Why Cape Town South Africa Is My New Favorite Destination

by on September 8, 2013 · 22 comments

in South Africa, Sunday Reader Questions, Video Blog Post

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For today’s first Sunday Reader Question, I thought I’d answer a question that I get all the time, which is: What is your favorite destination?

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got a lot of them. I’m a huge fan of Madrid, and I’ve been to all sorts of other exotic, fascinating destinations like the Seychelles, Cambodia and more.

But I have to say that my all-time favorite trip was the one I took this past January to South Africa. I know it’s a long way to fly, but it is definitely worth it! You don’t need a visa for stays of up to 90 days, and the exchange rate makes a trip here reasonably inexpensive, even if you’re going out and doing a ton of things.

Taking the cable car up Table Mountain.

Taking the cable car up Table Mountain.

Plus, Cape Town has a bunch of great points hotels you can choose from, including where I stayed last time, at the Westin and the Hilton.

The Vrede en Lust vineyards in Franschoek - absolutely stunning.

The Vrede en Lust vineyards in Franschhoek, just 45 minutes from Cape Town – absolutely stunning.

I’m currently in Cape Town, and I’ve been having another fantastic time in this great city. Just 45 minutes outside of town you have the world-class wine regions of Stellenbosch and Franschhoek, while nearby you have everything from a gorgeous coastline of rugged beaches to the iconic sight of Table Mountain, and an incredible dining scene with delicious restaurants. It’s almost like a little slice of Europe at the southern tip of Africa.

Security is an issue for some people, but as long as you take the usual precautions you would in any big city, like not venturing down dark streets in areas you don’t know, not flashing money or jewelry around, and just using plain common sense, you should be fine.

I can’t say enough good things about Cape Town and South Africa – it’s the perfect spot for a trip of a lifetime, whether it’s a honeymoon, an anniversary trip, or you just want to get away, you can’t go wrong with South Africa.

For more on what I love about South Africa and all the things I did there, check out my series on my trip from January. Posts include: Come Along With Me To South Africa!Flight Review: South African Airways Business Class JFK-JNBHotel Review: Westin Cape TownTrip Report: Watching African Penguins at Boulders Beach and the Cape of Good HopeCape Town Dining; Hotel Review: Hilton Cape TownHotel Review: 12 Apostles Hotel and Spa Luxury RoomTrekking Up Table Mountain In Cape TownHotel Review: Hyatt Regency JohannesburgTrip Report: South Africa Safari at Savanna Lodge in Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve; Safari Highlights at Sabi Sands Game Reserve in South Africa, 10 Things I Love About South Africa.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • sheldoncooper

    sharp jacket. Mind sharing where you bought it?

  • Tyler Brown

    Agreed! I live in South Africa at the moment…make your way up the coast a bit for some more variety and be sure not to skip the Drakensberg and Blyde River Canyon if you have time! Any safaris planned?

  • Gus

    Reasonably expensive? I found it dirt cheap.

  • 325RF

    One of my favorite places too. I just wish getting there and getting back wasn’t so long and miserable.

  • Jane

    I’m surprised that you find it reasonably expensive. We are going next year and with a 10 rand :1 dollar rate exchange I was hoping it would be fairly inexpensive.

  • JC

    From the context I think that was a typo.

  • thepointsguy

    Typo! “Reasonably inexpensive” is what I meant to say

  • Robert P

    My Honors Geography teacher at OSU loved Capetown

  • Fiscal Phantom

    I’ve really enjoyed reading about – and now seeing – your experiences in South Africa. It does sound like a fantastic place to visit. While you’re there, do you rent a car and drive yourself, or do you hire a driver? Just curious what your driving experiences have been considering you’re a U.S. driver.

  • Lanny

    Was that one of the 12 apostle mountains behind you for the major part of the video? We went there too but I can’t remember the name.

  • Windycityf

    when my flight was landing, I felt I was coming home. Hope to make it my home one day.

  • Michael

    Heading to South Africa as part of my honeymoon next August and using recently acquired Club Carlson points for hotel stay. What do you experts think? Is the Radisson Blu Waterfront worth 50k points/night or is the Park Inn Foreshore at 15k points/night the better option? 35k point difference per night is pretty tough to swallow but on the other hand this is our honeymoon.

  • Romsdeals

    Be smart and don’t wear fancy jewelry and fancy jackets :)

  • Keith

    Hey TPG, if you get a chance, I highly recommend a newish joint–Cafe Royale on Long St. (bougie burgers and shakes). Also, kaskazi kayaks. Their shop is located near greenpoint and the paddle we went on had plenty of dolphins curiously (and quite boldly) inspecting our boats. Plus, the closest you’re likely to get to the smaller whales.

  • Pashito

    That mountain behind him is Lion’s Head, next to Table Mountain. The 12 Apostle is a small range of crags closely packed together, a few miles/km away.

  • Pashito

    You should get a private tour guide – let him/her do the driving while you sit back, watch the view, taste the wines, hear the stories, all hassle free!

  • Tyler Brown

    The most difficult part about driving as an American here is the fact that the country drives on the left side of the road. Otherwise, people are pretty civilized and the roads are good for the most part. If you’re okay being on the left, it’s an easy experience.

  • Tyler Brown

    The exchange rate doesn’t really mean much at the end of the day. Yes, it’s cheaper to tour than Europe but don’t expect Southeast Asia prices. An average sit down meal will still run you about ~$12 USD/per person and gas (petrol) is about $5.50/gallon. Accommodation is reasonable but expect to pay over $75/night in any busy part of the country for something decent.

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  • Jane

    We are going next August as well and booked at the PArk Inn downtown. It had a good rating on Trip Advisor. Radisson Bleu looked amazing but we figured we’d be out everyday.

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