No matter where you stay in Cape Town, you’re not far from a stunning piece of nature. And if it’s beaches you’re after, base your family either close to the Atlantic Seaboard or on the False Bay side, which is home to a large stretch of Indian Ocean coastline where the water is warm, safe and manned by lifeguards.
Muizenberg beach is famous in surfer circles, but is also a perfect beach for young families as it has a long stretch of shallow waters. Saint James, right next door, has a large tidal pool that toddlers in particular love to explore.
The Atlantic side is where world-famous Camps Bay and Clifton beaches are found and young families enjoying a picnic on these beaches is a frequent sight. These beaches may be beautiful but be warned, the water is extremely cold so perhaps not the best for swimming in.
If your children are happy enough to spend time in the car, scenic drives in the Cape Peninsula will lead to the discovery of many more beaches and coves.
Once your morning spent sunbathing is over, it’s time to start exploring all that Cape Town offers. Young families will love the Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront. Perfectly positioned, it allows for parents and children to spend time getting to know the sea life that lives in the oceans and debunks many of the myths surrounding the shark visitors to Cape Town’s shores. You’ll even be able to watch the shark feed on Sundays and the African penguin feed twice daily, which will be fun for the kids.
As the Waterfront is built right on the harbour, many tour companies offer boat rides. Families can choose from going as far as Robben Island, an important place in the country’s history, or spend just forty minutes cruising in the waters around the bay. Closer to Simonstown, explore the gem stones of South Africa at Scratch Patch.
It wouldn’t be a balanced trip to Cape Town without a visit to the wine region. Many of the farms bend over backwards to welcome young families and understand that little ones are not interested in grape varietals.
But they delight them in other ways. Fairview Wine Test has goats on the premises, which provide countless laughs, and kids can also make cheese.
The large premises of the wine estates are perfect for letting off steam and children are actively encouraged to run around, explore and enjoy the beautiful, rural setting.
Travel time: A flight to Cape Town from London takes around 11 hours and 25 minutes.
Where to stay: There is a plethora of hotels available for visitors to choose from in Cape Town, ranging from budget to luxurious. Parents may want to consider a self-catering apartment as an opportunity to get to know the city better. We suggest trying the Cape View Clifton which has seven luxury deluxe or junior suites to choos from, or the Grand Daddy Hotel and booking the Sugar Daddy Suite, it accommodates two adults and up to three kids for £145 per night.