How to spend a week in Cape Town

When we got invited to a wedding in South Africa, it was the perfect opportunity to explore that part of the world that was so far from anything we know. We weren't sure exactly what to expect for our arrival in to Cape Town, but one thing was for sure: there would be lots of good wines, beautiful beaches and scenic roads.

How to spend a week in Cape Town

I'll start by stating the obvious (if you followed us on Instagram and FB during our trip): Cape Town is one of the most FANTASTIC travel destination we've had the chance to explore so far. Same sensation than five years ago when we got back from our road trip in New Zealand -we are traumatized. In a good way.

Here's a complete guide for how to spend a week in Cape Town! 


Day 1: From Table Mountain to City Bowl

There's no better way to start off a week in Cape Town than with panoramic views of the surroundings. Ready for chills?

How to spend a week in Cape Town

TABLE MOUNTAIN [UNESCO World Heritage Site]

  • Rule n°1: if it's sunny, GO. Table Mountain often gets cloudy and perfect clear and tranquil days can be rare.
  • Two options to get to the top: a steep hike (+/- 2.5 hours) or a ride with the Cable Car. The hike is stunning and requires a certain level of fitness. The Cable Car is a great option too, as its rotating system offers a 360° view during the climb.
  • If you plan on taking the Cable Car, you can check the estimated waiting time and buy your tickets on tablemountain.net.
  • Take your time, your picnic and go for a hike on the flat mountain. You'll want to soak up the views!
  • Spot the dassies -these stocky, squat animals that look like big rats, jump along the rocks and bathe in the sunshine.
  • If you feel adventurous, you can abseil down a cliff from the top. 

CITY BOWL & DISTRICT SIX

  • Walk around Long St to discover some of Cape Town's most typical buildings. [Be aware of the pickpockets at night.]
  • Learn about South Africa's history at the District Six Museum.
  • Taste the local cuisine at Africa Cafe. Not only the 16 African dishes menu is delicious, but the atmosphere is fantastic. Prepare to enter into a whole new world made of colors, local live music and tribal make-up!

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    Day 2: along The West Coast, From BLOUBERGSTRAND TO LANGEBAAN 

    A day beach hopping, crossing zebras and ostrichs on the road and kitesurfers on the waters. Pretty cool!

    How to spend a week in Cape Town

    THE WEST COAST

    • Bloubergstrand: 20 minutes from Cape Town, this beautiful white sandy beach is known for its iconic view on Table Mountain. You can also see clearly Robben Island from there. The spot is popular for surfing and kitesurfing. Watching pro-riders flying over the ocean can be spectacular sometimes -see for yourself
    • Ons Huisie, Blouberstrand: great spot for a wine + fish & chips with a great ocean view at sunset.
    • Big Bay: Great atmosphere on week-ends -locals come to hang out, picnic, surf, and drink good wine (always!). 
    • On the road to Langebaan, you'll drive along the West Coast National Park, so keep an eye open, you could see an ostrich or a family of zebras on the road -I saw some zebras, I was SO excited. 
    • Langebaan: Kitesurfers, this one's for you! 100 kms north from Cape Town, this little town is hides a beautiful lagoon, which makes a perfectly flat kitesurfing spot. The beach is wide and beautiful, and you can find a small strip of restaurants on the beach front.
    • You can also go sand boarding in Langebaan's sand dunes.

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    Day 3: At the end of the world, EXPLORING the Cape's deep south

    The Southern Peninsula is so wide and magnificent, it could be explored in a few days -don't hesitate if you've got an extra day.

    • Kalk Bay: a charming fishing village that's worth a stop. Some lovely arts & crafts shops and great cafés to discover.
    • Simon's Town is known for Boulders beach, popular for its penguin colony. It's open everyday 8am-5pm in winter, 7am-7:30pm in summer. While you might think it's very touristic -well, you're right- but look how cuuute they are! Plus, the beach is gorgeous. These folks get quite a view!
    • Lightouse Cafe in Simon's Town: BEST fish & chips ever -in a relax beach-style cafe.
    • Drive down to the Cape of Good Hope Reserve, Table Mountain National Park. It's 110R, opens 6am-6pm. Go as early as you can, as there's plenty to do there...
    • Spot the baboons (be careful, they are NOT friendly!) and ostrichs in the reserve.
    • Climb up to the Cape Point to get a magnificent on the sea meeting the ocean.
    • Go to Cape of Good Hope -beautiful at sunset!
    • Explore the beaches around -Platboom is one of the most BEAUTIFUL beaches I've seen in my life. It was late, so we were alone -with a bunch of giant ostrichs. It was magical!

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    Day 4: Bo-Kaap to Camps Bay

    Pack your camera with an extra memory card today, you're in for quite a photogenic day...

    BO-KAAP & CITY BOWL

    • Explore the cobbled street of the rainbow-painted Bo-Kaap, Cape Town's Malay quarter. Wale St and Rose St are the most picturesque ones. 
    • Walk down to 107 Bree St for a delicious brunch in La Parada -we LOVED the food, the atmosphere and the prices there.
    • Hit Greenmarket Square and discover Cape Town's beautiful art deco architecture.
    • Relax and play like in a squirrel in Company's Gardens' little huts.

    CAMPS BAY

    • From the city, take the scenic Kloof Rd, the view is spectacular.
    • Get there for sunset -the Twelve Apostles get a very unique golden light at that time of the day.
    • Go for a swim if you dare... the water is freezing!
    • For cocktails and good wine with sea view, La Belle is a good option.

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    Day 5: Day trip in Stellenbosch

    I told there would be lots of good wines... I hope you like cheese too!

    How to spend a week in Cape Town

    STELLENBOSCH

    • Wine tasting is a must. We went to Zorgvliet and Peter Falke Wine Estates, love the places.
    • Stellenbosch is a lovely small town that worth a visit. Don't miss the charming Dutch Reform Church!
    • Stop in De Warenmarkt for breakfast / lunch, a cool fresh produce market & restaurant on Plein St.
    • Stay in Absolute Bosch Guest house for a peaceful night where you'll feel like home.

    FRANSCHHOEK

    • Another beautiful South African winelands town to explore.

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    Day 6: Woodstock, Chapman's Peak Dr & NOORDHOEK

    Soak up Cape Town's vibe in a trendy market, hit a stunning coastal road and finish the day with live music in a park.

    WOODSTOCK

    • Discover South African artists : you can either visit Woodstock's art galleries or just enjoy the street art.
    • Don't miss the Neighbourgoods Market every Saturday (9am-3pm) at the Old Biscuit Mill (Albert Rd). It's one of the best artisan goods markets in town. We LOVED the ambiance: good music, delicious food, great people, arts & crafts shops, cool local boutiques, champagne... This place makes you wanna live in Cape Town!
    • If you can't come on Saturday, the Old Biscuit Mill is still worth a visit. This former biscuit factory houses an ace collection of lovely little shops.

    CHAPMAN'S PEAK DRIVE TO NOORDHOEK

    • Chapman's Peak Dr is a scenic 5km road linking Hout Bay with Noordhoek. They say it's one of the most spectacular coastal drives in the world, and I can understand why! The views are so incredible, you'll want to stop every 100m or so. It's also a great spot for picnics with a view. 
    • Spot the leopard statue in Hout Bay -a reminder of the wildlife that used to live around. 
    • At the end of the road, you'll see a magnificent stretch of white sand. That's Noordhoek beach, another of South Africa's stunning beaches. It's loved by surfers, with a good right beach break. Get down to Noordhoek and follow the beach signs, you can't miss it.
    • Noordhoek Farm Village: We fell in love with the place! Café Roux serves delicious salads, Kristen Kick Ass Ice Cream kicks ass! At night, they often host live concerts with local bands. Relaxed atmosphere that, once again, makes you wanna stay in Cape Town forever. 

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      Day 7: V&A Waterfront, the Botanical Gardens & Muizenberg

      Eat in a trendy food market, shop some local crafts, hike in a botanical garden, and surf in Muizenberg. All of that, in one day.

      How to spend a week in Cape Town

      V&A WATERFRONT

      • To be honest, we thought it was a mall and didn't want to go the Waterfront. But on a rainy morning, it was one of our only options, so we went and wow, we were happy the rain took us there! The old charm of the historical harbour meets the most modern shopping experience there. There are plenty of cafés and restaurants and museums.
      • We went for the V&A Food Market and LOVED it. Plenty of delicious options, and great stuff to discover! 
      • Want to bring back some souvenirs from Cape Town? Avoid the mall and go to Watershed: that's where you'll find the best of local design and crafts.

      KIRSTENBOSCH BOTANICAL GARDENS

      • Covering 5 hectares of Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens are the largest in South Africa. Prepare a picnic, take your time and enjoy the scenery.
      • Don't miss the great Tree Canopy Walk!
      • There are some beautiful hikes to do from the Gardens, you can even go up Table Mountain from there.
      • Plan ahead and book your tickets for one of the Summer Sunset Concerts (usually held on Sundays).

      MUIZENBERG

      • Muizenberg is one of these surfers / artists town full of surf shops / organic cafes that I love. Not only it's great for surfing, but it sometimes gets pretty good for kitesurfing too.
      • There's a very interesting Shark Spotters Center by the beach, where you'll get all the answers to your questions about shark attacks in South Africa. After we talked with the lady there, we saw a shark alert, the whole beach has been evacuated. That was something!
      • Muizenberg is also known for its row of colorful Victorian bathing chalets on the beach.