6 good reasons to discover Cape Town and the surrounding area

We just can’t say it often enough: we love Cape Town, and we love South Africa! Hardly any other country we know has been blessed with such unique nature, has so much art and culture to offer, serves quite such outstanding cuisine, or is home to such a vast array of different wildlife. So in today’s blog, we’ll be revealing just why Cape Town and the surrounding region are so worth a visit!

Kapstadt Austrian Airlines

#1 Cape Town

Cape Town is a good place to spend a lot of time. If you feel like it, you can even spend a lot of time. There is so much to see, to visit, to admire. Take the cable car up Table Mountain and enjoy the great view of the city, the coast and far out to sea. Stroll through the hip Woodstock district, admire the pastel houses in Bo-Kaap and don't miss Kloof Street with its many restaurants, cafes and shops.

Be sure to visit the Zeitz Museum for Contemporary Art Africa, which is an incredibly spectacular building on the one hand and one of the most remarkable collections of contemporary African art on the other (more on this later). Immerse yourself in South Africa's tastes at the Food Market at the V&A Waterfront. Spend a romantic day at one of the many wineries on the outskirts of the city. A trip to the Cape of Good Hope is also a must, and on the way you should visit the many cute little penguins at Boulders Beach near Simon's Town. A short trip to Robben Island, the former prison island, is also worthwhile. It doesn't get boring.

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Kruger Nationalpark.jpg

#2 The Big Five

Africa’s biggest, most imposing wild animals are also known as the ‘Big Five’. They include the elephant, the rhinoceros, the buffalo, the lion and the leopard. Especially popular, therefore, are safaris and game drives in South Africa’s Kruger National Park, where the Big Five and numerous other species can be observed. Take the time to discover the national park. Let your soul unwind in the beautiful lodges, and watch as the giraffes eat their dinner in front of your eyes.

#3 Paarl

‘Paarl’ is Afrikaans for ‘pearl’. The area north-east of Cape Town is home to a town going by this name, which lives up to its illustrious sound in every way. Less well-known than Franschhoek or Stellenbosch, but no less worth a visit, Paarl is South Africa’s third-oldest town. You’ll not just find historic architecture here, but also wine bars, boutiques and galleries.

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#4 Art and architecture

For years, Jochen Zeitz was CEO of sporting goods manufacturer Puma, and he feels particularly attached to the African continent. He has bought a ranch in Kenya, and has been collecting African art for many years now. Dedicated to his passion for the art, he also had a former grain silo converted into a museum by British architect Thomas Heatherwick. The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, or Zeitz MOCAA for short, opened in 2017 in Cape Town. Works from his collection are exhibited here, amongst other things, and it’s now also home to the world’s largest collection of African contemporary art, shown in temporary exhibitions.

#5 Surfing in South Africa

Water sports are a big deal in South Africa. Surfing is hot both with South Africans themselves and visitors. One of the real hotspots for the sport is Jeffreys Bay, on the Garden Route, between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth. The long, fast and right-breaking waves in the Bay here make it one of the best spots for surfing anywhere in the world.

One of the coolest surfing brands, Mami Wata, was brought to life in Cape Town, and its shops are now go-to places for surfing enthusiasts. “Surfing in South Africa is different from anywhere else,” says Nick Dutton, co-founder of Mami Wata. “We’re completely uncharted territory.”

#6 Restaurant of the Year

Around 150 kilometres north of Cape Town, you’ll find the restaurant that received the title of Restaurant of the Year in 2018. The restaurant Wolfgat is in the picture-perfect small town of Paternoster on the Western Cape. The jury praised the “clarity and good taste in every regard” [of the restaurant], which lies directly on the Atlantic. Chef Kobus van der Merwe inspires his guests with his local, seasonal cuisine, which is refined but simple and oriented to slow food.

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