Cape Town has won numerous awards for its beauty. The sights around the city and the list of activities to do seem endless. Every personality type is catered for in this vibrant place. There is just so much to explore. It is a truly remarkable city to visit (and live). Here is a round-up of the top 10 activities we think you ought to try while in the Mother City:
1. Shark Cage Diving
There is nothing more exhilarating that dropping into the fresh Atlantic Ocean and seeing marine life up-close. It is a whole different ecosystem down by the sea, and locals and visitors are encouraged to give shark cage diving a try. There are a number of companies who operate successful diving trips to see these majestic fish. However, we recommend White Shark Diving Company for daily trips. Their itinerary includes transport from your guesthouse to Gansbaai, breakfast and a meet and greet with the sea crew, a trip on the boat to complete the cage diving experience, lunch and the chance to view and purchase DVD footage of your dive. Transport back to Cape Town can be arranged at additional cost.
- Destination: Gansbaai
- Duration: 1 day
- Price: R1,600 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)21 671 4777
2. Abseiling off Table Mountain
The ultimate rush has to be abseiling. If you enjoy descending down mountains, strapped in by safety rope while witnessing incredible views, then this is for you. Abseil Africa offers a unique experience. Their abseil activity on Table Mountain takes roughly 45 minutes to 1 hour. The trip includes a guided hike up Platteklip Gorge, signing and harnessing, safety briefing, and abseiling down.
- Destination: Table Mountain
- Duration: 1 hour
- Price: R795 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)21 424 4760
3. Biking on Table Mountain
If you enjoy seeing nature on a set of wheels, then mountain biking is the best activity to do in Cape Town. Cycling enthusiasts can enjoy a glorious ride along the front of Table Mountain. Downhill Adventures offers a two and a half hour ride with professional mountain biking guides. The ride is suitable for all levels of fitness, so don’t feel intimidated! Grab their shuttle service from their shop, where they will transport you to the top of the trail on Table Mountain. Then the journey begins as you embark on downhill trails and private roads that lead around Devil’s Peak. The ride culminates in the only viewpoint on the mountain that takes in a panoramic of the Indian Ocean of False Bay and Atlantic Ocean of Table Bay.
- Destination: Table Mountain
- Duration: half day
- Price: R950 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)21 422 0388
Tandem Paragliding in Cape Town is likened to a paradigm shift unlike anything else you have ever experienced. Paraglide South Africa offers tandem trips at five different sites: Lion’s Head, Signal Hill, Sir Lowry’s Pass, Hermanus and Porterville. You need not be qualified to take part in this activity and it is ideal for those who want to find out what paragliding is all about, but who cannot take time out of their schedule for two days of learning. Tandem Paragliding is fun and easy! Note: the only limitation is weight (max 120 kgs). There is no minimum or maximum age, though children under 18 years old will need their parents’ consent.
- Destination: Lion’s Head/Signal Hill/Sir Lowry’s Pass/Hermanus/Porterville
- Duration: half day
- Price: R1200 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)83 251 9892
5. Zip Line Tour
If you are looking for a fast and scenic tour of Constantia, then the Zip Line Tour is a must. SA Forest Adventures was the first to bring this activity to Cape Town’s Constantia Nek. There are 11 platforms and 7 cables between each platform that will zip you down a large canyon. Witness incredibly beautiful views from this high vantage point. This is Africa`s longest zip line tour with 2.3 kilometers of cables in total. The highest cable is 155 meters above the canyon floor. Note: There is a weight limit of 120 kgs. No pregnant women or children under 6 years are allowed to participate.
- Destination: Silvermist Mountain Lodge & Wine Estate, Constantia Nek
- Duration: 2 hours
- Price: R480 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)83 517 3635
6. Table Mountain Aerial Cableway
It does not only appeal to tourists, but locals also enjoy the aerial cableway trip up the slopes of Table Mountain. The 360-degree panoramic views are virtually out of this world. As the cart climbs, the views of the Atlantic seaboard and surrounding suburbs grow wider, spanning the entire Table Bay. This is a photographer’s dream come true. At the top of the mountain, there is a self-service restaurant, Table Mountain Café, for food and drinks. A shop called the Shop at the Top has a selection of gifts and curios on sale. Pop in and find something special to remind you of your visit to the highest point in Cape Town. The cableway can get really busy, especially during peak season, so please check the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway website for trip times.
- Destination: Lower cableway station
- Duration: Take the five-minute cable car trip to the top of Table Mountain
- Price: R60-R240 pp. Please see Webtickets
7. Horse Riding on the Beach
There is nothing better than riding off into the sunset on horseback. On Noordhoek Beach, you can enjoy guided horse riding trails with Cape Town Horse Riding. Noordhoek beach is ideal for horse riding and stretches for miles with magnificent views of Chapman’s Peak. The small coastal village of Kommetjie is connected to Noordhoek via Long Beach, making it an ideal stretch of sand for exploring on horseback. Note: minimum age 12 years old, maximum weight 90 kgs.
- Destination: Noordhoek
- Duration: 1 hour 45 minutes
- Price: R650 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)21 856 2246
8. Hike Lion’s Head
One of the mandatory things to do in the Mother City is hiking up Lion’s Head. Lion’s Head forms part of the Table Mountain range and provides a scenic backdrop to the City of Cape Town. It falls within the Table Mountain National Park and rises to a height of 669m above sea level. There are exquisite views from the top of Lion’s Head of the sprawling city below, Table Bay and the Atlantic shoreline. The hike itself is a three-hour ascent to the top. It is not for the faint-hearted and requires a basic level of fitness. It is not suited to the unfit, elderly or very young. The route starts at Signal Hill Road, at the base of Forestry Road and spirals around the head to a section with chains. These chains assist climbers over a steep, rocky section. There is an alternate route that bypasses the chains, but it is still steep and not to be taken lightly.
- Destination: Lion’s Head
- Duration: 3-hour ascent
- Price: free
9. Kayaking with Penguins
Kayak Cape Town offers a two-hour kayaking experience at Boulders Beach, the home of a penguin colony. The tour starts from Simon’s Town Waterfront going past the Naval Harbour and out to Boulder’s Beach to see the penguins. This is a truly unique experience being so close to penguins in their natural habitat. The surrounding scenery and marine life are awe-inspiring. Depending on the tide and season, you will be able to stop on the beach for a swim. This is an excellent way of getting up-close to the penguins who dive from the rocks into the water.
- Destination: Simon’s Town
- Duration: 2 hours
- Price: R300 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)82 501 8930
10. Go-Kart Racing
Get your adrenaline rush from a speedy session around the go-kart track. Kenilworth Karting offers speed queens the chance to let go around their 310-metre indoor track. Excitement builds as you ready your go-kart at the start, where other drivers are revving their engines to go. Each of the 160cc karts are fitted with hydraulic brakes and slick tyres to keep you racing safely and speedily. It is bound to be a fun, exhilarating experience.
- Destination: 10 Myhof Road, Kenilworth
- Price: Adults R100-R170 pp, Children under 16 pay R90-R120 pp
- Contact: +27 (0)21 683 2670