This was my third visit to Cape Town and Chris's parents first ever holiday to South Africa! We had 6 days which was great and long enough to do almost everything we wanted to (leaving a few things for next time). I could never tire of visiting this city... it is incredible and honestly one of the most beautiful cities in the world. I thought I'd share what we did in case you need any ideas... this is not a comprehensive list, just a few things I have done and enjoyed on my last few trips.
1. The Waterfront - There are so many good restaurants, shops and you have an amazing view of Table Mountain. There is also the Waterfront food market with local food stalls and the Watershed, an industrial building with over 150 stalls selling locally produced and designed crafts and goods... you won't see this much unique, creative, high quality stuff again, so if you see something you really want, buy it!
2. Table Mountain - This is obviously a must! You can hike or get the cable car up/ down. If you are limited for time and have a clear day you should definitely go up! We decided to go up on our first day and am so glad we did, as every day after that there was cloud covering the top and we wouldn't have been able to see a thing if they even let us up!
3. Cape Peninsula - If you want to do all of the peninsula, down the east coast and up the west, you either need to plan for a very long day, or spread it over 2-3 days and take your time enjoying all the stops! I would recommend starting with Kalk Bay (have breakfast at Olympia Cafe), and then have stops at Simons Town (you can take a boat trip from here), Boulders Beach (to check out the penguins on the beach) and finish the east coast with Cape Point. On the west coast start with driving Chapmans Peak, stop at Noordhoek (you can go horse riding on the beach), Hout Bay and then up to Camps Bay. These would be my main stops, but there is so much more to see and explore in-between these.
4. Cape of Good Hope - Most people just head straight to see Cape Point, where you can see the meeting of the Atlantic and Indian oceans, but there is a whole national park with trails you can explore. Look out for the baboons, penguins, eland and bontebok.
5. Bo-Kaap - This incredibly colourful multicultural area with it's cobbled streets is definitely worth checking out. It used to be a township and the centre of Cape Malay culture. More recently it has become very popular with other people buying houses... it is still a feast for the eyes though! There is a very good Bo-Kaap museum which is in the oldest house in the area.
6. South African cooking class - there is a brilliant Cape Malay cooking class in the Bo-Kaap. You will go on a little tour, check out one of the local shops and then cook loads of tasty food in one of the colourful houses!
7. The South African National Gallery - The brilliant gallery is located in the company gardens with a backdrop of table mountain. There is lots of interesting and thought provoking art, definitely worth a visit.
8. Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens - These are hands down the best botanical gardens I've been to. So lovely and peaceful and surrounded by mountains. There is a fantastic greenhouse, restaurant and cafe, loads of sculptures and walkway among the tree tops where you are high up with the birds and have a different view point of the mountains and gardens.
9. Groot Constantia - This is the oldest wine estate in South Africa. We had a fantastic lunch outside under the trees with the best views, followed by a really good wine tasting. If you don't have time to head to to Stellenbosch and the winelands definitely try and stop here as it is so much closer and just as good. If you do have time try and do both!
10. Hermanus - This is a bit of a drive, but if you are in Cape Town between June and December you have a high chance of seeing wales. It is a gorgeous drive and a lovely stop for some lunch or a stopover even if you don't see wales!
Nelson's Eye - Fantastic steak house
Olympia Cafe - Bakery and breakfast in Kalk Bay
Mooiberge - Strawberry farm for breakfast
Miller's Thumb - Seafood
The Power and the glory - Awesome little place for good breakfast. coffee, or a beer in the evening
Amber Tree Lodge - We have stayed in a private room here twice now. Fantastic location and lovely reasonably priced hostel
Bo-Kaap Cape Malay Cooking Class