While many know it as Cape Town, others lovingly call it the Mother City. One of the reasons for this is because of its ability to nurture your soul whether you have a relationship with nature or not. The City has all you need to reconnect to that spark within your true self, including:
It does not take a physiologist or neurobiologist to realize the physical and mental health benefits that a walk at the beach, in the woods, or up the mountains does to the mind and body. Cape Town has an abundance of outdoor activities to keep you busy, while recharging your spirit.
Through its beautiful mountains, the City offers a wide selection of excellent hiking, walking and even canyoning trails. One of these is Table Mountain, with its lush flora and fauna, and the best way to have a bird’s eye view of all this and more from the ground up is through the Table Mountain Aerial Cable way. The cableway car offers you a scenic ride by rotating to give you a 360-degree view as you make your way to the top.
This view is considered to be one of the best in the world and millions of people around the world have been awestruck by the views and sensational experience.
THE GREAT OUTDOORS
To the left of Table Mountain is Devil’s peak, which offers stunning views with trails surrounded by fynbos. Situated on the eastern slopes is Newlands Forest, which offers a variety of walks and hiking trails for all levels of fitness.
Cape Point Nature Reserve is situated at the south-western tip of Africa in the Table Mountain National Park, and offers numerous one-day hiking trails with diverse scenery ranging from deserted beaches to shipwrecks, local wildlife and impressive sea cliffs.
The Kirstenbosch hike to Constantia Nek on the other hand also offers some of the best views, including an aerial view of Kirstenbosch gardens and the southern peninsula. Lion’s Head is also one of the city’s most popular hiking trails because of its magnificent views of the Atlantic ocean, mountains and the city.
RETAIL THERAPY, WINE & DINE IN CONSTANTIA
Research shows that retail therapy not only makes people happier immediately, but it can also fight lingering sadness or stress. The Constantia Village Shopping Centre is the perfect place to indulge in some retail therapy.
The shopping centre has a variety of fashion boutiques, jewellery stores, antique dealers, art galleries, lifestyle stores, restaurants, and necessities such as banks, foreign exchange services, beauty salons, and grocery stores.
The Earth Fair Market offers a range of fresh produce and delicious artisan foods from over 40 traders every Wednesday and Saturday.
Constantia also has a plethora of cafés, bistros, and fine-dining establishments offering a wide selection of dining experiences for all palates. Here you can soak up the sun while enjoying a glass of wine at any of the wine estate eateries.
If you’re an adrenaline junkie or adventure lover, there’s no better place to feed your addiction than the Cape Town Zipline Tour, one of the longest zipline routes in Africa.
The V&A is one of the biggest restaurant hubs in Cape Town, with over 80 restaurants and over 40 vendors selling you a wide selection of foods and drinks. It is home to some of the top restaurants, not only in Cape Town but also in South Africa. It offers a unique, vibrant array of cocktail bars and sundowner spots where you can just grab a drink or two to soak up the vibe.
The V&A Waterfront is also home to the Two Oceans Aquarium where adults and children alike can get to explore and be wowed by the beautiful, diverse sea life. When you’re there, make sure that you also hop aboard the Jolly Roger, and channel your inner Captain Jack Sparrow.
The Esperance Champagne Cruise, which is perfect for families and groups, takes you in the most beautiful views while the sun goes down over the water.
What better way to rediscover your chill than on a beach?
Thankfully, the Mother City has plenty of those! In 2015, National Geographic ranked Cape Town as the world’s second-best beach city.
Some of the best beaches in Cape Town include:
This beach boasts spectacular views of the mountain, dreamy sunsets and a palm fringed lagoon. It’s perfect for the snap-happy visitor and Surfers as the waves found here inevitably draw large surfing parties.
Little Bay, Bloubergstrand
This is a perfect place to enjoy the scenery and the sun with the family, and food is never a problem here with a number of restaurants bordering the beach.
Often regarded as the ‘French Riviera of South Africa, Clifton can generally be relied upon for perfect conditions in summer. Temperatures can soar on the back beach, but down near the water’s edge the icy sea has a welcome cooling effect. Each of the four beaches has its own special character.
Camps Bay Beach
They say life in Camps Bay feels like an endless holiday that never gets tiring. Camps Bay is about 10 minutes from Cape Town city centre and Table Mountain and only 20 minutes from the V&A Waterfront. With plenty of thing to do, this beach is ideal for the active travellers.
This is one of Cape Town’s best known beaches, perfect for swimming and surfing. It has great historical attractions along with local hotspots for the travelers who are looking to veer off the tourist map and get the most authentic experience.
There are many reasons why Roben Island is one of Cape Town’s top tourist attractions. Some of the most high-profile political prisoners in South Africa’s history were imprisoned here, including the late former president Nelson Mandela. Today, the Island hosts various animal species, including seabirds, water birds and terrestrial birds, which can be found roaming around the island.
Also, if you spend some time inside prison halls, into the cells you realise why it has become a symbol of a triumph over oppression and an unlikely birthplace of what is widely regarded as the world’s most progressive constitution.
THE COFFEE CULTURE
Gone are the days that people in Cape Town sip on instant coffee or waste their precious coins on vending machines that produce hot bean-flavoured water. Today, they treat themselves to artisanal greatness, to full-bodied freshly-roasted bean perfection and enjoy a plethora of coffee variations.
The coffee culture in Cape Town is strong, with shops lining the corners and main strips across the city. Coffee roasters have been popping up in the city faster than you can think, and these include the Bootlegger Coffee Company in Sea Point and the City Centre, Espresso Lab Microroasters, Rosetta Roastery and Tribe Coffee Foundry Café & Roastery in Woodstock, the Kamili Coffee in Harrington Street and many others.
So matter what you think you now know about Cape Town, there are and always will be beautiful wonders to discover. So come to the Mother City and fall in love with its beauty, as well as with yours.