Chapmans peak drive | Cape Town

Best Cape Town Escapes

The best Cape Town escapes tick so many boxes – not just for the city itself, but for everything that you can find on its doorstep. It’s what makes Cape Town one of South Africa’s best destinations. The location is enough to set any real-estate agent drooling: Table Mountain and its iconic white tablecloth of cloud is a constant backdrop.

Take the cable car to the top on a clear day for a seagull’s eye view down into the City Bowl and across to Robben Island – once the prison where Nelson Mandela was held, and now a museum.

Now well oriented, you’ll find Cape Town is a great city to explore on foot, whether you want to check out the Company’s Gardens and the quirky boutiques of Long Street, or follow your nose to one of the many trendy espresso bars.

Walking is bound to work up an appetite – and there’s no finer city in which to be hungry. Your only dilemma will be choosing where to eat, as Cape Town boasts a veritable smorgasbord of dining options, from vegan food trucks to restaurants so renowned you’ll need to reserve a table long before you arrive in South Africa.

A private vehicle and driver lets you explore a little further afield. Mix with the beautiful people on the achingly cool (and pristine) beaches of Clifton and Llandudno, or get that ends-of-the-earth feeling at Cape Point on a peninsula tour. The rugged, rocky landscapes here provide a striking contrast with the city’s many luxury boutique accommodation options. You can even stop on the way to snorkel with seals.

You won’t want to miss a day in the Cape Winelands, sipping your way from Chenin Blanc to Cabernet Sauvignon. Don’t forget to try some Méthod Cap Classique – South Africa’s answer to Champagne. Cheers!

When to Go

Cape Town’s Mediterranean-style climate is quite different to the rest of South Africa’s. Warm, dry summer months are from November to April, and Cape Town truly comes into its own from January to March, with average daytime temperatures around 30°C. Hot days at the beach are moderated by the ‘Cape Doctor’, the southeaster wind that’s responsible for the city’s clean air. December is family-holiday time in South Africa, and the city bursts into a hive of busy activity. You’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to concerts and events.

This is when Cape Town experiences cooler, wetter weather. After the hot summer months, May sees temperatures drop to a daytime average of 20–25°C. Essentially, winter in Cape Town resembles the best parts of a Northern Hemisphere spring. The midwinter, in June and July, is far from bleak, although temperatures average 18°C at most and you should expect showers. By September, the sun makes headway again, and Namaqua daisies cover the land. Another highlight is the whales, which frolic in the Cape’s waters from June to November, calving in July and August.

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