Where to Stay - South Africa

Climb Lion’s Head

Well you do need to be a bit fit for this one but a hike up Lion’s Head when it is full moon is a truly rewarding experience. From the top you can see across Cape Town, Robben Island, the peninsula and of course the ocean. Take a drink and some a picnic and relax with like-minded folk as you watch another beautiful day in South Africa come to an end.

Dipping your toes in the Ocean
Relax on the beach in Camps Bay, Cape Town
You are spoilt for choice when it comes to beaches around Cape Town. From Camps Bay to Bloubergstrand there are numerous endless sandy beaches just waiting for you. If you enjoy a spot of people watching then the beaches at Clifton are your best bet but if you want some heavy action then head to Bloubergstrand to marvel at the kite-surfers taking off in the waves.

Moonlight Mass Cycle Ride

Moonlight cycle ride in Cape Town

Photo Credit: @Kj_Pretty

Join the masses on the monthly Moonlight Mass cycle ride. Bring your bicycle and meet up at Green Point Circle between 2100 and 2115. This relaxed night cycle ride started off as just an experiment on Twitter and its social capability but now takes place once a month.  The ride leaves at 2115 and takes a route to the bottom of Long Street where you wait to regroup before the whole group rides together along Loop Street, into Longmarket Street and into Greenmarket Square.

Company’s Gardens

Campany's Gardens in Cape Town

Situated at the top of Alderley Street this hidden little gem is a lovely spot to stop for a picnic. Surrounded by historical buildings including the National Museum, the National Library and the Planetarium the gardens create a relaxing Cape Town oasis. At the centre of the gardens there is a tea room with an aviary next to it. There is also a Rose Garden, Japanese Garden and a fish pond to enjoy.

Stroll the promenade

Take a walk along the 11km Sea Point promenade which is a popular exercise route for many locals in the morning or late afternoon. The wide and flat promenade follows the Atlantic Ocean and is popular with mums pushing their strollers with babies on board. Take a book or a newspaper and stop at one of the benches and take part in a little people watching.

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

Every Tuesday (except Public Holidays) the gardens are free to enter for South African pensioners. You do need to be quite fit but we know plenty of fit pensioners will enjoy a stroll through these beautiful botanical gardens set on the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain in Cape Town. Don’t forget to bring your ID book with you to ensure your free entry.

Cape Town Civic Centre

Located on Hertzog Street the Civic Centre is the headquarters of the City of Cape Town where exhibitions are held that are open to open to visitors. Presently there is a large exhibition celebrating the Nelson Mandela Legacy on the concourse level. This exhibition runs until the end of April 2014 and is open weekdays from 09h00 to 16h00 and on weekends/public holidays between 10h00 and 16h00.

Hout Bay Craft Market

Market at Hout Bay near Cape Town

Courtesy: Bayharbour.co.za

Browsing through the Hout Bay Craft Market is always free but we can’t promise that you won’t see something you like and want to buy it. This popular market is open Fridays from 17h00 to 21h00, Saturdays from 10h30 to 18h00 and Sundays from 09h30 to 16h00. The market is located at 31 Harbour Road in Hout Bay and is closed on Public Holidays. As well as the market there is the Bay Harbour Sound Stage that puts on free music by established and up and coming artists. The music on offer can be anything from blues, to jazz and much more.

R44 – Clarence Drive

Take a beautiful scenic drive along the R44 (Clarence Drive) from Gordon’s Bay to Kleinmond. This stunning coastal road takes you from Gordon’s Bay, to Rooiels, on to Pringle Bay and Betty Bay and finally Kleinmond. Along the way you can stop at one of the many beaches, look across False Bay or check out the Ocean for southern-right whales during season. Apart from the petrol and wear and tear on your car this is free and well worth the drive. When you get to Kleinmond you have the choice of going onto Hermanus or exploring the Elgin Valley.

V&A Waterfront
The old clock tower at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town
Spend some time wandering around the beautiful Waterfront watching the comings and goings. You can often find street performers here showing off their skills in this area. Keep an eye out by the bridge near the ferry station for the seals some of which are huge and enjoy sunbathing much to the amusement of all the visitors.  There are some beautiful old buildings here like the Victorian Gothic style Clock Tower which was originally the office of the Port Captain.

Signal Hill

Climb to the top of Signal Hill (350m to the summit) and look out across the Atlantic Seaboard. At 12h00 noon every day the Noon Gun fires – a memory of years gone by when the gun sounded warnings to approaching ships. Night-time sunset picnics are very popular here.

Milnerton Flea Market

Spend a few hours browsing around 200 stalls at the Milnerton Flea Market located on the R27 8km West out of Cape Town. Lots of antiques, collectables, bric-a-brac and food stalls to look through. The market is child-friendly, wheelchair-friendly and pet-friendly and is open on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays weather permitting. The market is outdoors and is situated right by the Atlantic Ocean with Table Mountain standing proud in the background.

Tags: cape town cycling free hout bay kirstenbosch lions head moonlight riding signal hill things to do V&A Waterfront