Cape Town is full of great family-friendly activities. Whether your kids are outdoor fans, or prefer indoor fun – you will be able to keep them occupied for hours. Also read our post Top 10 Things to Do with your Family in Cape Town for more ideas.
#1 Have fun at Scratch Patch
Did you know that almost half of the world’s gemstones can be found in South Africa? Or that you could scratch for these gems yourself right here in Cape Town? Located at the V&A Waterfront (with a second location in Simonstown), the Scratch Patch and Mineral World is an exciting, and unique way to dig for your own beautiful gems. At the Scratch Patch you get to immerse yourself in all the gems and stones that quite literally cover the floor, then visit the gem exhibitions and shops afterwards. Scratching for gems at the Scratch Patch is tons of fun for the whole family, making it one of the best family-friendly things to do in Cape Town.
- Location: V&A Waterfront, Dock Road (near the Aquarium), Cape Town
- Opening hours: Monday – Sunday, 9am – 4:30pm
- Contact details: 021 786 2020 | www.scratchpatch.co.za/scratch-patch/
- Price: You can purchase one of three sizes of plastic bag or a cup to fill with your favourite gemstones:
- Small bag: R25 (contains approximately 140 grams)
- Medium bag: R42 (contains approximately 300 grams)
- Large bag: R130 (contains approximately 1200 grams)
- Cup: R85 (contains approximately 630 grams)
#2 Play a game of Cave Golf
Have some fun and enjoy an exciting game of putt-putt with the whole family. The V&A Waterfront has put their own unique spin on this classic family activity by having it in a cave-like setting – hence the name Cave Golf. This unique putt-putt course is located right next door to the famous Scratch Patch at the vibrant V&A Waterfront.
- Location: V&A Waterfront, Dock Road (near the Aquarium), Cape Town
- Opening hours: Monday – Sunday, 9am – 4:30pm
- Contact details: 021 786 2020 | https://www.scratchpatch.co.za/cave-golf/
- Price per game: Refundable deposit: R20 per player | Round of golf: R30 per player | Groups of 10: R25 per player
#3 Go Artjamming
It’s time to have some paintertainment fun! Whether it’s playing, painting, sponging, or spraying, Artjamming gives you the opportunity to unleash your creativity on a blank canvas and create whatever artistic masterpiece your heart desires. Artjammers are provided with a range of various size canvases, easels, a choice of non-toxic acrylic paints on tap, brushes, and tools to freely express themselves.
No drawing or painting skills are required, but for those who would like a helping hand or some inspiration, there are qualified artists at the studios to assist. They cater to ALL AGES, from 0 -100 years old. Artjamming is undoubtedly one of the top things to do in Cape Town with kids.
***COVID-19 update: All studios comply with social distancing requirements and very stringent hygiene protocols are in place. For this reason they suggest you book a session in advance as they limit the number of people in their studio at all times.
- Location: V&A Waterfront (Above Toy Kingdom) | They also have locations in Willowbridge Shopping Centre and Somerset West
- Operating hours: Monday – Sunday, 9am – 5pm
- Contact details: 021-4255050 | [email protected]
#4 Putt-Putt with a Unique Spin
Putt-putt has been around for decades, and maybe your kids think that it’s not cool enough anymore. Well, surprise them with an outing to glow in the dark putt-putt! The luminous 3D course features 3D murals, plus UV and disco lights. The unique experience includes playing with special imported 3D glasses. You can also book out the event room for private functions. The beauty of putt-putt is that everyone can enjoy it. The owners boast with their wide range of players – the youngest was one-and-a-half, and the oldest 84!
- Location: Milnerton
- Opening hours: Mondays closed | Tuesdays to Thursdays only open for bookings | Fridays – 13:00 to 20:00 | Saturdays – 10:00 to 20:00 | Sundays – 10:00 to 16:00
- Visit www.glowingrooms.co.za
#5 Connect with the Outdoors
It’s always a nice adventure to go on a small road trip with your family. Situated on a Stellenbosch wine estate, the Vredenheim Animal Farm is a great outdoor experience. Activities include a petting zoo with farm animals, tractor rides, and thrilling interactions with lions in the Big Cats Park. There are also expansive play areas with jungle gyms and sandpits.
- Location: Vredenheim Farm, Baden Powell Drive | Stellenbosch
- Opening hours: Saturdays and Sundays 10:00 to 16:00 | Check Facebook page for school holiday opening times
- Lion Park: Monday to Sunday – 09:00 to 17:00 | Game drives: 10:00, 13:00 and 15:00
- Visit www.vredenheimanimalfarm.co.za (Animal Farm) or www.vredenheim.co.za (Lion Park)
#6 Go to the Two Ocean’s Aquarium
If you’re looking for something exciting to do with the whole family, going to the popular Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront should be high up on your list. Home to several (if not all) of the Western Cape’s magnificent marine life species, incredible exhibits, and a variety of amazing experiences, visiting the Two Ocean’s Aquarium promises to be tons of fun for both the young and young at heart (trust us, you’ll instantly feel like a kid again from the moment you arrive).
Some of the Two Ocean’s Aquarium exhibits you can look forward to include: The Penguin Exhibit; Kelp Forest Exhibit; I&J Ocean Exhibit; Save Our Seas Foundation Shark Exhibit (experience up-close encounters with some of the most misunderstood species in South Africa’s oceans, such as ragged-tooth sharks, giant yellowtail, and yellowbelly rockcod); The Diversity Gallery (the Diversity Gallery aims to showcase the incredible diversity of marine life found in the Indian and Atlantic Oceans); The Touch Pool & Microscope Exhibits (this remarkable exhibit gives you the opportunity to look through a microscope and see marine life species like you never have before. Thereafter you can head to the Touch Pool and feel shells, plants, and animals in your own hands).
An outing to the Two Ocean Aquarium is a firm favourite of many holiday plans. But you can now schedule an even more up close and personal experience with the Ocean Experience in the I&J Ocean Exhibit of the Aquarium. No diving experience needed, you can snorkel with your kids to explore the wonderful underwater world. Just bring your bathing suit (and an underwater camera if you have one) the aquarium will provide you with a towel, wetsuit and a snorkelling kit.
- Location: Two Oceans Aquarium, Dock Road, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
- Contact details: [email protected] | 021 418 3823
- Website: www.aquarium.co.za
- Operating hours: Monday to Friday, 9:30am – 6pm | Saturdays, Sundays, and Public Holidays, 9am – 6pm
- Click here to buy your Two Ocean’s Aquarium tickets online
- Click here for more information
#7 Watch African Penguins
Escape the hustle and hype of the city and visit the thriving African Penguin colony at Boulders Beach. Seeing these cool and charismatic Cape Town ocean locals in their natural habitat is one unforgettable experience that should not only be on everyone’s Cape Town bucket-list, but will be thoroughly enjoyed by every member of the family.
Boulder’s Beach is officially Africa’s only penguin colony. The area has been transformed into a space to safely view the penguins in their natural habitat, without disturbing them, with walkways overlooking the beach. Throughout the day penguins come and go from this sanctuary spot, but the best times to see a lot of them are early mornings or late afternoons.
Besides seeing the African Penguins from the African Penguin Viewing Site (which is worth every second), you can enjoy a variety of once-in-a-lifetime experiences and adventures with them by your side. Swim, snorkel, kayak, or enjoy a laid-back beach day with these beloved members of the Marine Big 5 – The choice is yours!
**Note: Visitors will need to pay an entrance fee (which forms part of a conservation project) to gain access to the Penguin Viewing Site and Boulders Beach. Your ticket is valid for the entire day. You can choose to exit and re-enter as it suits you (this only applies to the day your ticket was purchased).
Conservation Fees for 1 November 2020 to 31 October 2021
- South African Citizens and Residents (with ID): R40 per adult per day | R20 per child, per day
- SADC Nationals (with passport): R85 per adult per day | R42 per child, per day
- Standard Conservation Fee (Foreign Visitors): R170 per adult per day | R85 per child, per day
- Location: Boulders Beach, Kleintuin Road, Simon’s Town, Cape Town
- Operating hours: Monday – Sunday, 7am – 5pm
- Contact details: 021 786 2329 (Boulders Visitor Centre)
- Click here for more information
#8 Be a Pirate for a Day
Did you know that there’s a real life pirate ship that sets sail every day from the V&A Waterfront? The Jolly Roger caters to both adults and kids. The ship is commandeered by a team of “pirates”, so for a moment your kids can immerge themselves in a great fantasy world. There’s also a special pirate show. Remember to keep an eye out for dolphins or whales!
- Location: V&A Waterfront
- Opening hours: September to end April 10:00 – 12:00 | 12:30 – 14:30 | 15:00 – 17:00 | May to end August 10:00 – 12:00 | 13:00 – 15:00
- Find out more about their kiddies parties
#9 Visit the Noordhoek Farm Village
The warm and welcoming vibe and easy, relaxed, everyone-is-welcome atmosphere of the Noordhoek Farm Village makes it the perfect place to enjoy a fun day out with the whole family. Located a mere 25 minutes from Cape Town’s city centre, the Noordhoek Farm Village is all about bringing people together to enjoy great food, and great company in a beautiful setting.
The Noordhoek Farm Village is made up of the Foodbarn (one of the only fine-dining restaurants in town that welcomes kids), Café Roux, the Toad in the Village restaurant, two pubs, the Cape’s best bakery, hand crafted ice cream, a boutique hotel, weekly live music, a wide range of shops, a fantastic children’s playground, and large open spaces for the kids to run around and have tons of fun. What more could you ask for? The Noordhoek Farm Village also regularly hosts a range of fun kids’ activities such as puppet and magic show, arts and crafts, and face painting.
- Location: Corner of Village Lane & Noordhoek Main Road, Noordhoek, Cape Town
- Operating hours: Monday – Sunday, 8am – 10pm
- Contact details: 021 789 1390 | Visit their website
#10 A Ride like No Other
Have you seen the movie Cool Runnings? Well, if you head over to its local namesake, you can recreate your own movie moment with your kids. It’s the first tobogganing track in South Africa. The 1.2km track winds its way down the mountain, offering you the opportunity to set the speed pace. This unique thrill can be experienced by kids aged 8 and older, as well as adults. The sleds can take two people at a time, so you can accompany your child for a unique shared experience.
- Location: Opposite the Bellville Velodrome| Carl Cronje Drive | Bellville
- Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday 12:00 – 18:00 | Weekends 09:00 – 18:00 | Closed on Mondays, except school holidays
- Visit coolrunnings.capetown
#11 Have a picnic at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
There is nothing quite like enjoying a fun-filled family picnic in one of Cape Town’s most beautiful natural wonders, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens. Pack your picnic basket full of all your favourite treats and delicious snacks, a picnic blanket, fun games to keep the kids entertained and enjoy a lovely day on the lush lawns of Kirstenbosch.
Besides a wonderful picnic paired with a stunning view of Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch Gardens offers so much more to do, see, and experience. Giving you the opportunity to add some extra adventure and excitement to your day out exploring Cape Town.
Top things to do at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens:
- Walk along Kirstenbosch Garden’s famous Centenary Treetop Canopy Walk (also known as the ‘Boomslang’).
- Meander through the varioustrails, paths, and routes through the garden.
- Explore Kirstenbosch Garden’s rich biodiversity & fauna & flora.
- Visit Kirstenbosch’s many beautiful Gardens. Some of which include the Botanical Society Conservatory, art at the Sculpture Garden, the Protea Garden, and the Cycad Amphitheatre which features life-size models of dinosaurs – this is a real winner with the kids!
- Use Kirstenbosch as a starting point for a hike up Table Mountain – there is access to Skeleton Gorge and Nursery Ravine.
- Keep a lookout for the vast number of birds, including breeding owls, guinea fowl, and sugarbirds.
- Enjoy a meal at one of the various restaurants and cafés, including Moyo Restaurant Kirstenbosch and the Kirstenbosch Tea Room.
- Take a FREE Guided Tour with a Kirstenbosch volunteer to learn incredible facts about South Africa’s famous flora.
- Discover several of Kirstenbosch Garden’s hidden gems – An Easter egg hunt with a Cape Town twist. From secret caves and glorious waterfalls, to gurgling streams and hidden trails, there are so many secret spots to discover and explore.
- Pick up great souvenirs and Kirstenbosch memorabilia at the on-site stores.
- Location: Rhodes Drive, Newlands, Cape Town
- Entrance fees: South African Citizens: Adults: R80 | South African Students (with student card): R45 | Child/Scholars/Learners: R25 | Children under 6 years: Free | Pensioner: Free entry on Tuesdays | Non- South African citizens: Adults: R200
- Operating times: Summer (September – March): Monday – Sunday, 8am – 7pm | Winter (April – August): Monday – Sunday, 8am – 6pm
- Contact details: Ticket Office: 021 799 8782 / 021 799 8602 | Information Office: 021 799 8783 / 021 799 8773 | Email: [email protected]
- Website: www.sanbi.org
- Tickets: Buy garden entry tickets online at WebTickets
- Click here for more information regarding all the COVID-19 measures at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens.
#12 Visit Oudekraal Beach & have a braai
Tucked away in a sheltered cove between Camps Bay and Llandudno, Oudekraal is not only one of the top beaches in Cape Town, but one of the best braai spots too. It has approximately 40 private braai spots scattered along the lawns above the sheltered cove and sandy beach below.
Oudekraal is also one of the top beaches for enjoying a fun-filled family beach day. The beach is surrounded by large granite boulders that keep big waves at bay, making it the ideal place to swim, especially for the little ones. The water is also calm enough for snorkelling near the shore – adding extra adventure and thrill to a fun family braai and beach day.
**Tip: Because of its popularity and stunning beach location, the braai spots at Oudekraal can get snatched up pretty quickly. It is important to arrive early to secure a top spot.
- Location: Oudekraal, Victoria Road, between Llandudno and Camps Bay
- Conservation Fees for 1 November 2020 to 31 October 2021: South African Citizens and Residents (with ID): R35 per adult per day / R15 per child, per day | SADC Nationals (with passport): R70 per adult per day / R35 per child, per day | Standard Conservation Fee (Foreign Visitors): R140 per adult per day / R70 per child, per day
#13 A Day on a Farm
The Oude Molen Eco Village is tucked away on the edge of the city, offering city dwellers a moment of rural delight. There are various companies housed in the enclosed area, with a few offering kid-friendly activities. The Eco Theatre introduces the kids to the wonder of honeybees, earthworms, and many other natural delights. It’s a great hands-on experience. Food Garden Village is a community orientated vegetable garden project to participate in. The Oude Molen Stables offers pony and wagon rides, as well as riding lessons. Pop in at the Play Shed for a refreshing cuppa while the kids enjoy the indoor and outdoor play areas. Or go to Oom Daan se Plaas for a picnic/braai and a swim. And Yes We Can offers both sport and cultural activities.
- Location: Alexandra Road | Oude Molen Eco Village
- Opening hours: dependant on tenant
- Visit www.oudemolenecovillage.co.za
#14 Birds Galore
The World of Birds is the largest African bird park with more than 3 000 birds and small animals. View 400 bird species with 100 walk-through aviaries. There is also a picnic area with a playground, next to the flamingos. A fun must-do activity: playing with the monkeys.
- Location: Valley Road | Hout Bay
- Opening hours: All Year Round – 09:00 to 17:00
- Visit www.worldofbirds.org.za
#15 Spend the day at the Company’s Gardens
The Company’s Gardens is a nature lovers paradise right in the heart of Cape Town’s CBD. It is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city for a while and enjoy a memorable and fun-filled day with family and friends. Boasting tons of wide-open spaces (perfect for kids to run around in), plenty of trees, stunning flora, several shady spots for picnics, benches, and various scenic pathways meandering through the gardens, there is so much to experience and explore.
The Company’s Gardens is also home to a rose garden, a bird aviary, water features, a restaurant, and plenty of squirrels running about. Seeing and feeding the squirrels is undoubtedly a fan-favourite activity among the kids! A pro tip is to buy a bag of peanuts for the squirrels from the vendors at the entrance.
**Extra tip: Besides being one of the best gardens in Cape Town for a fantastic day spent with family and friends, the Company’s Gardens is home to some of South Africa’s most important landmarks, including the Houses of Parliament, Iziko South African Museum and Planetarium, St George’s Cathedral, and the National Library of South Africa, to name a few.
- Location: 15 Queen Victoria St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town
- Operating Hours: Monday – Sunday, 8:30am – 6pm | Restaurant kitchen closes at 5pm.
- Contact details: 021 423 2919 | [email protected]
- Website: www.thecompanysgarden.com/
- Cost: Free
#16 Go to Acrobranch Adventure Park
Are you looking to add a bit of adventure and excitement to your fun-filled family day out in Cape Town? Then a visit to Acrobranch Adventure Park should be right at the top of your list! Acrobranch is the ultimate treetop experience dedicated to offering children and adults alike a unique, memorable and bucket-list worthy adventure unlike any other. This tree-top obstacle adventure park provides visitors with an action-packed day of tree-top exploring and adventuring as they move from tree to tree in lush, green forests.
Acrobranch boasts different obstacle courses in each of their parks, with some of them being exclusively for kids (marked Acrobranch Kids) and others for reasonably fit adults and teenagers. Some of their thrilling obstacles consist of tree top high ropes and tricky crossings (with ladders, tunnels, walkways, and bridges). They also offer exhilarating zip lines to top it off.
To find out more about Acrobranch, their exciting range of activities, thrilling experiences, obstacle courses, and various safety regulations and measures, visit the Acrobranch website.
- Locations: Acrobranch Cape Town: 1 Hout Bay Road, Hout Bay, Cape Town | Acrobranch Stellenbosch: Klein Joostenberg, R304, Muldersvlei, Stellenbosch
- Contact details: 086 999 0369 | 021 201 1121
#17 Enjoy a screening at the Galileo Open Air Cinema
Known as the first and finest outdoor movie experience in Cape Town, attending a screening at the Galileo Open Air Cinema is without a doubt one of the top things to do in Cape Town with kids. There is nothing better than watching one of your all-time favourite classics or fabulous family-friendly movies under the Mother City moonlight and a canopy of stars.
To make things extra special, the Galileo has taken their local fan-favourite outdoor movie experience to the next level by completely reinventing and reimagining their cinematic offering to bring the ultimate level of entertainment to the Mother City. Alongside their wildly popular Galileo Picnic, the Galileo has put together two more incredible cinematic experiences namely, The Galileo Drive-In and the Galileo Royale. Each one offering visitors an entirely unique and unforgettable experience all together.
- Contact: 071 471 8728 | [email protected]
- Facebook: @GalileoCinema
- Twitter: @Galileo_Cinema
- Instagram: @thegalileo
#18 Go Sandboarding
Going sandboarding is one of the most sought-after adventure experiences for thrill seekers and adventure enthusiasts of all ages – Making it one of the most exciting things to do in Cape Town with kids. Downhill Adventures offers a unique sandboarding experience right in the heart of the Cape West Coast sandboarding mecca of Atlantis Dunes. Located approximately 40-minutes from the city center, the Atlantis Sand Dunes is the ideal playground for kids who enjoy the outdoors. It is also one of only a handful of sandboarding locations in the world, undoubtedly making it a bucket-list worthy adventure.
The ever-shifting dunes of Atlantis range in size of up to 35 meters and provides the perfect sandboarding destination for people of all ages and experience levels. While it may seem a little daunting at first, there is absolutely NO reason to worry. All you need to tick this thrilling experience off your adventure bucket-list is a reasonable level of fitness, an adventurous spirit, an open-mind, some sunscreen, the ability to laugh at yourself and have fun, and a few basic instructions from the experts and you’re good to go. Even if you’ve never sand boarded a day in your life, the experienced guides will be right there by your side to help you out along the way. The team will familiarize you with the basic tricks of sandboarding, and then you can challenge the kids in a downhill marathon!
- Visit www.downhilladventures.com
- Location: Klein Dassenberg Road, Atlantis, Cape Town
#19 Visit the Clay Café
Get the whole family together for a fun-filled day at the Clay Café in Hout Bay. Situated in the heart of the valley of Hout Bay, the Clay Café gives you the opportunity to unleash your inner artist, get creative and spend the day painting and creating your own ceramic masterpiece. By choosing from an array of unfired bisque (already made pottery pieces) and a wide selection of colourful paints and tools, you get to craft your own piece of unique crockery that you can take home with you. Another perk of visiting the Clay Café is that there is no age limit! This means both the young and young at heart are invited to join in on all the Clay Café creativity fun.
The Clay Café also boasts a beautiful large open patio with stunning outside tables overlooking a luscious garden, a veggie garden, their own African chic boutique, and a restaurant serving delicious meals throughout the day.
- Location: Clay Cafe, 4080 Main Road, Hout Bay, Cape Town | Opposite Bokkemanskloof Estate
- Contact details: 076 810 5120 | 062 455 6578 | [email protected] | www.claycafe.co.za
- Facebook: @ClayCafeHoutBay
- Instagram: @theclaycafe_houtbay
In addition to its wildly popular Hout Bay location, the Clay Café has opened another branch in the trendy inner-city neighbourhood of Gardens – Clay Café In The City.
- Location: 23 Wandel Street, Gardens, Cape Town
- Contact details / Bookings: Bookings can be made via email: [email protected] | Or via WhatsApp: (061) 917 419
- Instagram: @claycafe_inthecity
#20 Go on a Table Mountain Aerial Cableway ride
Going on an exciting Aerial Cableway ride up one of the New7Wonders of Nature is by far one of the best family-friendly things to do in Cape Town. There are few things as magnificent as the view from the top of Table Mountain and getting to experience it with your loved ones by your side just makes it extra special.
Whether you’re young or young at heart, going on an Aerial Cableway Ride up Table Mountain is an adventure experience that will be thoroughly enjoyed by all! Plus, you get to tick something truly incredible off your Cape Town bucket-list!
Pack a picnic basket to be enjoyed at the top while admiring the sky-high 360-degree view of the Mother City and beyond, or get something delicious to eat and drink from the Table Mountain Café, Terrace Bar or Wi-Fi Lounge located on the Table Mountain summit.
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