Mountain – you can’t come to Cape Town without visiting the top of Table Mountain – voted one of the 7 natural wonders of the world . In summer, the strong winds can cause a ‘tablecloth’ of cloud to form over the mountain, and close the cable car. We therefore strongly recommend that the moment you have a clear day with little wind, you cancel your plans and visit the mountain. Be prepared for a long wait for the cable car in Summer, or if you are feeling energetic, you can walk to the top, and take the cable car down.
Canal Walk at Century City – If you like shopping, then this is a must! With over 400 shops, it claims to have “the widest selection of speciality shops in the Southern Hemisphere.” Visit Here for details.
V&A Waterfront – The Waterfront is one of Cape Town’s most popular attractions. Offering exclusive shops and an abundance of restaurants and entertainment in the heart of the City, set around a pretty harbour.
Stellenbosch – approximately 40 minutes drive from Cape Town, Stellenbosch is widely regarded as the wine capital of the Western Cape. Visit Here for more details. If you are a wine connoisseur, we have a contact that runs personal tours.
Franschhoek – Founded by French Huguenots in 1688, one of the most beautiful places you can visit within an hour of Cape Town is Franschhoek, with its spectacular mountains, vineyards, restaurants and Cape-Dutch architecture.
Boulders Beach – situated just outside Simons Town, Boulders is popular as it is one of the few beaches to be completely sheltered from the prevailing South Easterly wind, and because it is home to a large colony of African Penguins. You are also likely to see a Dassie, which resembles a large guinea pig, but whose closest relative is the Elephant!
Cape Point, Scarborough, Kommetjie and Chapman’s Peak Drive – If you want to experience the stunning scenery of Cape Town, we recommend a trip to Cape Point, via Simons Town, and returning through Scarborough and Kommetjie and along the exhilarating Chapman’s Peak to Hout Bay. Expect to meet plenty of Japanese tourists, and the occasional baboon in Cape Point reserve. Please refrain from feeding either of them!
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens – one of our favourite places in Cape Town, if you have any interest in gardens or artwork, Kirstenbosch should be high on your list of places to visit. As well as the incredible gardens, moyo restaurant and art gallery, on Sundays in summer they have open air concerts and on Wednesdays they have open air movies.
Visit Here for this year’s lineup and to book.
Township Tours – if you want to see how the other half live, you will find a tour of a township a real eye opener. Not recommended on your own, or late at night, you can visit here or Visit Here for details.
Robben Island – One of the more popular tourist attractions, I was a bit disappointed with this trip. The sea is often rough between the Waterfront and the island, so the visitors were looking pretty green on arrival. It was interesting to see where Mandela was incarcerated, but one empty cell tends to look like another… For details visit here
Night Clubs – if you want to live it up a bit while in the Mother City, then you really are spoilt for choice. Some of our favourites include The Reserve Club, Club 31 on the 31st floor of the ABSA Bank building, and Jade in Greenpoint which is a favourite with celebrities. If you like live music, you have to visit Polana below the superb Harbour House restaurant in Kalk Bay. Set right on the rocks, with waves crashing outside, this is a magical venue to listen to live music on a Friday or Saturday night.
Tokai Forest – one of the best mountain biking venues in the world, this is also a lovely place to go for a walk, with plenty of shade from the trees, and wonderful views. However, the highlight is seeing the troop of Baboons that live here, and number approximately 150. Please remember if you do see them, if you feed them they will associate people with food, and as a result will almost certainly have to be put down.
Greenmarket Square – if you like to shop for locally made, inexpensive and traditional goods, then a trip to Greenmarket Square market in Cape Town’s city centre should be top of your list.
Cape Town Castle of Good Hope – if you are planning a visit into the City, then pop in and visit the Castle, which is steeped in history, and well worth a visit.
Bo Kaap (The Cape Malay Quarter) – close to the city centre, the brightly coloured houses of Bo Kaap draw many visitors, as do the many restaurants and museums.
Ratanga Junction – for the more adventurous among you, and those with kids, a day out at Ratanga Junction Theme Park with more than 30 attractions will keep you thrilled all day. Alternatively, drop the kids off while you shop at Canal Walk across the road. Visit Here for opening times.
Shark Cage Diving – if you fancy getting up close and personal with these magnificent creatures, we recommend diving with Shark Lady in Gandsbaai – about two hours from Cape Town. Visit Here for more details and to book.
Horse Riding on Noordhoek Beach – this is an unforgettable experience – riding in the waves along this beautiful beach which is close to both LXIX and Stonehurst. We went with Sleepy Hollow Riding, and found them very professional.
Kombat Mission – Helicopter Tour
Constantia Uitsig 021 794 4480
Buitenverwagting 021 794 3522
Kloofing – suicide gorge and Crystal Pools
Hout Bay market
Breakfast – 12 Apostles Hotel in Camps Bay
Sundowners on Lions Head – take a torch
Kitesurfing – Big Bay
Constantia Wine Route
Topless sight-seeing bus (the bus, not the guide!)
Riding on Noordhoek Beach
Camel Rides at Kom
Paragliding off the Lions Head
Abseiling off table mountain
Cheetahs at Somerset Mall
Cape Point Vineyard, Noordhoek
Eco Train, Canal Walk
D’Aria Wine Estate
Westlake Golf Course
Art Galleries – Museum of Modern Art
The Pickled Fish – Imhoff Farm, Kommetjie
021 783 5053 – best food in Kom
Live Bait – Kalk Bay 021 788 5755 Great value and views of sea and harbour
Harbour House – Kalk Bay 021 788 4133 – above Live Bait, it is superior in quality but priced accordingly.
Beluga – Green Point, Cape Town
021 418 2948 – best place for Sushi in Town
Thai Café – Steenberg Shopping Centre, Tokai
021 701 8000 – superb Thai food, very reasonable.
The Market – Builders Warehouse Wed Evening & Sat Lunch, Tokai – fun home made produce and great vibe.
The Kitchen – Woodstock 021 462 2201
Simon’s Restaurant – Groot Constantia
021 788 6396 – very smart, excellent food
Black Marlin – Mouille Point, Cape Town
021 786 1621
Colcochio – Westlake Business Park, Westlake – great pizza restaurant
Cape to Cuba – Kalk Bay 021 788 1566 – fun atmosphere
The Brass Bell – Kalk Bay 021 788 5455 – great for lunch on the water’s edge – book!
Dunes – Hout Bay – great for kids on the beach
Peddlars on the Bend , Constantia 021 794 7747 – pub with excellent restaurant
Catharinas – Steenberg Estate 021 713 2222 Wine tasting & food
Bo-Kaap Kombuis, Cape Malay Cuisine
021 422 5446
Top of the Ritz – Seapoint 021 439 6988 – lovely views of Cape Town from revolving restaurant.
Kitima – Hout Bay 021 790 8004
Chapmans Peak Hotel – Hout Bay