Cape Town Honeymoon Guide

With a choice of exclusive beach resorts, world-class shopping, fine dining restaurants and accommodation options to satisfy the most demanding holidaymaker, Cape Town has all the ingredients you need for an unforgettable honeymoon or romantic getaway holiday.

Surrounded by stunning white-sand beaches and overlooked by the massive Table Mountain, South Africa’s oldest city mixes a rich cultural heritage with an easygoing and laid-back nature.

Experience an exciting choice of honeymoon options in Cape Town – one of the world’s most beautiful cities.

What to do and see in Cape Town

Unwind on a choice of trendy Cape Town beaches, including Cape Town’s most exclusive beach resort, Camps Bay, or drive out of town to find a more secluded spot at Boulders Beach or Llandudno Beach.

Away from the beaches, Cape Town offers a variety of attractions: hike or ride the scenic cable car to the top of Table Mountain; examine the cell where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned at notorious Robben Island; stroll beside a showcase of South African flora at the colourful Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens; and relax in some of the country’s best best-preserved examples of Cape Dutch architecture while savouring award-winning wines at nearby Winelands.

Enjoy panoramic vistas of False Bay and the Hottentots Holland Mountains from the lookout at Cape Point, a dramatic rock that juts into the Atlantic.

Then stroll through a choice of nature trails in the Table Mountain National Park until you reach the Cape of Good Hope – the southwestern-most point of the continent.

Make the most of Cape Town’s surrounding rugged landscape, where you can go surfing, scuba diving, sailing, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing and sky diving.

Browse for African curios and unique souvenirs at one of the city’s splendid open-air markets or at the restored Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, which offers a wide variety of shops and arts and crafts markets, as well as free entertainment, museums, taverns and restaurants.

Cape Town offers a range of must-see sightseeing attractions for inquisitive couples celebrating a honeymoon, including…

Table Mountain

Journey to the top of Cape Town's defining landmark in a state-of-the-art gondola – a 6-minute trip with superlative 360-degree vistas – and discover one of southern Africa's most impressive natural wonders.

Alternatively, hike one of the many tracks to the summit: try the Platteklip Gorge trail, one of the safest and most popular routes to and from the mountain.

Then, follow more than 2km of marked trails from the 1086m-high summit through the Table Mountain National Park, enjoying breathtaking views of the city and Atlantic Ocean below.

More about Table Mountain

Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope

Hike through rolling hills covered with fynbos (shrubs) to the famous Cape Point on the Cape of Good Hope: spot wildlife such as baboons, eland, red hartebeest, bontebok, ostriches and zebra along the way.

Alternatively, take the funicular rail or drive the 12.5km-long paved road to the tip of the peninsula and the viewing platforms that surround the old lighthouse. Enjoy spectacular ocean views from the towering 180m-high cliffs as thousands of seagulls wheel below.

More about Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope. . .

Castle of Good Hope

Explore inside and along the ramparts of the oldest colonial building in South Africa – a five-pointed, star-shaped castle designed as a Dutch fortress and built in 1666.

The Castle of Good Hope is still used by the South African Defence Force: see the changing of the guard (or Key Ceremony) at 10am sharp, then peer into the underground cells and tour the Military Museum. Don't miss the William Fehr Collection, a superb collection of colonial Cape paintings, furniture, antiques and artefacts.

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Robben Island

Join a guided tour of this former prison island, a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1997 and one of Cape Town’s most popular attractions.

Walk through the old prison, peek into Nelson Mandela’s cell, see the lime quarry in which Mandela and many other political leaders slaved and the church that was once home to a leper colony. Don’t miss the moving exhibition of Cell Stories in the prison’s A-section, where each of the 40 isolation cells contains an artefact and story from a former political prisoner.

More about Robben Island

Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden

Stroll through a showcase of South African flora set on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain and overlooking Cape Town. The park features several popular walking trails that lead along and up through the mountains, including a trail to the summit of Table Mountain.

Kirstenbosch was established in 1913 to preserve the local flora and, even today, almost all the species grown are indigenous, including fynbos plants such as proteas, ericas and restios. A large indoor greenhouse exhibits plants from different regions, including savanna, fynbos and karoo.

More about Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden

Two Oceans Aquarium

Meet the denizens of the deep at one of the finest aquariums in the world, home to more than 3,000 live marine specimens.

Swim alongside large, ragged-tooth sharks in the predator exhibit (but only if you hold a PADI Open Water Certificate), explore the five-story kelp forest, get hands on with shells and anemones in the touch pool, see pulsating moon jellies and spider crabs, and check out the endangered jackass penguins.

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Boulders Beach

This boulder-strewn white-sand beach is famous for its resident colony of around 3000 African penguins, which inhabit a fenced-off section of the beach easily seen from the two viewing platforms. Nearby are several idyllic secluded beaches edging small coves framed by giant granite boulders.

The waters here are two to three degrees warmer than on the Atlantic coast and offer excellent snorkelling and swimming for families with children. Boulders Beach is located on the outskirts of Simon's Town, around 30km from Cape Town, a 45-minute drive.

More about Boulders Beach

South African National Gallery

Examine a fascinating collection of South African artworks, paintings and cultural artefacts reflecting South Africa's turbulent history.

Look out for the Ndebele beadwork and knobkierries (fighting sticks). The gallery is considered by many people to be the country's premier art museum.

More about South African National Gallery

Gold of Africa Museum

Gain an insight into the history and artistry of African gold, complete with several glittering exhibitions.

More about Gold of Africa Museum

Best beaches in Cape Town

Cape Town offers a choice of friendly beaches for an unforgettable honeymoon or romantic getaway holiday.

Just remember that the waters of the Atlantic Seaboard around Cape Town are always cold, with average sea temperatures of around 13°C (55°F) during the summer months of November to February.

However, air temperatures average 28°C (82°F) – perfect for sunbathing and beach games.

The best beaches around Cape Town, include…

Camps Bay Beach

Unwind on Cape Town’s most exclusive beach, an 80m-wide, 750m-long white-sand beach that shelves into a picturesque bay framed by wave-lashed rocky headlands.

Pick your own spot to sunbathe, join a game of Frisbee or volleyball and people-watch the ‘beautiful people’ who flock to the beach ‘to see and be seen’.

Cool off in the tidal pool or with a cold drink at one of the popular bars and restaurants that line the beachfront road, or brave the cold waters and go swimming, surfing and windsurfing.

Facilities include umbrellas and sun loungers for hire, wind-free barbeque spots, toilets and showers. There are no lifeguards on this beach. Victoria Road offers a great choice of bars, gourmet restaurants and nightclubs.

Set between the cold waters of the Atlantic Ocean and a grassy palm-fringed verge that flanks Victoria Road, Camps Bay is overlooked by the dramatic Twelve Apostles at the foot of Table Mountain. The trendy beach is home to some of South Africa’s most expensive real estate.

Camps Bay sits on the Atlantic Seaboard of the Cape Peninsula, around 5km southwest of Cape Town, a 20-minute drive from the city centre.

Clifton Beach

(Atlantic Coast) Pick your own spot to sunbathe on one of four small white-sand beaches that lie separated by large granite boulders.

The largest of the numbered (1 to 4) beaches is a family favourite, around 150m long, while the other beaches are popular with the local singles crowd.

Go swimming in the shallow, wind-sheltered turquoise waters, relax on the beach with friendly locals and watch rainbow-striped paragliders float overhead (from the top of nearby Lion’s Head to land at the Maiden's Cove end of Clifton Beach).

Overlooked by the dramatic Table Mountain, the four beaches are only accessible by climbing down a series of steep steps from the cliff top, where desirable residences cling to hillside slopes overlooking the beach.

Lifeguards are on duty on weekends. Take your own umbrella, food and drinks as there are no facilities.

Clifton Beach is located over the headland from Camps Bay Beach and is around 15 minutes by car from the city centre.

Llandudno Beach

(Atlantic Coast) Unwind on the white sands of this 450m-long beach that shelves into a picture-perfect cove framed by huge granite boulders.

Sunbathe on the soft white sand, go swimming at the southern end of the beach and enjoy surfing and body boarding at the northern end.

Bring your own umbrella, food and drinks, as there are no facilities on the beach, except for lifeguards. Picturesque Llandudno Beach – perfect for viewing sunsets – lies beneath a bush-covered rocky hillside overlooked by nearby Mount Rhodes.

The beach sits at the end of a narrow road that winds through an exclusive suburb, around 20km from Cape Town.

Sandy Bay

(Atlantic Coast) Get an all-over tan on Cape Town’s unofficial nudist beach, which is framed by picture-perfect rocky coves and backed by wild sand dunes and mountain slopes.

Access is by a 20-minute walk from the nearest car park or by clambering across rocks from nearby Llandudno Beach. Sandy Bay is also popular with gay men.

Hout Bay Beach

(Atlantic Coast) Pick your own spot to sunbathe and swim on this kilometre-long crescent of white sand facing the sheltered waters of Hout Bay.

Surrounded by picturesque mountain peaks and edged by bush-covered sand dunes, this family friendly beach offers safe swimming close to a choice of bars, restaurants and shops, which are in the adjacent fishing village of Hout Bay.

Come for a day, relax on the beach and enjoy delicious seafood at Mariner's Wharf. Or join a cruise from Hout Bay's harbour to see the Cape fur seal colony on Duiker Island.

Blouberg Beach

(Atlantic Coast) Discover majestic views of Cape Town and Table Mountain from two beaches.

The 600m-long crescent of white sand at Big Bay is ideal for surfing, kite surfing and windsurfing, while a 400m-long beach shelves into the shallow waters of reef-protected Little Bay, framed by wave-lashed rocks, and best visited for sunbathing and family outings.

The long, seemingly endless strands on either side of Big and Small bays are the perfect spots for long walks and beachcombing.

Or relax with a cocktail on the terrace of the Blue Peter Hotel, which sits on a rocky plateau overlooking the beaches with views across the bay to distant Table Mountain – a perfect spot to enjoy the sunset.

Blouberg Beach is located on the other side of Table Bay, around 25km north of Cape Town.

Noordhoek Beach

(Atlantic Coast) This 300m-wide, 4km-long white-sand beach is also known as Long Beach and is perfect for horse riding, kite flying, jogging, walking and surfing.

There are neither lifeguards nor facilities on the beach.

Framed by mountain peaks, Noordhoek is one of the Cape’s wildest beaches, sitting around 34km south of Cape Town.

Muizenberg Beach

(Atlantic Coast) Pick your own spot to sunbathe and swim on this kilometre-long beach that stretches along the bay for more than 10km.

Go swimming in the calm and shallow waters, learn how to surf in the gentle waves or go beachcombing and walking on this long beach.

Facilities at this one-time fashionable beach resort include a swimming pool, waterslides, changing rooms, toilets, showers, lifeguards and a choice of small cafes.

Enjoy fresh seafood at one of the restaurants that are housed in old Art Deco beachfront buildings.

Muizenberg Beach is 27km from Cape Town, approximately a 25-minute drive.

Fish Hoek Beach

(False Bay) Unwind on the white sand of this 1.7km-long beach that shelves into the sheltered waters of Fish Hoek Bay, framed by soaring mountain peaks.

This is regarded as one of the safest swimming beaches in the Cape Town area, with calm clear water. Surfing and boogie boarding are also popular here. The middle section of the beach is used as a launch spot for catamarans and windsurfers.

Stroll the scenic Jager's Walk from the south side of Fish Hoek Beach to Sunny Cove; this wheelchair-friendly pathway meanders through a rocky seascape with access to sheltered natural rock pools that are perfect for swimming.

Facilities include a children's playground, seats and a cafe. The town is just a stroll away and offers a choice of restaurants for hungry beachgoers. Look out for whales during calving season from August to November.

Although it does not seem to perturb the locals much, sharks are sighted fairly often in the bay between September and March; shark spotters are employed to warn swimmers.

Fish Hoek is just south of Muizenberg, a half-hour drive from Cape Town.

Boulders Beach

(False Bay) This boulder-strewn white-sand beach is famous for its resident colony of around 3000 African penguins, which inhabit a fenced-off section of the beach easily seen from the two viewing platforms.

Nearby are several idyllic secluded beaches edging small coves framed by giant granite boulders.

The waters here are two to three degrees warmer than on the Atlantic coast and offer excellent snorkelling and swimming for families with children.

Boulders Beach is located on the outskirts of Simon's Town, around 30km from Cape Town, a 45-minute drive.

More about Boulders Beach

Where to stay in Cape Town

Cape Town offers an excellent choice of accommodation options to suit most honeymoon budgets, including the following hotels…

One & Only Cape Town
Location: V & A Waterfront, Cape Town
Rating: 5-star
Ave nightly price: AUD839 per room
Description: Situated on the V&A Waterfront, this luxury hotel boasts panoramic views of Table Mountain. It has an outdoor infinity pool, a sun-lounger terrace and a spa. Free Wi-Fi is available. One&Only Cape Town offers elegant rooms and suites with a private balcony. Rooms also have a tea/coffee maker and a TV with a DVD player. Each marble bathroom features a rain shower and a separate bath. Guests can unwind at the spa, which offers a sauna and a range of massages. There is also a modern gym, and a movie and game lounge. The hotel has several dining options such as the Nobu restaurant which serves Japanese cuisine. There are a range of activities for children including fully-supervised programs, a computer area, and a secure garden area. One&Only is just a 2 km walk from the Cape Town International Convention Center and 22 km from Cape Town International Airport.

Cape Grace Hotel & Spa
Location:West Quay, V & A Waterfront, Cape Town
Rating: 5-star
Ave nightly price: AUD682 per room
Description: Situated in the centre of Cape Town's vibrant V&A Waterfront, this boutique hotel offers elegant rooms with limited free Wi-Fi. Facilities include a spa with panoramic views of Table Mountain and the marina. Rooms at Cape Grace Hotel have a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, an iPod docking station, a private bar with deli snacks, and an en suite marble bathroom. All rooms have views of the yacht marina or the harbour. The award-winning Signal Restaurant serves South African cuisine and international dishes, made with fresh seasonal products. Bascule Bar at Cape Grace features over 500 whiskies and a number of fine Cape wines. The Cape Grace Spa offers African-inspired treatments, using locally harvested products and ancient methods. The fitness studio features stunning views of the V&A Waterfront. From Cape Grace, it is a 5-minute drive to the Metropolitan Golf Club. Guests can make use of the hotel’s luxury BMW transfer service, which is free within a 10 km radius.

Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel
Location: 76 Orange Street, Cape Town
Rating: 5-star
Ave nightly price: AUD518 per room
Description: Nestled on a lush garden estate in the heart of the city, this luxurious hotel is an icon of Cape Town and committed to excellent 5-star quality and service. Just a stone’s throw from Company Gardens, the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel is a tranquil oasis in the bustling city centre. Enjoy the hotel’s famous afternoon tea on the terrace or have a swim in one of the pools. Extensive wellness facilities, including a tennis court, ensure a truly memorable stay. Each of the Belmond Mount Nelson's accommodation wings has its own character, with private gardens and facilities. Order in room service and take in the elegance of your room. Marble bathrooms and specially designed furniture make each unit an exclusive retreat after a long day. Guests can dine at the contemporary Planet Restaurant and Bar or enjoy lunch at the interactive Chef's Table, offering fine cuisine and wines. Oasis Bistro serves local and Mediterranean-inspired cuisine. The hotel offers a complimentary shuttle transfer to the V&A Waterfront and the scheduled times are available at the reception. Explore the city’s highlights, including Table Mountain and Robben Island. The multilingual concierge staff is happy to take care of your requests.

The Table Bay Hotel
Location: Quay 6, V & A Waterfront, Cape Town
Rating: 5-star
Ave nightly price: AUD443 per room
Description: The Table Bay Hotel is a 5-star luxury hotel situated at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. It boasts beautiful views of the working harbor, Table Mountain and the Atlantic Ocean. It features a pool and a spa. Each air-conditioned room comes equipped with a minibar, flat-screen satellite TV and tea-and-coffee-making facilities. The private bathroom includes a bath and shower with free toiletries. Enjoy locally inspired and sourced gourmet meals at the Camissa brasserie. The Atlantic Grill serves daily breakfast and high tea is available in the afternoon. The Camelot Spa offers a number of spa treatments, holistic care, laser therapy and a gym. A complimentary shuttle service is available to transport guests within a 5 km radius of the hotel. Free WiFi is available in the hotel rooms. The Cape Town International Airport is a 30-minute drive from the property.

Victoria & Alfred Hotel
Location: Waterfront Pierhead, Cape Town
Rating: 4-star
Ave nightly price: AUD355 per room
Description: Right on the V&A Waterfront, this 4-star hotel offers a walk-in wine cellar and a terrace with a bar. Rooms include LCD TVs and overlook the Alfred Basin or Table Mountain. All rooms, suites and lofts at Hotel Victoria & Alfred have king beds, a minibar and a private bathroom with bathrobes. Free coffee, herbal teas and cookies are also available. Hotel V&A’s OYO Restaurant serves rich breakfast and fine cuisine on a dockside terrace with harbor views. It specializes in seafood and cocktails, and on special nights, guests can enjoy live music performances. The surrounding area provides ample shopping and entertainment opportunities, from craft markets and to movie theaters and amphitheaters. The Robben Island ferry departs from next to the hotel. Guests can use the hotel's pool, which is across the street. Victoria & Alfred Hotel provides 24-hour security, and Wi-Fi and parking are both free of charge.

Out-of-town hotels include the luxurious Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa, which sits perched on a plateau just metres above Atlantic rollers and flanked by the majestic Table Mountain, and the stylish Ellerman House, overlooking the Atlantic in prestigious Bantry Bay.

Best time to honeymoon in Cape Town

The best time to visit Cape Town honeymoon is anytime.

However, the most popular time for holidaymakers is during the summer months between December and March, when the average maximum temperature hovers at 28°C (82°F), and the famous (but often fierce) southeasterly wind known as ‘Cape Doctor’ brings a welcome breeze.

For more climate info: Cape Town Weather Guide

How to get to Cape Town

Cape Town is located on the southern coast of South Africa's Western Cape Province.

The most convenient route to Cape Town is by air to Cape Town International Airport (CPT), located around 18km (11mi) from the city centre.

More information on how to get to Cape Town

More about Cape Town…

Latest update: About Cape Town: 12 July, 2024