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First time visitor

Tarragona, Spain
Level Contributor
2 posts
8 reviews
First time visitor

Planning to visit Cape Town for 2 months Jan/Feb 2011. Can you help with places / areas to stay. We ( wife and I) want to rent a furnished apartment or house and do not want to rent a car for the whole period. So walking distance to bars, restaurants, beach, etc a definite plus. Our intention is to escape the winter here in Europe plus take in some of the South African culture.

At the end of the period we will travel to Port Elizabeth and take in the Addo Elephant Park before travelling back to UK.

Any / all advice welcomed.

Cape Town
Level Contributor
733 posts
1 review
1. Re: First time visitor

Try the waterfront, Waterkant or Camps Bay.

Mark September

Small World Tours

Edited: 30 June 2010, 16:36
Cape Town
Level Contributor
1,183 posts
55 reviews
2. Re: First time visitor

2 months without a car is going to be tough. We don't have the best public transportation system and it will end up pretty expensive taking taxis around. I think its wise to choose a place that will have everything you need within walking distance - beach, grocery store, restaurants and bars.

Waterfront has lots of bars, restaurants and shops and will give you easy access to all the sights of the city. But its not within walking distance of a beach. Its also busy and full of tourists. I think its ideal for a short stay, but not sure I would recommend it for 2 months of "relaxing"?

Camps Bay is more suburban, close to the beach and has bars, restaurants and a small grocery store in the main strip behind the beach. You would have to stay close to this strip to be able to walk (its a steep suburb on the side of the mountain). Also, its important to point out that Camps bay is very popular with the trendy tourist crowd - if you are keen on that, its perfect.

I would also consider Hout Bay. Its further from the city center, but has a beach, pretty harbour, lots of grocery shops, restaurants etc. In my opinion its also a truer reflection of "South African culture" as it has a local fishing community as well as a shanty town. You would easily be able to find a house/apartment within walking distance of beach and shops - and really the whole town is not that big, so you can walk anywhere with enough time on your hands.

Port Elizabeth...
Level Contributor
63 posts
20 reviews
3. Re: First time visitor

I think both replies are valid especially the public transport comment. You will get frustrated as soon as you consider activities/ scenary outside the CBD (winelands, etc). Forget taxis- too expensive per km. Consider dividing your holiday in periods in Cape Town CBD (public transport) areas around Cape Town like Franschoek, Stellenbosch to rent car. Consider Oranjezicht overlooking Cape Town for accommodation.

Tarragona, Spain
Level Contributor
2 posts
8 reviews
4. Re: First time visitor

Thanks Guys. Any advice on further afield, e.g. what about Simons Town? We could (maybe) then go into Cape Town on the train. Or Fish Hoek?

We thought we would have a car for maybe 3 of the 8 weeks to visit places not accessible by train.

London, United...
Level Contributor
409 posts
2 reviews
5. Re: First time visitor

I'd personally stay closer to the city centre, i.e. Green Point, Sea Point, Camps Bay, etc.

You will have easier access to everything (including taxis) and you won' get tired of riding the train to everywhere.

Cape Town
Level Contributor
1,183 posts
55 reviews
6. Re: First time visitor

Both have good beaches, both have restaurants. Simonstown is more geared towards tourists (being a town of historical and naval importance, and also having a harbour and the penguins) while Fish Hoek is more of a normal South African suburb, especially popular with families and retirees. If I had to choose one, I'd probably go for Simonstown as its main strip has some lovely old colonial buildings, so its more more picturesque than the main strip of Fish Hoek (which was mostly built in the 60's and 70's).

One disadvantage of Simonstown is that it doesn't have much in the way of supermarkets, just a few small corner shops - you would have to go to Fish Hoek once a week to do your shopping.

It is fine to take the train, but I feel I must warn you about muggings that have occurred at the stations. Only travel in first class, during the day and be careful with your belongings.

There have been recordings of muggings at the train stations so some choose not to take the train. However if you travel first class, and during the day, I think it should be fine.

7. Re: First time visitor

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