The last city at the tip of Africa, surrounded by the chilly Atlantic Ocean, with the dramatic Table Mountain as its backdrop, Cape Town will offer something for everyone - from shopaholics to sports fanatics and culture vultures!
Within a short distance from the Dolphin Inn you can savour fine local and international cuisine, wines and cocktails, relax on beautiful beaches, absorb the breathtaking scenery on the many mountain walks and boat trips, or take it easy and hop on a Peninsula tour.
Have a closer look at some suggested activities.
City Sightseeing Bus Tours
The BEST way to see the city's highlights!! Explore Cape Town’s attractions at your own pace. Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch Gardens, Groot Constantia Wine Estate, Historic landmarks, Museums, Galleries and Beaches. Simply hop off and on at any of their designated stops. They have several options that cover the most interesting Mother City attractions and also include City Walking Tours, which include District 6 and Bo Kaap, LaGuGu Township Tours, Wine Tasting and SideCar tours. A once a day trip to visit Cape Point with a stop over at Boulders Beach is now available. Tickets can be bought on the bus or book online.
The city's most prominent landmark and one of the most popular tourist attractions, forming part of the Table Mountain National Park. Table Mountain is proud to be one of the official New 7Wonders of Nature and the only one to be located in an urban area, making it highly accessible. Take the Cable Car from the lower cable station or for the more adventurous - book a guide and explore one of the many hiking trails. The views along the way and from the top are well worth the effort! Book your tickets online and check weather conditions - www.tablemountain.net
- Lion's Head - a popular hike with all age groups, peaks at 669 metres (2,195 ft) above sea level. The hour-long walk to the top is particularly popular during full moon. Its slopes are also a popular launching point for paragliders.
Please be warned that as innocuous as Table Mountain and Lion's Head seem, it claims lives regularly and you should remain within your comfort and fitness levels on all hikes. Its best to check the weather beforehand as conditions can change quickly - take warm clothes, sunblock, water and walk with a group or a local guide.
At the tip of the Cape Peninsula 60 km south-west of Cape Town, lies Cape Point, a nature reserve within the Table Mountain National Park; a declared Natural World Heritage Site. Named the ‘Cape of Storms’ by Bartolomeu Dias in 1488,
7 750 hectares of rich and varied flora and fauna, dotted with beautiful valleys, bays and beaches, abounding with buck, baboons and Cape mountain zebra as well as over 250 species of birds, Cape Point is a nature enthusiast’s paradise.
Explore the many walks on foot or bicycle trips can be arranged. Take a trip in the Flying Dutchman funicular that transfers visitors from the lower station at 127 metres above sea-level, to the upper station to visit the Lighthouse, completed in 1859 - it still stands at 238 metres above sea-level on the highest section of the peak and is now used as the centralised monitoring point for all the lighthouses on the coast of South Africa. Often mistaken as the most southerly point of the African continent, it is the most south Westerly point, with Cape Agulhas being the most Southerly.
Visit www.capepoint.co.za for opening times and rates.
Situated on the Atlantic seaboard and in the heart of Cape Town’s working harbour, the V&A Waterfront has something on offer for everyone. Enough to satisfy the most die hard shopaholic. high Fashion brands, designer boutiques featuring local and foreign brands, jewelry, and gifts galore. Movies and entertainment venues, fast food takeaways, fine dining in restaurants with ocean vistas and mountain views, or meet up with friends and live music in one of the festive late night pubs! Hop on a high speed boat trip around Table Bay or take in a mellow sunset champagne cruise. Stock up on fresh produce and locally produced crafts at the Market on the Wharf and Watershed markets. Check the V+A Waterfront website for updates on activities and the latest entertainment.
Experience the incredible diversity of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans at one of Cape Town's top tourist attractions, the world class Two Oceans Aquarium. The Cape Fur Seals, African Penguins, Jellyfish displays, giant Open Ocean and Kelp Forest tanks will all leave you astounded at the variety of Marine life off our coast. Be brave and take the plunge to Dive with the Sharks in the Aquarium.
Established in 1913 to promote, conserve and display the extraordinarily rich and diverse flora of southern Africa, Kirstenbosch Gardens was the first botanic garden in the world to be devoted to a country's indigenous flora.
Living up to its reputation as the most beautiful garden in Africa and one of the great botanic gardens of the world.
The Garden covers 36 hectares in a 528 hectare estate that contains protected mountainside, supporting natural forest and fynbos along with a variety of animals and birds. In 2004 the Cape Floristic Region, including Kirstenbosch, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Dozens of walks and hikes are there to be explored, some will take you all the way to the Cable Station on top of Table Mountain. A restaurant and deli are available for lunch, dinner or to stock up on some picnic snacks for your walk.
Every Sunday from December to April, a summer music concert series is hosted with a varied program suitable for all ages. Pack a picnic basket and enjoy the good music in this amazing setting with Table Mountain as a backdrop. Book tickets in advance! For more info contact Kirstenbosch Gardens.
No visit to the Cape could be complete without tasting our nectar from the gods! Our mild Mediterranean weather provides the perfect climate for winemaking.
The Cape’s winelands stretch from the coast to the plains of the Little Karoo. Plenty to choose from - with over 560 wineries and 4 400 primary producers of vineyards in the Cape, divided by the Wine of Origin Scheme into 4 main regions: The Breede River Valley, The Little Karoo, Coastal and Olifants River.
South Africa's oldest vineyard, Groot Constantia, is just 20 minutes outside of the city, with a rich history of winemaking that dates back to the late 1600s. Travel further afield to some of the most scenic wine regions in the world. Stellenbosch, Franschoek and Paarl host a multitude of farms offering a range of the award winning reds and whites that will satisfy even the most discerning palate, including our own unique Pinotage, a red wine grape that is South Africa's signature variety. It was bred here in 1925 as a cross between Pinot noir and Cinsaut. Celebrate your visit to the Mother City with our own world class Sparkling wines, "Method cap Classique" made in the traditional champagne style.
The Cape Winelands also boasts world-class golf courses and endless kilometers of cycling, walking and hiking routes.
Boulders Beach forms part of theTable Mountain National Park and is situated just around the corner from the seaside village of Simonstown, home to the SA Naval Base. Boulder's Beach is a popular stop because of a colony of African Penguins, which settled there in 1982. It is the only Penguin species that breeds in Africa and is confined to the Southern African waters.
Sadly, endemic African Penguins are in danger of extinction. Scientists believe this endangered marine bird will be extinct in the wild within 15 years. Major reasons include depletion of their food from overfishing, climate change and pollution from incidences such as oil spills.
Boulders Beach is ideal for the whole family with safe swimming and slightly warmer water! Boulders Visitor Centre: +27(0) 21 786 2329.
Camps Bay & Clifton Beach
Playground to the rich and famous, these popular beaches have hosted a range of celebrities seeking an undisturbed place to soak up the sunshine. Clifton's beaches are often protected from the wind when the notorious "Cape Doctor" starts to blow. White sand, blue water and beautiful people, Clifton offers safe swimming beaches, where you'll often find a flotilla of luxury yachts competing for the perfect spot to drop anchor.
Further along, Camps Bay Beach is long stretch of white sandy beach with a vibrant, yet relaxed feel. Trendy bars and restaurants line the roadside, where you can kick back with a sundowner, grab a bite to eat or party the night away in one of the popular beach side bars.
Check when lifeguards are on duty and beware of the strong undertow that can be present at certain times.
From the17th to the 20th
Robben Island served as a place of banishment, isolation and imprisonment, but more famously known for its political prisoners, including Nelson Mandela, during South Africa's Apartheid era.
It was also used as a training and defence station in World War II (1939-1945) and a hospital for people with leprosy, and the mentally and chronically ill (1846-1931).
This iconic landmark, declared a World heritage site in 1999, is also a protected nature conservation area with a complex, sensitive eco-system hosting about 132 bird species and 23 species of mammals. On your ferry trip across to the island keep a sharp look out for marine mammals, including Cape Fur Seals, Southern Right Whales, Dusky and Heaviside Dolphins.
Ferries depart from the Nelson Mandela Gateway, at the V&A Waterfront. It is recommended to pre-book tickets in advance.
For more information visit: www.robben-island.org.za