Anush and I had Cape Town, South Africa in the top 10 in our endless list of places we want to travel to, and I am so glad we got to visit what I consider one of the world’s most beautiful cities for my birthday week. The gorgeous city is characterized with its majestic mountains against the pretty blue seas. It was quite the flight (36 hours to be precise with the layover!) so be prepared for some serious jetlag haha, but once you step out, you will realize it was completely worth it. Travel and Leisure has also recently voted Cape Town as one of the best places to travel in 2017 and rightly so as it has SO much to offer from the restaurants, shopping, beaches, mountains, wineries, etc.
Cape Town Travel Guide :
We spent the first 3 days in the city and the next 3 days in a gorgeous resort in the Cape Peninsula. In this post I will be recapping the must do’s within the city, and will recap our Cape peninsula adventures + travel guide in another post.
Where to stay :
We stayed at a super cute airbnb in the Seapoint neighborhood. We wanted to go the airbnb route as we were hardly in the room, and just wanted a clean and comfy space to get back to at night. Camps Bay, Clifton and the Seapoint areas are all great location wise if you are looking for airbnb’s.
Dress : c/o Tolani
Best Time to visit :
Since South Africa is in the southern hemisphere, it makes for the perfect winter getaway from the US, as you get to jump into summer in the middle of winter! The weather is very reminiscent of a Mediterranean climate and was absolutely fantastic and in the 80’s during the time we were there. Dec – March is considered the best time to visit.
What to do :
1 ) Get your vitamin Sea at one of Cape Town’s most scenic beaches : The beaches in Cape Town are so so stunning – think white sands, turquoise waters (freezing though!), and boulders on the beach all set against a cinematic landscape of the mountains behind you. One word to sum it all up – paradise! My fave beaches were all the Clifton beaches (Clifton 4th was the best!) and Camps bay Beach.
Oh and did I mention Cape Town has the most amazing sunset skies! We caught this unforgettable sunset at Camps Bay on of the nights and the sun lit the twelve apostles and the clouds rolling over it in a pretty pink hue, what a sight!
2) Visit Table Mountain. Whether you choose to hike or take the cable car either way you will be treated with the best birds eye view of the city and unforgettable instagrammable moments.
3) Hike up Lion’s Head : Since we were short on time, we decided to skip Table Mountain but instead did the 2 hour hike to Lions Head and it was phenomenal! The entire hike had views for days and the view from the top was unreal! When you go up Lion’s Head, also stop by Signal Hill which also has beautiful vantage points of the city.
4) V & A Waterfront : We loved this lively place filled with restaurants, shops and market; such a fab area to wander around. And while you are there you can also catch a sunset cruise, ride the Cape wheel or visit Green Market square for some lovely handicraft shopping.
6) Stroll along the beautiful colored neighbourhood of BoKaap. See this post for more.
7) Other popular things to do that we couldn’t do are – District 6 museum, Robben island, shopping along Long street and Kistrenbosch botanical gardens. The hop on hop off citysightseeing bus is a great option if you want to hit all the touristy spots in one go.
Where to eat :
Cape Town is a major foodie city and has tons of highly acclaimed restaurants. Here are a few we went to and a few that were also on my list (but we couldn’t get reservations at as they are SO popular!)
1 ) La Parada Del Mar in Camps Bay : We went here for dinner on the first day when we met a friend and her husband who live in the city. La parada is fantastic for tapas and also offers phenomenal views of Camps Bay. While we were there, we caught the most beautiful sunset right from our dinner table. After which we went for a stroll along the Camps Bay Strip, I love this part of the town – reminds me so much of SoCal!
2) The Bungalow Clifton : We were recommended the Bungalow by several friends and made sure we went there for a meal atleast once. With an unbeatable location perched right on top of Clifton 4th, the ambience of this beach club + restaurant is absolutely stunning. We went there for drinks and lunch and sat at one of the outdoor tables. Anush and I literally ate our body weights in seafood that day haha, and I cant blame ourselves as the food was so so good. I tried the seafood platter while Anush tried the local crab curry which was delicious! Make sure to make reservations well in advance as this is a popular spot. And while you are at the Bungalow , walk over to the lookout point near the entrance of the restaurant for this view of Camps Bay and the 12 Apostles ! The Kove Collection also has a bunch of other great restaurants in the city, check them out here.
Dress : c/o Tolani
3) Black Sheep – I don’t have any photos from dinner at this place, but boy was the dinner here fantastic! The menu is different every night, and is whipped up from fresh seasonal ingredients to make a contemporary fare. Its situated on the popular culinary hub of Kloof Street, which has tons of great bars and restuarants.
4) Caprice Camps Bay – We stopped here for a quick meal on one of the days and tried the burgers – lip smackingly good!
5) Truth Coffee – if you are a coffee lover (or not!) you have to visit this iconic cafe in Cape Town when you visit. It has been voted best coffee in the world several times ! Aside from the super coffee we also loved the steampunk vibes and decor of this cool cafe.
6) Harbour House V & A Waterfront : A Cape Town classic, this restaurant is known for its exceptional seafood and sushi. There are 3 locations of this restaurant and we went to the one at the waterfront. The venue is so amazing as its right on the harbour, hence the name. For apps we tried the Masala Calamari and the roasted butternut and feta salad which were both excellent! Aside from the food, the service, ambiance and wine menu were also superb. I highly recommend this spot and again make sure to get your reservations in early!
7) Other places that were on my list but couldn’t get to this time around – Test Kitchen, Potluck Club (these first 2 places are super duper popular and need reservations months in advance ! But I have heard it is so so worth it!), Kloof street house, Chef’s Warehouse, Grand Africa and many more!
Hope this quick guide helps you if you are every planning a trip to Cape Town, or make you want to add this beautiful city to your list! Stay tuned later this week for a full recap and guide to part 2 of our trip in the Cape Peninsula.
Thanks for stopping by! xoxo