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South Africa - Cape Town

Cape Town is renowned for being one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Situated at the base of Table Mountain, it is the capital city of the Western Cape. Whether you are looking for history, natural beauty or a cosmopolitan lifestyle, the 'Mother City' has it all. There is such a diversity of attractions and activities you will not be disappointed with your city experience. Offering fantastic views of the city, Table Mountain dominates the skyline. For natural surroundings there are gardens, beaches and vineyards all close by. Cape Town is steeped in history and many of the museums and monuments have much to tell. For a cosmopolitan and lively experience, visit the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront with a wide variety of shops, restaurants and craft markets.

In and Around, there are many areas of this fascinating city that you can visit, each offering something different.

City Bowl: Known as the 'Heart of Cape Town', there is a fantastic vibe with a range of restaurants, stalls and street life. Don't miss out on taking a cable car to the top of Table Mountain for fantastic views of the city. In addition, the museums, galleries and other historical buildings offer plenty of interesting venues to visit.

Victoria & Alfred Waterfront: Fast becoming 'the' place to visit. With a multitude of shops selling international and local brands, plus restaurants, bars and entertainment, there is something for everyone. A wide range of accommodation makes the Waterfront an ideal place to stay.

Camps Bay: The Bay has one of the best beaches in the Cape Town region combined with an impressive backdrop of the Twelve Apostles mountain range. Many cafés, bars and restaurants line the beachfront - a great location to view fantastic sunsets.

Sea Point: Situated just outside central Cape Town with amazing views of Table Mountain and the Atlantic Ocean. The beachfront promenade is a focal point for locals and tourists.

cape_grace
One of Africa's most luxurious hotels, renowned for superb accommodation and exceptional service.
ellerman_house
This Cape Town Hotel is one of the world's most exclusive private small hotels with a legacy of stylish entertaining and understated luxury.
one&only_cape_town
One&Only Cape Town is an oasis of cosmopolitan style with chic design and African flair.
the_table_bay_hotel
One of the leading hotels in the world, The Table Bay Hotel combines Victorian elegance with modern style, offering a welcoming and inviting atmosphere.
african_pride_15_on_orange_hotel
This luxury African Pride hotel combines sophistication with exquisite design features and superb, friendly staff. Located in stunning gardens, it's an upmarket luxurious hotel located at the foot of Table Mountain, and is within easy reach of the Pl...
african_pride_crystal_towers_hotel_&_spa
Centrally located in the heart of the Century City urban hub, African Pride Crystal Towers Hotel & Spa is situated beside a palm-lined canal, and boasts views stretching out towards the majestic Table Mountain.
cape_royale_luxury_hotel
A landmark hotel set against one of South Africa's iconic sites, Table Mountain, Cape Royale has a grand and elegant feel balanced with an intimate and relaxed atmosphere. The hotel offers the very best in comfort and convenience.
lawhill_apartments
Thirty luxury apartments set in the Marina at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. The apartments are furnished in a cool, modern style with a patio or balcony with views of the marina, canal and nearby hotels.
mandela_rhodes_place
Mandela Rhodes Place offers the definitive city lifestyle with a choice of luxurious apartments, a host of leisure options and a wealth of retail facilities in the heart of metropolitan Cape Town.
radisson_blu_hotel_waterfront
Spectacularly situated on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, overlooking a private marina and adjacent to the world famous V&A Waterfront, this five star international hotel offers magnificent views and superb service.
the_bay_hotel
A luxury beachfront hotel on a trendy strip of Camps Bay. The stunning location, in-house restaurants & bars, wellness centre and a vast choice of activities make this Cape Town hotel an absolute paradise.
the_cellars_-_hohenort_hotel
With a history dating back to the 18th-century, the two buildings that make up The Cellars-Hohenhort once served as a farmhouse, a German-style manor house, a traditional wine cellar and a country guest house.
the_last_word_long_beach
Situated outside of the city of Cape Town this romantic hideaway has a backdrop of stunning sea views and kilometres of white sand.
the_mount_nelson_hotel_cpt
One of Cape Town's best loved hotels offers timeless elegance and fine cuisine.
the_westin_cape_town
A deluxe hotel situated in the heart of Cape Town offering scenic views of both the ocean & Table Mountain.
twelve_apostles_hotel_&_spa
An intimate, boutique hotel offering exceptional standards of service.
the_bantry_bay_luxury_suites
An exquisite blend of the sea, the mountain and the city of Cape Town in the heart of Cape Town's Platinum Mile.
waterfront_village
Overlooking the marina, the Waterfront Village offers guests a luxurious home away from home.
camps_bay_retreat
Stay at Camps Bay Retreat and enjoy an unforgettable experience for all the senses. From delicious, organically grown food, to glorious views, from the feel of absolute calm to the fragrant smell of fynbos. The estate comprises four acres of private ...
cape_town_hollow_boutique_hotel
Cape Town Hollow is ideally situated for easy access to the V&A Waterfront, Table Mountain, and the well known beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay.
protea_hotel_fire_&_ice!
Ultra chic lighting and trendy décor combined with traditional facilities makes Fire & Ice! an extraordinary hotel to compliment the vibrant 'mother city'. In an ideal location for relaxing or exploring the city.
simonstown_quayside_hotel
With breathtaking views over False Bay and the majestic Simon's Kloof Mountains, the Simonstown Quayside Hotel on the waterfront offers a unique accommodation, shopping and dining experience.
southern_sun_the_cullinan
Offering majestic views of Table Mountain, this elegant hotel is perfect for an exploration of Cape Town.
southern_sun_waterfront_hotel
This large hotel has a contemporary feel and is perfectly positioned for a visit to Cape Town.
the_ambassador_hotel
There is no escaping the beauty of one of the world's favourite places, and the Ambassador, right on the rocks, is unique in this city of spectacular sights.
the_cape_milner
The views of Table Mountain from the restaurant terrace, the hotel's alluring interior and its closeness to the city centre and trendy Kloof Street, makes The Cape Milner one of Cape Town's hottest spots.
the_commodore_hotel_cpt
Boasting superb service and excellent cuisine in a secure and friendly environment.
the_portswood
Stylish accommodation on the edge of the trendy Victoria & Alfred Waterfront.
the_president
The atmosphere is relaxed, yet professional. This is a resort in the city. For a leisurely holiday, there's no better choice of venue.
the_vineyard_hotel_&_spa
With over 200 years of history within its walls, this deluxe hotel is situated in six acres of attractive landscaped parkland on the banks of the Liesbeeck River.
victoria_&_alfred_hotel_cpt
Built in 1904 as the North Quay Warehouse and converted in 1990 to a luxury hotel, it is named in honour of the Queen of England and her son who visited the Cape in 1870, when Prince Alfred officially opened the Breakwater basin, today's Victoria & A...
winchester_mansions
A landmark hotel where classical elegance abounds and a friendly welcome awaits you. Imaginatively designed rooms are arranged around a charming courtyard.
the_cape_manor_hotel
The Hotel is part of the Premier Hotels group, ensuring an excellent standard.
city_lodge_v_&_a
City lodge has become a household name in the Southern African market, providing comfortable and tastefully decorated rooms which are the ideal place to come home to at the end of your day.
hollow_on_the_square
A modern city hotel, luxurious, comfortable and excellent for exploring the city centre by foot.
park_inn_hotel_cpt
One of Cape Town's gracious old buildings renovated to a high standard and offering all the comforts of a city hotel.
protea_hotel_breakwater_lodge
Experience a rich piece of history balancing modern-day comfort when you stay at this hotel right next to Cape Town's fabulous V&A Waterfront.
protea_hotel_sea_point
Decorated with contemporary comfort this stylish 3 star hotel is set in the relaxed residential suburb of Sea Point.
sunsquare_cape_town
At the foot of Table Mountain with sweeping views of the city & easy access to major highways.
the_glen_apartments
Set on the verge of The Glen Forest Nature Reserve in Camps Bay, These are design led, modern serviced apartments within easy reach of Cape Town.
cape_town_city_tour_(1-2_day)
The ultimate 'Mother City' experience, designed to orientate you and give you an insight into the magic of Cape Town.
full_day_cape_peninsula_tour
See for yourself how this spectacular southern tip of Africa became known as the 'Fairest Cape'.
safari_day_(full_day)
Less than 2 hours from Cape Town is The Aquila Private Game Reserve, home to lion, hippo, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, rhino, ostrich, baboon, warthog, springbuck and many other wild animals, birds and fauna.
winelands_tour_(full_day)
A whole day dedicated to the indulgence and splendour of Africa's premier wine region.

Map

Located in the southwest of South Africa, Cape Town is the second most populated city after Johannesburg. The city is tucked under the mighty Table Mountain and a broad bay surrounded by white sand beaches. To the south of the city is the Cape Peninsula which comprises a 40km mountainous stretch that extends out into the Atlantic Ocean, culminating at Cape Point. The downtown area, affectionately nicknamed City Bowl, is home to sprawling suburbs that cover a 50km area, referred to as the Cape Flats, which joins the peninsular to the mainland.   

Not much is known about the initial inhabitants of the Cape Town region, as there are no written records in existence. However, there are early human remnants that have been found that date from between 15,000 and 12,000 years ago. In 1486, the first Europeans to reach Cape Town were Portuguese explorers. In 1652, the Dutch East India Company took over the city and established a way-station for ships travelling between the Netherlands and the Dutch East Indies. Britain captured Cape Town in 1795, but it was later returned to the Dutch in 1803. The 17th and 18th centuries saw a lot of bloodshed and disagreement as ownership of Cape Town was passed between the Dutch and the British numerous times, particularly during the Boer Wars.

Much later, after the 1948 elections that established apartheid, Cape Town became racially divided and remained that way until apartheid was officially abolished in 1991. In 1994, Cape Town played host to South Africa’s first democratic elections and the city began to move forward towards a more positive future.

Today, Cape Town’s beautiful beaches, ample hiking opportunities, and numerous attractions make it a top African destination to visit. The city has an easy-going vibe, the cultural sights are top-notch, and of course, diverse wildlife and fauna are its biggest lure. With so much to see and do, it’s no wonder Cape Town is a bucket-list destination for many travellers. 

Cape Town has incredible biodiversity and boasts many protected areas that are also World Heritage Sites. Table Mountain itself contains around 2200 different species of plants, many of which are unique to the area. Cape Town’s incredible species diversity is down to its varied soil types and microclimates, which allow for multiple varied plants to live in relative closeness to each other. The city has 19 different endemic vegetation types and countless wildlife species, including dolphins, seals, aardvarks and bats. However, due to urban sprawl and population growth, many of these unique ecosystems have been lost over the years. The good news is, South Africa’s natural flora and fauna is currently being protected in over 30 nature reserves around the country, including the Table Mountain National Park. 

Cape Town offers amazing holidays throughout the year, and although it technically has four seasons, temperatures are mild all year round. So, whichever month you choose to visit Cape Town, you’ll have an incredible African experience.  

Summer (November – February)

With temperatures reaching an average of 25C and minimal rainfall, summer in Cape Town is highly popular among tourists. Beaches are likely to be busy, but there are a whole host of other summer activities available to keep you entertained. Treat yourself to an outdoor movie at the Galileo Open Air Cinema or have a cocktail at one of the many trendy bars on Bree Street. Temperatures can reach  40C though, so bring your sunscreen!

Autumn (March – April)

This is the best time to hit the beach as temperatures are still warm (around 18C to 20C) but there are fewer tourists. Due to it being the off-season, you can expect great deals on accommodation, emptier beaches, and less competition for those restaurant reservations.

Winter (May – August)

Temperatures are a little cooler at this time of year, but at an average of 17C there’s still no need for a winter coat. Rainfall, although still rare, is rather unpredictable, so taking a waterproof jacket with you at all times is probably a good idea. This is the perfect time to go hiking, as the scenery is lush and green and the cooler weather is perfect for exploring Table Mountain. From July until September you can also enjoy whale watching as migratory whales pass by the Cape.

Spring (September – October)

Cape Town is awash with colour as flowers begin to bloom. Temperatures are still mild (around 15C to 17C), although as October approaches, you can experience days in the mid twenties. Days get longer and spring showers are sporadic so you can enjoy a full Cape Town experience.  

As a dynamic metropolitan city, Cape Town has much to offer its visitors: lively nightlife, gorgeous beaches, delicious food and stunning nature. Whatever your interests, Cape Town has something for everyone.

Table Mountain, Cape Town’s defining landmark, is also one of the city’s greatest tourist attractions. There are hundreds of hiking trails leading keen hikers to the flat summit. Always carry water, food, sunblock, a ‘space blanket’ and a mobile phone with you before setting off. If hiking isn’t your thing, then take the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, a five-minute ride that offers splendid views of Cape Town. 

Cape Town is surrounded by excellent vineyards, many of which have their own world-class restaurants. Stellenbosch is the place to try South Africa’s most famous red wine grape, Pinotage, which is a cross between Burgundy’s Pinot Noir and heat-tolerant Cinsault. For a gastronomic treat, enjoy a local wine tour to the Spier winery and sample their internationally acclaimed wines paired with sumptuous dishes made with locally sourced ingredients.

Add a historical touch to your holiday by visiting the Castle of Good Hope, a fort built in the 17th century. Initially built by the Dutch East Indian Company, the fort protected the first Dutch settlement in South Africa. Today, the Castle of Good Hope is open to the public and is a place where you can learn about the colonial past of Cape Town.

For a fascinating (but grim) history of the Apartheid period, visit Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was once incarcerated. This island is now home to a museum offering guided tours to Mandela’s cell and the quarry where inmates worked. To get to the island, take the ferries that depart from the Victoria & Alfred waterfront. 

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