If you’ve made it to Cape Town, you’re already winning. But while there, you’ve got a lot of fun things to choose from to keep yourself entertained. Whether you’re looking to bring back souvenirs or want to explore beyond the city center, you won’t be disappointed. While I still have a long list of things to experience, sharing some highlights from past trips below.

The V&A Waterfront

Visiting the V&A Waterfront is a MUST as it offers a variety of shopping, food and drinks. The Watershed is a curated artisan market, great for picking up souvenirs made by local artists. There is also a food hall with a variety of offerings. If you have never had biltong – it’s artisan dried game (beef, kudu, springbok) that’s D E L I C I O U S. Don’t be fooled by any pre-packaged “biltong” you may find, it is NOT anything close. It’s a pity you can’t bring any back with you.

Hout Bay Night Market

Hout Bay’s Bay Harbor Night Market is a fun way to spend a Friday night. The market is filled with artisan shops offering everything from handmade leather goods to slingshots. There are also

The Old Biscuit Mill

There is a collection of shops, eateries, and even an escape room at the Old Biscuit Mill. A must-try is The Pot Luck Club, a tapas style restaurant that won’t disappoint. My favorites were the SMOKED BEEF FILLET WITH BLACK PEPPER & TRUFFLE CAFÉ AU LAIT and PEANUT BUTTER BOMB for dessert. Their menu changes, but I’m sure whatever they offer will be delish. Just be sure to grab reservations, I’ve heard they can fill up!

Sights to See

While downtown Cape Town has a lot of things to see and do, I highly recommend hiring a car and heading out of the city to explore. Whether you enjoy a day touring local wine farms or prefer to hike a natural wonder, you won’t be disappointed.

Table Mountain

One of the Seven Natural Wonders of the world, Table Mountain is magnificent. Over four million tourists visit each year, taking a cablecar up to the top or choosing one of several hikes, either option leading to jaw-dropping views in every direction. I’ve done both and can promise that either route you take will not disappoint. You can read more about my experience hiking the India Venter trail here.

Cape Peninsula

Hire a car and drive up to Cape Peninsula. Throughout the drive you’ll have beautiful coastal views while visiting some well-known sights like Cape Point, the Cape of Good Hope, and Boulders Beach.

Found on the Cape Peninsula, Cape Point is well-known for its historic lighthouse, which is found after climbing several steep and narrow stairs. At the top, prepare yourself for strong winds and beautiful ocean views.

After leaving Cape Point, we stopped at the Cape of Good Hope. Don’t expect any curios here, as the only landmark noting this as a point of interest is the coordinate sign. If you venture out of your car, be mindful of local wildlife – we encountered ostriches and monkeys, who I’ve been told can be aggressive at times.

The last stop you can’t miss is the famous penguin colony, Boulder’s Beach. It is so unexpected to see penguins sunbathing in South Africa, and such a cool experience to get to walk around the beach and observe them without the impediment of cages or plexi windows. After leaving

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

I’ll be honest, visiting a botanical garden was not on my itinerary for Cape Town. However, a friend suggested it for our last day together and I’m not one to say turn down an outdoor adventure. I’m so glad we went – walking the gardens was the perfect peaceful close to a fun-filled trip. It’s not far outside the city and an easy excursion to squeeze in. The protea, South Africa’s national flower, was by far my favorite.

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