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Where to Stay in Cape Town (2023)

Are you planning a trip to Cape Town but wondering where to stay? I got you! This blog post contains a full guide about the best places to stay in Cape Town with an additional explanation, and my personal opinion on which place is the best to stay.


Table of Contents:


Best Areas to Stay in Cape Town

Cape Town is a unique place where the ocean meets the mountains. It is home to the famous Table Mountain and Cape Point. Looking at a map, Table Mountain divides Cape Town into two areas; the seaside area with Green Point, Sea Point, and Camps Bay, and the city area with Waterfront, the City Center, Woodstock, and Observatory. Every area is marked with a number on the map below:

Where to Stay in Cape Town

Those are also the places I recommend for staying. Which one's the best area to stay in depends on travel style, budget, and preferences regarding vibes. For this reason, I explain in more detail about each of those places:


1. Camps Bay

Facing the West you get spoiled with the most beautiful and scenic sunsets you've ever seen, accompanied with beautiful white sand beaches and an unforgettable view of the famous mountains such as Lion's Head, Table Mountain, and The Twelve Apostles. Camps Bay isn't only known for that, it is also home to luxurious mansions, the fine-dining restaurants with lots of wine and oysters. This area is considered very safe, where you can walk around easily on foot. A lot of joggers keep themselves fit while jogging from Camps Bay to Sea Point, and whenever you feel hot there's a refreshing cold sea for a short dip.


2. Sea Point

Are you enjoying long walks? Sea Point has a walkway right next to the sea with a few restaurants alongside the promenade. You also have the opportunity to jump into the ocean, where rocky beaches await you, or in one of the many beautiful rock pools. There is also another road, that has a few restaurants, lots of big grocery stores, and some shops as well. Sea Point is not far away from Camps Bay and a scenic walking route will bring you directly to the tropical beaches, whenever you'd like to relax there instead of


3. Green Point

This area is very similar to Sea Point and is home to the famous soccer stadium, a famous landmark of South Africa that looks like a UFO spaceship. There are two important roads in Green Point; the Main Road and the road right next to the ocean. Both are good places to have a relaxing walk and do have some tasty restaurants and cafés along the way. As Sea Point's promenade reaches to Waterfront, you can take a long walk from Green Point too, or walk towards the city center since it is only a short walking distance away.


4. Waterfront

Right next to Green Point, there's the area called Waterfront, where most boutique and luxurious hotels are located. The waterfront is a harbor and is famous for its looks. On one side you have the ocean and on the other side the mountains. And the good news for all the shopping queens is there's a big shopping mall there too. As Green Point, it is only walking distance away from the city center.


5. District Six/City Center

The city center is divided into even more areas. There's Bo Kaap, City Bowl/Cape Town City Center, and District Six. However, they are very similar and located in the center.


Anyway in my opinion this is the place to stay for people who like it, if a lot is going on. You find endless options of restaurants, from Italian to Asian and South African. The party area "Longstreet" is also located in the city center, where a lot is going on in the evening. Before your party night starts you can enjoy fantastic cocktails at one of the fancy-looking cocktail bars.


Besides the gastronomic side, the city center offers a lot regarding culture and art. You have the Bo-Kaap Museum with colorful houses, the District Six museum that tells you more about Apartheid in South Africa, and many more museums and art galleries.


The dark side of this area is, that at night the vibe is changing and it is not considered safe, which is why it is recommended to take an Uber, even for short distances! You can walk around Kloof-Street though, and maybe around Longstreet, when it is busy enough, but do not risk your safety while walking around on empty streets!


6. Woodstock

It is said that Woodstock should be the upcoming trendy area with lots of cafés and galleries and good for people, who love street art. It's located around ten minutes by car, and around 20 minutes by walking. It will remind you of Brooklyn.


This area is especially recommended for people with a lower budget, who want to stay not too far away from the city center, but still want to stay somewhere affordable. It's also where the Old Biscuit Mill is located, home to the Neighbourgoods Market every weekend and a prime location for festivals.


Woodstock is not the safest area, so walking around is recommended only in the daytime on the main road, and avoid the side streets.


7. Observatory

Another suburb of Cape Town is Observatory, also called Obz which gives bohemian vibes. It's the perfect place for shopping for "new" clothes in one of the many thrift shops. On its main road, a dozen bars and restaurants are ready to satisfy all kinds of tastes and at night it offers a vibrant nightlight scene.


Conclusion

You probably wondering now, where you should stay after you know that all of those areas are good, and honestly, I had the same issue when I was planning my trip.


I decided to stay in Woodstock and called it eight weeks my home and was happy with my decision. I got a wonderful Airbnb apartment for an affordable price, which was close to the city center. My partner and I mostly went out for dinner around Kloof Street, Bree Street, and Sea Point. All destinations were easily reachable by Uber and for a reasonable price. If we had all the possibilities and free choice of living, we would stay in Sea or Green Point, since it is safe, close to the sea, and the city center is not too far away.


From my point of view, although, a lot would recommend otherwise, I would not stay in the city center. It gets dangerous, and in the evening it makes me insecure. If you are interested in reading more about safety in Cape Town feel free to check my other blog entry here. I also did not like the vibe of Camps Bay, since the racial segregation was noticeable.


In the end, Woodstock was pretty okay, and I would not hesitate to stay another eight weeks here.

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