This new years I was fortunate enough to travel to Cape Town in South Africa. I have always wanted to visit South Africa and heard great things about it. The great thing was we were going at peak season so we had a great guarantee of sunshine – something very valued when considering the long english winters. Cape Town is so unique in its location, driving down Camps Bay I couldnt stop staring from left to right; Table Top Mountain on one side and the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever seen on the other. The cool winds keep temperature down. Clifton beach is a picturesque beach spot with white sand and crashing waves and boulders beach just out of town homes over 3000 penguins! There is a fantastic sense of community, I felt safe and welcome. Bo-Kapp was one pocket of Cape Town where the colourful homes lined the street. Read below to discover some of my highlights in Cape Town…
- Grand Africa: great for sushi but be sure to book in advance.
- The Cod Father: Despite the cheesy name, this was one of the best restaurants I went to in terms of quality and price.
- Roundhouse: is a great restaurant which I would recommend for Lunch – but be sure to book in advance! – With a picnic vibe on a UNESCO world heritage site, its one to remember. I would even recommend tying it before a hike up lions head if you are short on time
- Haiku: was very good for a selection of East Asian cuisine.
- Nu café: This is in Sea Point and is good for food on the go. The service wasn’t exactly exemplary but the food is healthy, on trend and quick! With alfalfa sprouts sesame salmon and rye, and a selection of amazing shakes – Its a health foodies paradise.
- ORANJEZICHT City Farm: Oranjezicht (which means orange view in Afrikaans) is a non-profit farm project celebrating local food, culture and community through urban agriculture. It takes place every Saturday from 9am-2pm.
- Sexy Food: This was my top pick for Cape Town – Located on Bree Street, this vegan cafe had the best selection of fermented food I’ve seen in ages. 100% organic with Kombucha on tap and some of the most interesting smoothies I found in Cape Town this is a must visit spot.
- N.b. Plant Cafe just opened mid january but I didnt get a chance to visit- I hear good things though so any vegan or vegetarian should pay it a visit.
Move Your Body:
- Nature: There are many gorgeous hikes to do whilst in Cape Town. I enjoyed the Lions Head hike and would recommend anyone doing this to go either at 5.30 am or 5.30 pm. This is so you skip the cues as at the very peak of Lions head there is a one line system, meaning you could be stuck at the top in the heat for hours. I chose the later option and found it to be a nice temperature. It took us almost 2 hours to do the hike at a leisurely pace. This hike is for intermediate levels. Another hike is up Table Mountain and whilst I didn’t do this one personally, friends of mine really enjoyed it. This hike is far more advanced and dangerous but the views are exquisite. I took the lift up to the top of Table mountain and walked around there instead, which I would recommend.
- Fitness studios: The first studio I visited came at the recommendation of a friend. Described as insane, fun and super tough SWITCH by Steve Uria was definitely the hottest studio out there. Steve has been in the fitness industry for almost 26 years and was voted by Vogue magazine as one of the 50 top trainers in the USA. You arrive at SWITCH and are given a number, this will match with another to make up your team. You will then go to the correlating station and start. There are about 22 + stations and each one is overseen by a PT. These varied from TRK to weight lifting, to boxing to floor work. It was full on but you only had 2 minutes at each station before you… Switched. I really enjoyed this class and I went three times during my time. The next studio I found out from another gym goer at SWITCH. Under hushed tones she mentioned that SWITCH was devised after Steve Uria and the Rothschild brothers had a disagreement. But it is here is where it all began. Set up in 2010 Sweat 1000 is a revolution in fitness, filled with locals and like nothing Ive ever experienced before. The name relates to the amount of calories you can aim to burn per session. If you like Barry’s Bootcamp – this ones for you! The HIIT aspect of the training programme includes treadmills overlooking sea point; which then lower and plunge the room into fluorescent lighting in time for the floor exercises which are core, functional and resistance based. Another great studio that came highly recommended was Hot Dog Yoga. This studio was located in Sea Point and offered a great selection of classes for most capabilities.
- Take a one hour ride down to Franschoek to the wine region of South Africa. Book in advance for the Delaire Graff estate in Stellenbosch if you can – certainly book in for lunch either way. We left our booking until the last minute and came across a very quaint and nice vineyard called Boschendal. This is a perfect way to either begin or end your time in Cape Town as its 20 minutes from the airport and the scenery is unreal.