Get the most out of your Cape Town vacation
The lovely city in South Africa. There really is so much to do in and around Cape Town. I have had the privilege to explore its surroundings earlier this year. Even though it is my home country, it is a little hard to get it in my schedule. Well, I finally did it and it was a blast! We, my better half and I, only had a limited time to be tourists but we made it count? Here is how you can get the most out of your Cape Town vacation…
Booking is key
So we booked our flights on the whim. Our pre arranged plan fell through on our off days and we decided to just make it a normal two weeks at home and work on the house. Less than a week before our plans changed.
We only booked our flights a few days before the trip. This is easier because it is domestic flights. We got the flights at reasonable prices. Some airlines lower their prices closer to the time to try to fill the flight, this was a bonus for us. So off we were to our Cape Town vacation!
We are fortunate to have family members in the area, but we flew to Cape Town with no plan at all. We didn’t book for any accommodation nor did we book a rental car. Our plan was to see what is around and book the cheaper options. But I can tell you now, do not leave these bookings for on the arrival.
It so happens that the day we landed in Cape Town all the cars were booked for a big conference that’s was happening that week and the cars that were available ended up to be very expensive. So please pre book if you want to go the car rental route. Most airline sites have a combo option for a flight and rental of the car, this makes it a little cheaper.
And if you go the more adventurer route like we did… don’t worry, there are more option.
Day 1 – landed and stranded!
Okay, maybe stranded is a little harsh. So we were at the airport on the first day of our vacation with no car and no plan. It was no train smash luckily. There are so many nice coffee shops in the airport, so we sat down to get our bearings. While sipping on my cappuccino, I looked through Airbnb, it’s a very secure booking site and you can get an app for it in IOS. You can see the properties available and also see the hosts and the rating of other people on the hosts.
We were able to make a booking for that night at a property close to the promenades, but still no way to get there. Luckily Cape Town has Uber, also available in app form or the phone. The nice thing about uber is that you never have to carry cash around. You do your booking on the app, the app tells you a little more on the driver picking you up, the car registration and the estimate pick up time.
So finally we are on our way. We dropped our bags off at the B&B and caught another uber to the iconic Table Mountain, with no time to waste. And it was magical! the view from the to is amazing and breath taking. We went late afternoon, hoping to see the sunset but the sunsets later in Cape Town then what we are used to, but we still enjoyed it to be on top of on of the wonders of the world!
When we got off the mountain we caught another uber to the Victoria & Alfred waterfront mall for dinner. The views were amazing. Definitely a go to place, if not for the shopping but for the views. There were sea lions swimming around in the harbor and chilling in the sun, something that I was not used to. What a good first day we had!
Day 2 to 4 – exploring
With an early start we decided to head back to the waterfront. There is a hop on hop off bus service with routes going through the hole of Cape Town. We did it and we loved it. Cape Town is full of iconic sites and theses buses travel passed them all and stop at designated spots. You can decide where you want to jump off and there are times specified at each site when the next bus will be there to pick up again.
I would recommend this to everyone, we had a great time and saw so many new places. We climbed off at Hout Bay where we’d took a short boat trip to the sea lion island. I’ve never seen so many of them clustered to get her in one place. We also stopped off at the world of birds wildlife sanctuary.
After completing the circle we got our bags and headed up north to Langebaan where we spent a few days. From there we went back and forth to the little towns and harbors around. We saw Kraal Bay, Saldana Bay and few more smaller Bays along the coast. Each destination as beautiful as the last. This area is filled with old style coffee shops, small towns and a lot of history.
Day 5 to 9 – explore some more
Mid way through our Cape Town vacation we traveled back to Cape Town and took the Bloukrans bus to Tergniet. Here we had more advantages to see more small towns and iconic spots. There is big strawberry farm in the area, Red Berry Farm, you pay per bucket and get to pick your own delicious, juice and sweet strawberries. Not to mention huge! It’s a must go to place if you love strawberries like me.
With our Cape Town vacation almost coming to an end. We took the bloukrans bus again towards Cape Town but we hopped off at Summer set west and took a day trip to the coast to Betty’s Bay where we saw the penguin colony at the Stony point nature reserve. It’s one of the most successful breeding colonies of the African penguin. One word… breathtaking.
Memories were made
And so our Cape Town vacation came to an end. Even though there are many more places to be seen, we saw a lot and made memories that will last for ever! We will most definitely go back and explore the places we were not able to see. But this just shows that you can make the most of it from no plan at all to one big adventure.