Top attractions in Cape Town to visit that are open to the public

If you’re a keen traveller, avid adventurer, or someone that’s been itching to get out and experience everything Cape Town has to offer – its finally time to explore some of the Western Cape’s most magnificent natural wonders and top attractions once again! With the easing of South Africa’s COVID-19 Lockdown regulations to Alert Level 1, the travel and tourism industry has been adjusting to the ‘new normal’ with many of Cape Town’s most sought-after attractions re-opening, eager to welcome back visitors – and we couldn’t be more thrilled!

Here are some of Cape Town’s top must-see attractions that have re-opened (with various stringent COVID-19 protocols and safety measures in place), all of which deserve a prime spot on your Cape Town bucket-list.

**Important note: While the easing of the Lockdown regulations gives us the opportunity to explore some of Cape Town’s most beautiful landmarks, attractions and sought-after sites more freely, it is incredibly important for us ALL to continue to adhere to the COVID-19 regulations and protocols as outlined by the government. This includes the wearing of face masks, regularly sanitizing your hands, as well as adhering to social distancing guidelines of at least 1.5m.

It is important to pay careful attention to each individual attraction’s outlined COVID-19 protocols and safety measures before visiting them. This way you can ensure you are well prepared and know exactly what to expect when you arrive.

**Disclaimer: This article was last updated on 29/09/2020 and is thus subject to change as per COVID-19 Lockdown regulations and protocols.

#CAPE POINT

Cape Point is one of Cape Town’s most magnificent natural wonders and sought-after attractions. Located approximately 60km south west of the city of Cape Town, at the very tip of the Cape Peninsula, Cape Point is the ultimate mecca for nature lovers and adventure seekers. Boasting endless stretches of scenic landscapes, unapologetic natural beauty, a glorious diversity of fauna and flora, picturesque secret beaches, thrilling hiking trails and adventure experiences, Cape Point pretty much has it all!

**Note: Due to the easing of National Lockdown regulations, visitors to Cape Point are now able to enjoy the following activities and experiences: Surfing, hiking, cycling, fishing, the Cape Point Flying Dutchman Funicular and some food shops and curio stores.

Have a look at our Cape Point blog for everything you need to know regarding Cape Point, permitted activities and adventure experiences, and various COVID-19 regulations and safety measures. If you’re keen to go on the ultimate Cape Point hiking adventure, be sure to check out our ‘Best Cape Point Hiking Trails’ blog for the most exciting and bucket-list worthy hiking trails.

#BOULDERS BEACH

Top attractions in Cape Town to visit that are open to the public

There is no denying that Boulders Beach and its beloved colony of African Penguins is one of Cape Town’s most sought-after attractions for locals and travellers alike. Boulders Beach is home to an amazing African Penguin Viewing Site that gives you the incredible opportunity to get an up-close perspective of these beautiful ocean beings in their natural habitat. In fact, it is one of the only places in the world where you can get up close and personal with the charismatic African Penguins, making it a bucket-list worthy experience in every way! Boulders Beach also boasts a beautiful swimming beach where you can spend the day on the beach with these cool Cape Town ocean locals. By paying a conservation fee you will gain access to both the Penguin Viewing site and Boulders Beach itself. 

**Note: In a recent statement released by SANParks it was announced that Boulders Beach would re-open to the public on the 24th of September 2020 with stringent COVID-19 regulations and safety measures in place.

Have a look at our Boulders Beach blog for more information on the re-opening of Boulders Beach, its COVID-19 protocols and safety measures, opening and closing times and conservation and entry fees. You can also check out our ultimate guide to Boulders Beach for everything you need to know about Boulders Beach and its charismatic colony of African Penguins. For all the latest updates and need to know information, visit the official SANParks website.

#ROBBEN ISLAND MUSEUM

Another one of Cape Town’s top attractions and historical landmarks is the iconic Robben Island Museum. If you’re looking to immerse yourself in an integral piece of South Africa’s history and journey to democracy, a trip to the renowned Robben Island and Robben Island Museum is highly recommended. While Robben Island has quite the chequered past, it is most famous for being a political prison during South Africa’s apartheid regime. Due to the 18-year incarceration of Mr. Nelson Mandela (late South African President and iconic world leader), Robben Island now houses one of the most recognisable prisons in the world today.

All Robben Island tours are led and guided by previous political prisoners. Visitors can expect a real and raw perspective and understanding of both the prison’s history and the personal plight of the prisoners themselves during their time spent there.

**Note: The Robben Island Museum announced the re-opening of their tours on the 14th of September 2020. To ensure that COVID-19 Lockdown regulations are upheld as well as to safeguard the health and safety of all visitors and staff, the Robben Island Museum will only operate two tours on a weekly basis – Mondays and Saturdays at 11:00. This is however subject to change based on demand and the easing of Lockdown regulations.

Have a look at our ‘Robben Island Museum re-opens for tours’ blog for everything you need to know regarding their re-opening as well as the various COVID-19 regulations and safety measures.

#LION’S HEAD

The roaring lion of the Mother City skyline is undoubtedly one of the top attractions in Cape Town to visit. Standing tall at 669 meters above sea level, showcasing a beautiful panoramic view of the Mother City, Atlantic Ocean, Table Mountain and beyond, Lion’s Head has established itself as one of the most popular Cape Town hiking trails for both hiking first-timers and avid hikers from around the world.

As Lion’s Head forms part of the renowned Table Mountain National Park, it boasts a rich biodiversity and diverse fauna and flora display – Making it the ultimate nature lover’s paradise. Besides being one of the most sought-after hiking trails in the Mother City, Lion’s Head forms a vital part of Cape Town’s topography and is also regarded as one of the most magical sunrise and sunset spots in the city.

**Note: Local hiking enthusiasts were absolutely thrilled when Lion’s Head officially re-opened to the public following the COVID-19 Lockdown. Have a look at our Lion’s Head blog for everything you need to know before taking on this sought-after hiking trail.

#TABLE MOUNTAIN AERIAL CABLEWAY

Standing tall at a staggering 1,086 meters above sea level, Table Mountain is one of the New7Wonders of Nature as well as one of the top landmarks and attractions to visit in Cape Town. If you’re a keen hiker and avid adventurer, hiking up Table Mountain via any of its thrilling trails is right up your alley. However, if hiking is not quite your cup of tea, going on an exciting Aerial Cable Way ride up Table Mountain is a bucket-list worthy experience in every way. Plus, it is one of the most fun and exciting things to do in Cape Town with the whole family.

**Note: While the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway was closed for several months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) re-opened to local and domestic travellers on the 1st of September 2020 with various protocols and COVID-19 regulations in place.

Have a look at our Table Mountain Aerial Cableway blog for everything you need to know regarding the re-opening of the Aerial Cableway, its COVID-19 regulations and protocols, capacity limitations, operating hours, tickets and everything in between. For additional information or updates, be sure to visit the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway website.

#CITY SIGHTSEEING RED BUS TOUR

Its time to explore the beautiful and vibrant city of Cape Town in one of the most exciting ways – by going on a famous City Sightseeing Red Bus Tour of course! The iconic City Sightseeing open-top Red Bus is not only one of the most sought-after Cape Town experiences, but a real icon of the tourism landscape. The Red Bus Tour is the ultimate hop-on-hop-off experience, boasting more than 30 stops and taking you to over 50 of Cape Town’s top attractions, landmarks, hidden gems, and sought-after sites. Not to mention its tons of fun for the whole family!

**Note: While Cape Town’s renowned Red Bus has been closed for business since the start of the nationwide COVID-19 Lockdown, it is finally back in action!

**Tip: There are a variety of Cape Town Red Bus City Sightseeing tours to choose from, visit their website to find out more. Have a look at our City Sightseeing Red Bus Tour blog for all the need to know information regarding the Red Bus Tour and its various safety measures and COVID-19 regulations.

#KIRSTENBOSCH BOTANICAL GARDENS

If you’re a head-over-heels nature lover, a visit to the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens should definitely be at the top of your Cape Town bucket-list. Located right at the base of Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch is one of the most beautiful displays of indigenous natural beauty you’ll find in the city. Kirstenbosch also forms part of the Cape Floristic Region, known as the Cape Floral Kingdom, which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here you’ll find a glorious variety of fauna and flora entirely indigenous to Cape Town.

Boasting over 125 species of birds, a variety of walking trials, hiking routes, waterfalls, the Botanical Society Conservatory, art at the Sculpture Garden, the Protea Garden, restaurants, lush lawns, and a variety of hidden gems, Kirstenbosch truly has it all!

**Note: The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens officially re-opened to the public on the 3rd of August 2020. While the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens initially re-opened solely for outdoor exercise, it has since been announced that picnics are permitted due to the easing of National Lockdown regulations. Have a look at our Kirstenbosch Gardens blog for all the need-to-know information before visiting this Cape Town natural gem.

#TWO OCEANS AQUARIUM

Photo credit: Two Oceans Aquarium

The beloved Two Oceans Aquarium is another one of Cape Town’s top attractions for the young and young at heart. The renowned Two Oceans Aquarium, located at the V&A Waterfront, boasts some of the most magnificent marine life sightings and thrilling ocean experiences in the Mother City.

**Note: The Two Oceans Aquarium finally re-opened its doors to the public on the 1st of September 2020 – leaving marine life lovers (as well as everyone else) jumping for joy! Check out our Two Oceans Aquarium blog for everything you need to know before visiting this top Cape Town attraction.

#V&A WATERFRONT

Known as the ultimate hub of art, culture, history, adventure, food, shopping, and everything in between, the vibrant V&A Waterfront is undoubtedly one of Cape Town’s top attractions to visit. On top of being the leading retail hotspot in the city, the Waterfront has established itself as a highly sought-after culinary destination, boasting a variety of world-renowned restaurants, trendy bars, cool hangout spots, amazing eateries, and food markets. The V&A Waterfront fun doesn’t end there – this Cape Town attraction offers visitors an endless variety of things to do, see and experience, with something for every member of the family to enjoy.

**Note: The V&A Waterfront is the first attraction in South Africa to adopt the World Travel and Tourism Council’s (WTTC) Safe Travels stamp. This is the world’s first ever global safety and hygiene stamp for Travel & Tourism, designed specifically to address COVID-19 and similar outbreaks.

With the easing of South Africa’s Lockdown regulations, various retailers, attractions, and restaurants at the V&A Waterfront have re-opened with the appropriate COVID-19 regulations and protocols in place. For more information regarding the V&A Waterfront, a list of stores, restaurants, adventure experiences and tours that have resumed operation, trading hours and COVID-19 health and safety regulations, visit their website.

#WEST COAST NATIONAL PARK

Located along the picturesque Cape West Coast, the West Coast National Park is a must-visit destination if you’re planning on taking a trip up the west coast of Cape Town. Known as one of the best places to see the magnificent Cape wildflowers come to life during the Mother City’s spring flower season, the West Coast National Park is any nature lover’s dream come true. Besides a stunning display of wildflowers, the West Coast National Park boasts a rich biodiversity, variety of wildlife and birdlife as well as several stunning secret beaches, including the famous ‘Preekstoel’, that are absolutely worth a visit.

**Note: The West Coast National Park is open to visitors during Lockdown with the appropriate COVID-19 regulations and safety measures in place.

#CHAPMAN’S PEAK DRIVE

Named one of the most magnificent coastal drives in the world, taking a drive along Chapman’s Peak Drive should be on everyone’s Cape Town Bucket-list. Affectionately referred to as ‘Chappies’ by Cape Town locals, this captivating coastal road ribbons along the Atlantic coastline between Hout Bay and Noordhoek. Besides showcasing some of the most sensational views over the Atlantic Ocean and Hout Bay, you’ll pass rugged mountains, picturesque white-sand beaches, and vibrant fishing harbours on your way.

Chapman’s Peak Drive is also known for its amazing hidden gems scattered along the route. Two of its hidden gems include the waterfall walk and the secret Look-out Cave. Check out our ‘Top Mountain Passes in Cape Town’ blog for everything you need to know about Chapman’s Peak Drive, including how to reach these two hidden gems and secret spots – trust us, you don’t want to miss it!