Colourful, vibrant and cosmopolitan, Cape Town is the perfect destination for a winter city break. WTG picks out some of the highlights.


South African Airways (website:, British Airways (website: and Virgin Atlantic (website: all fly direct from London to Cape Town.


Visiting Robben Island (website:, a World Heritage Site, is one of the most profoundly moving experiences to be had in South Africa. The most famous inmate was, of course, Nelson Mandela, who spent 18 years of his 27-year sentence here.


A cable car trip to the 1,086m (3,563ft) summit of Table Mountain (website: takes just six minutes and the state-of-the-art gondola (one of just three of its kind in the world) rotates through 360 degrees on the way up. Once there, more than 2km (1.2 miles) of pathways lead walkers over the massif, with breathtaking views of the city and ocean below.


At Harbour House, fresh seafood is the speciality. This light and airy restaurant is perched precariously on the edge of Kalk Bay Harbour, with breathtaking views of the mountain, harbour and ocean. Dishes might include West Coast mussels with fresh herb and white wine sauce for starters, followed by a selection of expertly prepared local favourites - kingklip, yellowtail, red steenbras and Cape salmon, depending on what is fresh (website:


The Pan African Market is an experience within itself. Wall-to-wall African art and curios crowd into the double-storey labyrinth of shops, open Monday to Saturday. Tiny tin can sculptures sit alongside wooden behemoths of tribal masks, while leathersmiths, hair braiders, djembe drum tutors and West African tailors practise their crafts and an informal café offers refreshments.


One of the Leading Small Hotels of the World and certainly Cape Town's loveliest, the 121-room Cape Grace exudes contemporary style and elegance (website: More moderately priced is the Tudor Hotel, Cape Town's oldest, built in 1870 and excellently located right on Greenmarket Square in the city centre, close to downtown sights, shopping and nightlife (website:

Day out

A tour of the Boland ('uplands' or 'toplands') reveals a world of dramatic mountain ranges, crystal clear rivers teeming with trout, beautiful valleys and the Western Cape's bucolic Winelands, dotted with historic wine estates. There are 14 officially designated 'wine routes' incorporating many of the wine estates that are open to the public.

Night out

Marco's African Place, Bo-Kaap (website:, is one of the first of a growing number of authentic urban African venues and is a popular spot for Cape Town's rich and famous, who come to enjoy the indigenous cuisine, stylish bar and nightly live music from the best of the local jazz bands.

Photos courtesy South African Tourism

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