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Unique and Special Day Tours in Cape Town
Explore our magnificent metropolis with a wide selection of special and unique sightseeing options
Last Updated: 6 March 2018
The glorious Mother City, with her towering mountains, sparkling oceans, fragrant fynbos and fine architecture, offers a smorgasbord of sightseeing options for South Africans and international visitors alike. Though it seems impossible to cover it all in one trip, there are plenty of Cape Town day tours that give outsiders (and locals who don’t get out much) a neatly packed insider’s glimpse into everything from the famed Winelands to the local craft beer scene and the lives of city and township dwellers.
We’ve compiled an overview of excursions in and around the city that are sure to thrill, enlighten and educate even the most seasoned of travellers. So, all you have to do is pick an adventure and get set to be blown away.
TOP DAY TOURS IN CAPE
CREATE YOUR OWN TOUR BY MAPPING YOUR OWN ROUTE AND HIRING A MINIBUS
If you know what you want to see and how much time you would like to spend there, AroundAboutCars allows you to rent a vehicle (with a driver) to visit all the places in the Western Cape you have been dying to see. They offer unlimited kilometres with no excess, discounts on accommodation, free delivery and collection of cars at all major airports, the latest vehicle brands and models, and 24-hr countrywide emergency backup, it is worth it to rent a car with AroundAboutCars.
20 Bloem Street | Cape Town | 8001| +27 21 422 4022 | [email protected]
Experience the Best of Cape Town in One Day with Kiff Kombi Tours
Cape Town in a day? Locals and tourists know there’s only one way to get the full experience: road-trip style with Kiff Kombi Tours. These are laid-back day trips in a colourfully painted local minibus (so South African) exuding good vibes as you’re driven all over the city to a soundtrack of the coolest road-trip music and taken to all the city’s most essential hidden gems and local hot spots (complete with local tour guide) for the quintessential taste of Cape Town. Experience the city and its people, appreciate its art, learn its history and take in its awesome natural beauty, all while sampling the tastiest local food and drinks – all in one epic day tour. Choose from the essential Urban Safari tour; speciality Craft Beer Safari; The all-new (and pleasantly boozy) Constantia Sunday Funday experience, The Road Trip Tour to Cape Point; the Wine, Beer & Biltong Safari to Stellenbosch; The Gin Jol; the Township and Street Art Tour and more – including a German-speaking tour and the option to custom-make your own tour for bachelor/bachelorette parties and special occasions.
Cape Town Helicopters VIP Winelands flight
Take a flight on the high side of life with a VIP Winelands flight and culinary experience with Cape Town Helicopters. Take in breathtaking views as your flight starts with a private Full Peninsula flight around Cape Point before heading directly to Idiom wine estate on the Helderberg Wine Route. Here, you will enjoy the Idiom Signature Experience – a haute cuisine tasting menu paired with wine from the exclusive Idiom Collection or a selection of imported Italian wines, followed by a three-course meal comprising a fusion of Italian and South African cuisine.
What's more, CapeTownMagazine.com readers get the Hopper flight for only R988/p (that's a 24% discount) when using booking code 'CapeTownMagazineHopper' on this secret link. Or get a 10% discount on ALL other flights with Cape Town Helicopters. Claim yours by using our unique booking code: FlyAirbus.
Cost: R12600/p | +27 (0)21 418 9462
Cape Town Culinary Tours
Taste your way through Cape Town with Cape Town Culinary Tours. Not only does this guided walking tour present the true flavours of our multicultural city through its intimate offering, but here history comes to the fore too - owner Elsje Erasmus is as passionate about teaching local history as she is about food. So whether it’s savouring your way up historic streets in the inner-city, or a winelands experience filled with country hospitality, you can be assured that a flavourful journey will be had, with a valuable lessons about Cape Town’s history inbetween. Custom and private tours may be booked, while family and team-building events can also be arranged.
Cost: A maximum of 10 foodies per trip are permitted, ensuring an intimate experience. Adults pay R899p/p and children R699p/p.
+27 (0)87 550 8662 | [email protected]
Deon Meyer Mystery (audio) Day Tour
Looking for a day-tour that will have you intrigued, entertained and enthralled? Don’t delay booking for the Deon Meyer Mystery Day Tour. Hop into a tour bus along with 11 other people and take a trip through Cape Town, visiting the significant locations featured in Deon Meyer’s novels Thirteen Hours, 7 Days, Cobra and Icarus, with exhilarating audio clips as your guide throughout this tour. Follow the chase of the characters in the beloved author's novels set in Cape Town as the tour takes you from the lower Long Street to Signal Hill and Sea Point - you will have the opportunity to experience picture-perfect views and knowledgeable guides on this visual-audio tour.
Cost: R600 per person
+27(0)82 410 1762 | [email protected]
AWOL Tours and Travel
Explore the breathtaking beauty of our seaside metropolis with AWOL Tours and Travel. The award-winning hiking trips and bike tours specialist- they have been bestowed with TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence for four consecutive years (2011-2014) - run guided group and private trips that give visitors and locals a unique sightseeing experience. Some of AWOL’s most popular offerings include a tour of the inner city that takes participants to historical sites The Castle of Good Hope and the Company’s Gardens, an excursion to the Masiphumelele township that forms part of AWOL’s responsible tourism drive to empower local communities and various guided hikes on the magnificent Table Mountain. All tours are private; this means that departure is guaranteed even if there is only one intrepid explorer. Furthermore, be sure to give the lovely folks at AWOL a call and ask about custom designing your own sightseeing adventure.
Cost: AWOL Tours offer a vast variety of expeditions and adventures that vary in price. For more info you can visit www.awoltours.co.za. Bookings and payments can be made online via a safe and secure payment service on AWOL’s website.
Dock Road | V&A Waterfront Information Centre | Cape Town |+27 (0)21 418 3803 | [email protected]
Into The Blue Snorkeling and Fun Dives
Into The Blue Scuba Dive Centre offers novice, intermediate and expert divers an array of snorkeling and diving adventures (suitable for all diving statures), various internationally recognised PADI-certified diving courses (from beginner to professional level) as well as a top quality dive shop (sales and rentals). Offering a wide range of snorkeling and fun, shore and boat, diving opportunities, Into The Blue prides itself on providing the very best and exciting ocean excursions in the Cape. What’s more, not all of the dives require a qualified scuba diving certification, making it possible for non-divers to also enjoy the aquatic experience. These fun dives take the form of snorkeling with Cape fur seals and scuba diving with cow, blue or mako sharks to discovering the Cape’s unique kelp forests and reefs and exploring one of the 800 shipwrecks scattered along its seafloor. Boasting a plethora of underwater spectacles, the Cape Peninsula coastline truly does offer some of the most beautiful and varied scuba diving opportunities available across the globe, suitable for all diving preferences and qualifications. Founded in 2010, today Into The Blue has been internationally recognised as a PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) 5-star IDC centre, in 2016 was awarded Trip Advisor’s Certificate of Excellence and proudly claims over seven in-house PADI-certified diving instructors and masters. Contact the expert diving company today and experience an underwater ‘trip’ of a lifetime.
Cost: Into The Blue offers a wide range of sea-expeditions and ocean-adventures that vary in price. For more information please contact the Cape Town diving company directly.
88 Main Road | Sea Point | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 434 3358 / +27 (0)74 106 3575 | [email protected]
Wine Flies Wine Tours
Let the knowledgeable, fun-loving Riaan Renke and Francois van Binsbergen from boutique tour company Wine Flies take you on a Cape Winelands excursion that’s slightly different from the average tasting trip. Day trippers get to visit the much-loved vineyard towns of Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek and call in at several well-known estates, but they also get to stop at hidden gems that locals tend to keep secret. Here, visitors can hear the stories behind the vintages straight from the winemakers’ mouths while touring the vineyards and cellars. Along with reds, whites, sparkling wines and ports, the tour also gives participants the chance to sample lots of cheese, local cured meats and dried fruit, as well as enjoy a hearty lunch. Notably, the two Wine Lords and their legion of guides add a healthy dose of charm and humour to each day trip, peppering their talks with titbits of trivia and history to make for an informative but informal excursion. Be prepared to laugh, learn and discover a whole new appreciation for local wines.
Cost: A Winelands tour with Wine Flies costs R700p/p, which includes doorstep pick-ups and drop-offs, all tastings, food pairings and lunch. There is a maximum of 13 people allowed per trip (though bigger buses can be arranged), and customised private tours are also available. Tours run seven days a week.
+27 (0)21 462 8011 | [email protected]
SCENIC DOWNHILL SCOOTER ADVENTURES
Described as ‘downhill fun for everyone’, this exciting experience guarantees a fun day out. Embark on a sightseeing adventure around Table Mountain, Stellenbosch, Franschhoek or Knysna with Scootours. Designed by the Swiss to navigate along the Alps, the non-motorised scooters used by Scootours can handle anything and each 90-minute tour is led by a professional guide, ensuring everyone has fun safely. What’s more, on Sundays junior passengers (under 9) ride along for FREE with their designated driver. Plus, you can book loads of other adventures through Scootours, too, from paragliding to abseiling and even kayaking.
Cost: R550p/p for drivers 10 years old and up. R290p/p for passengers aged 4-9 years.
Table Mountain Lower Information Centre | +27 (0)82 776 0557 | [email protected]
Camissa Township Tours
Experience the other side of the Mother City with a vibrant, eye-opening half-day township tour led by the husband and wife team from Camissa Travel & Marketing. Giving locals and foreigners a glimpse into the heart of real South African culture outside of the glamorous CBD, the day trips include visits to a number of informal settlements, like Langa, Gugulethu and Bonteheuwel, where people were relegated during the dark days of Apartheid. The half-day excursion starts at the infamous District Six, the site where thousands of families were evicted due to racial segregation, and then proceeds to Langa for a walking tour led by one of the township residents. On foot, visitors can immerse themselves fully in the setting and engage with the homeowners, all the while learning about South Africa’s tainted history and the effects of it today. However, rather than being an outing full of doom and gloom, the township tour with Camissa also shows the strength, resilience and optimism of these Capetonians, making it more than worthwhile for both locals and international guests.
Cost: The half-day township tour costs R520p/p for adults and R260p/p for children between the ages of 2 and 12. There is a morning and afternoon option, and Camissa also runs gospel, soccer and eco tours as well as full-day township tours combined with excursions around Robben Island, the Cape Winelands or the CBD. Tours run daily.
20 Curlew Street | Brooklyn | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 510 2646 | [email protected]
Do a Harley Davidson trip around Cape Town
Get ready to burn some rubber and soak up the city’s spectacular scenery from the back of a Harley Davidson. Cape Bike Travel offers chauffeured rides for those who’ve always dreamed of a hard-fisted, free-wheeling ride. Careen around the curves of some of the most scenic roads in the world. The excursions include an experienced driver who’s completely at your disposal. If you prefer to take the handlebars, you are more than welcome to as long as you have a motorbike licence, there are various options available from Cape Bike Tours.
Cost: Prices for the chauffeured ride experience vary depending on the duration of the tour.
+27 (0)84 606 4449 or +27 (0)21 424 5013 | [email protected]
Shark Cage Diving Tours with White Shark Diving Company
Forget safaris and trying to catch sight of the big five on land. For a truly otherworldly experience and a day trip you’re not likely to forget soon, book a cage dive with the White Shark Diving Company (WSDC), which specialise in underwater adventures that showcases the kings of the deep in their home territory. These excursions for the brave and daring take place in the Gansbaai area, which is notorious for its year-round great white shark population, and divers can arrange to be picked up in Cape Town – Gansbaai is roughly located two hours from the CBD – or can meet the operator at Kleinbaai harbour. The day tours start at the crack of dawn (the best time to see these master predators in their prime), and thanks to the hundreds of seals that live and breed on the nearby Dyer Island, you’re almost always guaranteed to spot a shark from the safety of the submerged cage. Not to mention, from May to September, warmer water and an abundance of baby seals make for perfect conditions to view the sharks breaching (leaping out of the water as a hunting technique to catch their prey unawares). And since WSDC only takes 22 passengers per trip, everyone on board gets to spend more time in the cage and is also guaranteed a quality viewing spot from the deck of the boat.
Cost: A standard shark cage diving tour costs R1 600 (from 10th December cage diving will cost R1 750) for adult divers, R1 450 for adult non-divers and R1 050p/p for children; this price includes diving equipment, safety briefing and light pre- and post-trip meals and refreshments. A breaching and diving combo trip (offered only during the winter months from June to August) costs R1 950p/p. If door-to-door transport is required, an additional fee applies.
9 Kusweg | Kleinbaai Harbour | Gansbaai | +27 (0)82 559 68587| [email protected]
The Forgotten Route Tour to Matjiesfontein with Wine Flies
There aren’t many tour operators that can promise a time travelling experience as part of the day trip package. But Wine Flies sure can with its Forgotten Route tour, which retraces the steps of early diamond explorers through the Karoo and ends in the little one-road town of Matjiesfontein, a small village still stuck in its Victorian-era glory days. Apart from the fact that you get to ride in the Shosholoza Meyl train and stay overnight in the historic Lord Milner Hotel, this two-day adventure stands out because tour owners Francois van Binsbergen and Riaan Renke make it their mission to create a fun-filled, educational journey that contains quirky surprises at every turn. There’s the stop at a boutique winery in the Breedekloof Valley, the hilarious, lightning-quick bus tour of Matjiesfontein, the honky-tonk jam with the locals at the Laird’s Arms pub and the visit to an old Anglo-Boer War fort, just to name a few highlights. Not to mention, travellers can expect to be stunned by the scenic Karoo landscape. With deep green fields of fynbos and thin waterfalls spilling from rocky crags, it’s every bit as majestic and visit-worthy as the oft-travelled Garden Route.
Cost: The Forgotten Route tour with Wine Flies costs R1675p/p, and this price includes everything (accommodation, train ride, wine tasting, dinner, breakfast and museum access) except lunch and drinks. The tour departs every Friday.
+27 (0)21 462 8011 | [email protected]
ByeCycle Electric Bicycle Tours
Explore the Mother City’s sights and landmarks in a particularly unusual way on one of ByeCycle’s e-bike tours. The Oranjezicht-based company specialises in crafting exciting excursions done by electric bicycle. This two-wheeled wonder differs from its traditional counterpart in that it features a built-in motor that allows riders to cruise up steep hills and cover longer distances without even breaking a sweat. Choose from trips like the Sundowners on Signal Hill Tour, the Sunday City Breakfast Ride and the daily Sea Point Promenade Ride. On top of these options, cyclists can customise their own tours (with the assistance of ByeCycle’s highly dedicated staff) for special occasions, and they can get quite creative as this modern beast of a machine can take riders almost anywhere in the Mother City and surrounds.
Cost: The Sundowners on Signal Hill Tour goes for R590p/p (including refreshments), the Sunday City Breakfast Ride is R550p/p (excluding breakfast) and the Promenade Cycle is R325p/p (including entry to the Chavonnes Battery Museum at the V&A Waterfront).
+27 (0)76 403 7320 | [email protected]
Whale, Wine and Wors Tour by Wine Flies
If you’re on the hunt for a unique day trip outing, then look no further than the Whale, Wine and Wors Tour courtesy of boutique vino operator Wine Flies. The fun-loving company will whisk you off to discover the hidden gems of the Cape Winelands, and thanks to its musical chairs policy (after every stop you have to swap seats in the minibus and sit next to someone new), you will make friends along the way as well. Running every Tuesday and Thursday from August until December, the Whale, Wine and Wors tour comprises three major stops. The first is Stellenbosch, where you will visit the quirky Oom Samie Se Winkel and stop over at the family-owned Middelvlei Wine Farm to sample some top-quality reds and whites and take a cellar tour. Next, it is off to Grabouw for a uniquely South African pairing of authentic boerewors (farm sausage) and Everson’s Cider. Finally, to top it all off, you’ll take a trip to Hermanus for lunch at a stunning Hemel-en-Aarde Valley estate and for some land-based whale watching (binoculars are provided by Wine Flies). All in all, it is a fun and informative day trip led by charming and experienced tour guides.
Cost: Wine Flies’ Whale, Wine and Wors Tour costs R650p/p, which includes all tastings, food pairings and lunch. Tours run every Tuesday and Thursday (August to December) from 7:30am-6pm.
+27 (0)21 462 8011| [email protected]
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