A great way to make the most of your safari is to include a few days before or after to enjoy some other attractions. Laura, from the John Stevens Safaris team, has just spent some time exploring the many wonders of Cape Town, one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It’s a popular destination for an add-on, but you need at least 3 days; here, you’ll revel in a truly immersive experience, exploring the city and surrounds and all that culture, history, art, wine, food and nature along the way!
See two oceans in one day when you tour the spectacular Cape Peninsula
Either drive along the Atlantic Seaboard from Sea Point, over Chapman’s Peak to Kommetjie and beyond or take the False Bay route via the picturesque villages of Kalk Bay and Simon’s Town.
Get up close to African penguins
Boulders Beach is just a few kilometres outside historical Simon’s Town and can be on your peninsula tour itinerary. A small colony of African penguins live in this sheltered cove. www.sanparks.org/boulders
Learn about the legend of The Flying Dutchman at Cape Point
Stand on one of the most spectacular viewpoints in the world and think of the brave but hapless sailors who risked their lives to sail around this point. There are 26 recorded shipwrecks in the area and you’ll be able to spot some of them. Today, the most powerful lighthouse on the South African coast helps guide ships safely through these perilous waters. capepoint.co.za
Take a stroll through some beautiful Cape gardens
There are so many in and around the Cape and they feature fine examples of local and exotic plants and trees such as these beautiful proteas. Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in the city was the first botanical garden in the world to be established (in 1913) to protect local flora. Its lawns are ideal for picnics and there are several walking trails to explore. www.sanbi.org/gardens/kirstenbosch
Visit the past at District Six Museum
This is a must-visit where you can immerse yourself in the memories of what was one of Cape Town’s most colourful communities before its residents were forced to leave their homes during the apartheid era. districtsix.co.za
Get a kick out of culture at Zeitz MOCAA
The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA), a landmark on the local landscape and the first major museum dedicated to contemporary art from Africa and its diaspora… the astonishingly reimagined historic grain silo complex also took our breath away. https://zeitzmocaa.museum
Take a revolving cable-car to the top of Table Mountain
Ascending the mountain in one way or another is always on our to-do list. The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway has transported more than 26 million Cape Town visitors since it opened in 1929, including royalty and celebrities. The journey takes just a little more than five minutes in a rotating cable car, which affords a 360-degree selfie opportunity. www.tablemountain.net
Swim with sharks
Get your adrenalin levels up! Friend and well-known shark and marine photographer, Chris Fallows offers cage diving, breaching and predation tours. www.apexpredators.com
Try a little something on the side…
Whether you are a first-time visitor to Cape Town or a returning fan, there’s no better way to enjoy the sights and sounds of the city, peninsula and winelands than from the seat of a chauffeured vintage sidecar. For freedom-feeling fun! www.sidecars.co.za
Fly high on an aerial adventure
Experience the ultimate in sightseeing when you embark on an amazing scenic flight by helicopter to the romantic winelands for lunch, enjoy a quick flip over the city or explore the wonders of the Cape peninsula. www.helicopterscapetown.co.za
Go whale watching in the Overberg
Hermanus is most famous for the southern right whales, which visit annually between July and December to calve in Walker Bay. The area is thought to be one of the best land-based whale watching locations in the world and a long stretch of cliffs provides plenty of vantage points. A whale-crier will announce the presence of whales in the bay with his kelp horn. www.hermanus.co.za/whale-watching
Get up close to a towering cheetah cast from solid bronze
Dylan Lewis’s sculptures of magnificent cats, other animals, birds and human forms grace his stunningly beautiful sculpture garden in Stellenbosch. Lewis’s distinctive work will awaken all your senses.
Discover the food and wine heartlands of Franschhoek and Stellenbosch
No wonder the French Huguenots settled here in the late 1600s – the breathtaking beauty, wineries, restaurants, galleries and lifestyle had us waxing lyrical. franschhoek.org.za
Explore neighbouring Stellenbosch, too, the second oldest town in South Africa and known for its university and oak-lined avenues, Cape Dutch architecture, history and culture – and, of course, its wine routes.
Hike through unrivalled fynbos landscapes found nowhere else in the world
We have professional guides at our disposal to accompany you on one of Cape Town’s many incredible hikes. Exhilerating, satisfying, superb for active adventure-lovers! Here are a few ideas to get you going… insideguide.co.za/cape-town/hiking-trails/
Treat yourself to local food delicacies and learn how to cook them in Bo Kaap
Situated at the foot of Signal Hill, this eclectic suburb known for its bright, rainbow-coloured houses and steep cobblestone streets is the cultural home of the Cape’s Muslim community. Take a walk and discover the history, culture, architecture, traditions, religion and economics of Bo-Kaap. www.bokaap.co.za
Take a tandem paragliding leap off Lion’s Head
We watched a few of these take off and the joy was evident just seconds after the obvious fright of leaping off a hill! www.paraglide.co.za
Gallop on horseback along Noordhoek Beach
If you like to see the world from a different point of view and get some exhilarating exercise in, take a horseback ride from Imhoff Farm to Noordhoek’s long stretch of beach. www.capepointroute.co.za
Taste a feast of fusion foods at vibrant markets
Cape Town is famous for its many homegrown food and craft markets and it’s a great way to spend a morning or evening with friends or family in social, friendly, atmospheric settings, often with live music. You get to support local communities while enjoying their warm hospitality!
We visited this one for a delicious breakfast in the sun overlooking Cape Town’s harbour – www.ozcf.co.za/market-day/