Travel: How to Make the Most of a Weekend in Cape Town!

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Summer is finally here which means it’s time to haul out your sandals and sunnies, dust off your suitcase and head to the beach! That’s right Darlings Cape Town is calling.  The only problem with Cape Town is that there is so much to do – almost too much when you only have a few days, or worse, a short weekend! But fear not because I have put together the most incredible weekend guide to Cape Town that will ensure that you get as much fun as humanly possible into just two nights in the Mother City. So whether you are planning a quick weekend break with the girls or a romantic getaway with your special someone I’ve got you covered!

So before I continue I need to explain that this post is based on a true story – but really, I actually tested this exact itinerary out just for so you know it is all totally doable in two days. So what’s the story? I was contacted by Fuze Tea (a new-ish iced tea brand by the Coca-cola Company) who were looking to hookup with some bloggers from different cities in South Africa in order to encourage them to #TrySomethingNew on their blogs and in turn encourage their readers to try something new too. It sounded like a great opportunity to me and in the end they surprised me with an incredible trip to Cape Town where I got to try all sorts of new stuff including their delicious iced tea (but seriously I drank so much of the stuff over the weekend that I should probably be declared an official brand ambassador now – nudge, nudge). But enough babble, let’s talk about my trip.

Day 1: A Trip to the Winelands and a Bird’s Eye View

Of course no trip to Cape Town is complete without a trip to the winelands, but how about trying something new and different and checking out the winelands in the a way that not many people have before – on a bike? I joined the Fuze Tea team in Stellenbosch for a fabulous wine tasting tour on a mountain bike with Bikes n Wines

We left Cape Town city centre on Saturday morning around 09:30 and arrived just in time for the bike tour at 10:30. The tour starts at the Bikes n Wines headquarters and sees riders join a tour guide on a wine tasting tour of their choice. I was signed up for the Platinum Tour (a 15km ride which includes a visit to three wine farms and a brandy distillery) which was an all day tour (6 hours) but there are also other options like the half-day Vineyard Meander (a 9km tour which includes a visit to two wine farms and a brandy distillery) which might be a better option for those who don’t want to spend the entire afternoon on a bike.
I must be honest, while this tour was absolutely incredible (there really is no better way to take in the beauty of the winelands than on a bike!) and as much I as I love being active and out in nature, I would have preferred to do a shorter tour. The 6-hour tour requires quite a good level of fitness, as there are quite a few hills involved in the tour so make sure you are comfortable on a bike and sitting on a bike seat for 6 hours before booking the full day tour. Of course, you do stop along the way to taste some fabulous wines, tuck into a generous lunch and take some photos but a whole day on a bike is quite intense. If you are the adventurous type then you will LOVE this activity, if not and you still love the idea then book the far more relaxed half-day tour and spend the rest of the afternoon stocking up on wine to take home with you.

The full day tour is R790 per person and includes transport by train from Cape Town to the winelands, bike & helmet rental, a snack en route, all wine tastings and a brandy coffee and chocolate pairing).  A half-day tour is R550 a person. For more information visit the Bikes n Wines website.

After my adventure with Bikes n Wines it was time to head back to Cape Town for yet another fabulous activity. We arrived at the V&A Waterfront, a popular tourist destination but we weren’t there to feed the seagulls or visit one of the many restaurants, no we were there to try something new and check out the Waterfront in a completely different way – from the VIP booth at The Cape Wheel!

We arrived at the wheel at 17:00, just in time to hop into the VIP booth which had been booked for us. The booth needs to be pre-booked as they need time to prep the booth for you and get your bottle of champagne on ice. On all my trips to Cape Town I have never considered buying a ticket to go on the Cape Wheel and have always considered it a bit lame but trust me this is one thing you simply have to try! And, while you’re there why not do it in style? The VIP Booth is an absolutely fabulous experience and guests are spoilt with a comfy VIP lounge where they can wait before they hop into the booth, a bottle of champers, and a half hour flip offering an incredible view of Cape Town and the Waterfront. The wheel is also a great place to take aerial shots of the city and spend some quality time with friends or a special someone as there is nowhere else to go. The experience is R800 for four adults and 1 child and includes your champagne. For more information visit the Cape Wheel website.

Night 1: Arriba - a Mexican Fiesta

We finished our Cape Wheel experience around 18:00 (the nice man controlling it let us stay up a little longer) and then headed back to our hotel for a quick shower before dinner at 19:30. Dinner was just around the corner at a local Mexican restaurant. As far as Mexican restaurants in Cape Town go I know one of the most popular spots to head to is Panchos but we were there to try something new so we headed to Cape Town’s other Mexican hangout, El Burro.

Here I got to indulge in some seriously excellent Mexican food and some even more impressive Frozen Margaritas. Most Mexican restaurants only offer one or two flavours of Frozen Margarita but not El Burro, they offer all their margarita cocktails frozen! We tried at least five different kinds so I can confidently sat that the Orange Mint Margarita (Reposado tequila, Fresh Orange, fresh lime, fresh mint and orange zest – R40 for a glass, R240 for a jug) is the best. I also had the  Butternut Enchilada (cumin, coriander and roasted butternut rolled in flour tortillas, covered with a butternut sauce and topped with queso fresco gratinated and served with a side of greens – R65) which was incredibly delicious! El Burro also has a great bar downstairs called Cabrito where you can keep the party going once the restaurant closes. For more information visit the El Burro website.

Day 2: A Trip to the Nursery

I woke up the next morning a little sad to be leaving but my sadness was short lived as that morning we were off to have brunch somewhere completely different. When travelling to Cape Town there are so many eatery options that it is often difficult to choose. So what do we do? We head somewhere near the beach or the Waterfront. But not today, today we were trying something new and instead headed for brunch in a nursery! We drove to the beautifully leafy suburb of Newlands for brunch at The Gardener’s Cottage restaurant and coffee shop. Here I met with owner of Habits, Jenny Le Roux who told me all about her fabulous online store, the latest Habits collection and their rather ingenious travel magazine (a brand new way to shop for fabulously comfortable travel clothes!) We stopped chatting just long enough to tuck into a delicious brunch and I ordered the Gardener's Style Eggs Benedict with bacon (creamed spinach poached eggs on a herbed croute topped with hollandaise sauce - R66.00) which was absolutely delicious. If you’re looking for somewhere unique to have lunch or breakfast then this is the spot for you! It’s so beautiful and an incredible way to end off a great trip.

For more information on Habits and Jenny Le Roux visit the Habits’ website.

For more information on The Gardeners Cottage visit their website.

From there it was straight to the airport to catch my 15:00 flight back to Joburg. It was an incredible weekend and I must say thank you to Fuze Tea for giving me the opportunity to experience the Mother City in such a new and exciting way. I hope my trip will inspire you try something new on your next trip to Cape Town!

For more information on Fuze Tea visit their website.

You can also keep up to date with their latest news on the Fuze Tea Facebook and Twitter pages and get involved with the #TrySomethingNew Campaign to win some incredible prizes just by trying something new!

By Crystal Espin
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by Crystal

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