Cape Town is a city that offers a little bit of everything, for all kinds of friendly and adventurous travellers! It’s not only one of the most beautiful places to visit in Africa, but it’s also a place that’s thriving in diversity, African culture and contemporary arts.
With plenty of cheap flights to Cape Town, there’s no reason for not planning an exciting trip to this beloved destination.
Here are our top picks of the absolute best things to do in Cape Town.
Adventurous Things to do in Cape Town
1. Hiking Day Trips
With no shortage of hiking trails, travellers of all ages and experience will enjoy the epic hikes that the Cape has to offer.
Some of the best hiking trails are:
- The Pipe Track
- Skeleton Gorge (it’s not as scary as it sounds)
- Kasteel Port hiking trail
- Platteklip Gorge
- Tygerberg Nature Reserve
2. Tandem Paragliding Experience
Although a trip to Cape Town is memorable as it is, there’s nothing wrong with adding an even more exciting adventure. And paragliding over the capital is hard to beat. You’ll see the best parts of the colourful city as you soar from above.
3. Table Mountain
Journey to the top of the iconic landmark on a thrilling cable car ride. Or, if you’re feeling up for the challenge, hike to the top and be rewarded with out-of-this-world views from all parts of the trail.
Soak up the panoramic landscape from the top, and meet some of the local small mammals that live on the mountainous terrain. Guided tours can be joined for free to learn about flora and fauna, which is fun for all ages and nationalities.
4. Wine Tasting Tours
The Cape is praised for its fantastic wines that are cherished in all parts of the world. But nothing beats heading to the original cellars and discovering the local winemaking process.
Tours can be joined from the city centre, and generally include shuttle services to some of the most renowned wine farms in the surrounding areas.
Sample local wines and cuisines while observing stunning scenery as part of your tour.
5. Marine Life Tours
A large part of the Capetonian lifestyle revolves around the beach and the sea. Which is why there are many marine tours that show off the spectacular ocean life and beautiful beaches.
Below are some of the best marine tours unique to Cape Town:
- Diving with the Cape fur seals
- Whale watching tours
- Paddleboarding tours
- Eco-cruises and speed boat adventures
What to do in Cape Town on a Budget
Fun activities in Cape Town are easy to come by, and they can easily be done on a budget. Here are our top budget picks well-worth doing.
6. Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art
A group of abandoned grain silos have recently been transformed into 80 galleries, topped with a tasteful restaurant. The museum showcases some of the finest contemporary African art, created by legendary artists, such as Kehinde Wiley, Nandipha Mntambo and Ghada Amer.
If you’re visiting Cape Town and hold a South African passport, you’ll be granted free access to the museums on Wednesdays, from 10:00 – 13:00. On the first Friday of every month, tickets are sold for half the price between 16:00 – 21:00.
7. Old Biscuit Mill
Entrance to the Old Biscuit Mill is free, and once inside you won’t need to spend a cent. Visitors can enjoy live music and art vendors at no cost. You’ll be able to visit restaurants, jewellery stores and more in this industrial shopping mall.
Foods and drinks at the Mill can be pretty pricey, so if you’re on a budget, consider eating before, and simply treating yourself to a sweet snack or delicious craft beer.
8. Robben Island
Not only is Robben Island a symbol of South African history, but it’s also an essential experience for tourists who want to learn and understand what makes South Africa the place it is today.
Tours depart from the V&A Waterfront, and you’ll embark to the island by boat. The whole day is an adventure in itself, combining a beautiful boat trip, a day at the famous Waterfront and tour of the island.
Family Places to Visit in Cape Town
For many of us, nothing can beat a family vacation, and with all the family-friendly activities to do in Cape Town, it’s a top destination for both tourists and South Africans.
9. A Trip to The Two Oceans Aquarium
Here you’ll have the opportunity to engage with the biggest predator in the ocean, the great white shark. And, watch as jellyfish float by, spy upon the penguin feeding that happens twice a day, and spend some time in the arts and crafts corner.
The exciting, learning-based interactions teach the whole family about the creatures found in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
10. Explore the Kirstenbosch Gardens
For a small fee, you’ll be granted access to the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, one of the most acclaimed gardens in the world.
Kirstenbosch is nestled against the side of Table Mountain and guests can take leisurely wanders through the perfectly manicured gardens and discover the unique biodiversity.
Don’t forget to pack a picnic, as you can spend the afternoon lounging on the grasses with friends and family.
Free Things to do in Cape Town
11. Hike up Lion’s Head
Whether you’re a local or international traveller, a trip to Cape Town isn’t complete without a climb to the top of Lion’s Head. The view from the top overlooks the whole of Cape Town and the stunning beaches in the surrounding area.
12. Beach Adventures
Beaches in Cape Town won’t cost you a cent! Some of the best beaches in the Western Cape are found right in the heart of the city, like Clifton Beach and Camps Bay Beach.
The MyCiti Bus line stops directly at the beach entrances, making it ideal to hop from one beach to another. Although the bus will cost you a couple of rands.
To Conclude Cape Town Activities
Of course, this guide couldn’t include all the fantastic activities Cape Town offers, but it’s got you covered with the most fun places to explore and discover.
When you’re not sitting at awesome restaurants, you can adventure in the outdoors, learn about the history and wildlife and meet some of the friendliest local and international residents.
When you’re ready to give the wallet a break, these places to go to in Cape Town are completely free and just as incredible.