Cape Town is renowned for its world-famous attractions such as Table Mountain and the V&A Waterfront. But there are also many lesser-known destinations, services and secret surprises worth sharing. Networked and in the know, Pam Golding Properties estate agents share their tips on where to go and who to know:
Sea Point estate agents Farrel Kelman, Minette Munitz and Melanie Stavropoulos recommend a visit to the promenade, which now sports new paving, trees, public art and cafes.
Take yourself and your pooch for a walk, or make use of the drop-and-go bike rental company which has a network of stations. (http://upcycles.co.za)
Also on the Atlantic Seaboard, Linda Kagan, Jenny Katz and Iain Konkol share some of their favourite places:
· Drive to the very end of Ocean View Drive and watch the magnificent summer sunsets from Fresnaye Rock – a popular sunset vantage point.
· Visit the open air gym on the Sea Point promenade and enjoy a gym session with a sea view where you will meet new people while training outdoors.
· Visit the Discovery Store in Sea Point which serves as a meeting point for Vitality members to go on runs, cycles and other group activities. A full-time nurse, dietician and biokineticist are on-site as well as financial advisors and consultants. (The Point, 76 Regent Rd, Sea Point | 021 527 1073.)
· Take the 2.6 km Fan Walk, from the city centre to Green Point.
· Visit De Waterkant village and take a walk through this beautiful suburb with its quaint 18th century cottages, cobbled streets and colourful shop fronts. (Part of Green Point, adjacent to the CBD on the south-eastern end of Somerset Road.)
Clifton 4th Beach not only enjoys Blue Flag status, says local agent Annette Hepburn,
but also family-friendly evenings of free music and picture-perfect picnicking. You can also book for a sunset cruise from the Waterfront to 4th Beach and back.
You can also hop on a MyCiti bus with friends and head out to the V&A Waterfront for some shopping, then catch a bus back and choose from a selection of great restaurants in Camps Bay.
Fresnaye agent Moira Ferber insists that the best-kept local secret is Ginger and Lime, the brainchild of Denise Levy, who has a passion for cooking and a love of food. She invites you into her kitchen in Fresnaye for courses, sharing how to prepare, cook and taste the food that has been loving prepared together. (http://www.gingerandlime.co.za).
Upper Fresnaye and Bantry Bay area specilaists Jackie Rosenberg and Janice Toay recommend choosing from the many Waterfront activities such as helicopter rides, harbour boat trips and sunset cruises. Hiking trails on Lions Head are very popular while the Queens, Saunders and Sunset Beaches are the place to go for sun-drenched relaxation or sundowner picnics.
Mouille Point, Waterclub and Waterfront resident agent Paul Levy points out the landmark red and white candy-striped Green Point lighthouse, dating back to 1824. Many people mistakenly refer to this Green Point lighthouse as the Mouille Point lighthouse, but the base of the old Mouille Point lighthouse still stands on the grounds of the Cape Town Hotel School at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology adjacent to the Radisson Hotel. There is a parking boom, but speak to the guard on duty and take a look at this old relic. (Green Point Lighthouse 100 Beach Rd, Mouille Point 021 449 5171| South African Lighthouse Tourism 021 449 2400 | firstname.lastname@example.org)
From Camps Bay, Barbara Rogers and Karin Coetzee recommend the Roundhouse, created as a guard house in 1786. This has enjoyed incarnations as an hotel, dance hall and Lord Charles Somerset’s hunting lodge. The outside dining area offers guests a tapas-style menu in the heart of The Glen, where you can unwind in the sun and enjoy beautiful views over Camps Bay. (http://theroundhouserestaurant.com).
A quaint little bakery Baked Bistro in Bakoven offers freshly-baked breads, good coffee and light meals. (www.bakedbistro.co.za | 8 Victoria Rd, Bakoven | 021 437 0297)
Southern suburbs secrets
Vickie Francis and Heather Turner, area specialists in Newlands, recommend collecting pure spring water at the Newlands Brewery spring water collection point (corner of Letterstedt Road and Main Road, Newlands.) Take your bottles or containers and fill up on this legendary elixir free of charge – it’s open daily from 6am to 9pm.
Myrna Duveen and Christiaan Steytler (Bishopscourt) say children love splashing in the stream, clambering over rocks and climbing trees at Bishopscourt Village Park. You’ll find this magical spot at the end of Upper Noreen Avenue. Look out for the green information board situated at the entrance. Oh, and pack a picnic!
Take your family and dogs for a ramble along the beautiful Alphen Trail in Constantia Valley. Park your car on the bend of Alphen Drive off Constantia Main Road and enjoy the lush grass, trees, vistas and the Le Sueur Meadow towards Hohenort.
Don’t have time to cook? Meet ThatGourmetGuy, aka Johan Lückhof. Order delicious family fare such as butter chicken and lasagne or place a special order for a dinner party from his busy Constantia kitchen. (www.facebook.com/ThatGourmetGuy |email@example.com)
Resident agent Lindsay Beck recommends viewing how the under-utilised pavement edge of the Main Road in Westlake has been transformed into a magnificent indigenous garden. This is a working partnership with the City of Cape Town, local business and Zandvlei Trust. (www.zandvleitrust.org.za)
Zandvlei Estuary Nature Reserve is situated at the only functioning estuary on the False Bay coast. Take the 1.5km circular walk, where you will find picnic tables and bird hides. Information posters help identification and to broaden your knowledge of endemic birds and animals found here. There is also an environmental education centre. This is also the ideal area to try out yachting, windboard sailing, kite-boarding, canoeing and fishing. (Phone 021 701 754).