Cape Town is a mixture of stunning landscapes – mountainous ranges, beautiful coasts surrounding buzzing streets and not to mention….a culinary haven for foodies and wine lovers! Let me start by pointing out that a weekend is nowhere near enough time to fully explore Cape Town, but I made the most of the 2 days I had spare from my work trip to get a taste of what this beautiful city has to offer.
I stayed on The V&A Waterfront, a busy and buzzy hub with many restaurants to dine at and shops to browse in, set against the backdrop of Table Mountain. There’s an abundance of security around so it felt completely safe. Some of the things I’d heard about Cape Town being dangerous weren’t false but at the same time, weren’t entirely true either.
Yes, there is a risk of running into danger but it can happen anywhere! Speaking to the locals, it seems that it’s not that dangerous if you stick to the right places and you know where to go. Just apply some common sense and have your wits about you and you’ll be fine. I rarely ventured anywhere outside the V&A Waterfront and as a female solo traveller, I sure as hell didn’t go wandering around at night – that’s just asking for trouble!
Staying at the V&A Hotel was a perfect location and super convenient for touristy activities. Let’s also take a minute to compliment the amazing breakfast they have on offer. A great selection of cold options and delicious hot dishes made to order. And did I mention you could freely help yourself to oysters and champagne? A great way to start the [working] day! #itsgottabedone!
Being a true tourist, I opted for the City Sightseeing bus, a cheap and fuss-free way to see Cape Town. The Premium Hop On-Hop Off Tour costs R300 (c.£16) and includes 2 consecutive days on the bus plus a free harbour or canal cruise.
First stop, Kirstenbosche – a national botanical garden which serves as a brilliant venue for outdoor summer concerts and NYE parties.
Next up, some wine tasting at Beau Constantia. You really can’t go wrong with South African wine. Red or white…I’ll have any thanks! And what a view to take in with each tipple!
Lunch at Hout Bay for hands down… the best fish and chips I’ve ever had! The locally caught snoek fish has a naturally salty flavour which is enhanced with the ultra light and well seasoned batter mMmm delish! Oh and that absolutely moreish chilli sauce – a real shame they don’t bottle that up and sell it. I would’ve brought a whole suitcase full back! Don’t forget the pickled onions too – a must!
A scenic drive up the coast, admiring the beautiful coastline!
Stopping off at Chinchilla in Camps Bay – a nice rooftop bar with great views, vibes and cocktails! You can easily get carried away here so be prepared to stay till sunset, it’ll be worth your while!
I woke up the next day feeling a little worse for wear. A delicious brekkie will sort me right out! Looking out to what would’ve been a view of Table Mountain were huge, thick clouds. Oh no! Just my luck…the one day I had left to go up to Table Mountain and the cable car service decides to shut down due to strong winds. No harbour or canal cruises operating either. Booooo! They do say bad luck happens in 3’s! Never mind, I managed to take advantage of the free walking tours available.
Starting with a tour around the historic city centre, taking in the history and culture of the Rainbow nation.
Followed by a wander around the cobble stoned streets of Bo-Kaap – the original Muslim settlement of Cape Town, formerly known as the Malay Quarter. The colourful, brightly painted houses are an expression of freedom – a big attraction for holidaymakers and definitely Instagram worthy!
With the exchange rate of the pound against the rand, you can eat very well for less and that’s exactly what I did no doubt! I was spoilt for choice on the V&A – Harbour House, Willoughby’s, Belthazar but the standout meal for me definitely has to be Baia. Read more about my dining experience here.
Spirits will soar in this incredibly stunning city! Whether you’re into food, wine, nature, art, history, culture….you’ll find something to entice your senses. An amazing, albeit brief visit that has left me wanting to return in a heartbeat. A safari awaits!
Till next time…Outskies!