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11 Things to Do in Cape Town (2023)

I can’t say it enough though, but Cape Town is a beautiful city with lots to do. The amount of activities you could do is stunning, from hiking to surfing to exploring the city itself, doing a road trip, and the list goes on. I spent eight weeks in Cape Town and have done a lot of things. In this blog post, I’d like to share my ten top activities in Cape Town that must be on every travel to-do list and can’t be missed.


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1. Road Trip to Cape of Good Hope

This is an absolute must while staying in Cape Town. The ride itself down South is mesmerizing and shaped by the unique landscape of South Africa. The twelve apostles, the ocean, the fresh air, and just the feeling of having a road trip itself make it one of the best day activities I’ve done in my life. I already dedicated a whole blog post about my road trip to Cape of Good Hope, where you can read in more detail about the route, and what I did during my ride South. Click here to read it.


2. Hike on Top of Lion’s Head

Not as famous as Table Mountain but also an absolute must-do. Lion’s Head is visible from almost everywhere and was one of my favorite hikes I did during my visit to Cape Town. The difficulty of the hike and the duration were absolutely doable, and while walking up the hill you get spoiled by a stunning view as well. From the parking lot you walk around 20 minutes just up, and from there revolve around the mountain until you reach its top. It’s also a great spot for watching sunrise.


💡Make sure to bring enough water with you, especially during Summer time because it gets really hot since the sun is strong.

3. Oranjezicht Night Market on Wednesday

Located next to the V&A Waterfront Mall there's a city farm market that offers the most mouth-watering bites from almost every country of the world every Wednesday from 5-9 pm and on the weekend from 8 am until 2 pm. This place is kind of like a food festival and perfect for foodies like I am. Whatever you desire, you probably find something. The endless options of different kinds of dishes make it almost impossible to decide what you should eat.


From Vietnamese, Korean, American, Japanese, Italian, Mediterranean, South African, Ethiopian, and many more dishes, or in short: just from everywhere in the world, the stalls offer everything! With a glass of wine in one hand and a delicious meal of your choice in the other, you can have a good time surrounded by lots of people, a good atmosphere, and the sound of the ocean. I guarantee you, that you will have a good time there.

4. First Thursdays on Bree Street

Cape Town (and Johannesburg) has the tradition that every first Thursday, there's an epic party in the city. Bars, restaurants, art galleries, and fashion stores are hiring DJs and barkeepers. There’s an official website (Link) where you can discover what to see and where to be during the event. For a more spontaneous experience, I recommend heading to Bree Street and following the music you like, as I did. Make sure to get dinner beforehand or just be patient since every restaurant has lots to do. I went to Kloof Street for dinner and took an Uber to Bree Street.


🤫 A good spot to start your first Thursday experience is at Arcade. You can either have a drink there or walk to the left or the right and find a good spot.

5. Hike on Top of Table Mountain

This is probably the most famous sightseeing spot in Cape Town, and its presence is indispensable. Wherever you are, you always have a good view of the mountain. Getting on top of it is a must-do while staying in Cape Town, and there are many ways to do so. Whether you hike on your own on one of the many trails or casually take the cable car, you get spoiled with a breathtaking view.


For all adventures and people who like it more advanced, I highly recommend doing the Indian Venster Trail. It’s the shortest but the toughest. You must be physically fit to do this hike because some climbing parts need every muscle and you shouldn’t be afraid of heights.


6. Visiting the District Six Museum

Once a sorrowful time shaped South Africa’s history - the Apartheid. People of color left their homes to make space for white people. They were put far away from the city center and had to travel to it to get to work or school. They were irrationally put together in so-called townships, isolated from friends and families, where strangers surrounded them. Wherever you were, you must follow the strict separation rule. Visiting the church you had to use the correct entrance, some areas were designated for whites only, and only three cars of colored people, for example, could park in a parking lot.


By visiting the District Six Museum you get a better insight into how it was for the residents to live during the Apartheid. I highly recommend doing the guided tour, where a former resident of District Six tells you more about it in detail, and about his own experience.


7. Relaxing at the Beach

One thing why I love Cape Town is that there’s a beach to relax in, and so many to explore as well! My partner and I spent a lot of time relaxing at the beach, reading our books, and just enjoying the sun. Each beach had its vibe, but we liked Clifton 4th and Saunder’s Rock Beach the most.

Clifton 4th is a popular beach, with ice blue water, fine white sand, and the possibility to rent a sun chair and umbrellas. I liked the packed vibe, and since it is connected with Clifton 3rd, 2nd, and 1st you were able to walk along the beach. As some of you know, I like walking, so I often do that.

Saunder’s Rock Beach was one of my favorites for sunsets. It’s located in Sea Point and after walking along the promenade the perfect place to relax a little bit. The rocks are the perfect size to use as a support for your head while reading, and the sun gets down right in front of you. After that, there are many restaurants for dinner.


8. Doing a Wine Tour in Stellenbosch

An absolute must for those who like to drink wine, want to know more about the wine culture of South Africa, or just get drunk. This is also an opportunity to see Stellenbosch, Rondebosch, Franschhoek, and Paarl. Depending on the tour you’ll take.


I did the full-day wine tour (Link) from Cape Town City Center. It included three different vineyards in Paarl, Franschhoek, and Stellenbosch. Many pick-up points in the city center brought all participants to the Waterfront. After arriving at Waterfront, we changed the bus and headed to a vineyard in Stellenbosch, our first stop. We tried four different wines combined with a tasty cheese platter for breakfast.


Afterward, we had a guided walking tour through Stellenbosch. A beautiful town not too far away from Cape Town. Back in our bus, we drove to our next stop in Franschhoek, which was our lunch destination too. After ordering our lunch, we had another wine tasting that included four different wines. After lunch and the tasting, we got back into our car, drove 10 minutes to Franschhoek Center, and had some free time (around 30 minutes) to explore the town on our own.


The last stop of our wine-tasting tour was another vineyard in Paarl. It's a beautiful private vineyard perfect for weddings. This wine tasting was accompanied by Belgium chocolate. We had five different wines - three white and two red wines.


Overall, I did like the wine tour, although it was in a big group of almost sixty people. Because of that, it was cheaper than other wine tours. Personally, the tour size did not matter to me because you sat together in smaller groups and had the chance to get to know the other participants of the tour better. The tour was very well organized, and as a former teacher, I know how hard it is to control a big group.


If I had something to complain about, it was the lunch part. Putting sixty people together in a room for lunch, and waiting until all the food had arrived was unnecessary and too much waiting time. It would have been better to extend the free time in Franschhoek, where everyone could have looked for their lunch spot. Overall it was an excellent wine tour and I can recommend it to everyone who is on a budget.


9. Having a Walk on Sea Point Promenade

I probably mentioned it somewhere before, but having a walk on Sea Point Promenade is a thing to do. For those, who do not like walking as much as I do, there’s also an opportunity to rent a bike or a scooter.


The whole route starting from Waterfront to Clifton is along the beach and some activities will cross your way. You could stop for a mini golf game, a snack, or a short break on the beach (if you have your towel with you). The promenade is also one of the safest routes to have a long walk. The promenade is over 5 km long and therefore, good for an extensive run. Whenever you're in need to move your body, this is your place.


10. The Neighbourgoods Weekend Market

Similar to Oranjezicht City Farm Market the Neighbourgoods does offer different food stalls from everywhere as well. Every weekend from 9 am until 4 pm it opens its doors and gives an urbanist vibe, where the "hipsters" of Cape Town gather and drink wine or beer while enjoying the food and listening to fancy music.


The Neighbourgoods Weekend Market is located in Woodstock around 15 minutes from the city center. While being there I highly recommend indulging the Vietnamese Bao Bun's because they are the best here.

11. Watching the Sunset on Signal Hill

Watching the sunset is a spectacular event that never gets boring and Signal Hill presumably offers the best sunset spot in Cape Town. Surrounded by people who all have the same aim: observing how the sun vanishes behind the horizon. This can be done almost every day (depending on weather conditions).


Yes, there are many sunset spots, but on top of Signal Hill, you have the best view of Cape Town City, Camps Bay, and the seemingly endless ocean. Therefore, watching the sunset on Signal Hill should be done at least once while in Cape Town.


How to get on top of Signal Hill?

You can either walk from the Lion's Head parking lot (a 45-minute walk) or take an Uber that brings you directly to the spot. Keep in mind to factor in extra time because it gets quite busy and the streets are narrow.

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