Cape Town in South Africa is often mentioned in the same breath as Rio de Janeiro, Sydney or San Francisco. And rightly so! The symbiosis of big city flair, the enchanting location by the ocean, the interesting history and the beautiful and varied hinterland is more appealing than around other metropolises. This is due to the location between two oceans, the history, the climate, the diverse art and cultural offerings and the uncomplicated, friendly nature of the inhabitants.
For me, the Mother City on Table Mountain is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. So it is not difficult to create a perfect day in this South African city. How about a round of sports at the start: the best place to do that is in the Company's Garden on the large lawn. Afterwards it's time for a delicious breakfast. The Garden Café right next door serves croissants, cakes, sandwiches or Asian salads and, virtually free of charge, the view of Table Mountain and squirrels scurrying between the huge trees.
If Table Mountain doesn't have a "tablecloth", go up as quickly as possible and enjoy the view. In a few hours it may already be closed again. For those who like it sporty, I recommend a hike up Table Mountain with a guide. From Kirstenbosch Garden a trail leads in about two hours through the Skeleton Gorge to the back of Table Mountain. Once you reach the top at 1000 meters above sea level and Cape Town is at your feet, all efforts are forgotten in no time. The panorama is simply stunning. While tourists crowd around the top station of the cable car, you have the back of Table Mountain almost to yourself. Then down you go by cable car, another unforgettable experience and Swiss precision work.
The tour continues to the Boo-Kaap quarter. The colourful little houses are a real eye-catcher and provide the very best photo motifs. The quarter once got its name from the Cape Malay immigrants who settled here. The famous Waterfront is about 20 minutes walk away. If this is too much for you, you can simply take a taxi or the red Hop-On/Hop-off double-decker bus, as offered in many cities of the world. This way you can flexibly view the highlights of the city and learn everything worth knowing about the city via the audio system in your language.
The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront is a colourful mix of shops, restaurants, cabaret and hotels. How about a coffee break? Then stroll through the Farmers Market or the Market Stalls with South African handicrafts. From here all sorts of tours by boat, bus or even helicopter over the Cape Peninsula and its surroundings start:
A half-day tour to the Langa Townships, for example, could give you a more complete picture of Cape Town; the Mother City, as we all know, is not only made up of upscale neighbourhoods. Or you could take a trip to Robben Island: Nelson Mandela and other freedom fighters were imprisoned on the prison island during apartheid. Well-trained guides will tell you all the important facts about the island with its rich history.
Or you rent a vehicle and explore the Cape Peninsula individually. For nature lovers we recommend the Butterfly World in the Cape Winelands. You can see butterflies from Costa Rica and the Philippines, but also ducks, chicken and goats.
In the land of wild animals you will also find neatly dressed bipeds. That's right, penguins! In the small coastal town of Simon's Town in False Bay - just an hour's drive from Cape Town. On the way there, you will pass Chapman's Peak, one of the most beautiful roads along the sea. Arriving at Boulders Beach, two beautiful beaches between granite boulders invite you for a swim, but they are quite crowded in summer, and not only by penguins, with whom you can swim here. In 1983, a lonely pair of penguins was found under the wind-protected bushes above the beach. Meanwhile, more than 2,500 African penguins cavort on the small beach section.
If you made it this far, the short drive to the Cape of Good Hope is highly recommended. Here it is great for hiking. In the national park you can find beautiful flowers as well as wild clippings or ostriches.
If you prefer the beach instead of a trip, we recommend Camps Bay. The beach is one of the more chic ones, with many cafes and bars, where you can later enjoy a sundowner in the evening. The atmosphere is casual, relaxed and less snobbish than in Clifton, the view is magnificent. Those who are brave can also jump into the cool water and cool down.
Or you can spend the afternoon at a winery. Some of the best restaurants in the Cape region are located on wine estates. Since most of them only open during the day, it makes sense to stop for lunch. Not far from the centre of Cape Town, the Buitenverwachting Winery is a good choice. On the farm you have your salads, pâtés, cheese, bread and wine packed in a picnic basket and then find a nice, shady spot on the large area to enjoy your picnic.
When the big hunger comes in the evening, the Hussar Grill is a good choice. Vegans have bad cards, because here you can get meat, meat, meat - and in huge portions. The 700-gram steak is already an announcement, so you simply don't need an appetizer anymore. Bon appetit!
To properly prepare for your trip
That'll get you there:
nonstop from Zurich with Edelweiss
How long am I supposed to go:
long weekend, combine with a trip to South Africa
Best time to travel:
European winter half year
Table Mountain, Waterfont, Boo-Kaap, Penguins and Cape of Good Hope