With so much to see and do in Cape Town, holidays in this beautiful city provide the perfect blend of stunning scenery, gorgeous beaches and intriguing culture. South Africa's 'Mother City' rests between the iconic backdrop of Table Mountain and the country's most visited tourist attraction the V&A Waterfront. Holidays to Cape Town benefit from a fantastic year-round climate is combined with so many things to do and see including Robben Island, Table Mountain, Camps Bay, great shopping, interesting museums and wonderful restaurants and bars - all still fantastic value for money.
Cape Town is a sprawling city made up of many suburbs and different areas spread across the mountain and beyond so there is a lot to see and do. We do recommend car hire for those who want to explore on their own, or alternatively a combination of day tours and use of cheap local taxis is also a great way to get around. The following gives you an idea of what there is to see and the best places to stay.
Victoria & Alfred Waterfront
Situated right on the Victoria & Albert harbour, with incredible views over Table Mountain this waterfront marina is the most visited tourist attraction in South Africa with its huge Marina Wharf shopping mall, harbour-front restaurants and often local entertainment amid the buzzing atmosphere. Other attractions include the African Craft Market and the Two Oceans Aquarium and the V&A is also the hub for all boat tours from Cape Town such as whale watching and cruises of the Cape as well as the departure point for the Robben Island Tour. With a huge selection of things to do and places to eat and drink the V&A is still a great base for any visit to Cape Town, hotels we recommend in the area include the Table Bay Hotel and the One&Only, the self catering Waterfront Village and for a great value for money option just steps away, the Southern Sun Waterfront.
This huge, naturally sculpted slab of shale, sandstone and granite rose from the ocean some 250 million years ago is South Africa’s most instantly recognisable image and ensures Cape Town has one of the most iconic skylines in the world. The top of Table Mountain can be reached either by hiking one of the 350 paths or at a more leisurely pace by cable car, the station is half way up and reached by road. A trip to the summit will be rewarded with the most incredible vistas of Cape Town across to Robben Island, the city suburbs and Cape Point beyond from the 3 miles wide plateau. The fact that the mountain alone has more plant varieties (some 1,470 species) than the entire British Isles is flaunted with pride, and it is thought to be the most climbed peak in the world.
Located at the foot of the Twelve Apostles Mountain range at the back of Table Mountain, Camps Bay is the best place in Cape Town for a sundowner (a drink to watch the sunset) with views across the Ocean. Camps Bay is the hip and trendy area of Cape Town with a long line of street cafes and bars set just behind the wonderful white sandy beach front. Think Mediterranean al fresco dining with a Capetonian twist. We highly recommend The Bay Hotel in Camps Bay, with its stunning pools and close proximity to all the local bars and restaurants and for a resort feel a little further out try the Twelve Apostles, one of our Platinum Hotels.
City Bowl and Kloof Street
Situated at the base of Table Mountain and stretching down towards the V&A Waterfront, Cape Town’s City Bowl takes in Long and Adderley Street as well as the ever-cool Kloof. Soak up the vibrant atmosphere whilst taking in the architecture of days gone by, the area is famed for its excellent galleries and museums, we would recommend the District Six Museum and Iziko Slave Lodge Museum for an interesting insight into the city’s past. This is also a great place to eat and drink with different types of food on offer including traditional African cuisine. There are many places to stay in this area but we highly recommend the Cape Town Hollow and the boutique style Cape Cadogan.
Green Point, Sea Point and Bantry Bay
Stretching from next door to the V&A Waterfront around to almost Camps Bay, these ever-expanding areas offer great bars, restaurants, shopping and stunning views across the ocean. Quite local in clientele, you can see the Capetonians going for a morning run and making the most of some great food and local living. Green Point is also quite firmly on the map as was Cape Town’s host stadium for the World Cup in 2010, leaving behind a wonderful stadium and a lovely new developed area. Overlooking the stadium is the excellent 5V Cape Royale with roof top pool and within steps of the Waterfront, further round is Winchester Mansions, a lovely boutique hotel with open courtyard and sea views and our Virgin Holidays Favourite hotel the Protea President in Bantry Bay.
- Table Mountain
- Superb Food and Shopping
- Robben Island
- V&A Waterfront
- Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve
- Cape Point
Jan – J&B Met – a very popular horse racing event in Cape Town / Cape Town Minstrel Carnival
Mar – The Cape Cycle Tour (open to anyone 12 years or older) is the world’s largest Cycle Tour / Cape Town International Jazz Festival
Apr – Cape Town Two Oceans Marathon consisting of the half marathon and the ultra marathon
May/Jun – Good Food and Wine Show / Red Bull Big Wave Surf contest
Jul – Cape Town Fashion Week / Stellebosch Wine Festival
Aug – Cape Town International Nando’s Comedy Festival
Sep – Hermanus Whale Festival
Nov – Cape Town Festival of Beer / The Discovery Cape Times Big Walk - a popular charity walk
Please note: all events listed are for helpful information only and many are subject to entrance fees and/or prior reservation, and may be cancelled at any time. Please check with the relevant tourist office if you need further information on these or any of the other events in this region.
Postcards from... Top ideas from our travel experts
When to go
South Africa's Western Cape is pretty similar in climate to the Med, only upside down. If you're looking for a cooler, fresher, holiday, with bright days and chilly evenings, then the months of April through to August are ideal. This is a great time of year if you want to see the Garden Route in all it's lush green glory and, as it rains mainly at night, days spent walking are an absolute delight. Warm weather tends to kick in from September to February and, with temperatures ranging from mid-to-late twenties, lovers of the beach will find plenty of chances to soak up those all-important South African rays.
Different destinations have different magic touches so make sure to check them out to see what makes your holiday with us so special.
We have direct flights from London to Cape Town between October - April, at other times of the year, flights operate via Johannesburg with an onward flight to Cape Town. We highly recommend hiring a car to explore the surrounding areas and you can even arrange to have your car delivered to your hotel so you can start exploring, fully refreshed.
Bottle of beer locally R 16 - 340 ml (price varies depending on type of beer)
Bottle of coke locally - R 7.00 for 500ml
Bottle of wine locally - R 50.00 for 750ml (price varies depending on type of wine)
Local meal in reasonable priced restaurant - R 130.00 per person
Local meal in the best restaurant in the area - R500.00 per person
Bottle of beer hotel - R36.00 340ml
Bottle of coke hotel - R17.50 200ml
Bottle of wine hotel - R105.00 750ml (price varies depending on type of wine)
Lunch at a hotel - R185.00
Dinner at a hotel -R 200.00
Prices are a guideline only and are subject to change.