48 Hours In Cape Town, South Africa
2:00pm—Check in at One&Only Cape Town
Centrally located in the heart of the V&A Waterfront, One&Only Cape Town is an award-winning luxury urban resort that offers the city’s best Table Mountain views. Surrounded by excellent shopping experiences and dining options, the hotel serves as the perfect base for exploring Cape Town.
3:00pm—See Cape Town from above
Take in the scenic beauty of the Mother City on a helicopter tour that departs from the V&A Waterfront. Charter companies Cape Town Helicopters and NAC Helicopters both offer sightseeing flights, ranging from a 25-minute tour along the Atlantic Coast that takes you around and above Table Mountain, to a 50-minute full trip around Cape Peninsula.
Whichever tour you choose, a bird’s eye view of the city nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and False Bay is a sight to behold.
4:00pm—Meet the penguines at Boulders Beach
You don’t have to brave the cold in Antarctica to get up close with penguins—in fact, you can find them on beautiful Boulders Beach in Cape Town, where a colony of African Penguins reside.
The area’s famous inhabitants—African Penguins in their thousands—are an endangered species native to South Africa and Namibia, and the best place to view them is at nearby Foxy Beach, which can be reached via the wooden boardwalks that wind through the area's dunes and vegetation. You can even share a stretch of the fine white sand with these birds or take a dip in the ocean with them in their natural habitat.
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6:00pm—Sundowner at Camps Bay
Boasting a beautiful stretch of pristine white sand and azure waters, with Lion’s head, Table Mountain and the Twelve Apostles mountain range as the backdrop, it’s only fitting that Camps Bay is dubbed the St. Tropez of Cape Town.
Its namesake beach a magical spot to watch the sky changing colours and the summits of the mountains illuminated with a reddish glow, or you can soak in the view with a drink in hand at one of the buzzing beachfront bars.
8:00pm—Dinner at Mantra Cafe
With bustling restaurants dotting the famed Camps Bay strip, you may want to dine in a more relaxed setting away from the noise at street level. Mantra Cafe offers just that—without compromising the beach view.
A charming semi-open restaurant just one floor above ground level, Mantra Cafe has a well-thought-out menu that serves a diverse selection of comforting dishes, from wood-fired chicken to slow-cooked pork belly or sirloin with Mantra’s bearnaise sauce to name a few. Oh, and remember to save some space for their homemade rooibos ice cream, too.
9:00am—Breakfast at Neighbourgoods Market
Kick off the weekend at Neighbourgoods Market in the trendy suburb of Woodstock, a vibrant Saturday market featuring a diverse assortment of delicious foods from around the world. Dig into an an ostrich burger tacos, rosti and even dim sum, along with local artisan coffee and pastries for a quick pick-me-up.
At the fashion and crafts section, you’ll find unique clothing, handicrafts and statement pieces made by emerging South African designers—but do a lap before you make any purchases, as you’ll probably want everything you see.
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11am—Hike or take the cable car up Table Mountain
A trip to Cape Town wouldn’t be complete without a visit to—you guessed it—Table Mountain. The easiest way to get to the summit is via the cableway, which takes around five minutes and rotates 360 degrees during the journey to slowly unfold the scenic Cape Town city centre right before your eyes. Those looking to conquer the mountain will have many routes to choose from, with leisure of taking in spectacular views while hiking at your own pace.
Platteklip Gorge is the most popular route up the centre of the main table, which is a steep, zig-zag ascent that offers little shade and takes 2-3 hours to complete. Skeleton Gorge is one of the most scenic routes that starts from Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens in a jungle setting, with a beach break halfway through the hike and offers exceptional views of the Cape Peninsula and inland leading up to the tabletop.
3:00pm—Step up your Instagram game at Bo-Kaap
Bo-Kaap is a charming Cape Malay neighbourhood situated between the city centre and the foothills of Signal Hill, which has become one of the most Instagrammed spots in Cape Town thanks to its pastel-coloured houses and quaint cobblestone streets.
Home to a mix of Cape Dutch and Georgian architecture and the Cape Malay people descending from Maritime Southeast Asia, Bo-Kaap is the gateway to get a glimpse of modern Islamic culture and sample the famous Cape Malay cuisine.
4:00pm—Sip wine in Stellenbosch
Less than an hour's drive from Cape Town lies Stellenbosch, an elegant, historic town known for its Cape Dutch architecture, oak-lined avenues, and world-class wine routes.
Discover the region’s superb wines with a wine tour and sip your way around the wineries, which often offer unbeatable views of the mountain ranges and vineyards as well as exceptional dining experiences. The wine and chocolate pairing at Waterford Estate is a personal favourite.
8:00pm—Dinner at Tokara Restaurant
Tokara Estate is a picturesque destination that represents the finest things in life. Situated 400 metres above sea level on top of the Helshoogte Pass, Tokara is an award-winning winery, delicatessen and shop by day, and a fine dining restaurant by night.
The menu features terroir-focused contemporary cuisine inspired by the South African countryside and farm produce, served in a contemporary setting alongside a gallery of curated artwork. Go for the springbok loin if you’re up for something exotic, and end on a sweet note with the mouthwatering dark chocolate dessert.
9:00am—Breakfast at Yours Truly
Yours Truly on the ever-happening Kloof Street is one of Cape Town’s favourite hangouts for good reason. With a unique outdoor seating shaded by lush greenery and hanging plants, this is the place to soak up the energy of the Mother City. With a variety of breakfast options—from freshly baked pastries to gourmet sandwiches—this inviting cafe & bar also serves up excellent coffee and best of all, good vibes.
11:00am—Walk through history on Robben Island
Let’s not forget the man who changed the history of South Africa—Nelson Mandela. The country’s first democratically elected president spent 18 years of his 27-year sentence in prison on Robben Island, which was turned into a museum in 1997 and open for guided tours led by ex-political prisoner with firsthand insight into life in the prison during apartheid.
The trip begins with a ferry ride from Nelson Mandela Gateway at the V&A Waterfront, followed by an hour-long bus tour of the island and a visit to the cells.
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