How To Get From The Cape Town International Airport To Your Hotel South Africa

The Cape Town International Airport is located 20 kilometres to the west of the Cape Town CBD. It lies in the Matroosfontein district. Conveniently located next to the N2 highway, you can easily travel to the various sides of the city from the airport.

Transport Options from Cape Town International Airport

There are a variety of ways to travel to your hotel from the Cape Town International Airport. These include the MyCiti bus transport system, shuttle services and metered taxis, car rentals, and Uber.

Your choice of transport will depend on the distance you have to travel, as well as the direction. For short distances from the airport, an Uber ride will be sufficient. If you are staying in the city centre, on the Atlantic seaboard, or towards the West Coast –  consider using the MyCiti bus.

If you prefer to travel speedily and directly to your hotel, you can consider using a shuttle service or metered taxi. Alternatively, if you will be travelling a lot during your stay in Cape Town, hiring your own car could be the best option. Read our post about the Best Car Rental Companies in Cape Town.

MyCiti Bus Airport Transport Service

You can take the MyCiti bus from the airport to the Civic Centre. This is the main station where you can effortlessly switch to other routes travelling throughout the city. The busses travel throughout the city centre, the Atlantic Seaboard, as well as towards Century City and Melkbos Strand.  Click here to view the MyCiti routes.

My City Bus Cape Town - Get From The Cape Town International Airport to Your Hotel In Cape Town

The busses run between 5:30 am and 9:30 pm. To reach the MyCiti bus station, head out the main airport entrance and turn to your left. You will see the Public Transport Plaza opposite the Central Terminal Building entrance. Travelling into the city will take about 30 minutes, depending on traffic. You can buy your MyCiti card at the airport bus station. The card costs R35 and is valid for five years. Fares to the city cost between R60 and R100, depending on when you travel.  Read more about the MyCiti airport service.


Uber Cape Town International Airport - Get From The Cape Town International Airport to Your Hotel In Cape Town

The airport has created a designated area where you can book your Uber from. The official pick up is from parkade 1. As you head out of the airport, turn to your right towards the separate parking building. Ubers are constantly heading in and out of the airport, so it will not take long to book a car. If you can’t find your Uber, you can contact the driver via the app.

The following are pricing estimates to a few popular destinations near Cape Town:

  • Waterfront, from R 177
  • Camps Bay, from R 190
  • Stellenbosch, from R 254
  • Simonstown, from R 316

Uber Cape Town International Airport - Getting From Cape Town International Airport To Hotel

Car Rentals

Hiring a private car to use during your Cape Town holiday is a great way to explore the city and surrounding areas at your own leisure. Before making a booking, make sure that your licence is valid and accepted in South Africa. It is recommend that you pre-book your rental car before arriving at the airport. This especially important during high season from December to February. Click here to compare car rental prices.

Cape Town International Airport Car Rental

The car rental agencies are situated at the Transport Plaza and the Central Terminal Building. You can access the plaza via two subways, located on the sides of the terminal building. Currently there are 9 car rental agencies providing services from the Cape Town airport:

  • Avis
  • Europcar
  • First Car Rental
  • Bidvest Car Rental
  • Hertz
  • Tempest Car Hire
  • Woodford
  • Dollar / Thrifty Car Rental
  • Capital Car Hire

Cape Town Airport Shuttle Services

As you walk out of the domestic arrivals terminal or international inner lane, you will be greeted by a variety of friendly shuttle service operators. Depending on how far you will be travelling, as well as how many people will be travelling together, a shuttle service can be a very good transport option.

The add-on benefit of a shuttle service, is that they often also offer tour options that you could consider. Make sure that you compare travelling prices to ensure that you pick the most affordable transport method. Sometimes you also need to pre-book a shuttle. Click here for the 10 Best Cape Town Taxis and Shuttles.

Cape Town Airport Metered Taxis

The Cape Town International Airport has an accredited metered taxi service, the Touchdown Taxi Association. Their contact number is +27 (0)83 652 0786. Find the metered taxis at the Transport Plaza. You can access it via two pedestrian subways from the passenger terminal’s main entrance.

Alternative Travel Option

When booking your stay at a local hotel or bed and breakfast, you can check if they offer collection options from the airport. This is a good solution to save yourself the trouble of finding your accommodation if you are worried about navigating your way through the city.

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Intercape Bus Services Around South Africa

Intercape is the biggest intercity passenger transport service in Southern Africa. They operate in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique. We decided to investigate how you can use this luxurious bus service to springboard into the Western Cape.

Discover the Secret Spots of the Cape

We think the following little Western Cape towns will make for great local getaway options. If you think Cape Town is filled with spectacular views, wait till you travel a few kilometres outside the city borders! The awe-inspiring beauty will take your breath away. You don’t have to travel to an exotic location to have a fabulous holiday experience. The Western Cape has enough mesmerizing locations to keep you busy for ages.

Off-peak Bus Ticket Rates

The Intercape bus tickets have three different class options: Full Flexi, Flexi, and Saver. With a Full Flexi or Flexi bus ticket, you are more flexible with regards to cancelling or changing your booking. The Saver bus tickets offer you the best travel fares, but availability is limited and it’s more restricted. Read more about the bus ticket rules.

(Full Flexi) | (Flexi) | (Saver) – one-way prices

R300 | R285 | R270
1 and a half hours bus travel

Located about 65km North of Cape Town, it’s the biggest town in the Swartland area. The area got its name from the Renosterbos, an indigenous plant which turns black during the warm, dry African summers.

R370 (full flexi) | R352.00 (flexi) | R333 (saver)
2 hours bus travel

Located approximately 160km North of Cape Town. You can guess where the town got its name from, citrus fruit farming flourishes in the area. The “dal” part is Afrikaans for valley, the town is situated in the Olifants River Valley.

R350 | R333 | R315
2 hours bus travel

Situated 130km from Cape Town, close to the West Coast town of Saldanha Bay. Originally the name was spelled “Piquetberg”. It’s located at the foothills of the Piketberg mountains. These mountains contain Table Mountain Sandstone.

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In die stilte tussen die wingerde

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R390 | R371 | R351
3 hours bus travel

Located 200 km north of Cape Town. The town lies in the Olifants River valley and is part of the Cederberg Local Municipality. This area is a hiker or climber’s dream come true! Click here to view your rock climbing options in the area.

R490 | R466 | R441
3 and a half hours bus travel

Located approximately 250km from Cape Town. It’s known as the second capital of Karoo. You will pass the famous quaint little town of Matjiesfontein on your way here. Consider a quick outing to it for lunch at the famous Lord Milner Hotel, it’s only 20 minutes from Laingsburg.

R390 | R371 | R351
4 hours bus travel

Located about 200km from Cape Town. It’s the third oldest town in South Africa (after Cape Town and Stellenbosch) The little town is full of heritage sites, 50 in total. Most of these are Cape Dutch architecture buildings.

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Come and visit Greater Swellendam on Cape Trade Route

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R430 | R409 | R387
5 hours bus travel

Located approximately 300km from Cape Town. The town forms part of the West Coast District Municipality but is not situated at the beach. It dates back to 1661, when Pieter van Meerhoff and other Europeans explored the area.

Beaufort Wes
R510 | R485 | R459
6 and a half hours bus travel

Located about 450km from Cape Town. It is the biggest town in the desert-like Great Karoo region. The town has the reputation of being the “Capital of the Karoo”. It’s a bustling spot, as the N1 runs through it.

R580 | R510 | R440
9 hours bus travel

Located approximately 400km from Cape Town. This town is the “Capital of the Klein Karoo”. It’s situated along the famous Route 62 wine route. The area also has many ostrich farms. If you feel brave enough, you could even ride one of these feisty birds! And make sure you pop in at the Cango Caves limestone chambers, which is 20 million years old.

R390 | R371 | R351
4 hours bus travel

Located about 250km from Cape Town. Make sure you click carefully when selecting this one, otherwise you will end up at its namesake in Gauteng. The little town lies east of the Overberg region and could be seen as the start of the Garden Route.

Travel A Little Bit Further

If you want to see what else the country has to offer you, the Intercape bus can conveniently let you spread your travel wings. Coastal city options include Mosselbay, Knysna, Jeffreys Bay, Port Elizabeth, East London, and Durban. Travel into the heart of the Northern Cape stopping at Garies, Springbok, Keimoes or Upington. Or to the top of the country, stopping at Nelspruit. You can also travel effortlessly to Gauteng on the Cape Town to Johannesburg/Pretoria via Kimberley route.

Search other routes

Did you know? You can receive discount on your bus ticket. Discounts are available for families, students, children and senior citizens. Intercape also offers frequent traveller discount. View the discount options.

A Few Things to Know When Travelling on an Intercape Bus

Two suitcases are allowed per person, but the total mass must not exceed 20kg. The bags must also be maximum 80 cm x 60 cm x 30 cm in size. If your luggage goes over the weight limit, you will be charged per extra kilogram. Refreshments aren’t served on the bus, but you will have plenty of time to stock up on snacks at the various stops along the way. And you are also allowed to pack your own.

How to Make a Booking

There are a few ways you can book your bus ticket. Online bookings, via the Intercape call center, visit a sales office, at a PEP store, or Shoprite/Checkers Money Market counter. Once you’ve booked your ticket you can make a payment with your credit card, an EFT, at a PEP store, or Shoprite/Checkers outlet. You can also book your Intercape bus ticket with your Jet or Edgards Thank U account card.

Your Intercape Bus Options

You can choose between the Intercape Mainliner or Sleepliner. All the busses boast with an impeccable safe travel environment and unbeatable safety record. The Mainliner features include reclining comfortable seats, secure luggage storage, air conditioning, an on-board toilet, and on-board entertainment.

The Sleepliner seats can recline 150 degrees and has special padded memory foam. The comfort is further extended with extra legroom and a leg rest, plus a seat belt for your safety while horizontal. It also has air conditioning, an on-board toilet, and on-board entertainment. This options offers you premium class luxury at an affordable price. These imported coaches are of the highest quality.

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Top 10 Luxury Hotels in and around Cape Town

The best luxury hotels in and around Cape Town provide more than just a place to rest one’s head for the night. Tricked-out suites with million-dollar views and all the finest amenities, along with posh bars and top-notch dining options from Michelin-starred chefs fulfill every need and desire for the finer things in life. It all comes, of course, at a premium price to match.

Here are the best luxury hotels in Cape Town.

The Silo Hotel

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The Silo Hotel's luxurious Penthouse – the ideal space to relax and take in the picturesque scenes our beautiful city has to offer. ___________ The one-bedroom Penthouse is located on the top floor of The Silo Hotel facing Table Mountain with triple aspect views of Cape Town. ___________ #thesilohotel #theroyalportfolio #africa #southafrica #meetsouthafrica #wowsouthafrica #capetown #capetownmag #capetownetc #capetownlife #cityofcapetown #tablemountain #beautifulhotels #beautifuldestinations #beautifulcity #beautifulview #hotel #hotelsandresorts #penthouse #luxurypenthouse #luxury #luxurylife #luxurytravel #luxurylifestyle #travelgram #traveltheworld #design #interiordesign #uniquehotels #instatravel @theroyalportfolio @thesilohotel_

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One of the most unique hotels in the world, the Silo Hotel was once a fully functioning grain silo. The grain silo was established in 1924 and at that time, it was the tallest building in the whole of Sub-Saharan Africa. Now, the hotel is a far cry from it’s industrial beginnings. Boasting 28 suites, a museum, an art gallery, three restaurants and a spa, the Silo Hotel is renowned as one of the best hotels in the world.

The Silo is located in the centre of Cape Town and is the ideal base to explore all that Cape Town has to offer.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

The Twelve Apostles

Set with mountains on one side and the ocean on the other, Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa is a getaway to explore the Table Mountain National Park.

The hotel offers 70 guest rooms, unique features include a holistic spa, private cinema, and breathtaking views from the legendary Azure Restaurant and The Leopard Bar.

This intimate 5-star hotel prides itself on exceptional hospitality coupled with a relaxing atmosphere; making an unforgettable experience as unique as its haven-like setting.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Cape Grace Hotel

Situated on a private quay between Cape Town’s bustling V&A Waterfront and the tranquil yacht marina, there is no better position from where to soak in the natural beauty of our Mother City and the very essence of Cape Town living at its best.

Each room is completely distinct from the next, in fact; no two are the same, making guests feel as if they are one in a million.

The Cape Grace Hotel also boasts the award-winning Signal Restaurant serves South African cuisine and international dishes.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Cape Cadogan

Cape Cadogan is an elegant hotel is nestled in Gardens, located above the central business district of Cape Town. It features lush gardens, a plunge pool and sun terrace.

The building that houses the Cape Cadogan is a stately double-storeyed Georgian and Victorian building that dates back to the beginning of the 19th century.

The Cape Cadogan comprises twelve en-suite bedrooms which are luxuriously decorated with an eclectic mix of contemporary and antique furniture.

Due to its intimate size, Cape Cadogan is the perfect place to stay if you want to ‘live like a local’, in quirky yet refined style.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Birkenhead House

Set 90 minutes from Cape Town in the seaside town of Hermanus, we’ve listed this gem as no trip to the Cape is complete without a visit to the exceptional Birkenhead House.

With its cliff-top position overlooking the whale watching paradise of Walker Bay, Birkenhead House provides luxury accommodation for those seeking an extraordinary coastal experience. During the migration months, you may even witness Southern Right and Humpback Whales breaching just metres from the hotel.

Most of the 11 opulently appointed studio suites of Birkenhead House offer sea or mountain views and some include a small outdoor patio. Each room is luxuriously and individually decorated in a contemporary style, with an eclectic mix of modern and antique.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Ellerman House

Celebrating over 25 years of excellence, Ellerman House encapsulates the grandeur of a bygone era while embracing all modern life’s creature comforts.

Nestled into the side of Signal Hill and boasting some of Cape Town’s most spectacular views lies a magnificent Cape Edwardian mansion that will welcome you with both arms and capture your heart forever. With only 13 individually-styled bedrooms, attention to detail and personalised service reigns supreme.

What Ellerman House has that sets itself apart is their extensive South African art collection, some dating back as far as the 1800’s.

Additionally, in the bar, guests can savour a drink surrounded by Table Mountain granite blending with skilled stone masonry, sumptuous leather and rich woods. Boasting four fully stocked cellars of South African vintage wines, guests can select from over 17 000 bottles!

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

One & Only

One of the larger properties on our list, all 131 rooms have en-suite bathrooms and private balconies with breath-taking views of the glorious Table Mountain. All are designed with chic African colours and contemporary patterns that represent the distinctive Cape landscape.

The One and Only is surrounded by the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront which was once a trading refreshment station and is now the Cape’s most prestigious shopping and entertainment hub. Home to more than 450 retail outlets, 80 restaurants and bars, cinemas, markets; there is definitely something for the whole family.

Whether you are reclining on the armchairs, on the deck under the palms, trying you luck on one of the stand-up paddleboards or relaxing by the infinity pool, there is no doubt that you will enjoy your stay in the Mother City.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

More Quarters Apartment Hotel

The hotel is a collection of converted heritage townhouses, offering five-star hospitality and the privacy of individual accommodations.

The More Quarters is the perfect Cape Town home away from home. If you are a family on holiday or a couple seeking romance, the apartments offer comfort and luxury in the centre of what is arguably the world’s most beautiful city.

The location within Cape Town city bowl affords guests the ability to walk to both restaurants and boutique shops which are located close by.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

La Residence

Featured on Conde Nast’s Traveler Gold List for 2018, La Residence offers luxury accommodation in a tranquil setting amongst the 30 acres of vineyards in Franschhoek.

La Residence is a Tuscan style, horse-shoe shaped manor which wraps around a manicured courtyard, inviting pool and panoramic winelands backdrop. Springbok can often be seen on the sprawling green lawns and the private dam complete with island, rowboat and soft flowing willow trees will leave you feeling like you stepped back in time.

In total, the hotel consists of 11 luxury suites (double rooms), as well as five Vineyard Suites that can accommodate four guests each.

Whether you are a wine connoisseur, a mountain biker or a food enthusiast the Franschhoek Valley has something to offer everyone. If ultimate luxury and homeliness what you desire, La Residence is the place for you.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Delaire Graff

High up on the Helshoogte Mountain Pass, which links Stellenbosch to Franschhoek, exists a wine enthusiast, diamond lover, foodie and art fanatics dream.

The estate includes five world class boutiques, including an outpost of Graff Diamonds, two restaurants, a spa, gym and private cinema.

The hotel’s owner, Laurence Graff, is the founder of world-renowned diamond dealership, Delaire Diamonds. On show in the hotel’s boutique are some of the collection pieces and iconic stones, handmade in London by Graff’s Master Craftsmen, that Graff has become renowned for.

All rooms are luxuriously appointed with private plunge pools, state of the art kitchens and even a lodge butler.

Delaire Graff is the epitome of luxury; whether you are wanting to relax at the lodges and spa, eat at the internationally celebrated restaurants, or simply sink into a sofa with a bottle of wine.

To inquire about bookings, please CLICK HERE.

Iconic Africa is able to cater to your luxury travel inquiries. Iconic Africa creates exclusive luxury African safari and adventure holidays for couples and families in southern and eastern Africa.

By booking through Iconic Africa you are able to save up to 20% on other advertised offers and they will beat any other quote you have been given.


Email |

Phone | South Africa +27 82 411 5776 | United States +1 888 345 3443

The Western Cape is an outdoor fanatic’s dream come true. With rolling mountains and endless open spaces, you can step away from your busy city life for a moment to refresh yourself. The following are a few of the top campsites in and around Cape Town.

Cape Town’s location between mountains and sea offers you endless opportunities for a nature-filled adventure within a short drive from the city.

#1 Voëlklip, Hermanus

Location: 1.5 hours from Cape Town
corner of 17th Avenue and the R43, Hermanus

Voëlklip Camping lies in the beautiful seaside town of Hermanus, situated adjacent to the Voëlklip suburb and walking distance from the blue-flag Grotto beach. The camp site is located amongst natural forest consisting of indigenous milkwood bushes, allowing one to embrace the natural environment to its fullest. The view from your site includes the ocean, the Klein Rivier Lagoon and the spectacular mountain.


The camp sites are fitted with plug points and the communal ablution blocks have hot water. Each site is equipped with braai facilities.


The site is within walking distance of the blue flag Grotto beach. Other activities in the area include hiking, swimming, kayaking and canoeing.


Pets are allowed (provided the owner takes full responsibility of them during their stay)


R300 to R750 (2 persons) and R100 per additional person (depending on season)
Special low season and pensioner rates are available

012 460 4047 |

Special December relaunch offer: The first 30 bookings will receive a 30% discount (T&C’s apply)

#2 Dwarsberg Trout Hideaway, Trouthaven

Location: 1.5 hours from Cape Town
Dwarsberg Farm, Louwshoek Voorsorg Road, Rawsonville (via N1, R101)

This spectacular campsite is located on a working fruit and wine farm, just outside the little Klein Karoo town of Rawsonville. It is the perfect getaway spot from the city with the rolling hills wrapped around the farm, you can soak up the beauty of the Breede Rivier Valley to refresh your soul.


Each camping site is fitted with its own private ablution, with hot water. On weekends you can use one of the portable braais with two bags of free wood. During the week you can purchase wood from the kiosk. Other supplies sold include ice, snacks, fresh farm bread, and coffee. Some of the sites are fitted with electricity.


Besides soaking up the pure nature, you can do some bird watching or trout-fishing. There are also mountain bike and hiking trails meandering through waterfalls. Or you can indulge in a bit of wine tasting.


R990 (for the first 6 people) | R165 (per additional adult) | R80 per child (aged 4 – 12)
Free for children under 5.

Pets are not allowed.


023 349 1919 |

#3 Slangkop Tented Camps, Kommetjie

Location: 1 hour from Cape Town
46 Lighthouse Road, Kommetjie (Via M3, Ou Kaapse Weg)

This SanParks-operated campsite offers you amazing ocean views. Tucked away between the mountains, this little village is on the edge of the city. Step away for a moment from civilisation and soak in all the nature around you. It’s located on the Hoerikwaggo Trail, so you can use it as a quick overnight spot if you want to do a more extensive hike of the area.


The tents sleep two people each and bedding is included. There is a shared bathroom with hot water. The communal kitchen is self-catering, and the dining area has an open fireplace.


There are various hiking trails in the area. Stop for a picnic at one of the designated spots in the Table Mountain National Park. Great surfing available at the beaches close by. You can walk to the little town of Kommetjie to treat yourself to a restaurant outing. Visit the tallest lighthouse of the South African coast, called the Slangkop Point Lighthouse.


R586 – R686 (1 – 4 people) | R263 (per additional adult) | R132 (per additional child)

Pets are not allowed.


021 712 7471 | SanParks Bookings

#4 Silverstroom Resort, Melkbos

Location: less than an hour from Cape Town
Silwerstroom Road, off the West Coast Road (R27)

This is one of the city’s eco-labeled Blue Flag beaches. The area overflows with indigenous plants and the peaceful waters will beckon you to come dip your toe. But beware, it is on the cold side. It is located on the West Coast Culture Route.


Camping and caravan site and chalets also available. It has ablution with hot water. There are picnic and braai areas, as well as a conference room.


You have easy beach access from the campsite. There is also a tidal pool nearby. It’s safe for swimming and fishing is allowed. You can relax on the beach with a picnic or braai.


R375 to R450 (depending on season)

Pets are not allowed.


021 571 7080 | Silwerstroom Bookings

#5 !Khwa Ttu, Yzerfontein

Location: 1 hour from Cape Town
Grootwater Farm, Yzerfontein (via N7, R27)

This camping outing can be combined with an educational moment as well. Learn more about the interesting history plus culture of the San. Staying in the Bush Lodge can create an almost-glamping moment or keep things basic at the Bush Camp, but with the bonus of your tent already pitched for you.


The campsite is solar-powered. There are five freestanding tents at the Bush Camp, sleeping up to four people. Each tent has a little lounge area, as well as a covered outdoor deck. The bathroom and kitchen areas are shared. There’s also a communal boma area with a fireplace. You can request the following: extra beds, towels, utensils, and firewood


Stop at the farmhouse restaurant to treat yourself to an authentic African dish. Book a San guided tour if you are curious about these reclusive people. You can even learn to speak a bit of their language! Take home your own San-themed art piece from the little shop. The herbal-tea tastings are also a great treat. The area has beautiful hiking and cycling trails. Game drives can be organized. It’s the perfect base to explore the West Coast.


R325 per person (includes breakfast)

Pets are welcome.


022 492 2998 |

#6 Slanghoek Mountain Resort, Rawsonville

Location: 1.5 hours from Cape Town
Slanghoek Road (via N1, R101)

This campsite is well-maintained with a beautiful setting among the vineyards. The tents are situated next to a tranquil stream with beautiful green grass for kids to play on. It is a perfect spot for a family getaway.


Each campsite has private washing facilities with hot water showers. There are power points available and the electricity usage is included in the camping rates.


Every Saturday morning you can go horse riding, stables located near the campsite. There is a putt-putt course at the campsite and swimming pools. Go fishing near the campsite at the dam. A hiking trail starts at the putt-putt course and meanders up the hill to offer you spectacular views of the valley.


R600 – R720 per night (depending on season)

Maximum 2 vehicles per site | Maximum 1 caravan per site
Maximum 6 persons per site (excluding children 3 years and younger)

Pets are not allowed.


023 344 3138 |

#7 Wolfkop Camping Villages, Citrusdal

Location: 2 hours from Cape Town
Citrusdal (via N7)

A little cluster of camping spots is situated on the Olifants River banks. The campsite is tucked away between the mountains, with outstretched green lawns. Another site with permanent tents, saving you the effort, and making it feel more like glamping than just camping.


A Bedouin freeform marquee is set up at each little camping village. The canvas tents are equipped with their own mattresses, bedding and towels. The campsites have their own braai grids, utensils, as well as outdoor seating. Campsites are equipped with power points and electric lighting.  You can purchase firewood.


There are various hiking and mountain bike trails starting from the campsite. You can hire a canoe and explore the meandering rivers of the Citrusdal area. Fishing is allowed at the Biesievlak Campsite. The campsite has a strict policy against music and making too much noise, unless you book out the whole campsite.


R750 – R850 for 2 adults (depending on season) | R150 per additional adult
Maximum 6 people per campsite.

Pets are not allowed.


083 260 4822 |

#8 Tweede Tol, Limietberg Nature Reserve (near Paarl)

Location: 1.5 hours from Cape Town
Tweede Tol (via N1, R44, R301)

Always wondered what it would feel like to live in the mountains? Then this camping site is ideal for you. It is situated close to Bainskloof Pass in the Du Toitskloof Mountains, near the original 1851 tollgate. Surround yourself with forests, fynbos, and rugged wilderness.


There are no power points but the communal washing area has hot-water showers. Every campsite has its own braai grid, and you can purchase firewood at the gate.


Overnight campers can access the Wolwekloof swimming holes. The reserve has various hiking trails. There are shaded picnic area equipped with braai facilities and a jungle gym for kids. If you want a more private camping experience, there are six fenced-off campsites, each with their own bathroom and kitchen.


R160 – R360 for 2 people (depending on season) | R50 per additional person
R500 – R570 per private campsite (depending on season)

Up to 6 people allowed per campsite, with a minimum of 2 per site.

Pets are not allowed in CapeNature Reserves.

Please note: The cost of a permit (R40 for adults, R20 for children) for entering a CapeNature Reserve is not included in the accommodation rate.


021 871 1535 / 021 483 0190 | Limietberg Bookings

#9 Platbos Forest & Owl Camp, Gansbaai

Location: 2.5 hours from Cape Town
Gansbaai (via N2, R43)

How does a camping trip to an ancient forest sound to you? This is a privately-owned campsite. The owners are conservationists, focused on preserving the rich biodiversity of the area. To name but a few – bushbucks, baboons, thousand-year-old milkwood trees, and even some leopards. The entire camp site is off-the-grid, with solar-powered lighting and antique donkey boilers to heat the water. There are different accommodation options available including tented rooms and secluded log cabins.


The Forest Camp has two tented units with two single beds each. It has a fully-equipped kitchen with an outdoor fireplace. There is an open-air shower with warm water. And the toilet is waterless. The donkey boiler is supplied with firewood. You can also purchase firewood. No power points but it is solar-powered.

The Owl Camp offers camping spaces under the forest canopy. There are parking spaces available for canopy tents or camper vans. It has an open-air shower with warm water and the toilet is waterless. There is a fire pit with a braai grid. A communal freezer is available. The donkey boiler is supplied with firewood. You can also purchase firewood. No power points but it is solar-powered.


There are various forest trails to explore, as well as a labyrinth made from mother-of-pearl seashells. Browse the Platbos Forest Tree Nursery or visit the Grootbos Nature Reserve at Gansbaai. Another fun outing is the Klein River Cheese Farm. Perfect for exploring Hermanus and Stanford


Forest Camp: R1 050 per night (for up to 4 guests) | R90 per additional person
Owl Camp: R275 per night for 1 – 2 guests | R85 per additional adult

Maximum 6 guests


082 411 0448 | |

#10 Beaverlac, Olifants River

Location: 2 hours from Cape Town
Beaverlac, Porterville (via N7, R44, R365)

Another great mountain getaway, with a river thrown in for good measure. The campsite is situated in the the Groot Winterhoek Mountains, close to Porterville. It’s a quaint little back-to-basics campsite, experience the great outdoors in all its unfiltered glory.


The campsites are non-demarcated. There are communal ablution facilities with a few offering hot water. The campsite doesn’t have electricity, but you can access power point and a freezer a the little camp shop. It also sells ice, snacks, meat, wood, beer, wine, cold drinks, and ice cream. You must bring your own braai grid. There also nine self-catering cabins available, most of them have electricity. Contact campsite for rates and to book.


There are various hiking trails from the campsite, which are dog-friendly. Mountain bike trails also meander through the mountains. Keep your eyes open for the ancient rock art hidden in the area. Take a dip in one of the rockpools scattered along the Ratel River.


R30 per car | R65 per adult | R40 per child (aged 4 – 17 years)
Free for children under 5.

R50 per dog per night.


022 931 2945 |

Sunset Sea point Swimming Pool Cape Town Emma Van Der Vliet

Sunset Sea point Swimming Pool Cape Town Emma Van Der Vliet


I love swimming – I always have. When I was a child, we used to take the train from Grahamstown in the Eastern Cape all the way to Joburg to visit my grandmother. There I would run the gauntlet into her garden past the homicidal sausage dog, Curly Wee (yes, actually) but it was worth it, because if I could make it past him alive I would get to… The Pool. Flanked by vibracrete swans, adorned by lilos and reeking of chlorine, it was a suburban oasis. I loved that pool. I swam in it until my lips were blue and my fingers looked like mauve prunes. Most afternoons, my long-suffering, non-swimming mother had to drive me out of the water with dire threats as the daily thunderstorm brewed and lightning was imminent.

I still love swimming, though these days I’m a bit more discerning about where and how I do it. I’m not as quick to throw off my clothes and leap into any available body of water wearing nothing but two small stripes of lycra, and I prefer somewhere that I’ll be left in peace. Luckily, there are some magnificent places to swim in Cape Town, some more secret than others, which suit my needs perfectly. There are plenty of sea swims (and that’s a story for another day) but for now I want to stick to pools: here are some of the best Cape Town swimming pools open to the public.

I have to start with my all-time favourite, the Sea Point pool. Can there be a better poolside view than there is from this large, salt water swimming-hole, which seems to continue out endlessly into the Atlantic Ocean alongside it? There are four pools, including an Olympic sized main pool, a paddling pool for kids and a diving pool with a fearsomely high diving board which is open to the public during high season when there are lifeguards on duty.

For all this you’ll pay the modest sum of R25.30 a day for adults, R13.20 for children or nothing at all if you are a senior citizen or have a disability. Not surprisingly, the Sea Point swimming pool is one of the best-used facilities in Cape Town, frequented by a pleasingly diverse range of people. During weekdays it tends to be quieter, with older visitors swimming or sunning themselves convivially on the lawns, and on weekends it is teeming with children from all over greater Cape Town. High season runs from the 1stof October to the end of February, when the opening hours are extended to allow a full twelve hour day from 7 to 7. And because it is filled with (treated) sea water it is open despite the drought.

Sunset Sea point Swimming Pool Cape Town Emma Van Der Vliet Diving Board


The pool is set near the far end of the Sea Point Promenade, another wonderfully well-used bit of public open space and one of the few places in Cape Town where one can walk alone for a good solid hour or two, with spectacular views, in relative safety. People-watching makes for excellent sport here, but if you’re keen on more physical activity you can hire a bike, run, skateboard, play soccer or putt-putt, or even land your paraglider on the grass. Once again, the promenade is a worth a story all on its own. On Sunday evenings, on the outlook next to the pool, people gather informally for a spot of Latin dancing while the sun sets over the sea, or to watch others dance while enjoying some food from the street stalls.

But back to swimming… If it’s too chilly to brave the elements – or if a heated pool seems like a more relaxing prospect – the Long Street Baths is another of Cape Town’s open secrets.

Established well over a century ago in 1908, the Long Street baths is worth a visit just for the feeling of stepping into a different era. Yes, it could perhaps do with a spruce-up, but the genteel tattiness is part of its charm. As you come in through the original imported iron turnstile and into the light, old-fashioned lobby, it’s a little like walking onto a set from The Unbearable Lightness of Being or Hotel Budapest. A staircase leads up off the lobby to a spectator’s balcony where you can look down onto the pool and the murals of local scenes that flank it.

Long Street Baths Cape Town Swimming Pool Murals Emma Van Der Vliet Web


Even more like a film set are the changing booths next to the steam room to the left of the lobby, in which there are small slatted wooden beds on which one can apparently “take a break from the heat”. At least that’s what I was told. Unfortunately the steam rooms are still closed due to the drought.

You access the pool itself through the change rooms, which are at the back of the ground floor lobby as you walk in. These are basic, and apparently not always scrupulously clean but perfectly adequate. And the pool is magnificent – several lanes wide, 25 meters long and an inviting bright blue. The room is vast, with plenty of natural light and raked seating for spectators or resting swimmers. The facility belongs to the City of Cape Town and the entrance fees are the same as at Sea Point.

Both the Sea Point pool and the Long Street Baths have been around for a long time and are well-known and well-loved. It took a dip into Justin Fox and Alison Westwood’s wonderful book Secret Cape Town to lead me to a much more secret swim in the Mother City.

Although it’s open to the general public between 10am and 3pm daily, very few people seem to know about the heated indoor pool at the Wynberg military base. Swimlab swim school have their home-base here, but when it’s not being used by them, this well-maintained, 25-meter long pool is the perfect place to go to train or just to swim a few laps.

The Wynberg Aquatic Centre is inside the military camp on the corner of Scoble and Buren Roads. The camp is a very strange place, a secret suburb-within-a-suburb, where you feel like you’ve been transported back in time: it’s all a bit “Toto, we’re not in Wynberg anymore”. Pre-fab buildings give it an outback feel, and everything seems oddly still and quiet.

The pool is not easy to find. There are no signposts at the entrance, so you have to be in the know or ask the guards at the boom – and even they had to consult amongst themselves. They told me to take a left at the entrance, take the right fork in the road and pass the tennis courts. I missed it the first time: again, there was no signage and the gate was unattended and looked like it was locked. I went around the block, came back to the same spot and parked. When I tried the gate I found I could open it. I eventually found the lone attendant and had a wonderful, peaceful solo swim with the perfectly-heated pool all to myself for the princely sum of R10: highly recommended! It is a lonely place though, and you might prefer to take some company rather than going by yourself. That said, it’s a pool for training in, not for a picnic or a poolside chat, so find someone who’s as keen on an adventurous secret swim as you are.

Emma van der Vliet is the author of Past Imperfect and Thirty Second World, both published by Penguin SA.

Cape Town Car Rental Companies

Although the public transport system in Cape Town is of high quality, the freedom to move around on your own schedule, is very appealing. To truly experience Cape Town, you must drive to the outskirts to enjoy the vast difference between areas.

From the outstretched beaches of the Atlantic coast, to the forest-like feel of the Southern Suburbs, to the rocky mountains near Muizenberg. Each little hub of Cape Town has its own unique vibe. And cruising around in your own rental car, will offer you a much more holistic picture of the city.

We’ve found the best car hire Cape Town has to offer. Some names are well-known across the country, and world. Others are local companies, passionate about offering you a reliable way of exploring the Mother City.

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