From mushroom burgers and loaded fries to “sticky wings”
Outdoor restaurants with a sea view in Cape Town and surrounds
A guide to Mother City eateries with refreshing ocean views
Last updated: 20 December 2022
Sun-drenched decks, glistening crystal waves and moreish morsels to munch on are as good a summer concoction as any bright-hued cooling cocktail. In Cape Town, we are spoilt for choice with a vast array of outdoor restaurants with spectacular sea views. From those that boast sweeping panoramic vistas of our naturally beautiful coastline to those located right on the beach but metres away from lapping ocean waves, there are a whole host of seaside eateries ideal for drinking in the good life. Here’s a selection of beachside dining spots where those in the know choose to go.
DINE ON TOP OF THIS KID-FRIENDLY LAGOON
This seaside eatery is the ultimate beach day experience – fresh fish, curious cocktails, local beer and wine, plus it’s located on top of a lagoon at Onrus Beach. Try the Rainbow Rolls or Rock Shrimp sushi and pair it with an Onrus Ale. Or go for the classic Hake and Chips at Milk on the Beach.
Tip: Pop by the Waffle Shack, with a “build-your-own” counter, loaded hot dogs and a Dog Bowl cocktail.
1 Atlantic Drive | Onrus River | 028 316 1516 | @milk_onthebeach | Image: Milk on the Beach
CHEEKY COCKTAILS, PINCHOS AND SWIMMING
Ficks Pinchos & Wine is situated on the picturesque Fick's tidal pool in Hermanus. Reminiscient of a restaurant in Greece or the Croatian Cost, at Ficks you can wine and dine on cheeky cocktails (like the MILF or Balls to the Walls), boozy milkshakes and small sharing plates like salmon ceviche and flammkuchen.
TIP: Hermanus is a popular whale-spotting area from June to November (dolphins have been spotted from Ficks, too)
8 Marine Drive | Hermanus | +27(0)28 312 4082 | email@example.com
COME STRAIGHT OFF THE BEACH AND ONTO THE DECK
Build your own breakfast over coffee, snack on a biltong and fig salad in the afternoon or enjoy a grilled ostrich steak with a Blooming Protea or Aperol spritz as the sun sets over Camps Bay Beach. And there’s no need to dress up – sandy slops are welcome at The 41 in Camps Bay.
TIP: All classic cocktails are half-price during their happy hour from 3pm to 5pm every day
41 Victoria Road | Camps Bay | firstname.lastname@example.org | +27 (0)21 437 0558
EPIC VIEWS, SURFBOARD TABLE AND YOUR FEET IN THE WATER
Crocodile tail pie with pineapple-chilli salsa. R&R cocktail with Mozambican rum. Red velvet beetroot cheesecake. And your feet dangling in the shallow water below your Corona surfboard table. As far as beach restaurants go, this is by far our favourite hidden gem. Discover moyo at Eden on The Bay.
TIP: Come on a Friday, between 12pm and 6pm, for R25 draughts and R39 cocktails during moyo’s drink specials.
Eden On The Bay Mall | Otto Du Plessis Dr | Big Bay/Blouberg | email@example.com | +27 (0)21 286 0662
CHECK OUT THE SUNDECK
You don’t get more local or lekker than this seaside eatery. Perched like a cheeky seagull on the edge of the Peninsula Hotel along Sea Point’s Platinum Mile, this 140-seater venue boasts a fresh and fuss-free menu that caters for everyone. And did we mention that Strolla is a lot more than just kid-friendly? There’s a Kiddies Corner where the little ones can build their own pizzas, complete with their own aprons, little chef’s hats and a childminder to guide their creativity.
WINE AND DINE AT SOTANO
With a sweeping view of the Mouille Point promenade as one of its main draw cards and the iconic candy stripe lighthouse as its beacon, Sotano is the ideal spot to drop anchor and disembark for a culinary adventure through the tantalising tastes of the Mediterranean. Let your taste buds explore a delicious selection of starters and mains (think fresh flatbreads, grilled calamari and beef tartare), while your eyes traverse the beautiful sea view before you. The name ‘Sotano’ means ‘cellar’ in Spanish and this theme is pulled through in the wood-dominated décor and neutral colour palette of the casual and comfortable eatery as well as in the extensive wine list. Pop in for a quick bite to eat with friends and let the mouth-watering food do the talking while you take in the dazzling sunset, glass of red or white in hand.
Tip: Every Wednesday there's a 2-for-1 burger special
121 Beach Road | Mouille Point | City Bowl | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 433 1757
From its kingly throne on the hilly slopes of Table Mountain National Park, Azure Restaurant at The Twelve Apostles Hotel claims a view to rule all views. The fine dining eatery boasts a vast veranda that appears to levitate above the sparkling Atlantic Ocean, and even if you’re forced to sup inside amidst the plush furnishings, you’ll enjoy a floor-to-ceiling vista of the watery depths beyond and the atomic sunsets that draw the day to a close. Not to mention, the restaurant’s chef is passionate about conjuring up creative fare that’s on par with the panorama, so you can rest assured that your meal will be as memorable as the dramatic setting. Azure is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week.
Victoria Road | Camps Bay | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 437 9029
Perched on Camps Bay’s famous seaside strip, this trendy Cape Town institution flaunts views of the glittering Atlantic Ocean and the butter-yellow beach sand that runs up to it, and as it features an outdoor sidewalk seating zone, it’s possible to enjoy this vista while sitting under open skies. Though most well-known for its award-winning cocktails, Café Caprice also puts ample effort into its fare, with an emphasis on fresh ingredients and winning flavour combinations. The eatery is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and must-try items include the roast butternut and beetroot salad with feta and toasted pumpkin seeds; the deboned, free-range chicken espetada, which is coated in a chilli, garlic and rosemary marinade; and the succulent Royal Burger, which is stacked with streaky bacon, cheese, fresh chilli and beer-battered onion rings. In essence, there are few sexier places to dine when you’re craving the scent of the sea and the feel of the sun on your skin.
37 Victoria Road | Camps Bay | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 438 8315
WHARFSIDE GRILL RESTAURANT AT MARINER'S WHARF
Rub shoulders with gung-ho fishermen at Africa’s first harbourfront emporium, Mariner’s Wharf in Hout Bay. Situated upstairs is the celebrated Wharfside Grill Restaurant offering a wide selection of seafood options, including, amongst others, calamari, prawns, kingklip and sole. Sit outside on the deck to take in the expansive view overlooking Hout Bay’s harbour, or for a more intimate dining experience, choose one of the private dining cabins named after famous ships that once frequented the Cape. For those wanting an authentic seaside experience, the Wharfette Bistro downstairs offers tasty takeaway finger fare pulled fresh from the surrounding ocean that can be eaten right on the beach while watching the fishermen bring in their catch and seals playfully duck in and out of the tranquil waters.
Mariner’s Wharf | Hout Bay Harbour | Hout Bay | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 790 1100
TWO OCEANS RESTAURANT
Situated at Cape Point, the narrow stretch of land that marks the most southwesterly tip of Africa, the Two Oceans Restaurant sits amidst a flurry of fynbos crowning the sheer cliffs of what has been known by sailors for centuries as the Cape of Storms. Owing to extensive renovations made in July 2012, the ‘storm’ has been brought into the kitchen with Head Chef Phil Alcock and Thai Sushi Chef Sarawut Sukkowplang cooking up a mouth-watering selection of fresh fare. Indulge in an assortment of inventive individual rolls from the chic new sushi bar or treat yourself to the signature seafood platter or ostrich burger and savour it alongside one of the Cape’s most exquisite, edge-of-the-world views of the ocean. The eatery’s innovative new design has created a stylish space as inspired by the expansive South African sea view as the menu is.
Cape Point Peninsula | +27 (0)21 780 9200
Perched above the dunes just beyond the kitesurf mecca of Dolphin Beach, Blowfish Restaurant in Blouberg treats diners to a vista that stretches from the shimmering Atlantic shoreline on the West Coast all the way to the rounded hump of Lion’s Head and the plateau of Table Mountain. From nearly any seat in the laidback, family-friendly eatery, guests can gaze out over the bay and drink in the stunning scenery while tucking into fresh seafood, sushi or rustic bistro fare. The food, like the ambience, puts on no airs and graces and, rather, is dependent on generous portions and good produce that’s been prepared well. So, whether you park at the sushi conveyor belt, settle in for shellfish on the covered outdoor deck or chill out with a cocktail or cold beer in the loungy section of the restaurant, you’ll find something to suit your palate and style. And as the longtime eatery is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, you can accompany your meal with occasional ocean glimpses at any time of day.
1 Marine Drive | Blouberg | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 556 5464
ON THE ROCKS
Whether it’s your big day, Christmas lunch with the family or a brunch with friends after a morning of running and cycling along Blouberg’s picturesque coastline, On the Rocks has much to offer in the way of delectable seafood and other fine cuisine, including the authentic Cape Malay Curry (with seafood or chicken) the Open Saffron Crayfish and Prawn Ravioli and Patagonis calamari tubes. Its terraced seating area with a view of Table Mountain and Robben Island is an added bonus and great for summer sundowners. The Venetian fire place is also a warm accompaniment to fine dining during the Cape winter. On the Rocks is sure to live up to its reputation of providing a pleasant dining experience.
45 Stadler Road |Bloubergstrand |Cape Town | + 27 (0)21 554 1988
This beachfront cottage-styled restaurant situated on Cape Town’s West Coast area of Melkbosstrand is an all-time favourite among Capetonians and visitors alike. Café Orca has been in existence for 18 years and offers a very wide variety of locally sourced food. Its menu offers a vast array of seafood, in addition to meat and salads. Why not try the creamy garlic mussel starter with the beef medallion as a main. The Moroccan line fish is also a very tasty option; you are guaranteed to enjoy whatever you choose from Café Orca’s extensive menu while enjoying a panoramic view of Melkbosstrand’s Atlantic coast.
88 Beach Road | Melkbosstrand | Cape Town | + 27 (0)21 553 4120
THE SALTY SEA DOG
Established in 1925 as a fish market, this popular Simon’s Town fish and chips joint has stayed true to its original purpose by serving up simple and honest seafood caught fresh from the adjacent ocean. Located near the harbour, the laid-back eatery is a model spot to enjoy the accompanying taste of tomato sauce and tingle of vinegar while watching the boats come and go. On clear summer days when the weather is fine and the food even finer, take your meal outside on the protected patio and languish in the sun, or when the sea breeze is chilly, keep warm inside the rustic but endearing restaurant. With cold beer on tap and only the freshest seafood on offer, The Salty Sea Dog promises an authentic seaside experience.
2 Wharf St | Simon’s Town | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 786 1918
BLUE WATER CAFE
Looking for a great outing the whole family will enjoy with a beautiful sea view to boot? Then look no further: Blue Water Café on Imhoff Farm in Kommetjie is the perfect answer. A back veranda (or ‘stoep’ as South Africans say) opens onto a lush green lawn that leads the eye to a panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean. There’s a jungle gym on-site and kiddies’ parties can also be booked in advance, leaving grown-ups free to relax and dine while the little ones are entertained. Other activities on offer in the complex include camel rides and a visit to the neighbouring Higgeldy Piggeldy Animal Farm or the Snake Park for the more daring.
Imhoff Farm| Kommetjie Road |Kommetjie | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 783 2007
GAAITJIE IN PATERNOSTER
Do not be deceived by this very unassuming 70-year-old fisherman’s cottage. Its rustic appeal and Asian-infused menu provide its patrons with the idyllic escape from the mundane hum-drum of city dining. All of its produce is locally sourced to provide diners with a fresh and delectable meal, rendering this an unforgettable dining experience. Reservations are essential to have a meal at Paternoster’s hidden gem.
Off Sampson Street | Paternoster | Western Cape | + 27 (0)22 752 2242
Known to regulars simply as “The Rock”, Harbour Rock is a very popular dining spot among local and foreign tourists in the Western Cape’s bustling seaside town of Hermanus. Situated atop a cliff that spoils diners with a splendid view of the Hermanus harbour “The Rock” is the perfect venue for your dining experience. Try one of its many succulent dishes, such as the line fish with tomato dressing, gremolata, tapenade and baby marrow. There is plenty from which to choose.
New Harbour | Hermanus | +27 (0)28 312 2920
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