How to soak up the sun in Cape Town
Framed by blue skies and crystal clear water on three sides, Cape Town has all the beauty and romance of a storybook African adventure.
If you’re planning a trip to South Africa’s “Mother City”, you won’t want to miss a single moment. That’s why we’ve made this get-ready guide to help you prepare for the perfect Cape Town getaway.
What do I need to prepare right now?
Not much! If visiting as a tourist from the UK, you won’t need a visa or even any inoculations when visiting South Africa. Travel and medical insurance is always a good idea when going abroad.
If you’ll be travelling with children, you may be required to show documents proving that you are their legal guardian. This is because extra security measures have been put in place in this part of the world to ensure ensure child safety. While you may not need these papers at all, it’s best to have them on you just in case.
Don’t forget to pack your sunblock, as while the pleasant coastal breezes will keep you nice and cool, the sun can still shines brightly - especially during South African summertime which tends to run from November to February.
Also make sure you pick up plenty of the local currency (Rand), particularly if you plan on whiling away the hours exploring Cape Town’s many shops and markets.
What should I do when I get there?
With such lovely weather and breathtaking landscape, you’re probably going to want to hire a car to see Cape Town at your own pace. If you’re planning to check out Table Mountain (a stunning natural phenomenon at the center of Cape Town, and a must-see local landmark), then you definitely need to either drive yourself, take a taxi, or join a tour group.
With that said, local public transport runs well and many areas can even be explored on foot. Do exercise caution when exploring, as while most areas are perfect for tourists, some parts of town may not be safe. The staff at your hotel will be able to mark these neighbourhoods on a map for you.
The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is an expansive and beautiful nature reserve that you’ll want to spend hours exploring, so be sure to bring a good pair of boots.
If you happen to know a little something about wine; or even if you’re just a keen beginner, then Constantia is the place for you. Home to no fewer than 8 award-winning wine estates including Groot Constantia, Steenberg Vineyards, Constantia Uitsig, Klein Constantia, Buitenverwachting, Eagles Nest, Constantia Glen and Silvermist Vineyards, you can visit your favourite or work your way along the famous ‘Wine Route’ for the full package.
When the time comes for a bite to eat or drink, you can’t go wrong with the many markets and restaurants, a picnic on the white sandy beach, or even nibbles with a sunset cocktail at Camp Bay. Food in general is very affordable throughout the city, and you’ll grow to love the relaxed pace of life and fun-loving spirit of those who call Cape Town home.
There are many useful apps and travel tools that will make your Cape Town experience even better. Here are just a few that may come in handy:
- AccuWeather - for up-to-date local weather forecasts, wherever you find yourself.
- Currency Calculator - for staying on top of exchange rates.
- Cape Town Buses & Trains - the official city public transport app.
- Airbnb - stay like a local, with these private apartments in handy locations.
- TripAdvisor - reviews of local restaurants and business, written by visitors like you.
- Google Maps - never get lost again!
- Instagram and Twitter - check #CapeTown on these these social networks for regular updates and snapshots.
- Time Out Cape Town - all the best shows, concerts, and restaurants in the city.
One very useful Twitter account to follow during your visit is @CapeTown, for all the advice you’ll need on the hottest things to do.
To start planning the fun stuff sooner, why not take care of your parking right now? Book your airport parking with Good To Go for great value service that’s right at Heathrow.
Why not take advantage of our Meet & Greet parking? Simply drop your car off at the terminal, and we’ll park it for you. You can get on with enjoying your trip while we’ll keep your car safe and have it ready for you when you get back from sun-drenched Cape Town.
Now you’re really Good To Go.
(Official government advice for British citizens visiting South Africa is available here.)
Whether you're jetting away on a city break or following the sun to the beach get ready to travel with our expert tips and guides.
Preparing for your holiday should be exciting, not stressful.