Activities to do in cape town
Things to do in Cape Town.....
For the best views over Cape Town a hike or cable car ride up to the top of Table Mountain is a must. On the slopes of the mountain wildebeest and zebra can be spotted, and from the top spectacular views of the surrounding area can be enjoyed. Excursions can be done alone or with a guide, but it is advised that cable car tickets pre-booked.
Trips to Robben Island depart from the Nelson Mandela Gateway on the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. Tours last up to four hours, giving an insight into the 500-year history of the island. Highlights include the Lime Quarry, Bluestone Quarry, military bunkers and the prison.
Robben Island was made famous by Nelson Mandela who spent 18 years here as a political prisoner. During the tour, visitors see the cell in which Mandela slept and the areas in which he lived and worked. Robben Island’s tour guides are also ex-inmates of the prison and are happy to discuss what life was like for those sent there.
Cape Peninsula Tour
The popular full-day Cape Peninsula Tour takes in the most interesting and picturesque parts of Cape Town and the surrounding area, with the tour balancing expert guiding and independent exploration. Highlights are the Cape of Good Hope, Clifton and Camps Bay, Cape Point, Twelve Apostles Mountains, Hout Bay, Chapman’s Peak Drive, Noordhoek, False Bay, Simon’s Town, Muizenberg, and Constantia. Optional stops are Kirstenbosch Gardens and Boulders Beach.
Cape Town City Tours
City tours are a great way to explore the old and new worlds in-depth on a luxury Cape Town break. Excursion types range from walking tours to helicopter tours and everything in between. Cape Town bus tours are also a very popular way to experience the sights and sounds of the city. Exploring Cape Town by segway or even from the sidecar of an old military-motorcycle can also be arranged. For those wanting to experience a certain element of what makes Cape Town special such as food, architecture, art or history, please see our Cape Town special interest tours below.
Southern right whales and humpback whales migrate north from the cold waters of Antarctica to give birth between June and November. During this period it is possible to see them on a specialised whale watching tour from Cape Town. Dolphins, sharks, seals and other marine life can also be seen during the excursion. Transfers to and from the boat’s departure point are included in the tour, and usually require an early collection from your accommodation.
Boulders Beach Penguins
Boulders Beach in False Bay is Cape Town’s most visited stretch of sand, popular with both tourists and locals and famous for the 3,000 African penguins that live there. Boulders Beach can be reached easily by a private transfer, hire-car (limited parking) or on public transport. Some hop-on/hop-off bus tours also stop here.
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens is regarded as one of the best botanical gardens in the world. Located on the slopes of Table Mountain it is home to over 7,000 plant species from across Southern Africa. Free guided tours depart from the Visitor Centre at 11 am and 2 pm Monday to Saturday. Getting to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens from Cape Town is simple by car, and some sightseeing tours include a visit to Kirstenbosch.
Victoria and Alfred Waterfront
The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront is Cape Town’s gentrified retail and entertainment district. During a visit here a variety of retail outlets, restaurants and bars can all be enjoyed. There are also several interesting museums to visit, from contemporary art to maritime history as well as a diamond exhibition. The Two Oceans Aquarium, fairground rides and playground make it a great spot for family holidays in Cape Town.
Bo-Kaap and District 6
Formerly known as the ‘Malay Quarter’, Bo-Kaap is located on the slopes of Cape Town’s Signal Hill. Its multicoloured buildings are the most photographed and visually striking parts of the city, and the area is also home to South Africa’s oldest mosque. During South Africa’s apartheid regime, more than 60,000 Africans were removed from District 6, and the museum here is a must for anyone visiting the area. The exhibitions paint a heart-wrenching picture of the racial persecution that occurred throughout the country. Free-walking tours, private tours and art-focused tours can be arranged to visit both areas.
Visit Cape Town’s largest pre-apartheid community and learn about their culture and living heritage. Find out how they stood strong in the face of apartheid oppression and see the stark contrast between the townships and the modern city centre. Tours include pick-up and drop-off from your hotel. Some tours also visit the District 6 Museum for an introduction to the city’s history before visiting the township.
Safaris from Cape Town
There are several game reserves that can be visited from Cape Town. Safaris in other parts of the country offer a better experience but there is exciting wildlife to see in this area nonetheless. To maximise your safari experience we advise spending at least one night at a lodge or hotel on the reserve. Transfers and all safari activities are included.
Cape Town Special
Cape Town Food Tours
Gastronomy tours showcase the best cuisine Cape Town has to offer. Enjoy tastings of a variety of foods that have shaped the city’s culinary character. A specialised guide will take you through the story of Cape Town’s flavours, the city’s international and local dining influences and how it became the home of fine dining in Africa. Tours can be done as a group or on a private basis.
Speak to our team for more information and how to book a food tour of Cape Town on your South Africa holiday.
Cape Town Architecture Tours
Experience Cape Town’s contrasting aesthetic during a Cape Town architecture tour and see a city with a unique character as modern and cutting-edge design sits alongside traditional colonial architecture. Learn more about the architectural influence of Herbert Baker, and visit sites of interest such as the former home of Cecil John Rhodes, the colourful Bo-Kaap area and the trendy Cape Quarter. Highlights of the tour may include but are not limited to the Lutheran Church and Martin Melck House on Strand Street; the Dutch Manor House and museum in Bo-Kaap; Groot Constantia; the Houses of Parliament in Company Gardens; and Rust ed Vreugd in East City.
Cape Town Art Tours
Enjoy a wide variety of thought-provoking artwork during several different art tours in Cape Town. Modern and Contemporary Art Tours can include the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, the Guild Gallery, Side Street Studios, the Foundry, the Whatiftheworld Gallery, Fairweather House, Everard Read Gallery and the Circa Gallery. There is also the opportunity to visit the studio of a local artist. If you’re more interested in the historical influences of the area, try a Cultural Arts Tour, which explores Bo-Kaap or District 6 with a guide. Learn about Muslim artworks, culturally significant sites, racial segregation and apartheid during your walking tour in Cape Town. Private Curated Tours giving exclusive access to some of the city’s most exquisite art collections and the studios of internationally acclaimed artists are also available.
For something a little different, combine some of the world’s finest wines with fabulous works of art on a Cape Winelands Art Tour. The day comprises visits to wonderful wine estates with sensational collections of art as well as visits to galleries in Stellenbosch and Franschhoek. The tour is led by a specialist guide.