If You Had 24 Hours in Cape Town…

Enjoy this guest post by Russell Jarvis, who manages and develops content for www.Travelstart.co.za, a travel agency specializing in airline tickets and accommodations in South Africa. He’s the expert, don’t miss out on his top to-do picks in Cape Town!

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In starting this post I have visions of Guy Ritchie cinematography flashing through my head. You know… the scenes in Snatch where we see Cousin Avi flying between New York and London. Avi’s travel time is neatly condensed into a few cleverly shot sequences, and if you haven’t yet seen the movie, you should! It’s Richie’s scene making brilliance that got me thinking about how it would look on screen if I only had 24 hours in Cape Town. Fast forward Cable Car trips cut to Clifton Beach cut to sunrise, moonrise… man this is stressful and the Mother City wouldn’t want that would she? So I’ve taken a step back and come up with a blow-by-blow, time sensitive itinerary. Take it from me – I live here and these are the things I wouldn’t want my best friend to miss out on.

9:00am – 10:30am | Breakfast at the V&A Waterfront

9am? You must be joking? Well, no I’m not. After all this is Cape Town and we haven’t earned our laid back reputation by getting out of bed early. The clock is ticking so head down to the V&A Waterfront and enjoy a coffee and pastry at Vovo Telo or check out the new Market on the Wharf for an even greater variety of artisan food and fair trade coffee Cape Town style.


V&A Waterfront

10:45am – 12:00pm | To the Top of the Mountain

The day is sunny, windless and pleasant so what do you do? You seize the opportunity and head straight to the Table Mountain Cable-way. It’s R205 for an adult return ticket but I’ve heard you can buy them online for a little less.


Table Mountain in the Distance

12:15pm – 14:00pm | To the Bottom of the Sea

Well not quite the bottom of the sea, but it might as well be after you descend the lofty heights of Table Mountain to the glitzy shores of Clifton Beach. Indulge in a little R&R on Cape Town’s most famous stretch of sand and if you’re brave enough, a dip in the Atlantic. Clifton 4th is the one that everyone talks about so head there if you feel like schmoozing with fellow sun gazers and if you’re lucky enough, a celebrity or two.


Clifton 4th Beach

14:30pm – 16:00pm | Wine Route

The clock has struck 2 and you haven’t even had a glass of wine. Need I remind you, you’re in Cape Town? Leave Clifton and head to the Constantia Wine Route via Hout Bay. Of course the Constantia Route could be swapped out for the wider pastures (vineyards?) of Franschhoek and Stellenbosch but if you’re staying in the city you’ll have to travel a lot further to reach these enclaves. Constantia is about 20 minutes from Cape Town and here you can enjoy beautiful scenery dotted with Cape Dutch architecture, a mid-afternoon lunch, and wine tastings. The good ones are Groot Constantia, Klein Constantia and Buitenverwachting.

16:30 – 17:30 | High Tea at the Mount Nelson

If you haven’t filled up on enough cheese and wine then stop by the Mount Nelson Hotel on Orange Street after your Winelands excursion. Their afternoon High Tea is well-known and is served from 2:30–5:30pm in the lounge, on the terrace or around the garden fountain.

18:30 till late | Dinner and a Razzle

When it comes to Cape Town’s nightlife, saying your choices are plentiful would be an understatement. From the 24 hour a day action of Long Street to the unadulterated swish of the Camps Bay strip, you won’t have to look far if it’s fine fare and merriment into the wee hours you’re after. Cape Town is a world city on a grand scale and there are a million other options and combinations thereof for a truly memorable experience.

From Robben Island and Kirstenbosch to Chapman’s Peak Drive and the far reaching areas of Kalk Bay, Simonstown and Cape Point you’ll never be left wondering what to do next.

So… you only have 24 hours in Cape Town? And go!