If you are already fed up with autumn and desperate for a little winter sun, now is the perfect time to pack your bag, book a one-way ticket to Cape Town, and enjoy the many awe-inspiring attractions that South Africa’s Mother City has to offer!
Cape Town enjoyed a mini heatwave last week with temperatures reaching 42 degrees in the Western Cape Winelands, and while temperatures like these are uncommon at this time of the year, average daily temperatures of 25 degrees are not. From now until April, you can expect plenty of sunshine and clear blue skies in what is commonly described as the world’s most beautiful city, and while rain is always a possibility, you are more likely to experience good weather than bad.
Not only is Cape Town a fun and friendly city to visit, but it is also extremely reasonable for international visitors. At the time of typing, you’ll get around R18 South African Rand for every Pound GBP, and so your holiday spending money will go a whole lot further here than it will in neighbouring African countries Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe where the US Dollar reigns.
While November sees the start of high season in the Western Cape, it is still possible to get cheap flight tickets from as little as £500 return and discounted hotel rates, and so it’s certainly the best time of the year to visit if you are on a budget.
If that doesn’t make you want to run to your nearest travel agent and book your winter trip to South Africa, these 10 Free Things To Do in Cape Town might…
- Hiking Lions Head. While it is often overlooked in favour of its big brother Table Mountain, Lion’s Head is a tourist attraction in its own right, and I personally think it provides better views over the city than Table Mountain itself. There are no cable cars on Lion’s Head, and so the only way up is on foot – but guess what? It’s completely free, so you can enjoy this lion shaped wonder without spending a penny.
- V&A Waterfront. No trip to Cape Town would be complete without a trip to the V&A Waterfront – the city’s main shopping and entertainment area. You could spend all day walking around here without spending a penny, and if hunger strikes, you can get a meal here for less than £5.
- Camps Bay Beach. Rub shoulders with the beautiful (and rich) people of South Africa on Camps Bay Beach. A beautiful stretch of pure white sand, it’s the perfect place to spend a sunny day, and while the promenade restaurants are more on the expensive side, there’s a fabulous Col’Cacchio Pizzeria that offers humungous pizzas for less than R100 (£5.50). Alas, the water is FREEZING here year-round, so you might want to stop at dipping your toes.
- Groot Constantia Wine Farm. Fancy a spot of wine tasting without booking a tour? Then head to Groot Constantia, which is funnily enough in Constantia, on the Constantia Wine Route. Entry to the estate is free, and you are welcome to stroll through the vineyards and gardens, but you may have to pay for wine-tastings, which usually start at around R40 (£2.20) for 5 sample glasses.
- Sea Point Promenade. If, like me, you adore people watching, head on over to Sea Point Promenade for a stroll along the coastline. A bustling area filled with dog walkers, joggers, and an Olympic sized swimming pool (fee applicable), it is the perfect place for a picnic on a sunny afternoon.
- City Tour. Grab a complimentary map from the Cape Town Tourist Information Stand and take yourself on city tour. This city is steeped in history, so explore at your leisure and see how many iconic landmarks you can tick off your list.
- Visit Company’s Garden. Holding prime position in the centre of Cape Town, Company’s Garden is believed to home the oldest pear tree in South Africa. It also has a beautiful rose garden and a bird filled aviary, oh yes, and there’s free WIFI too!
- Go Kitesurf Watching in Bloubergstrand. Watch kite surfer’s tackle the mighty south-east winds from the beautiful Bloubergstrand. A great day out for those who love being next to the ocean, it’s completely free to spectate, and you’ll enjoy the most magnificent views of Table Mountain on a clear day.
- Go for a Bike Ride. Okay, if you haven’t got your bike with you, this one’s not exactly free, but you can rent a bike in Cape Town for next to nothing, providing you don’t visit during the Cape Town Cycle Tour weekend. You can cycle from Sea Point to Camps Bay, then on to Hout Bay, over the infamous Chapman’s Peak, and then on to Noordhoek before circling back to where you started. It’s a spectacular ride along the coastline!
- Bay Harbour Market. Described as ‘Cape Towns Most Vibrant Market’ Bay Harbour Market is the perfect place to spend the weekend. There’s live music that you can enjoy for free, and some fabulous stalls where you can buy locally made crafts at great prices.
They say the best things in life are free, and when it comes to your winter holiday in Cape Town, we’d have to agree! Have you got any tips you’d like to share with visitors to the Mother City? Drop us a line and let us know!