Cape Town Travel Advice

For general information on travelling to Cape Town, visit our South Africa travel advice page.

Top Travel Tips for Cape Town

Hire a car: Cape Town’s public transport network is improving but it still has a long way to go. However, what the city does have is an excellent network of well signposted roads, so do it yourself and hire a car, or head out of Cape Town and experience an African self-drive holiday.

Bring the kids: safe swimming beaches, tons of outdoor activities and a wide range of child-friendly accommodation make Cape Town an ideal destination for a family holiday.

Prepare for all weather: sitting right on the southern tip of the African continent between two huge oceans, Cape Town’s maritime climate can deliver four seasons in one day. Always be prepared and pack a warm and waterproof top, especially if you’re going hiking or taking the cable car up Table Mountain.

Stop for sundowners: Capetonians don’t just watch the sunset, they celebrate it. For a front-row seat, go for cocktails at one of Camps Bay’s many bars or restaurants, or take a bottle of wine and some picnic goodies to the top of Table Mountain (the last cable car down generally leaves an hour after sunset).

Watch for whales: whale watching season runs from July to October, but for the best chances of seeing massive southern right whales breaching and tail-slapping, we recommend you visit around September and do a daytrip to Hermanus on the Whale Coast – home to some of the best land-based whale watching in the world.

Don’t forget the sunblock: despite often mild daytime temperatures, the Cape Town sun is harsh and sun protection is essential – especially in summer! A hat, sunblock and some common sense is all you need to be able to enjoy your day on the beach and still step out at night to show off your new tan.

Leave some space in your suitcase: The shopping in Cape Town is fantastic – from airy shopping malls to eclectic roadside markets, there is something to suit all tastes. Most shops are open from 8:30am to 5pm and on Saturday mornings – the V&A Waterfront and most other shopping centres close their stores at 9pm.

Cape Town Weather

As a general rule, Cape Town’s winter (July-August) is relatively cold and wet, with temperatures ranging between 8 and 18 degrees Celcius, and summer (November – March) is hot and dry, sometimes getting up to 35 degrees Celcius. But you may experience warm days in winter, so consider packing a pair of shorts for the beach just in case.

Read more about the best time to visit Cape Town.

Cape Town’s Landscape

Table Mountain forms the centre of Cape Town and is used by locals and visitors alike as a point of reference when navigating the city’s highways and residential streets.

On the east coast of Cape Town, you will find the steep spine of the Southern Peninsula mountains, beginning at Devil’s Peak in the southern suburbs and running all the way down to famous Boulders Beach.

The “Atlantic Seaboard” runs along the west coast past Clifton and Camps Bay, and on this side, the water is much colder. The city centre of Cape Town is the northern end of this Atlantic Seaboard.

Flights & Getting Around

Did you know you can book your flights through Go2Africa? For more information and frequently asked questions, please see our Flights section.

Cape Town International Airport: one of Southern Africa’s travel hubs, Cape Town is served by numerous international airlines and is the gateway for South Africa’s Cape destinations – Cape Town, the Cape WinelandsGarden Route and the Eastern Cape.

Transfers from the airport into town are conducted in modern mini buses or sedan cars, as are guided tours around the Cape. However, it’s a popular self-drive holiday destination with dozens of must-see places and many visitors choose to hire a car to see it all at their own pace.

Central Cape Town is one of the few African cities that can be easily and safely explored on foot. Most of its attractions are set in and around the city centre though you’ll need to take a taxi or arrange transport to Table Mountain, Camps Bay and the Constantia Winelands.