It’s a brand new year! That means it’s time to enjoy new experiences and make new memories! What better place to do that than in the beautiful city of Cape Town?
Cape Town is a cosmopolitan South African city. It boasts an enchanting combination of beautiful natural scenery, world-class accommodation, award-winning restaurants and fantastic shopping. Here, you’ll find a mix of fascinating cultures and famously friendly locals - and unmissable things to do, of course!
A visit to Cape Town should be high on any traveller’s bucket list - whether you are a local or international visitor, there are certain things that definitely need to be experienced when visiting the city.
Take a look at dk villas top 10 recommendations for the best things to do in and around Cape Town in 2022. Get ready to add them to your 2022 Cape Town bucket list!
1. Take in the views from the top of Table Mountain
Table Mountain is an iconic landmark in Cape Town. The majestic mountain provides an impressive backdrop to the city while a trip to the top offers incredible views across the city centre and surrounds. In even more accolades, it’s officially one of the New7Wonders of Nature! There are a number of ways to experience the mountain. Taking the aerial cableway to the top is one of the most popular options. Buy tickets at the lower station, hop aboard the state-of-the-art cable car and enjoy a +- 5 minute trip to the station at the top; enjoying the scenic views along the way. At the top, stroll around the walkways and explore! Visit the viewpoints and keep an eye out for the resident wildlife - including a stunning variety of birdlife and the cute-yet-grumpy looking rock hyrax! You could even settle down for a picnic or grab a bite to eat at the restaurant.
2. Experience the scenic vistas of Cape Point
Travel south to visit the beautiful Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope in the southern section of Table Mountain National Park. Here, you’ll find striking scenery including crashing ocean waves, rocky outcrops and scenic beaches. There are a number of great things to do during a visit! Some include: admiring the sights from the viewpoints, taking a trip on the Flying Dutchman to the viewpoint above the old lighthouse, relaxing on the beaches, enjoying a meal at the Two Oceans Restaurant, embarking on one of the area’s hiking routes, wildlife watching and more. Don’t miss the chance to snap a pic at the Cape of Good Hope which is the most south-western point of Africa!
Be sure to check the opening times and ticket costs before your visit.
3. Visit the penguins at Boulders Beach
This is definitely the most adorable entry on this list! Travel to Simon’s Town in the Southern Peninsula and visit Boulders Beach to see the monochromatic residents. Boulders Beach is home to colonies of African Penguins. Pay to access the beach and spend time with the adorable flightless birds who waddle across the sand and dip and dive through the lapping waves. Alternatively, access the boardwalk and watch the groups of penguins from the viewpoints dotted along the walkways. Look forward to the gorgeous coastal views including huge granite boulders and cool blue waters.
4. Learn about South Africa’s history on a Robben Island tour
One of the most important historic sites to visit in Cape Town and South Africa as a whole is Robben Island. The tour takes around 3.5 hours and includes a round-trip on the ferry and a tour of the historical sites around the island. The tour is incredibly informative and will be led by a guide with deep knowledge of the island’s 500-year history. Learn more about Nelson Mandela’s time spent imprisoned on the island as well as the history of the other freedom fighters who served time here, visit the Bluestone Quarry, see Robert Sobukwe’s house and view Mandela’s cell.
5. Take a hike!
When in Cape Town, be sure to head outdoors! There are several breathtaking hiking routes around the city and its surroundings. The mountain ranges and coastal areas offer beautiful scenery and wonderful views. Routes range from easy to challenging so it is up to you to find the one that suits you best! Around Table Mountain, choose to hike the Pipe Track, Kasteeslport, India Venster and more while lion’s Head is a great hike for a range of fitness levels. Travel to Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in the Southern Suburbs where some truly amazing routes begin including Nursery Ravine, Skeleton Gorge and nearby Celia Forest.
Hout Bay is also home to some spectacular walking and hiking routes!
6. Sample the region’s best wines
Cape Town is famous around the world for its wines and wine farms! The best place to sample authentic South African wine is on one of the region’s stunning wine farms. Closer to town, travellers should visit farms along the Constantia Wine Route including Groot Constantia which was founded in 1685 - making it one of the country’s oldest producing wine farms!
Venture out from the city centre to visit the Cape Winelands; Stellenbosch and Franschhoek both boast award-winning wine farms and are culinary centres in South Africa. For a unique experience, enjoy a day on the Franschhoek Wine Tram! More wine regions to explore include Hermanus, the West Coast, Durbanville and Paarl.
7. Shop up a storm at the famous V&A Waterfront
Head to the bustling V&A Waterfront for a great day out! This centre for shopping, cuisine and entertainment is sure to keep all kinds of travellers captivated. Stroll through the shopping centre and Watershed Market to pick up everything from fresh produce and clothing to souvenirs and artisanal products. Sample local flavours at the V&A Food Market or world-class fusions at one of the many restaurants in the area. Take a trip on the big wheel, cruise around the marina on a boat trip or enjoy a cocktail or high tea at one of the opulent hotels in the waterfront - there are so many great things to do!
8. Eat to your heart’s content!
One of the best things about Cape Town is the pure variety of food and restaurant options. From street food and authentic local favourites to five-star luxury dining and everything in between, Cape Town caters for all palates! We recommend booking a table at a beautiful wine farm restaurant or enjoying a luxurious high tea somewhere fancy!
9. Relax on the beautiful beaches
Looking for a few hours of relaxation in a beautiful setting? Head to the beach! Cape Town is lucky enough to have multiple stunning beaches nestled around its coastline. Close to the heart of the city centre are the ever-popular Camps Bay and Clifton beaches which are the quintessential picture of “idyllic beach break” - we’re talking about golden sand and deep blue waters! Further south is the colourful Muizenberg where you’ll find the iconic multi-coloured beach huts. Here, beachgoers can relax, enjoy beach walks and even try their hand at surfing.
10. Explore the museums and galleries
Are you a culture vulture? When in Cape Town, visiting the museums and galleries is an absolute must! Visit Company’s Gardens where you’ll find the South African Museum, the National Gallery and the Planetarium. In the Silo District of the waterfront, be sure to visit the Zeitz MOCAA which is Africa’s only museum dedicated to contemporary African art. The District Six Museum and the Castel of Good Hope are two more excellent historic destinations to visit. In the Southern Suburbs, you’ll find the Norval Foundation which hosts riveting art exhibits and has a fascinating sculpture garden! There are many more small galleries and artistic destinations located around the peninsula so be sure to keep an eye out for them wherever you go!
Are you ready to start ticking off items on your Cape Town bucket list? There’s no time like the present! Start planning your next visit to the city or if you’re local, get out and start exploring!