What to do in Cape Town?

Adventure, culture, nature, history, gastronomy…Difficult to reply exhaustively to this question with so many possibilities! However, as is our wont at VillaNovo, we have selected the top activities for you to experience during your holidays!

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Climb Table Mountain
“Table Mountain” overlooks Cape Town city, peaking at height of 1086 meters. Its name comes from its shape which, seen from a distance, appears as flat as that of a table. When the clouds cling to it, they even say that the table cloth has been placed! To discover it, set out to explore the numerous trails crossing the mountain or opt for the dizzying cable car! Its gondola baskets turn 360º, thus offering passengers spectacular views of the city and ocean. At the top, restaurants and souvenir shops await you. High attendance: reserving your places online is strongly advised!

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Dive with the sharks
Were you aware that one quarter of all listed shark species in the world swim in the waters of South Africa? Thrill seekers will therefore not be able to resists this opportunity to dive down with the great white sharks! To do this, head to Gansbaai at 175 kilometers from the Cape, where numerous companies offer this activity in total security. After having watched the teams draw in the sharks using fish, you dive inside a protective metal cage, scrutinizing the comings and goings of the sharks. Thrills guaranteed! Another option for the less adventurous: you can admire them in their pools at the Two Oceans Aquarium.

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Take an interest in South Africa’s past.
In order to better comprehend the bleak period of apartheid. Robben Island and the District Six Museum are must-see venues. Off the coast of the Cape, classed by UNESCO as a world heritage site, Robben Island is renowned for its prison, where Nelson Mandela had been incarcerated. Today it has been converted into a museum, proposing guided tours on the site. Created in 1954, the District Six Museum invites its visitors to examine life in District Six, a neighborhood which was decreed “white” in 1966, at the height of apartheid. More than 60,000 individuals were thus forced to migrate to the shantytowns on the exterior of the city; the museum relates their history.

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Step out onto Long Street
Long Street is the party street in Cape Town! All along this artery, you will find plenty of good reasons to stay out the entire night! Restaurants, bars and clubs of all types follow one after another in this street lined with Victorian era buildings, displaying beautiful forged iron balconies, calling to mind New Orleans. A few good addresses: Mama Africa, a restaurant with African food, the Neighbourhood, a lounge bar and the Julep a bar with delicious cocktails!

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Stroll around the Cape of Good Hope
The southernmost point of the African continent is rich in cultural and natural heritage. The impressive lighthouses and landscapes on the cliff-sides are part of the treasures to discover. To do this, bus trips are possible but the best way remains to travel by foot or with a bicycle. The wildlife of the Cape of Good Hope is quite simply extraordinary: approximately 250 species of birds live here, such as the cormorants, the penguins or the ostriches.

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Visit the neighbourhood Bo Kaap
Bo Kaap is the Malay neighbourhood of the Cape, where the descendants of slaves live, brought there originally from Malaysia, Indonesia and numerous African countries, by Dutch colonists, At the foot of the mountain Signal Hill, plunge into the heart of this multicultural neighbourhood, characterized by its paved streets and brightly coloured dwellings. If you wish to learn more about the origins of its inhabitants, visit the Bo Kaap Museum, housed in the oldest building in the district.

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Follow the wine route to Constantia Valley
South Africa is the ninth producer of wine worldwide. The first vines were planted at the Cape in the middle of the 17th century in the valley of Constantia. The region offers charming landscapes with its oak-bordered passageways leading to stately historical residences. As far as tasting is concerned, the white blends are still dominant, even if the Cabernet Sauvingnon and the Syrah superior reds, have expanded rapidly since about twenty years. Take advantage to discover the Pinotage, a blend typically South African, invented in 1925, a cross between Cinsault and Pinot Noir.

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Roam around the Good Neighbours Market
Every Saturday, at the Old Biscuit Mill in the industrial neighbourhood of Woodstock, where gourmets come to meet: the Good Neighbours Market. In total more than 100 specialized merchants offer you, bio products, fresh and seasonal, local arts, wines, clothing, from their stalls…There is something for everyone, all in agreeable and gourmet atmosphere: A delicious surprise!

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Crédits photo :
Pete Stewart 
Joachim Huber 
Rüdiger Wölk 
thomas_sly 
shlzhao 
Nicolas Raymond 
neiljs 
Shaun Wallin 
The Neighbourgoods Market