Planning a Trip to Cape Town
As it was the case for thousands of people from around the world last year, thanks to the FIFA World Cup, I discovered the South African city of Cape Town for the first time. Having landed there weeks after the sounds of the iconic vuvuzelas had quieted down, I was thankfully able to experience the city in a more relaxed setting.
Known as the Mother City of South Africa, Cape Town is certainly one of the most beautiful cities in the world. A cosmopolitan place surrounding a wild mountain and flanked by stunning beaches, Cape Town is a top tourist destination.
When planning a trip to South Africa, be mindful of the seasons. June and July are not beach weather months. It’s actually winter time so the weather can be cold, rainy and windy. By contrast, January to March is the height of summer.
While there, be sure to visit:
- V&A Waterfront: The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront is a can’t-miss stop on any visit. It’s a bustling working harbor and hub of restaurants, high-end shopping and attractions such as the Two Oceans Aquarium. Embark on a ferry boat from the Nelson Mandel Gateway for a guided trip to Robben Island.
- Conquer Table Mountain: Located right in the center of the city, and towering at an impressive 3500 feet above seal level, Table Mountain offers stunning city views and remarkable trails. Cable car rides are available to reach the peak and back. If you decide to climb up or down the flat-topped mountain be prepared for a challenging trek. Make sure to allow plenty of time for daylight.
- Drive along the beautiful coastal areas: The road along the Western Cape coastline leading south to The Cape of Good Hope offers splendid views of beaches and imposing mountain ranges. Along the way, stop to visit Camps Bay, Clifton beach, Llandudno, Bantry Bay and Hout Bay.
- Take in on a wine tour: Visit Cape Town’s winelands region just a short distance from the city. The major wine routes include the historical towns of Paarl, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek.
- Nightlife and entertainment: For a taste of Cape Town’s vibrant nightlife and music scene, head to Long Street and Kloof Street in the city center.