Quick Cape Town tourism for a Canuck leaving from Boston
January 29, 2013 2:04 PM   Subscribe

What do you recommend for airlines, must-see tourist destinations and other travel tips for a late-March trip to Cape Town, South Africa?

I am flying from and returning to Boston. I will be at a conference for 25-27 March 2013 (Monday-Wednesday) in Stellenbosch near Cape Town. I will be busy during the working day but free in the evenings. Also, I may need to fly in a few days early and/or late just to make flights work.

I welcome recommendations for what to see, do, eat and drink while there. What tours, tourist traps and scams should I try and/or learn about before I go?

Also, what what do you think of South African Airways for this trip? They appear frequently in my travel search results and seem to be the most convenient. As a tall and broad-shouldered guy, should I push for other options to be comfortable?
posted by KevCed to Travel & Transportation around Cape Town, South Africa (4 answers total)
Best answer: See this recent thread that has some great suggestions. South African Airways is decent for the fare and definitely provide the most options to Cape Town or Johannesburg.
posted by flyingrock at 11:59 AM on January 30, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: In terms of flight, it depends a little on whether you are flying economy or not. If you are flying economy, they are all much the same (though BA's planes are slightly newer). If in business, the lie flat seats in BA are much better (and given as it is a 12 hour flight from London it is worth having a good sleep).

Stellenbosch is great for a few days if you like wine. There are plenty of beautiful wineries (personal favourites are Blaauwklippen, Delair, Fairview but any wine tour is worth doing). For meals, go to Franschoek (about 30 minute drive from Stellenbosch). French heritage means it is full of excellent restaurants (and good wine too).

In Cape town itself (30 minute drive away), Table Mountain is a must, the botanical gardens are beautiful, the V&A Waterfront is fun (if a little too touristy) and the beaches near Clifton is great (though the water is cold as it comes up from the Antarctic). If you have more time, a day trip to Cape Point is a beautiful (go via Boulder Bay to see the penguins).

If you are looking for night life in Cape Town, there are some nice Jazz places on the V&A Waterfront and Long Street is always buzzing.
posted by NirajVaria at 11:32 PM on January 30, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks for the suggestions. My flight comes in a few days early. I booked a hotel in Cape Town before the conference in Stellenbosch.

For my 2 days completely to myself I have I have a ticket for Robben Island, hike/tour of Table Mountain, Boulder Bay penguins, Cape Point and for the 3 nights in Cape Town I will wander around the V&A Waterfront for jazz, bars, etc.

My conference hotel includes a vineyard tour which may or may not be Segway based.

Thanks for the suggestions. I will post back after my trip for future ZA-bound travellers.
posted by KevCed at 8:25 AM on February 18, 2013

Response by poster: I went to V&A Waterfront, took the touristy (but cheap) double decker. We could not go up Table Mountain because of high winds, but the 2.5 hour loop around the city, down to the mountain, down to Camps Bay and back was well worth it. On the second day I went out to Robben Island, then took a trip to Cape Point via Boulder Bay to see penguins. Excellent suggestions all around.

For future askers, I would add Long Street for night life and shops and things.
posted by KevCed at 12:00 PM on March 24, 2013

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