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Home » Travel Planning

What to do in Cape town

Photo from Flickr by Christina Karchevskaya

Cape Town is one of those remarkable destinations which allow you to enjoy a fabulous vacation whether you’re living it up in a 5-star hotel or simply using backpacker’s accommodation as a base. No matter how large or small your budget, you’re unlikely to exhaust all your options. Realistically, most travellers these days have to keep a close eye on their spending and thus choose to seek out the more character filled, hidden gems which can easily be missed if you’re hopping between the more traditional tourist attractions.

Enter Long Street, Cape Town. This cosmopolitan street with its irresistible charm and bubbling spirit once used to be the border of the Muslim Bo-Kaap. Numerous old mosques can be found along the street, including the Pink Tree Mosque which is the oldest mosque in South Africa and is now a place of interest. From around 1960 to somewhere in the late 1990’s the street lost favour with the local inhabitants and gained the reputation of being a less than desirable area of the CBD. However, ingenious developers realised the street’s potential and set about upgrading the many Victorian-era buildings and at the same time giving its sullied reputation a facelift.

Today Long Street is a feast for the senses. With its bohemian charm it draws both locals and tourists from all across the globe.  The street is lined with quaint little bookstores, jam packed antique shops, street-wear boutiques, several ethnic restaurants, bars and backpacker hostels. Right at the top of the street are the well-known Long Street Baths which consists of various swimming pools, Turkish baths, steam rooms and plunge pools.

Because Long Street is located in the heart of the CBD, it forms the perfect base from which to explore. With the recently implemented Bus Rapid Transit System (BRT) and upgraded train stations, getting around is never a problem. Day trips to various unspoilt beaches, exquisite botanical gardens, world class wine estates, historical sites are all on the cards. Whilst Cape Town’s weather is generally rather pleasant, it can also be terribly windy.

Fortunately the wind lends itself to excellent surfing conditions and has become well known for its premier surf spots. If, however, surfing the big blue isn’t your thing you could always surf South Africa’s best online casino instead.  Extreme sports such as kite surfing, abseiling and rock climbing are all in easy reach. For something a little more commercial one could visit the enormous Canal Walk Shopping Centre or pay a visit to Cape Town’s very own Grande West Casino which is not only a casino but an entertainment complex too.

However you decide to occupy your time, Cape Town is one of those places that keeps drawing you back. A city with so many options that you’ll find yourself wanting more.



Aaron Bradford has written 156 articles. Aaron is the leader, mentor and chief geek of the Happytime team. He put together this crack team of travel writers known by codename “The Firm“. Twitter: @b4ubackpack | Google profile |

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