20 Free Things to do in Cape Town

Everyone loves saving money while having fun so I thought I would compile a quick list of 20 cool things to do in Cape Town that are free. These are some of the things we enjoy while living here so maybe they will appeal to you too!

Spend time with the animals at DARG

If you want to do something free and worthwhile with your spare time why not got to DARG animal shelter in Hout bay and spend some time with the dogs and cats that are waiting to get adopted. You can volunteer to take the dogs out for walks, help clean or just sit and read a book in the cat sanctuary ( especially the sick cats one ) aod make them feel loved again. You might cry as I do every time I go but you will also make some cute animals super happy! We got our cats from there and they are the best little things ever!

Do a sunrise hike to Wally’s Cave

The light is absolutely perfect from Wally’s cave at sunrise. Wake up early and hike up so you can see the sun creeping in from the side of the cave. A full route guide can be found on Life Of Mike and remember to always be safe while hiking!

Watch the locals feed seals at the Hout Bay Harbour

There are a few local guys in Hout Bay that have become quite a tourist attraction for feeding seals fish right out of their mouths. Usually they ask for a donation to buy more fish if you want to take a photo but feel free to watch from the background. Don’t try this yourself though as these guys know the seals pretty well and have even given them names!

Hike to Oude Schip island

If you are in the mood for an interesting hike with loads of photo ops why not do the trail from the top of the Hout Bay dunes down to the Capella Harvest Shipwreck on Oude Schip Island. Just remember to check the tides before you go as the island is not accessible at high tide! You can check out the full guide to getting there here.

Visit the Squirrels in the Company Gardens

The squirrels at the Company Gardens are quite friendly and have been known to climb oo top of people’s heads or eat nuts straight from their hands. Its just worth it walking through the gorgeous flower lined lanes watching the little guys do their thing.

Take a run on the Sea Point promenade

Exercise is always a good idea and the Sea Point promenade is a very popular spot to go for a run in Cape Town. Gorgeous views on both sides will motivate you and best of all it is usually sheltered from the South Easter so no struggling when its windy everywhere else!

Do a wine or olive oil tasting at Tokara

Tokara is only one of the wine farms that do free tastings but if you search around you will find that there are quite a few. The views at Tokara are great though and they also do a free olive oil tasting which is really interesting.

Watch the surfers at Llandudno

One of my favorite places for a picnic, a sunset or just a chill session is on the big rocks at Llandudno beach. Its the perfect vantage point to watch the surfers catch waves in the turquoise water and the views of Little Lions Head are epic as well.

Stroll around the colourful Bo-Kaap

The Bo-Kaap is known for its colourful Cape Malay houses, interesting history and delicious food. These pretty houses in the middle of town definitely stand out and are a favorite spot for tourists and photographers alike. The people are usually very friendly but do remember these are people actual homes so don’t go too crazy with the photo taking!

Do a sunset hike up Lions Head

This is definitely on the bucket list of almost every person that visits Cape Town and its not difficult to see why. Uninterrupted 360 views of Cape Town can be enjoyed from the top. Start early and relax at the top while you watch the sun set over the Atlantic in Camps Bay. Its even better when the South Easter is blowing and the clouds billowing over the mountain turn bright pink! Just remember to take all your rubbish with you when you head back down again.

Visit the Kommetjie Slangkop Lighthouse
Slangkop lighthouse is the tallest cast iron lighthouse along the South African coast but thats not the only reason it draws tourists and photographers alike. The pretty wooden walkways a great place to go for a stroll but the lighthouse is also super photogenic. Especially when you take a photo of the reflection from one of the many rock pools.

Take photos at the colourful beach houses in Muizenberg

The iconic beach huts along the white stretch of sand at Muizenberg have been around for quite a while. They were used as bathing boxes in the Victorian times and you can actually still rent them today if you wanted to. The interesting mix of people you will find in Muizenberg will definitely make for a cool day out!

Visit Clifton beach on a hot day

Clifton is one of the most sought after areas to live in Cape Town and its not difficult to see why with its 4 beautiful beaches that are mostly safe guarded from the wind. The bright blue water, white sand and beautiful people makes it a great spot to soak up the sun and feel like you are part of some glitzy movie.

Check out the National Library in Town

If you are into books and beautiful architecture then be sure to visit the National Library in town. Its open from 8-6 and is a great place to brush up your history knowledge a bit.

Explore the tidal pools at Maidens Cove

There are two gorgoeus tidal pools at Maidens cove and on a hot day its the perfect place to swim if you aren’t confident in the ocean. There is also a jungle gym for kids and a hidden sandy beach with rocks on either side.

Hike up Kasteels Poort and check out the reservoirs

Kasteels poort hike is one of my favorite ones to do on the Twelve Apostles. Its one of the easier ones but also extremely beautiful with a diving board rock at the top and access to two of the reservoirs on top of Table Mountain. Start this hike early as it can be brutal in mid day heat and also be careful if the weather has been wet as there is some scrambling close to the top. It takes about an hour and a half including some photo and water stops.

Relax in Green Point Park

Green point park is quite a recent addition to Cape Town and a great one thankfully. It has loads of things to keep the kids occupied with and people love having birthday parties there. Its a great tranquil spot in the city and even has a biodiversity garden. It is open from sunrise till sunset.

Walk along the beach in Noordhoek to the Kakapo shipwreck

This beach is over 8km long and towards the end of it at the Kommetjie side you will find the Kakapo shipwreck. Its quite a distance to cover but totally worth it as the beach itself is picture perfect with breathtaking views.

Watch Kite surfers on a windy day at Blouberg Beach

On a really windy day you can watch what looks like almost hundred of kite boarders surf the waves at Blouberg. Its quite a pretty site with all the colourful kites dancing in the wind with Table Mountain as their majestic background.

Experience a sunset with Table Mountain in the distance

No one should leave the mother city without experiencing it from beaches along the west coast. It is especially beautiful from Derde Steen and it almost looks like its a mountain floating on water. Not an image you would soon forget and most likely one of the most beautiful sights you will ever see!

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15 Comments

  1. February 28, 2017 / 5:43 pm

    I loved Cape Town. Such a lot of different things to do in the city. And a lot that are free!
    I have done quite a few of your list such as watching them feed the seals and of course watching the sunset. But I feel like I have missed out on a lot. I didn’t even know about Bo-Kaap and I really wished I had visited the light house.
    Thanks for sharing such a wide range of free things to do.

  2. February 28, 2017 / 9:30 pm

    Nice read, we too have a rescue pup. South Africa is not on our list to do, but was a interesting read.

  3. March 1, 2017 / 12:42 am

    Wow! I didn’t know that there are so many free things that you can do in Capetown. Also, I’m surprised that hiking up the Lion’s head is for free. I thought there’d be some sort of an entrance fee to get to it. I’m just not quite sure if I’d be able to do it, it looks like a complicated hike. :p

  4. March 1, 2017 / 1:28 am

    Thanks for all these useful tips! I would so love to visit Cape Town one day and something like this would really come in handy! I do wish you posted more pictures though! I’d love to see some of those colorful houses, the ship wreck, and the seals 🙂

  5. March 1, 2017 / 2:43 am

    What a fantastic list of things t do that wont break the bank. I am a big fan of nature and think I would enjoy that sunrise hike. I also love wildlife and what a beautiful thing to play with the shelter animals and help out. Beaches seem amaziing and feeding the seals would be fun. Thanks for this incredible list.

  6. March 1, 2017 / 9:59 am

    Ah I am so glad I found this post. I’m currently trying to work out a budget for a trip to South Africa in Feb next year, and these tips will definitely help me stretch the budget further. The hikes sound amazing, and it really looks like such a beautiful city and surrounds to photograph.

  7. March 1, 2017 / 11:20 am

    I’m dying to visit South Africa and Cape Town – this list isn’t helping my wanderlust! The fact that you were able to put together such a comprehensive list of *free* things to do is so impressive! I’ve bookedmarked this for my trip – whenever that may be.

  8. March 1, 2017 / 12:26 pm

    free wine tasting? sign me up for that! considering how expensive it is to fly from Europe to South Africa, it’s good to know that there are free options for things to do while you’re there. I’d love to watch the locals feed the seals, and I’d love to go for a nice hike to see the sunrise. I’ve always wanted to go to Cape Town and I hope I’ll get to go soon!

  9. March 1, 2017 / 7:02 pm

    Wow – I haven’t yet been to Cape Town but all these free things to do make me want to live there….lol! It’s great that so much nature is so close to town!

  10. March 1, 2017 / 9:06 pm

    Oh, my sweet sweet Cape Town! Take me back! I didn’t get to experience several of these things while I was there, so I’m saving this for my next trip there!

  11. March 2, 2017 / 9:06 am

    Oh my goodness, I would love to visit the squirrels at the Company Gardens! They sound like a lot of fun – squirrels in the UK are not so tame. I really considered Cape Town as expensive, but with lots of free options here I can see how you could make it good value.

  12. March 2, 2017 / 10:18 am

    Cape Town has been on my bucket list for a little while now and this post has made me want to go even more! Would love to head up Table Mountain and personally, I would love to go to the Ultra Festival!

  13. March 5, 2017 / 12:08 pm

    Woow that’s a lot of options! I never thought there is so many free things to do there! I’m definitely going to use that when i go there!

  14. March 6, 2017 / 9:33 am

    Wow so many free things to do in Cape-town!My girlfriend spent a good part of her childhood there and it was very pleasant to read this article with her and see her smile while reminiscing this gorgeous city.Hiking up to table mountain has always been on my list and I would absolutely love to surf on the coast of Cape-town.This list will be very helpful when we visit this city next year.Thanks for sharing.

  15. March 7, 2017 / 1:03 am

    I love squirrels, I want them to climb onto my head! When I reached “watch the surfers at Llandudno” it threw me off and I had to double back and check that it was Cape Town in the title! Llandudno is a Welsh word and a place in Wales so it’s really odd that there’s somewhere in Cape Town with the same name! I wonder why that is.

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