Top Five Things To Do in Wintery Cape Town

It's that part of the Cape Town winter when you need to stop wondering how so-and-so can afford to be in Europe for an entire month, and get busy enjoying the winter wonders right on your stoep.

In fact, the Mother City is one of the most wondrous places to experience winter on Earth. Compared to the Northern hemisphere, it's not that that cold, foreign coin goes far, and it's the only time hellishly busy tourist spots transform into an introvert explorer's heaven. Here are five of our favourite things to do in wintery Cape Town:


1. Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa

Step inside the crème de la crème of not-for-profit African art institutions, sans the slug of high season crowds. Dubbed ‘Best overall Cultural Destination of the Year’ at the 2018 Leading Culture Destination Awards, as well as featured as one of TIME Magazine’s Top 100 destinations, the Zeitz MOCAA will be a treat whether you're Cape Town born and bred or not.

Beyond the permanent collections, you can bank on no two visits being the same. Zeitz features a regular rotation of the most awe-inspiring contemporary African art in the world, across more than 100 galleries, featuring more than 50 African artists. Did we mentioned there's also a Centre for Art Education, the Centre for the Moving Image, and a project space for emerging artists?

  • Location: Silo District, S Arm Road, V&A Waterfont, Cape Town
  • Opening times: Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 6pm with last entry at 5.30pm
  • Contact details: | 087 350 4777 |
  • Tickets: R210 per adult | Children under 18 receive free entry (Please bring some form of ID for teens) | Tickets can be bought via Webtickets

Free Access:

  • Free entry for under 18s on presentation of ID.
  • Stop by on any day during your birthday month (Tuesdays – Sundays), show your valid South African ID or African passport reflecting your birth date and your day of fun at the museum will be entirely free.
  • Free entry every Wednesday from 10am to 1pm for all African citizens on representation of your South African ID or African passport.


2. Indulge in Royal Tea fit for royalty at the Silo Hotel's The Granary Café

Just two skips from Zeitz is The Silo Hotel, an architectural masterpiece whose sixth floor houses the The Granary Café. Here, you will find a pretty-as-a-postcard table setting at the foot of towering, convex, geometric glass windows, with chest-caving views of the Cape, rain or shine.

If you fancy yourself a chef-grade finger sandwich and a scone you won't soon forget, you absolutely must spend a winter's day savouring a Royal Tea. Expect a selection of petit gateaux and other-worldly teatime treats, sweet and savoury, that are nothing short of a testament to their pastry chef’s skills.

  • Location: Silo Square, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
  • Opening times: Monday to Sunday, 12–9:30 pm
  • Contact details: 021 670 0500 
  • Check out the menus here

We've also got a pretty splendiferous selection of teas and artisanal sweets, if you so happen to be reading this on a day that you're too lazy to leave the house. 


3. Something's fishy at the Two Oceans Aquarium

We speak for ourselves, of course, but we have to confidently claim that absolutely no one is too old for the Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront. (Also just another hop down the road from the previous two.)

Make it a family affair or get the gang together for a (legally) blazed up seascape experience. It's home to several (if not all) of the Western Cape’s magical marine life species, track-stopping exhibits, and a bunch of experiences sure to fill you with childlike wonder. 

Some of our must-see stops include:

  • The Penguin Exhibit
  • Kelp Forest Exhibit
  • I&J Ocean Exhibit
  • Save Our Seas Foundation Shark Exhibit
  • The Diversity Gallery (the Diversity Gallery aims to showcase the incredible diversity of marine life found in the Indian and Atlantic Oceans)
  • The Touch Pool & Microscope Exhibits (this remarkable exhibit gives you the opportunity to look through a microscope and see marine life species like you never have before)
  • Location: Dock Road, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
  • Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 09:30 to 18:00
  • Contact details: 021 418 3823 | 021 418 3952 |
  • Website:
  • Click here to bag a ticket or find out more about what's on offer.


4. Go back in time at The Labia Theatre

Respectfully, forget Nu Metro. If you haven't experienced the archaic majesty of The Labia – in Cape Town winter, no less – you haven't lived! The Labia Theatre is the oldest independent art-repertory cinema in South Africa. Originally an Italian Embassy ballroom, it was opened by Princess Labia in May 1949 as a theatre for live performances.

For the last fourty years, it's been the cinema choice of indie film lovers, hipsters, and suckers for the warmth of old school vibes. However, you won't have to worry about crappy film quality: thanks to the assistance of Crowd Funding and the Digital Gold Fund, the Labia was able to convert to digital projection. Bring on the best of both worlds: superior picture/sound and authentic, old-cinema charm.

Our favourite part? There's a fully-stocked bar (cocktails! beers! spirits!), a romantic-as-hell terrace, and banging dinner options that you can take right into the movie house. Did someone say winter date night of dreams?

  • Location: 68 Orange St, Gardens, Cape Town
  • Contact details: 021 424 5927
  • Book your tickets here


5. Get your head in the clouds on the Aerial Cableway ride up Table Mountain

Okay, we know it's the most touristy of the lot but hear us out: winter is the best time to enjoy the natural world wonder that is Table Mountain. No blistering heat. No standing in queues so long they put people to sleep. No crowds. Just you and the wild, wild mountain. Think slowly gliding through the air, being ensconced by unbridled views of a moody coastline and a beautifully angry winter's sky. Heck, it might even be icy blue with not a cloud in sight. Winters upon the Mother City's mountain be like both sometimes.

We recommend packing yourself and a loved one a young picnic, flask coffee and scones; you know, the essentials. Definitely take your time ambling around the top if the weather permits. You could even hike up and take the ride down. Whatever you do, make the most of the rare serenity the smashing season of winter affords. 

  • Location: Camps Bay, Cape Town
  • Visit the website to make sure of operating hours (they are weather dependent) and book your ticket here.


Looking for more ways to entertain yourself this winter? We have cocktail and boozy dessert recipes for days, with all the ingredients delivered. No need to leave the house. Check them out here

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