It’s been a good summer; and one where I’ve managed to find myself in Cape Town three times over as many months. Usually, when I visit it’s for work, but I managed to get some time to actually do what I wanted to do for a change and fit in some actual holiday. It was simply glorious.
I could write about every single thing I did, but we’ll be here forever, so instead I’ll rather cover what I absolutely loved during my visit both inside the city and a little further out into the Winelands.
Spending time in Kalk Bay
I don’t think I’ve been to Kalk Bay since I was a kid. My dad took a photo of me when I was tiny sitting on the steps of the colourful St James Beach huts, so I wanted to see what they look like now. I could’ve told you from all the photos I’ve seen that they’re still there, but it was so good to see what great condition they’re still in.
The path leading along the seafront towards Kalk Bay, taken at St James Beach.
I visited St James with Heather from 2Summers, we got dropped off with uber in Muizenberg along the beach and walked the seaside path towards Kalk Bay. The walk is entirely flat and took us about 30-40 minutes, stopping to take photos along the way. It’s a really great way to see the area too!
We planned our trip around lunch, and instead of eating at one of the restaurants, all decorated with their white table clothes and wine glasses, we went straight for the casual Kalkys. It’s a mix of tourists and locals all diving into massive tin plates of fish, prawns and calamari. It’s cheap (R55 for hake and chips), cheerful and has a dose of humour thrown in by the staff.
The enormous hake and chips at Kalkys!
After our lunch, we stopped for a delicious, creamy ice-cream from The Ice Cafe, worth the calorie splurge!
Spending time in the city
What I love about Cape Town that I absolutely know we lack in Jozi, is the ability to walk through town aimlessly. Usually in Joburg, I’ll be on a mission to somewhere specific and there aren’t exactly stores and eateries to pop into. Cape Town’s CBD however, is perfect for this.
Between Long Street, Bree Street and Kloof Street, I’m really not sure which I like more. Each has an awesome set of stores, cafes and window shopping opportunities. The place I keep returning to is El Burro’s Taqueria. I have now been there twice and eaten all the things, but have not got a single photo to show for it! BUT, you can find a great review here by my cousin Jessica.
Cape Town from the apartment we stayed in. That’s Truth Coffee down there in the middle.
Eating the Winelands
It’s not a secret that I love great food, so it’ll come as no surprise that I had a list as long as my leg of places to eat. And try as I may, I couldn’t fit them all in, but these are the highlights from this summer:
I have actually never been to Babylonstoren, but now that I have, I’m hooked! We popped in for breakfast with the whole family and managed to get a table quite easily at the Greenhouse. We ordered a mix of things, but my chicken salad was absolutely incredible. I cannot fault a single thing about this meal other than it didn’t last long enough, plus it’s just such a beautiful setting!
The incredible Greenhouse at Babylonstoren. Just grab a juicy plum if you fancy!
The world’s most incredible chicken salad.
We spent some time walking the gardens at Babylonstoren, they’re magical.
I have wanted to eat at Waterkloof for the longest time, so it was the very first booking I made when we figured out dates for Cape Town in February, and I was not disappointed! As much as I would’ve loved to, I couldn’t stomach the six courses (and the price) of the Degustation Menu. We opted for the a la carte option of three dishes for R530 per person, and ordered a few glasses of wine to enjoy alongside. The hero of the meal was the Egg 63 – a perfectly soft egg yolk cooked at 63 degrees with onion veloute and ribbons of mature cheddar.
What is rather special at Waterkloof are the small touches served too – an amuse bouche, petit fours and what seemed like an endless stream of desserts.
I know this was dessert, but I cannot remember what it was…
The Egg 63, beautiful right?
Walking into Waterkloof. Look at the mountains back there!
I’ve written about what I consider to be one of my all-time-favourite restaurants, Cosecha, before. Read that here. In short though, it’s a great casual eatery that has a Latin American spin paired with great Noble Hill wines. I highly recommend it.
Fantastic fish tacos that totally made my day.
Climbing Lion’s Head in Cape Town
Okay so this was something I thought would be a breeze, but it turns out it’s actually really difficult! I’m not going to write it all out again in fear that I may suffer dreams of it all tonight, but read about my Lion’s Head experience here!
Sunrise on the way up Lion’s Head.
Where to stay
Cape Town obviously has a zillion options when it comes to accommodation. We’ve had some mediocre experiences this summer, and one so terrible that we even chose to lose our money and move somewhere else. But the best out of the lot is an old favourite of mine: Doubletree by Hilton Cape Town.
I’ve stayed at this hotel three times now, and each time has been just as great as the time before. It’s not quite central, but its in a quieter neighbourhood (Woodstock), and the area really has a lot more than it did a few years ago when I first stayed.
What I love most about the hotel, other than the enormous beds, is the initiatives it takes to be more sustainable. You can read more about that here.
A sign in the herb garden.
The herb garden right outside the meeting rooms at DoubleTree by Hilton Cape Town.
That enormous bed I was talking about.
Love a good bath, and a shower you can dance in.
This Cape Town post was sponsored by WorldVentures Travel Club and DreamTrips who now offer local restaurant experiences allowing you to save points towards your next getaway. If you’re looking to explore Cape Town, they offer a variety of trips that include wonderful foodie experiences and even a stay at Doubletree!
My stay at Doubletree by Hilton Cape Town was by their invite, but I have gladly parted ways with my own money to stay here before. All the other experiences and meals in this post were paid for by me.