a road with a city in the distance

When I travel I want inspiring natural beauty, culture, memorable experiences, incredible meals and of course, some relaxation. What better place on earth than Cape Town, South Africa, to quench a healthy dose of each and every one. There’s so much to see, so much to do, and this guide will help you visualize and plan five perfect days in the romantic, dramatically perched city and its surrounding areas.

Day One

a mountain with trees and clouds

Presuming you’ve traveled from somewhere far, you’ll likely be a bit jetlagged. There is no better way to shake it off than to grab an Uber, which is the safest, cheapest and best way to get around Cape Town to the backdrop of this incredible city, Table Mountain.

a cliff above the clouds

Despite feeling that you may quite possibly have died, and somehow ended up in Heaven, you’ll quickly realized that you’re literally standing on top of a World wonder, looking out at the spanning ocean on one side, and the gorgeous city on the other.

a woman sitting on a rock with a city in the background

Between the two views, the clouds whizzing past below you and the sheer elevation, it’s impossible to not be absolutely elated.

a woman sitting on a rock

Pride rock anyone? Do note, if you go during summer time in the Northern Hemisphere, it just might be a bit cold, as evidenced by Laura’s face in this photo…

a plate of desserts on a table

After you’ve quite literally come back to reality, head to any one of the city’s world class restaurants. Kloof Street House, a very chic townhouse converted into a restaurant with a very well sourced, spanning menu, great cocktails and a fun environment is perfect. The gin cocktail with earl grey, orange curd and lemon will get you to sleep!

Day Two

a body of water with a rocky cliff and mountains

Look appealing? I dare you to say no! Taking a tour of Cape Point is essential. It’s a full day trip if done right, featuring dramatic landscapes, penguins, zebras, rock cliffs and natural parks.

waves crashing on rocks by a rocky beach

It’s an incredible feeling being at one of the southern most points of the most southern land mass. Absolutely gorgeous waves, terrain and views.

a group of penguins on a beach

As you make your way down the Cape of Good Hope, you’ll stop at one of the few natural Penguin colonies, often described as a rookery. The whole gang was on hand…

a zebras standing in a grassy field

Apparently Zebras aren’t a given on this route, but if you drive past some, hop out of your private guided tour (roughly $200 total per day for up to 4 people) to snap some pics.

a plate of food on a table

It doesn’t have to be day two, but La Colombe should certainly make its way into one of your evening plans. The World Top 50 restaurant offers a tranquil fine dining experience set in the mountains above the city. Absolutely gorgeous, absolutely delicious and coming from the western world, very affordable.

a bowl of food on a table

Believe it or not, this is dessert. Dehydrated pistachio cake (seaweed looking things), pistachio ice cream, bitter orange gelato, milk chocolate mousse and pistachio, caramel dusting. You can have two chef’s tasting menus and a bottle of wine with tip out the door for less than $150…

Day Three

a harbor with boats and buildings

Take the morning to get a feel for the city’s historic waterfront. You’ll find everything from boats (duh), to a high end shopping mall, many dining options, an aquarium and a very cool market, similar to Chelsea Market in New York or Spitalfields in London called the Water Shed.

a cup of coffee on a table

Any Cape Town hipster worth their coffee will tell you that the best coffee in town is served by Truth, which happened to have a stall at the waterfront market near the gigantic shopping mall.

a group of orange and white fish

After you’ve had your fill of caffeine, quality artisan goods and generic malls around the world, hit the aquarium for an under the sea tour with plenty of sharks. Better in there than on your surf board!

a plate of sushi on a table

One thing is for certain: food in Cape Town is delicious, relatively cheap and full of art. You’ll be happy just about anywhere you go.

Day Four

a pool with a mountain in the background

After a relaxing morning in the city, grab your stuff and head to the plush, sprawling landscapes of nearby wine country in Franschhoek and Stellenbosch. It’s gorgeous.

a landscape with mountains and trees

Take a hike around the insanely beautiful terrain before the wine tasting, it’s harder after!

a wine cellar with wine bottles and wine glasses

After a vineyard tour, or four, at the many famous vineyards in the area, opt for a tasting. The tasting room at La Residence is classic. only thing better than looking, is drinking.

a plate of food on a table

Of course it wouldn’t be a stop in farm to table wine country without an epic meal. We chose to stay the night, allowing us to sample a variety of dishes at lunch and dinner. Many people rave about The Tasting Room. We loved our rustic meals at La Residence (above).

a peacock standing on a ledge

Be warned, you just might find one of the village jesters peacocking around.

Day Five

a group of people petting a cheetah

On the way back to Cape Town, you’ll feel far less like you’re in a nature program if you neglect to stop by Cheetah Outreach, an excellent charity with rescued cheetahs. There are cubs too…

a woman standing on a rocky cliff

You’ll feel on top of the world (literally) after a quick Uber ride, or walk to Lions Head for a hike up the famous peak with views of the ocean, the city, Table Mountain and the Twelve Apostles. It’s great exercise and incredibly fulfilling. Natural wonder.

a sunset over a beach

You can debate for yourself whether life could possibly be better as you watch the sun set off the beaches of Camps Bay, the bohemian, high end neighborhood by the sea, right on the edge of Cape Town.

two glasses with orange liquid and straws on a table

After the sun goes down (or before), grab yourself something refreshing. After all, it’s your last night….

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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