cape town hero

Top Things to Do in Cape Town

Annamarie Tush
by Annamarie Tush

April 08, 2019

4 minute read

I have recently returned from an incredible trip to South Africa. While I got to enjoy so many adventures there, some of my favourite parts of the journey took place in Cape Town. It’s the second most populated city in South Africa and is known for its landscapes, museums, cuisine, wine, wildlife and so much more. You could spend a very long time there and still not see everything, so I’ve created a list of my top five Cape Town must sees.

V&A Waterfront & Food Market

Shopping, dining, harbour cruises, live music, a Ferris wheel and an aquarium—there is so much to see at the V&A Waterfront! You can easily spend a day or two here. Make sure you take time to enjoy the beautiful views of Table Mountain and the talented street performers. For high end local arts and crafts make sure you stop at the Watershed.

For the foodies out there, the V&A Food Market is a must see. There are 40+ vendors offering a wide variety of local gourmet goods and international street food. The difficult part will be deciding where to eat since there are so many delicious choices!

Table Mountain

Table Mountain Dassie

Going up! Take a ride to the top of Table Mountain on the Ariel Cableway at an elevation of 3,501 ft. Once you get to the top give yourself time to walk around the mountain and take in the stunning views of Cape Town. Be on the lookout for dassies when you’re up there, these furry little brown mammals are native to the mountain and cute as a button.

Be sure to check the weather since the high winds of Cape Town can shut down the Cable Way. It’s smart to have a backup plan just in case! To avoid long lines, get there a little before opening and purchase your tickets ahead of time online.

Robben Island Museum

robben island

Known as the holding place for the imprisoned Nelson Mandela, Robben Island is now a World Heritage Site and museum offering daily tours. Guided tours are offered by a former political prisoner of the island, for unique and incomparable insights into the island’s history. Tours often sell out often so it’s best to plan ahead and pre-purchase tickets.

Cape Point and the Penguins of Boulder Beach

Bolder Beach Penguins

Recognized as a world heritage site, Cape Point falls within the southern section of Table Mountain National Park. As you enter the reserve, keep an eye out for the wildlife and prepare to enjoy the views. Be sure to stop at the Cape of Good Hope, the most south-western point of the African Continent and visit Cape Point’s first light house built in 1859.

Once you are done at Cape Point make sure you leave some time to visit the penguins of Boulder Beach. The Boulders Penguin Colony in Simons Town is home to a protected colony of African penguins which can be viewed in their natural habitat via wooden walkways.

Chapmans Peak Drive

Chapmans Drive

If you planning on taking the ride to Cape Point, be sure to take the scenic Chapmans Peak Drive, known by the locals as “Chappies”. The five and a half mile road winds its way between Noordhoek and Hout Bay on the Atlantic Coast. With such stunning views, this truly is one of the most beautiful drives in the world. Some people compare the views to the famous California coast. There is a small toll, but it is well worth it.

Bonus Things to Do

Other notable activities include a visit to the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, a stroll through the Colorful Neighborhood of Bo-Kaap, and a visit to the Vineyards of Stellenbosch.

For those looking for a bit of adventure you can take a hike up the “Lion’s Head” for spectacular views of the Cape Town and its coast line. When I asked my Uber driver where to find the best view of the sunset, he directed me to Camps Bay Beach where the views did not disappoint (just bring a wind breaker)!

Camps Bay



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