Cape Town

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Traveling to

 

Cape Town

When to go:

December-February:
Between December and February it’s summer in Cape Town and you couldn’t ask for better weather. Temperatures tend to hover in the high 70s and there is plenty of sunshine. The downside is that it is peak season for tourists, so the city can be crowded and accommodations will be expensive.

March-May: (Recommended)
March-May is considered fall in Cape Town. The weather is still warm like summer (60s-mid 70s) and the days are still sunny. But the city will be less crowded, and hotel prices will be lower than in summer.

June-August:
June-August is winter in Cape Town. The temperature is usually in the low 60s, and it can be stormy and windy. The weather isn’t ideal during this time, but you can save a boatload on accommodation as prices will be at their lowest during this time.

September-November: (Recommended)
September-November is spring in Cape Town. Flowers are blooming and the sun is shining. Temperatures range from the mid-60s to the mid-70s. It’s a fabulous time to visit because prices will be reasonable but you will still have magnificent weather.

Costs:

Here are the average costs (USD) for basic items in Cape Town. We base these numbers off of what we spent.

Bed in a hostel: $11.00-$12.00

Mid-Range hotel: $55.00-$70.00

Cappuccino: $1.50-$2.00

Basic breakfast: $2.50-$5.00

Basic lunch: $3.75-$7.00

Basic dinner: $5.00-$10.00

One beer in a bar: $1.25-$2.00

Bottle of wine: $4.00-$5.00

5 mile cab ride: $8.00-$10.00

Neighborhood Guide:

Whenever we visit a new city, we like to get oriented. We want to know which neighborhoods to visit if we are looking for restaurants, bars and other forms of entertainment.

The Waterfront: The Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront is packed with good restaurants, upscale hotels, street musicians and craft vendors. The downside is that it is not a big hangout spot for locals so you will mostly find other tourists here. The upside is that it is a beautiful, safe and central area.

Camps Bay: Camps Bay is one of our favorite areas to visit. Enjoy amazing water views while dining at one of the many posh restaurants or upscale bars that line the beach.

City Centre: This neighborhood is considered the “downtown” area of Cape Town. If you are looking for some nightlife in Cape Town, this is where you want to be. Along Long Street, the main drag, you will find numerous lounges, pubs, clubs and bars.

Woodstock:  Woodstock is the hipster, artsy part of Cape Town. Here you’ll find art galleries, trendy cafes and neighborhood markets. When you’re there, make sure you check out Old Biscuit Mill.

 Renting an Apartment? Check Out These Neighborhoods

Sea Point:  A beautiful neighborhood with lots of restaurants and cafes. Home to a pedestrian promenade along the water.

Tamboerskloof:  A quiet, centrally located, neighborhood close to the action of Long Street.  

Gardens: Charming, safe, more residential neighborhood, with lots of bars, shops, and places to eat. 

cpt-neighborhoods

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Where to Stay:

The Sugar Hotel:

Prices starting at $90

Modern, clean hotel in a great location near Cape Town’s Green Point neighborhood

The Glen Boutique Hotel & Spa:

Prices starting at $96

Beautiful property, close to the water with great views from every room

Ocean View House

Prices starting at $88

Camps Bay luxury at an affordable price. Quiet, beautiful setting near the ocean

Click here to read our full review

Where to Eat:

Fork

Spanish tapas with a South African twist

Old Biscuit Mill

A multitude of places to eat and drink. Home to The Neighbourgoods Market every Saturday 

The Test Kitchen

Trendy eatery in Old Biscuit Mill serving unique, inventive dishes

Kloof Street House

Housed in a decorated Victorian style home with lovely garden seating

Black Sheep

Great views of Table Mountain with delicious food made with seasonal ingredients 

Sababa

The perfect place for a quick and delicious takeaway lunch

True Italic

A true taste of Italy right in Cape Town

La Mouette

A beautiful French restaurant offering a seasonal a la carte or tasting menu

La Colombe

World-renowned fine dining- a great place for special occasions

Azure

One of the best views in Cape Town. A true five-star experience for special occasions

Bo Kaap Kombuis

Serving up some of the best traditional Cape Malay cuisine alongside an unbeatable view

Mzoli’s

Part butcher shop, part barbecue, part party. Experience a traditional South African braai (bbq) in the township of Guguletu

                                                                                                                           

Click here to read our full review

For sushi lovers, click here to find the best sushi in Cape Town

                                                                                                                           

Coffee:

Rosetta Roastery

A trendy coffee shop serving up delicious gourmet espressos and pour overs

Origin Coffee Roasters

An artsy cafe that roasts their coffee on site and knows how to serve up the perfect espresso

Truth Coffee

Voted one of the world’s best coffee shops by the Daily Telegraph

Mischu

A quaint coffee shop with friendly service and an award-winning cappuccino 

                                                                                                                           

Click here to read our full review

                                                                                                                           

What to Do:

Get Outside:

Table Mountain

A trip to Cape Town is not complete without taking in the view from the top of Table Mountain

Tour the Cape Peninsula

Explore the Cape of Good Hope and visit the famous penguin colony at Boulders Beach

Get Educated:

Robben Island

See the exact cell where Nelson Mandela served 19 years of his prison sentence

District Six Museum

Learn about the background of this historically diverse neighborhood that was torn apart by Apartheid

Get Cultured:

Take  a Township Tour

Be a part of the South Africa that you don’t see in tourist books and experience life in a South African Township

Bo-Kaap

Learn about Malay culture and visit the colorful neighborhood of Bo-Kaap

Get Active:

  Hike Lion’s Head at Sunset

Pack a bottle of wine and some appetizers and take the 45-minute hike up Lion’s head to watch the sun sink into the ocean below

Surf at Muizenberg

Giving surfing a try in Muizenberg, just make sure to watch out for sharks

Get Adventurous:

Abseil Down Table Mountain

The view on top of Table Mountain is pretty epic, but the view abseiling down is ever better

Cage Dive with Great White Sharks

Visit “Shark Alley” and get up close and personal with one of nature’s most infamous creatures

                                                                                                                           

Click here for our in-depth activity guide! 

                                                                                                     

Planning Resources:

Books:

         

Our Resources:

Safety tips for South Africa

South Africa reading list

Tour Companies:

Ridgeway Ramblers Day Tours

Tour company offering guided hiking tours around Cape Town and the Western Cape

Wine Flies Wine Tours

Running wine country tours departing from Cape Town, 7 days a week

Cape Town Free Walking Tours

Great way to get oriented in the city, plus you can’t beat the price, it’s free

Discovery Tours

Tour company offering excursions around Cape Town, Hermanus, the Cape Peninsula and more

Daytrippers

Tours of Cape Town and the Cape Peninsula by bike

Siviwe Tours

Local company offering tours of the township of Langa

Transportation:

Baz Bus

Hop on, hop off bus “backpacker” bus throughout South Africa

Mango Airlines

Budget airline offering service within South Africa

CLICK HERE for information about public transportation in Cape Town

Other:

Tour Radar

Find and book international tours

Cello Mobile

Affordable cell phone rental starting a $2.99 a day

Visa Central

A website that will help you figure our international visa requirements

Visit a City

A helpful, basic overview of Cape Town

Travel Insurance: World Nomads

Reliable, flexible travel insurance 

All Cape Town Posts

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