11 Things to do for Free in Cape Town
Cape Town is a lovely city, loved by tourists and the people of South Africa (the most visited city in the country). It has scooped numerous awards for its cleanliness and for being the best Tourist City in South Africa. Given its status it is very easy for people to think that they have to pay for everything in order to have a good time in the city. What they do not know is that there are many things that one can do in Cape Town without paying a cent, all they need to do is get themselves there and have a great time. ENJOY!
Hike up the Table Mountain
Nothing beats a morning hike up the iconic 1085m high Table Mountain. Though it can be classified as a ‘hard’ hike it still is the most exciting and rewarding exercise. Once you get to the top you are spoiled with the most gorgeous views of Cape Town. From the deck you can see the ocean and the beautiful Lions head. At the mountain top there is a trendy restaurant where you can enjoy your breakfast and some shops where one can buy souvenirs. What is exciting about this hike is the fact that you can either descend by foot or you can take a cable car and enjoy the scenery.
Cape Town City/ Bo Kaap Walking Tour
This is my favourite, for each town I visit I always enquire about available City Walking Tours. This is the best way to learn about the city and its people. Because Cape Town has such a rich history, this tour is divided into two; the City Tour and the Bo Kaap Tour. The meeting point for these tours is the Green Market Square, there is a morning (11:00 – 12:30) and an afternoon session (14:00 – 15:30).
Company’s Garden situated in the heart of Cape Town is a large public park and botanical garden. Some of the things that make this botanic garden enjoyable is the South African Museum, a rose garden, Japanese garden, fish pond, an arts gallery and just meters away you will you see the Parliament. What I love the most about this place is that it has the most amazing back drop (Table Mountain) for spectacular pictures. It also is home to an amazing restaurant that is perfectly stationed for all to enjoy. Though it is also advisable for people to make reservations as it is very popular amongst the locals and as you would imagine, the Tourists.
Enjoy the sunset from Signal Hill
This a very popular spot because it offers the best sunset views in Cape Town and the most spectacular views of the city especially in the evenings. You can never get used to this experience because the views of Cape Town looks magical each day. This is a perfect spot for sun downers with your loved one/ a group of friends.
The best thing to ever happen to art lovers. Who would not like a day where they will get to indulge in all things artsy, visiting art galleries, crafts in abundance, music, street fashion and tantalising their taste buds with nice food and enjoying their drink of choice; all of this for free. Art galleries and culture events around Cape Town’s central city stay open until 9pm or later on the first Thursday of every month, allowing anyone to explore the city on foot. Another beauty about this event is that you get to explore the city at your own pace as there is no tour, schedule or guided walk. The best way to usher in the weekend, I say.
A day at the Beach
I love the walks at the beach and just lazying around having a good laugh while playing with the water. Cape Town is blessed with a lot of magnificent beaches that are very safe and good for swimming. Because it’s a huge tourist city the beaches are always busy but not crowded and are very safe.
Visit local Weekend Markets
Cape Town boasts a variety of weekend markets in great locations. My favourite is the Neighbourgoods market at the Old Biscuit Mill in observatory. This market offers a variety of things to be enjoyed, food, wine, hi-end fashion items and many more arty things. The vibe is very chilled complemented by nice cool music. It is a great way to spending your day.
Hike up the Lion’s Head
I found that the best views of the ocean and the Table Mountain can be captured in perfection from the Lion’s head. Unlike the table Mountain hike where you have an option to use a cable car down, on this one you are your only hope of getting back down. Though there are some stages where other people might find challenging, for me this was a moderate hike also because it is only 669m high compared to the Table mountain. I enjoyed every moment till the end, even descending was not too hard on the knees.
Knowing the history of each place you visit will make you fall more in love with it. I have learned that you do not need to be a history loving person to enjoy spending time at the museums. I never really used to even think about going to the museums until I got to understand what they can offer. They enhance your knowledge of the place, resources and its people. Google is your friend to find out which Museums are free in Cape Town.
Wine Estates Tours
You cannot be in Cape Town and pass out an opportunity to visit not one but a lot of wine farms. These wine farms offer a different experiences and will leave different tastes on your palate too. Most of these wine estates offer lunch and picnic spots for you to enjoy with your partner, friends and family. Therefore instead of having lunch at the Waterfront, drive out a little and enjoy a different experience all together, it will be worth your while.
A historic visit to District 6
District Six is a former inner-city residential area in Cape Town. Over 60,000 of its inhabitants were forcefully removed during the 1970s by the apartheid regime. A visit to this area will leave you full with the history of the people of Cape Town and how the apartheid system played a huge role on how the landscape of the city is as seen today.