The Best Guide to Vacationing in Cape Town, South Africa
When in Cape Town, you can expect to soak in epic views, vibrant and diverse landscapes, and experience bucket-list adventures, rich history, culture, and wine.
Modern Restaurants, Wineries, and Incredible Nature are Just the Start
Cape Town is a destination that is the right fit for every type of traveler. From penguin-filled beaches, the world’s best hiking trails, intriguing museums, delicious and one-of-a-kind cuisine, your options in South Africa are truly endless.
Best Weather from December to February and March to May
If you’d like to enjoy a beach vacation the best time to visit Cape Town is from December through February, with February offering the warmest weather. If you would prefer a more culinary-based vacation, the best time to go is from March to May. During this time, you’ll experience the best of premium wines and dishes. Both seasons offer temperatures from the higher 60’s to mid-70’s.
If you would like to have a getaway filled with wildlife sightings, one of the best seasons to visit Cape Town is from July to September. Temperatures range from the mid to high 50’s, and are a bit rainy and windy, but this time does offer great whale watching and safari adventures.
Travel Tip: The summer and winter seasons are the opposite from the U.S., which is something you may want to consider when planning your vacation. Should you have any questions, feel free to call us and we’ll connect you with a travel agent who specializes in the type of vacation you’re seeking.
9 Things to Do in Cape Town
Whether you’re looking for thrilling adventures like surfing or cage diving with great white sharks, or shopping at local markets, Cape Town has something for every pace, lifestyle, and budget.
Traditional South African and International Cuisine
If you choose to vacation in Cape Town, you can expect nothing less than world-class cuisine. Whether you’re trying an upscale restaurant, international cuisine, or traditional South African dishes, you can prepare your palate for some of the best flavor combinations you’ve ever experienced.
For a romantic date night, a visit to The Test Kitchen by Chef Luke Dale Roberts is a must on your list of places to dine at. This modern and exclusive restaurant seats 40 guests per night for dinner and serves dishes from various countries from around the world including Britain, Ethiopia, India, and Korea.
Travel Tip: There are various restaurants that offer vegetarian and vegan options.
For more traditional cuisine, dishes to try are: Boerewors, which is a sausage made from beef mixed with pork or lamb, Chakalaka & Pap, which is a spicy vegetable relish often served with bread, or you can try Bunny Chow, which is a hollowed-out bread filled with curry.
Local Cape Town Restaurants to Try: Mzansi and Lelapa – The Home
Dating back to the 17th century, the wines and harvesting you can find at South African wineries are second to none. The Constantia Valley is one of many regions that offers multiple premium wineries like Constantia Glen Winery and Eagle’s Nest. Unwind with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Cabernet Franc. Wineries in South Africa are delicious because of the way the wine is produced. The cool climate provides perfectly ripened grapes, which are sometimes hand harvested, depending on the winery.
More Local Landmarks:
- South African Museum – Founded in 1825, this museum is home to more than half a million species of scientific importance, including fossils.
- Heart of Cape Town Museum – Discover and learn more about how the world’s first human heart transplant happened in 1967.
- Table Mountain – This is one of South Africa’s most iconic mountains and is a great place for hiking, surfing, angling picnicking, and riding aerial cable cars.
- Lion’s Head – For travelers that enjoy spending time outdoors, this mountain also provides excellent hiking and scenery.
- V& A Waterfront – This space is popular amongst tourists and locals and offers anything you can think of. From markets selling South African arts & crafts, historical tours, harbors cruises, gourmet street food, the Cape Town Diamond Museum, and Two Oceans Aquarium, your options are limitless.
- Other Places to see Wildlife – See wildlife from a closer view at Seal Island and Boulders Beach Penguin Colony.
- Shark Diving – If you’re seeking a thrilling adventure, try a shark cage diving excursion. These predators call the Western Cape home and are famous for ‘flying’ out of the water.
Day Trip to Ceres, Stellenbosch, or Hermanus
Just 41 minutes outside of Cape Town, the city of Stellenbosch offers wineries that host art festivals, provide exclusive lodging, exuberant landscaping, restaurants, spas, and luxury boutiques.
Travel Tip: It’s a must to visit the Spier Winery and Graff Winery.
Approximately one and a half hours outside of Cape Town is the city of Hermanus, which boasts sunset wine tastings and incredible whale watching tours.
If you’re looking for a traditional Big Five safari, it’s a must to visit Ceres. This city is approximately two and a half hours outside of Cape Town, and offers reserves where you can see lions, rhinos, African buffalos, leopards, zebras, hippos, giraffes, just to name a few.
A Budget-Friendly and Luxurious Destination
A vacation in Cape Town is a unique experience that is for every type of traveler. This destination offers both affordable accommodations and luxurious stays, it all depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re considering a getaway to Cape Town, you can browse your options on our website, and if you would like assistance, we can connect you to a specialized travel agent who will do all the research for you based on your preferences.
A Vacation Best Suited For
Cape Town offers adventures of all levels and interests, however, it’s a great destination for animal and nature lovers, as well as food and wine enthusiasts.
Frequently Asked Cape Town Questions
Which city is better to travel to: Cape Town or Johannesburg?
Both Cape Town and Johannesburg offer a multitude of things to do and sites to see which make both cities hard to compare. Choosing which city to go to is up to you and your interest when you travel. Cape Town is a city that offers more of a food and wine scene, in addition to nature, and Johannesburg is more known for its safaris. If time permits while you’re in South Africa, there are many domestic airlines that offer affordable flights and the flight time is only two hours.
What is a great week-long travel itinerary for South Africa?
With Avoya Travel, you can explore multiple destinations within South Africa on a luxury cruise or if you would like to spend a little extra time in specific regions, a guided tour is a great option as well. For more information on planning a South African Vacation, you can call us, and we’ll connect you with a travel agent that specializes in the type of travel you are looking for.
How far is the nearest safari from Cape Town?
You can find safaris as close as 11 minutes from Cape Town to a couple hours away.
When’s the best time to go on an African safari?
One of the best times to go on an African safari is during the dry season which occurs during May and October. Travel Tip: Animals tend to gather towards watering holes during this time. September, March and April are also great months to enjoy a safari because temperatures are not as hot as other periods of time during the year.
Why should I visit South Africa for a vacation?
South Africa is a country that is famously known for its safaris, which allow travelers the opportunity to see wildlife from a closer view. In South Africa, you can cross off many bucket-list items, like swimming with penguins, attending a whale watching festival, trekking through Kruger National Park, just to name a few of many adventures that await you.
On top of wildlife and nature, South Africa is known for its diversity in culture, people, and foods. If a safari adventure is not your taste, you can visit the limitless restaurants and wineries that offer specialties from around the world or visit any of the open-air markets and see the vibrant arts and crafts created by locals.
What does Cape Town, South Africa look like?
Cape Town offers a multitude of scenic backdrops and landscapes including beaches, mountains, wine lands, and cityscapes, just to name a few. From coastal shopping centers like the Victoria and Albert Waterfront that offers shopping, bay-front dining, and boat rides, to the wine estates and vineyards like Groot Constantia, one of South Africa’s oldest wine-producing farms.
If the outdoors is more of your scene, you can explore the best trails and mountains like Kloof Corner, which is an easy hike that offers the best sunrises and sunsets with views facing the beaches, Lion’s Head and the main city. Another great place worth visiting is the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, which houses an array of wildflowers and covers five of South Africa’s six different biomes.