Misc. Activities in the Western Cape
Adventure Activities in South Africa
The sheer variety of adventures on offer in South Africa is mind-boggling. Whether you’re an adrenalin junkie or someone for whom extreme adventure is sipping a cocktail on a luxury yacht, you’re spoilt for choice.
Collectors have plenty of boxes to tick. The Bloukrans bungee jump is the highest of its kind in the world, the Pro-Nutro Zip 2000 the longest zipline and Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium has the only stadium swing in the world. There are half a dozen canopy tours, ranging from gentle journeys on which you commune with the birds to terrifyingly fast slides over rocky gorges. You can go skydiving, fly in a fighter jet, run head-first down a multi-storey tower block or take to the skies at dawn in a hot-air balloon.
There are scenic drives over historic passes and along the spectacular coastline, skid pans to test your driving skills, quad-biking in muddy forests or with big game and a range of historic and special interest tours in tractors, steam trains and ferries.
Horse-riding is very popular, but if that’s too tame you can always try riding a camel, an elephant or an ostrich. Mountaineers will find numerous peaks to scale and BASE jump, paraglide, mountain-board or zorb down. In fact, snow-skiing is about the only sport that you won’t find here, but there’s some sandboarding and, if you’re missing winter sports, ice climbing and tobogganing - albeit on an all-weather track!
The extensive coastline offers surfers, sailors and kite-surfers exciting big waves and winds. There are adrenalin-pumping speedboat tours and more leisurely cruises to see pelagic birds, sharks, whales and dolphins. Seasonal turtle tours are a highlight of the glorious beaches of northern KwaZulu-Natal, while inland water activities include kloofing (canyoning), black-water tubing and house-boating.
And that’s just the mainstream activities. In South Africa, you’re sure to find something that floats your boat, or sinks your kayak, if that’s the way you prefer it!
Articles & Blogs
Mike Horn for 2019 Absa Cape Epic7:58pm 2 Apr
Britain’s The Telegraph newspaper dubbed South African Mike Horn “the world’s greatest living man”. He is widely held to be the world’s foremost modern day explorer and, as a journalist quipped, “he’s had more adventures than you’ve had hot dinners”.
Those adventures include an unassisted round-the-world trip along the equator with no motorised transport, a trip by foot to the North Pole in the dark, a solo circumnavigation of the Arctic Circle, scaling four of the world’s 8,000-metre plus mountains and more. Right now he is busy tackling his Pole2Pole Expedition, a two-year...
Dieckmann for 2019 Sanlam Cape Mile3:20pm 10 Feb
Pics Tobias Ginsberg
Claudia Dieckmann will once again spearhead a group of swimmers that will take on the Western Cape’s premier open water swim, the 5th annual Sanlam Cape Mile brought to you by Sanlam Investments at the majestic Eikenhof Dam (Elgin-Grabouw Country Club) on Sunday, 17 February 2019 in support of Multiple Sclerosis South Africa (MSSA).
A keen swimmer, Dieckmann was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in 2011 at the age of 31. MS is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that interrupts the flow of information within...
Fairtree Simonsberg Contour 20189:55pm 26 Dec
Entries are now open for the 2018 Fairtree Simonsberg Contour Mountain Bike and Trail Run Stage Race events taking place 3 to 4 February and 10 to 11 February 2018 respectively. Keen trail runners and mountain bikers will once again have the opportunity to race in this unique conservation area right at the start of the annual stage race season.
A total purse of R40 000 will be up for grabs in 2018 with equal prize money to be awarded for the ladies’ and men’s overall winners over two days.
The 2018 Absa Cape Epic3:14pm 19 Nov
From the majestic slopes of Table Mountain to the magnificence of the Grand Finale at Val de Vie Estate with a manic time trial in between – the 2018 Absa Cape Epic route has been created to be balanced and bold.
The total distance of 658km with 13 530m of climbing will include four consecutive days of 100km, a final stage that is far from an easy roll to the line and a race of truth with a Stage 5 time trial that could shake up the race amongst the elites.
“The last Absa Cape Epic to feature a time trial was in 2010,” said Race Director Kati Csak of the 39km (1430m of climbing...
Expedition Africa 20182:59pm 8 Oct
Preparations for one of the world’s most prominent adventure races coming to South Africa’s Namaqua West Coast have moved into overdrive following the event’s official launch in the village of Vanrhynsdorp this week. The epic challenge to take place in May next year puts global attention on a region known for its magnificent wilderness and incomparable hospitality when competitors line up for the thrilling start.
Adventure Racing World Series’ Expedition Africa will see teams of athletes at their peak race unsupported across more than 500km of arduous terrain, using disciplines...
Merrell’s GREAT Weekend Invaluable to Expedition Africa Aspirants6:20pm 19 Apr
Pics Carmen Froneman and Graham Bird
By now, everybody is aware that this year’s 520km Expedition Africa, World Series Adventure Race, will be played out in the Garden Route in May 2016. Fifty teams of four will put their bodies and minds to a very big test; attempting to complete the entire route laid out by organisers Kinetic Events, navigating through the wilds on mountain bikes, kayaks and on foot.
Twenty eight South African teams have entered, some of whom have never done expedition...
Shark City6:55pm 20 Aug
Words Will Bendix, pics Alan Van Gysen
Cape Town was forged eons ago when tectonic forces pushed the South American and African continental plates together, crumpling the earth’s crust upwards to build tall mountain ridges and sculpt deep bays. Sanded down by millennia of erosion, the famed Cape Peninsula hangs off the bottom of the African continent and curls into the southern ocean like a crooked index finger. The result today is a virtual island of waves flanked by the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Indian Ocean on the other. Swells from the Roaring Forties slam into the...
Go Skydiving in Cape Town9:30am 5 Aug
Go Skydiving in Cape Town
Robert Peters for Cape Town Tourism
Man is not meant to fly. The words continued to bounce around my head as I made my way out to Mother City Sky Diving. In just over an hour I would be making my first tandem jump and it’s fair to say I was feeling a touch nervous. Okay, so I was terrified…
It is impossible to try and get your head around skydiving, because quite simply, there is nothing to compare it to. I am not a huge fan of flying and while I am not scared of heights, I do not actively seek them out. So why...
Get on a bike to explore the Mother City9:30am 20 May
Get on a bike to explore the Mother City
Robert Peters for Cape Town Tourism
The best way to discover and unlock a city is to hit its streets, pound the pavement and mingle with the locals. Cape Town, naturally, has a variety of tours to help you get to know the city, and few cover as much ground as AWOL Tours Cape Town City Cycle Tour.
For me the guide makes – or breaks – a tour. Fortunately then, we got Mark for our visit into the city. Apart from being knowledgeable of the Mother City’s long and storied history, he was always quick...
Beach Trails9:55pm 14 Oct
Words & pics Shan Routledge
Ever dreamt about flying? About watching the ground flash beneath you and the wind whip through your hair? About the salt stinging your face and your heart pounding in your ears? You must be dreaming about the feeling of riding a horse along the beach, about feeling free.
Cape Town is blessed with some of the most beautiful beaches in the world and I am constantly looking for different ways to enjoy them. And for my money there’s no better way to enjoy them than horseback riding on the beach.
No-Work-Wednesday6:30am 17 Sep
Enjoy an action-packed #lovecapetown adventure on no-work-Wednesday
Leonie Mollentze for Cape Town Tourism
Say goodbye to the Hump Day blues and hello to a day of freedom and fun!
Forgot about your pasella day off this coming Wednesday for Heritage Day? We will show you how you can #lovecapetown from morning to sunset, doing the action-packed fun things you can only dream about when you're stuck in the office...
BREAKFAST HIKE UP TABLE MOUNTAIN
Pack a breakfast picnic, put on your hiking shoes and take...
Free Ways to Exercise in Cape Town6:30am 21 May
Free Ways to Exercise in Cape Town
Alessandro Candotti for Cape Town Tourism
It’s time to get out of the office into the sunlight, escape your emails, talk to real people and breathe real air. You’ve heard that exercise can not only make you sexier, it can also help you not develop half the world’s known diseases. You’ve also heard it’s expensive to do properly and that it sucks trying to get out of bed that early. Here are some of Cape Town’s solutions to your problems, all of which are completely free.
1. FREE GYM
The Sea Point...
Nightjar Adventurer 2014 Winners!6:10pm 9 May
It was a stormy winter's eve, and the crowd sat close together for warmth, as they listened to tales of spectacular and seemingly impossible adventure... but the speaker was the Nightjar Adventurer 2014, Ray Chaplin, and impossible is not in his dictionary! Another inspiring talk was delivered by the seemingly unstoppable 2014 Readers' Favourite, Chris Bertish, as well as the wonderful guest speaker, Braam Malherbe.
Nightjar Adventurer 2014: Ray Chaplin completed the first riverboard descent of the Orange river. The 2460km journey was at the time, the second longest riverboarding...
Keep Calm and Do Yoga10:55pm 6 Apr
Keep Calm and Do Yoga
I did the Two Oceans for the first time this year, and I’m not sure if it was the hills, or the fact that I hadn’t trained enough but afterwards I suffered from pains in my knee. So much so that I couldn’t run for a few months. I tried everything from resting to icing but nothing seemed to help. I was tired of doing nothing so when I found out that there was a yoga class nearby I immediately decided to give them a go. The place was Yo Yoga. That was over four months ago and I’m hooked. Not only do I now have a very strong love for yoga but my...
Free things to do in Cape Town11:55am 1 Jan
Free things to do in Cape Town
Lynnette Johns for Cape Town Tourism
The old adage, “there is no such thing as a free lunch” does not ring true in Cape Town. One of the most beautiful cities in the world has much to offer, including a range of activities – for free.
I indulged quite a bit during the festive season and doing things for free sounds really good to me, so here are a few of the cool things you can do in the Mother City for gratis:
It’s summer and the beach beckons. Spend...
Nightjar Travelled6:45am 18 Nov
On Monday 11 November, Garmin organised a helicopter flip to give a few lucky people the chance to try out the new Garmin Virb – a great little action camera. I was very fortunate to be able to cover the morning for Nightjar Travel.
The day started at the NAC Makana heli pad near the V&A Waterfront, where we were given our cameras for the trip and shown how to use them. The Virb is incredibly easy to use – you just slide forward the record button and you’re A-for-away.
Then we had a quick safety briefing, met our pilot for the flip and headed across the tarmac to our ‘bird...
Out and About11:55am 25 Sep
Get out and about in the Mother City this spring
By Shirley de Villiers for Cape Town Tourism
With spring officially sprung in Cape Town, it’s time to dust off your sun hat, slap on some sunscreen and set out to explore some of the city’s spectacular outdoor offerings.
There is loads on offer for adrenalin junkies. Just 40 minutes from the city centre, the white dunes of the Atlantis nature reserve make for a perfect sand-boarding spot – as do the sands of Betty’s Bay, an hour north of the city. With the city’s famed southeaster...
Cape Town Undercover5:55am 24 Jul
Cape Town market browsing under cover
Sachiko Okada for Cape Town Tourism
Everything I love about winter, including the familiar comforts of Sunday lunch at Mom's and an earnest raid through Grandmother's closet, I can find while browsing through these indoor markets of Cape Town:
CITY BOWL MARKET
The historical building that hosts the market is filled with delicious smells and a bustling variety of foodies, fashionistas and families who sample their way around cosy stalls. As a self-professed macaroon...
Skydiving at 96!4:55am 3 Jul
How to skydive at 96, and other life lessons
Lynnette Johns for Cape Town Tourism
Everyone needs purpose in their lives, something to which to strive. It may be a career, taking care of your family or loving your city. For Georgina Harwood, it is all three. Born in 1915 – yes, that's almost 100 years ago – Harwood has always stood out. One of a handful of women who went to university during the 1930s, she was a career woman, still single until the ripe old age of 28, then a devoted wife and mother and now, a two time sky diver in her 90s....