But, for this Going Local series, he decided to go for something a little bit different and focused on Cape Town. His choices clearly show his three passions: nature, coffee, and wine. Take a look below and see how it is to travel in South Africa as a local!
Going Local with Callan in Cape Town
The top thing to do in Cape Town, as far as tourists are concerned, is to summit Table Mountain. You can climb up Platteklip Gorge or take the cable car, look at the view and descend. Or… You can take the back route up the Twelve Apostles mountain range, stay the night in a hut on the mountain and hike back down.
There is no running water or electricity, and the signal is nil, but spending the night in nature with a couple of friends is a much better experience I would say. I sometimes continue to trek from the huts to the cable car if I’m feeling particularly lethargic.
Here’s a bit of a fun hike. When people climb Lion’s Head, they almost always start and end at the parking lot. But I like to start in Sea Point, from Ocean View drive, walk along Signal Hill and take the round way up. There’s a really nice cave too if you’re more of an intrepid hiker.
I love wine. The taste, the story, the fact that something is living in a bottle. And all visitors head directly to Stellenbosch for this elixir. But what they don’t know is that even close to central Cape Town is the gorgeous Wellington wine route. My favorite wineries are Doolhof and Ridgeback. But there are also several other great wineries like Rheebokskloof (also a great trail running/MTB course), Dunstone and Diemersfontein.
There’s also an epic waterfall jumping and night camping spot if you drive up the windy Baine’s Kloof pass. You could also spend the day at Spice Route in the Paarl wine region, more like a little village than a winery.
This one is for the digital nomads. You sometimes find solace in the most arbitrary places, and for me, it’s slap bang in the center of the most touristy place in Cape Town, the V&A Waterfront shopping mall. While it’s not on the usual list of places to go for a local, especially in season, there’s a great coffee shop in the biggest book franchise in South Africa, Exclusive Books.
There are nice seats, power sockets, free wifi and a great area for people watching. The coffee is a super dark roast, just how I like it. If you don’t like to have your coffee in a mall, there are a whole bunch of coffee shops in Cape Town. Mostly hipster-type cafes in Bree street and central town, but my choices would be House of Machines, Bean There, Folk Coffee and Ou Meul.
Going Local is a series of interviews that we are doing with people that live and enjoy the city they live. You can read more interviews filled with tips here. And if you want to be featured here, this link will tell you how. We're always looking for more locals to share their favorite spots!