Photo Credit: Sericea
Cape Town is one of the world’s most beautiful cities, particularly for nature lovers. Below are my top ten favorite sights and activities in Cape Town and the surrounding suburbs.
1. Cape Point Nature Reserve
Photo Credit: Sgt. Rock
While not teaming with animals, this reserve is a nice escape from the city. You are almost assured to see a family of baboons as you draw near the entrance. Take the cable tram to one of the southernmost tips of Africa or visit the Cape of Good Hope. It’s worth the hour drive from the city center.
2. Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
Photo Credit: Va bene!
These gardens are a South African UNESCO landmark where you can find flora that you will see nowhere else in the world. Bring a picnic and enjoy a leisurely day walking. Stop in the chic tea room for a snack. If you are feeling energetic, you can walk from up Skeleton Gorge from the gardens to the top of Table Mountain.
3. Robben Island
Photo Credit: Geoftheref
Learn about the experiences of apartheid political prisoners first-hand from an ex-prisoner himself. Ferries leave from the Victorian and Alfred Waterfront. Book ahead to be assured of a seat.
4. Alfred and Victoria Waterfront
The waterfront area has been recently renovated to include a large mall, restaurants with plenty of outside seating, an aquarium, and boating expeditions. This area also provides a nice view of the new FIFA stadium.
5. Long Street Shops and Restaurants
During the day in Long Street you can find backpackers, affordable pubs and restaurants, boutiques, and used book stores. Enjoy a hearty curry and roti at Lola’s Cafe, 228 Long. Be aware of pickpockets or rogues at night. There are many clubs, and tourists are targets.
6. Table Mountain
The best view of the city is from the top of Table Mountain. You can either sit in the cafe and enjoy the view after taking some photos or hike around the many paths on the surface. Another option is to take the Skeleton Gorge path down to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens.
7. Stellenbosch Wine Region
Stellenbosch and Paarl are Cape Town’s most famous wine towns. If you don’t have your own transportation, I would suggest contacting the Wine Desk in the information kiosk at Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. The Wine Desk offers reasonable group day trips from the city center to Stellenbosch and Paarl.
8. Camps Bay Beach
A popular, vibey beach for swimming in the summer or relaxing at a cafe in the winter. A warning–while shark attacks are rare, great whites are seen from this beach.
9. Simon’s Town Penguins
If you make a trip to Cape Point Reserve, don’t miss stopping over a few hours in Simon’s Town. Visit the jackasss penguins at Boulder’s Beach and stop in the pâtisserie The Sweetest Thing for a heavenly lunch of coffee, quiche and a pastry.
10. Eastern Food Bazaar
This downtown food bazaar in the city bowl at the corners of Darling and Adderly blows away all expectations of the typical food court experience. The main food offering is Indian food, but there is also a falafel stand where you can get a heaping plate of falafel, fries, and salad–a plate large enough for two. Tandoori, curries, and dosas are offered. The portions are large and the price is super affordable.