Welcome to this (Best Cape Town Vacation Travel Guide) blog post. Get the guide to the best hotels, travel tips, and things to do in Cape Town, South Africa.
The colorful Cape Town is one of the world’s most multiethnic cities. The city is located on the South African Cape Peninsula, where the two seas, the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean, meet, and impressive cliffs rise above the blue water. For centuries, the Cape of Good Hope was a dangerous place on the route, when European ships rounded the perilous waters of the sea towards the riches of Asia. It was the main supply station for the passing ships that the Dutch in the year 1652 founded the settlement that has since been developed into one of the most amazing cities in the world with a location that can take the breath completely from one.
For many decades, Cape Town has been marked by a lot of stormy social upheavals just like the ships on their way to India, Cape Town has managed to sail free of the troubled waters of history and has now set the course for a bright future. It is a city that, despite its challenges, is a hope, not just for South Africa, but for the whole world. Central Cape Town is called City Bowl. It is an area shaped like an amphitheater framed by Table Bay and the characteristic flat top of Table Mountain, which extends over three kilometers. In the middle of the area is the Castle of Good Hope. Castle of Good Hope which is the focal point of the growing city was built by the Dutch East India Company. Nearby is the Company’s Garden, where vegetables are grown to supply the many merchant ships.
Best Cape Town Vacation Travel Guide
Around the garden, some of the city’s most important institutions emerged, among them is the Parliament Building and the National Library. In the southern part of the park is the South African Museum and Planetarium, where you can experience the wonders of Africa, ranging from prehistoric cave paintings to some of nature’s greatest giants. Quite a short distance from there hangs paintings from several centuries on the National Gallery. With its mix of modern and ancient architecture, the South African Jewish Museum is a tribute to a population group, who has helped create the country.
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Do not miss the District Six Museum, located a few blocks away. It is a museum and cultural center that tells the story of the 60,000 non-white residents, were forcibly relocated from the district while the vibrant, multi-ethnic neighborhood was razed to the ground in one of the worst periods of apartheid. Fortunately, one district was spared from the bulldozers of the apartheid regime, namely Bo-Kaap. Despite decades of racial segregation. The culture of the Cape Malay is alive and well among the lively, colorful townhouses and sloping cobbled streets in the suburbs.
The new South Africa after apartheid is often called the Rainbow Nation, and just as the gold at the end of the new rainbow shines diversity, change, and creativity up the streets in the center of the town, from the shops and to the actual buildings themselves. If you love coffee, look past Truth and grab a cup or two at the steampunk-inspired café that attracts coffee fans from around the world. Once you have quenched your coffee thirst, then take a stroll down Long Street, where elegant Victorian architecture, fashion, and good food go up in a higher unit in one of Cape Town’s busiest streets.
If you have become thirsty, then sit on a balcony with an ice-cold beer while contemplating the street life below. Get another breath of some of the fresh air on the Alfred waterfront Victoria. In South Africa’s oldest functioning port you can find lots of sights, including the Two Oceans Aquarium, which shows life below sea level in both the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean. From the port, you can also get to one of the world’s most notorious prisons, Robben Island. Take the trip across Table Bay to experience the humid cells and windswept prison yards and hear the personal stories of former inmates. For over 300 years the island was used to isolate people, without the outside world being aware of it, until 1964 when anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela was placed here and sat here for 18 years.
A visit to Robben Island shows how far SA has come on the long road to finally achieving freedom. Mandela was later to remain much more than South Africa’s first black president, he became the father of the nation and has inspired millions of people worldwide. Mandela once said it was Table Mountain on the mainland which is six kilometers away, which gave him inspiration through the many years on Robben Island. No matter where in Cape Town you are, Table Mountain is always visible, the city’s much-loved landmark, helping locals and visitors find their way. The closer you get to the haze of Table Mountain, the stronger you can feel its power. From Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens you can enjoy the view up the east side of the mountain and explore South Africa’s many biomes and the Boomslang footbridge that winds through the garden’s treetops.
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From the garden, you can walk along with one of the hiking trails up the mountain or jump aboard the cable car on a fantastic trip to the top. From here there are views of Signal Hill, Devil’s Peak, and Lion’s Head and all the way to Robben Island and further afield yet. Cape Town is one of the best beach towns in the world, with a myriad of beaches, coves, and coastal communities, each with its own atmosphere. From Green Point, which houses Cape Town’s futuristic stadium, you can take the trip along the west coast of the Cape Peninsula to one beautiful beach after another. Near the center, the wide seafront promenade at Milton Beach is a great place to go for a walk. A little further south of Milton Beach in Clifton is some of South Africa’s most expensive homes along the hillside down to the four beaches, which are divided by granite boulders, which provide shelter on windy days. It’s an expensive pleasure to buy a house in Clifton, but the view of the Atlantic, the Lion’s Head, and the Twelve Apostles cost fortunately nothing.
At the neighboring beach Camps Bay, the atmosphere of Saint-Tropez continues. Just a five-minute drive from central Cape Town you will find the finest white sand, a quiet tide, and free choice between over 20 restaurants and cafes. 10 kilometers down the coast will be even calmer on Llandudno Beach. Life is simple here, there is no street lighting, no restaurants, and not a single store. When the stomach starts to growl, slip around on the other side of the embankment to the fishing town of Hout Bay. Cool down with a hand-brewed beer, see what the market has to offer, and hang out with the locals down by the crayfish and tuna boats. After exploring the western coastline of the peninsula, there is plenty to see in the east. Welcome to False Bay, where the water is warmer, and the endless array of beaches and beautiful harbor continues.
On the naval side of Simon’s Town is the amazing historic St. George’s Street. Experience the maritime atmosphere, greet a much-loved sea dog, while exploring the small alleys and Victorian-style buildings along the way. Finally, do not leave Simon’s Town without a visit to Boulders Beach, it is one of the only places in the world where you can get really close to the endangered spectacled penguins. In the past, False Bay was filled with small fishing and agricultural things like Fish Hoek. Walk the path along the coast from here to Kalk Bay, where writers, musicians, and artists have replaced the past whalers and lime burners. Fortunately, the fishing boats are still sailing out to sea, so the local restaurants always have plenty of fresh seafood. When you have to force yourself to leave, then head to the neighboring town of St James, known for its colorful Victorian bathing cabins and beautiful old houses, which testifies to the early days of the diamond and gold industry in Cape Town.
Hope you are enjoying this amazing best Cape Town vacation travel guide. In the next town, Muizenberg, the mood is completely different. Muizenberg is known as one of the most relaxed destinations in Cape Town. The warm, shallow water makes the beach family-friendly. And if you have a dream of surfing, then this is where it needs to be tested! Muizies are after all the birthplace of surfing in South Africa. There can be surfing on the beach in Muizies in the summer, but there are plenty of cool places to cool off in the streets of the artist city. For the next 19 kilometers, it is pure sand all the way to the stunning historic town of Gordon’s Bay. Just nearby in Kogel Bay, the only sound is the pebbles and seashells rolling in with the tide. But Cape Town has more than beaches to offer, here is also some of the best lands to grow wine on in the world.
The first vines of the Cape Peninsula were planted in Company’s Gardens in 1655 so that the passing sailors could avoid scurvy. But the beginning of the country’s wine industry took place just a 20-minute drive away in the suburb of Constantia. In the late 17th century, hundreds of vines were planted here along with rows of oak trees to protect them from the strong winds. From here the vines were scattered, much further away from Cape Town, to an area now called The Winelands. Here you will find 18 different wine routes around the Winelands including historic villages and towns. The vast vineyards in beautiful surroundings will knock your legs off beneath you. On a large number of the vineyards, there are estates in the Cape Dutch style, as well as restaurants and wine tasting rooms, where you can taste the innermost essence of the fertile soil. After a walk past Paarl’s renowned wineries, including Laborie and Vrede en Lust, you can explore the streets and architecture of this 300-year-old city. High above Paarl is the Taalmonumentet, which is a tribute to the Afrikaans language, which was banned in the wake of the bitter Boer War, which ended in 1902.
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More than 150 wine tasting rooms at 200 wineries. Take the two-hour wine safari at the Bordeaux-inspired Waterford Estate, where you can taste some of the most exciting new red wines in the area. Only 30 minutes drive from Stellenbosch, and only 50 minutes from Cape Town, lies perhaps the most beautiful wine route of them all, Franschhoek wine windows. On the run from religious persecution in the 17th century, more than 200 French Huguenots came to this valley and created a paradise. Today, the Franschhoek is considered to be one of South Africa’s food and wine mecca. At Boschendal, one of the country’s very first wineries is the French inspiration and passion everywhere. The French can also be seen in the city itself, in the galleries, museums, and in the memorial, where a female figure frees herself from the cloak of oppression and looks ahead to a bright future. Before heading back to Cape Town, take a ride along Franschhoek Pass, one of the most beautiful car rides on the Cape Peninsula.
High up in the Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve, there are views of the valley and slopes filled with protea flowers, a flower native to the Cape Peninsula and now cultivated worldwide. According to locals, the protea flower stands for change, courage, and hope. Cape Town is made up of the same soil, so it is not surprising that the city possesses the same qualities.
Cape Town in SA is more than just one flower, the city is a whole more than a garden. Right from the town was founded as a supply station for the passing seafarers, to the bitter harvest of the apartheid era. It is a garden where hands of all colors have sown the seeds of hope and plucked the fruits of liberty. So come and taste the many colors, hopes, and freedom of Cape Town..
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