Western Cape – the perfect family destination in South Africa
Situated on the tip of Africa is South Africa, the most developed nation on the African continent and to date, the only African country to have hosted the FIFA World Cup. While the entire country has something to offer visitors from overseas, the real gem of the land is the Western Cape and for so many reasons.
It offers a landscape that is as green as it can be brown and arid, with world-class wine farms, quaint coastal villages, wildlife like no other, all the creature comforts of a first-world society, and let’s not forget friendly locals. It all adds up to the perfect family destination.
If you’re going for a visit to the Western Cape, you may not even have to pay too much attention to comparing ZAR to Dollars and Euros as South Africa is an affordable option for families travelling from both Europe and USA. The South African rand is in fact incredibly accommodating of all the major currencies, making it both a beautiful and an affordable destination.
So, if you are coming to South Africa, odds are you’ll be headed to the Western Cape. Here are some destinations you and your family are sure to enjoy.
Situated just over 140 Km from Cape Town, Greyton is truly something to behold. You and your family will feel as if you’ve stepped inside a painting thanks to its picturesque streets and houses. You might even feel as if you and your family are all starring in a period drama. Historical houses surrounded by lush vegetation all add to a character that will be hard to place, but impossible to forget.
Like many towns in South Africa and the Western Cape, Greyton has a rich and complex history going all the way back to the original inhabitants – the Hassequas khoikhoi tribe and then moving on to the arrival of the British and the establishment of the town way back in 1854. Greyton is close enough to Cape Town to make a day trip of it or to overnight.
The beauty of Cape Town and the greater Western Cape is that within minutes you can dramatically change locations and be surrounded by absolute beauty. Hout Bay, or the republic of Hout Bay as the locals like to call it, is a seaside neighbourhood and fishing village situated a mere 19 km’s outside of Cape Town. The area itself can be accessed from the south, the east and the west. This means there are three scenic roads to take, each filled with its own fantastic amenities.
There’s the coastal road from the city centre, the one that leads in through the green suburbs of Constantia, and finally there’s Chapman’s peak, an internationally recognised coastal road known for its slew of cyclists and tournaments. Hout Bay itself is eclectic, filled with great seafood restaurants and beautiful sandy beaches.
A 50 km drive from Cape Town will bring you into Stellenbosch, a leafy town with a long history, lots of historic buildings, wine as far as the eye can see and well suited for a visit with your family, including toddlers. Stellenbosch is home to the world-famous Stellenbosch University, which also happens to have one of the best medical schools in the country.
While the town itself has grown exponentially over the years, it retains a quaint quality regardless of its size and residents and visitors alike agree that nothing ever feels far away. Stellenbosch blends modernity with tradition to create a town that is fun and interesting to explore and one with more than its fair of cafés, side streets, restaurants and bustling nightlife. The surrounding wine farms and distilleries are amongst the finest in the world. Stellenbosch is beautiful, convenient, and ideally situated for a day outing from Cape Town or stay even longer.
You’ll find more of our tips for visiting Cape Town with kids over here, as well as this great guide to short trips and weekenders you can try outside of Cape Town covering more of the Western Cape and the west coast of South Africa.