July 25, 2007 at 2:14 pm #30259
Considered to be one of the global hot spots, Cape Town offers the foreign traveller good value for money and, according to Frommers, “is regularly heralded as one of the most beautiful (cities) on earth” due to its unique scenery. Whether you are into sophistication or slumming it, searching for adventure or tranquility, is sure to be a pleasant surprise. Pairing the natural beauty with a vibey and friendly culture, there are a variety of delights ranging from award winning French-style wines to Malay cuisine, fine art and architecture, a wealth of historical sights and much more on offer. Tourist information centres abound and offer a range of guides, maps and details of opening hours for local attractions, including the wine estates, many of which are located within a 90 minute scenic drive from Cape Town. Normal shopping hours are between 08h00 and 17h30, though big malls operate daily between 09h00 and 21h00. Traveler’s cheques and foreign currency are not the norm, but major debit cards are widely accepted. Value Added Tax (14%) is included in all purchases and foreign visitors can reclaim the VAT on expenditures exceeding ZAR 250.00. Banking hours are from 09h00 to 15h30 weekdays and 08h30 to 11h00 on Saturdays.
South Africa operates two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time throughout the year. October till March are the most popular tourist months, but with its temperate Mediterranean climate and temperatures ranging between 8 and 25 degrees Celsius, Cape Town is a recommended destination for any time of year, certain aspects such as the indigenous flora being more seasonal.
Airlines from all five continents service and land at the Cape Town International Airport, which has been voted the “Leading Airport in Africa” at the World Travel Awards. ATMs, bars, restaurants and currency exchange facilities are available throughout the airport, as are a number of shops. Many of the flights also touch down at Johannesburg en-route, making it quite viable to experience the South African landscape by including a trip on the Blue Train or luxurious Rovos Rail between Johannesburg and Cape Town. A number of cruise lines dock at Cape Town, including one of the few remaining old mail ships, the RMS St Helena, which sets sail from Southampton. Further options include overland journeys (such as Cape to Cairo) provided by a number of tour operators. Air travel to Durban and a three-day coastal cruise to Cape Town is also possible, as is travel on any of a number of coaches which interlink the major cities and provides economical access to some of the more remote destinations.
A flight from London lasts approximately 12 hours (usually overnight) and one can travel from the USA in about 15 hours. There are shuttle bus services and taxis from the airport which will whisk you into the CBD in less than half an hour and a number of car rental agencies are also represented. Sedan taxis are plentiful and charge between ZAR 8 – ZAR 11 per km. For the brave there are also numerous somewhat crowded and not-always-safe minibus taxis.
The infrastructure, numerous outdoor activities and its rich cultural heritage has led to Cape Town being described as a “must-see before I die” city. Major developments are already underway in preparation for the 2010 World Cup and a new luxurious hotel is being built at the V&A Waterfront which would connect to Century City, effectively creating a mini-Venice.
Whether you’re an eco-tourist, culture-vulture or simply looking for adventure and a great vacation,July 24, 2012 at 5:27 am #31127
Of course, Cape Town is a very good place and has lots of attractions. there are many beautiful beaches, Islands, resorts and many natural places where you can go and enjoy your vacations. I like to go at Robben Island which is 12 KM from Cape Town and a good tourist point.August 2, 2012 at 7:46 am #31128
Cape Town (Afrikaans: Kaapstad [ˈkɑːpstɐt]; Xhosa: iKapa) is the second-most populous city in South Africa,and the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape. As the seat of the National Parliament, it is also the legislative capital of the country. It forms part of the City of Cape Town metropolitan municipality. The city is famous for its harbour as well as its natural setting in the Cape floral kingdom, including such well-known landmarks as Table Mountain and Cape Point. Cape Town is also Africa’s most popular tourist destinationSeptember 10, 2012 at 1:06 pm #31129
Thanks for the info on Capetown – my friend from Malaysia is there right now. I was in J’burg earlier this year but was really bummed we ran out of time to visit Capetown. I hear you have some nice wine country in the region 🙂