Entertainment Special Events 31 Things to do in Cape Town in January

31 Things to do in Cape Town in January

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Summer is in full swing and the team at CapeTownToday have put together a list of 31 things to do in Cape Town, ranging from adrenaline pumping to relaxing.

  1. Catch a game of cricket at Newlands. The Proteas square off against New Zealand from 2-6 January and against Pakistan in February. There’s also tons of domestic matches to watch as well. Check out the Proteas 2013.
  2. Take a ride on the Hop On Hop Off bus. Arguably the best way to see Cape Town – whether you’re a local or a tourist. Simply get your ticket in the V&A Waterfront, grab a schedule and get a wonderfully informative, guided tour of the Cape Peninsula. Get off whenever you want; get back on whenever you want! (Local’s Tip: Be sure to take a peak cap and lots of sunscreen. If it gets too hot slip downstairs and enjoy the aircon.  
  3. Be seen at the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate. One of the oldest horse races in the Cape, this event is not shy on the glitz and glamour. This year sees epic entertainment by Dj Fresh and Lora
  4. The Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. It’s not called “the most beautiful garden in Africa” without reason. Established in 1913 on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, it is home to over 7000 plant species. Entrance fees range from free (children under six) to R42 (adults). (Local's Tip: Combine your visit with one of the Summer Sunset Concerts at Kirstenbosch
  5. Explore the Two Oceans Aquarium. Wow! This one’s equally exciting whether you’re a child or an adult. See everything from a tank full of Nemo’s to tuna, stingrays, lobsters and very scary spider crabs. You can even swim with sharks! Tickets range from free (children under 4) to R112 (adults) Locals tip: Book online, it’s cheaper than getting the tickets at the aquarium!)
  6. Take a ride up to Rhodes Memorial, a memorial to English-born South African politician Cecil John Rhodes designed by Sir Herbert Bake. This amazing monument on the Northern flank of Table Mountain, consists of Doric columns, eight magnificent lions and 49 steps (one for each year of Rhodes’ life), providing spectacular views of Cape Town and the Cape Flats.
  7. Visit Cape Point. The most south western tip of Africa is located in the Cape Point Nature Reserve and provides you with some of the most amazing views you can imagine. A trip on the vernacular to the light house and lunch in the Two Oceans restaurant will be an experience never to forget. 
  8. Take the cable car up Table Mountain. The cool thing about the “new” cable cars being used is they rotate – so no matter where you stand you’ll be getting amazing 360 degree views of Cape Town as you go up the mountain. The views, needless to say, are breath taking.   
  9. Walk up Table Mountain. Not for the faint hearted, there are numerous trails that take you up Table Mountain from different locations. Before you attempt this, make sure you have the most recent weather forecast, something warm to wear and lots of water. Don’t walk alone, wonder off the demarcated routes or take any unnecessary valuables with you.   
  10. Drive up to Signal Hill. A nice and easy one this - it gives you amazing views of the city bowl, Robben Island, the Atlantic Seaboard and Cape Town’s beautiful white elephant, the Cape Town Stadium. (Local’s Tip: Pack a picnic, there are a number of spots where you can chill, relax and enjoy the view with your friends
  11. Walk up Lions Head. A little more strenuous, but nevertheless an invigorating walk with lovely views of the city and Atlantic Seaboard.
  12. Watch the firing of the noon day cannon. We’ve all heard the sound of the noon day gun reverberating throughout the city at 12pm – but have you ever thought of going to watch it? Follow the signs in the Bokaap for an unforgettable experience - when the cannon is fired it immerses the gun battery in smoke and the smell of cordite!  
  13. Take a walk through the Company Gardens. Enjoy a lovely relaxing afternoon in the inner city walking through the Company Gardens. Check out the rose gardens, statues, old cannons and take a stroll down Government Avenue  
  14. Go to the beach. Chill out, relax . It’s summer in Cape Town. Slap on copious amounts of sunscreen and head down to your beach of choice for a day of doing precious little.  Whether it’s the icy cold waters of Clifton or Camps Bay, Blouberg or the warmer waters of Fish Hoek beach, Cape Town has beautiful beaches aplenty. 
  15. Go for a walk in Silvermine Nature Reserve. Take the M3 out of town, follow it all the way to the end and then head up Ou Kaapse Weg to Silvermine. There are a number of walks that aren’t too strenuous and it’s an absolute pleasure going to the dam. Enjoy magnificent views of Muizenberg and Constantia!
  16. Visit the penguins at Boulders Beach. Head past Simon’s Town to the Boulders Visitor Centre and follow the walkway through the colony of Jackass penguins. An amazing experience! Entrance is R15 for children, R40 for adults
  17. For an altogether different birding experience visit the World of Birds in Hout Bay. The largest bird park in Africa, the World of Birds is home to over 3000 birds and 400 species. Entrance is R40 for children, R75 for adults. (Local’s Tip: The World of Birds is one of the stops on the Hop On Hop Off bus route, some combine this into one trip)
  18. Relax at the Noordhoek Farm Village.  A great day out for the family. Enjoy the very relaxed atmosphere and excellent food at Café Roux, Toad in the Village or Foodbarn, get lovely deli goods and watch the kids play on the lawn.
  19. Visit Imhoff farm. The historical Cape farmstead at Imhoff Farm is another great outing for the family. Experience a camel ride, visit the higgledy piggeldy farmyard, buy organic food and sample Cape-style food at Blue Water Café.
  20. Take in the sights and walk the Kalk Bay strip. Smell the fresh salt air, pop into the various curio shops and art galleries along the Main Rd, catch a show at the Kalk Bay Theatre or enjoy lunch or dinner at any of a number of restaurants you’ll come across.  
  21. Visit the V&A Waterfront. Not just home to a magnificent shopping mall, the V&A Waterfront is also home to an outdoor market, many fine restaurants and continuous activities. A walk along the pier (and the second floor outside balconies) offers fantastic views of Table Mountain   
  22. Drive Chapman's Peak. One of our favourite drives and arguably the most scenic in the Cape Peninsula. Getting there is half the experience. You have a choice of three magnificent routes - over a mountain pass (Ou Kaapse Weg), along the coast (Victoria Dr from Bakoven) or through the leafy suburbs of the Cape winelands (through Constantia and over Constantia Nek). (Local’s Tip: Stop off at the Chapman’s Peak Restaurant for lunch and have their awesome calamari and Portuguese steak pan combo)
  23. Watch Dirty Dancing at Artscape. Once upon a time there was Romeo and Juliet. Then there was Baby and Johnny in Dirty Dancing. Now you can see it at Artscape from the 18th of January. Tickets range from R100 to R400
  24. A visit to Hout Bay is incomplete without a trip to Hout Bay Harbour. Watch all the colourful fishing trawlers and yachts moored along the quays, check out all the curio stalls and enjoy good old hake and slap chips in the sun. The more adventurous can buy their fresh fish on the quay straight from the fishing boats and take them home to cook.
  25. Take a boat trip to Seal Island.  Enjoy the experience of salt water spray in your face, that fresh sea salt smell and see hundreds of seals basking on Seal Island. A number of tour boat charters operate from Hout Bay harbour
  26. Have a picnic. There are numerous places you can go for picnics around Cape Town, but let someone else do the heavy lifting for you: You can book amazing picnics at Spier Wine Estate or Cape Point Vineyards. (Local’s Tip: For sheer beauty and tranquillity the picnic spot at Cape Point Vineyard is hard to beat.
  27. Stellenbosch introduces Street Soirees in Church Street, where visitors can enjoy an evening meander while sampling food and wine from local wineries and restaurants on the sidewalk.
  28. See South African theatre legend David Kramer’s Karoo Kitaar Blues at the Baxter – a unique showcase of unusual and old music styles from the Kalahari, Hardeveld and Klein Karoo. Tickets are R110 to R160.
  29. Enjoy sundowners in Camps Bay. It’s not hard to see why Camps Bay is the playground to South Africa’s (and sometimes Hollywood’s) rich and famous. Beautiful views, trendy restaurants and clubs, it’s definitely a place to be seen in summer. (Local’s Tip: Get there early! When the weather is great you could literally be stuck in traffic for hours trying to get to the beach).  
  30. Do the Constantia wine route. Although there is far more wine farms in Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, the Constantia Valley wine route boasts superb wines, is the oldest in the country and best of all right in our backyard – not an hour or more’s drive away.
  31. Go mountain biking in Tokai forest. Considered by many a mountain bikers paradise, Tokai forest offers everything from general road cruising to technically challenging and extreme down hills.

So that's our list of 31 things to do in Cape Town in January. We hope you found it useful! Soon we'll be posting our list of things to do in Cape Town in February. If you have an idea for ourlist, please send it to us at [email protected]