The handsome and captivating city of Cape Town is a friendly outdoor playground that attracts couples, families and globe-trotting travellers. With adventures at the heights of Table Mountain, ocean-based activities, nearby vineyards, architectural beauties, and a cultural buzz, Cape Town has plenty to offer holidaymakers.
Located in the Western Cape of South Africa, and sitting in the curve of Table Bay, it is not difficult to see why Cape Town continues to be the nation's top tourist destination.
Cape Town is a sprawling metropolis and its variety of interesting sights and attractions are spread around the city. Choose hotels in Cape Town wisely to base your holiday around the things that appeal to you most.
Cape Town hotels are in huge demand during the peak summer season - between December and February - so it's advisable to book early for this period.
The good news is that there are many types of accommodation in Cape Town, from budget hotels, and four- and five-star luxury hotels, to self-catering apartments and stays among the vineyards of the countryside, on the city outskirts, so you can usually find exactly what you're after.
Many of the hotels in Cape Town are located in the city centre, or the City Bowl, so-called because of the bowl-like valley formed by the surrounding mountains. The area is home to many sights, restaurants and shops, though walking to the Waterfront or Table Mountain is not recommended due to the distance involved. You will find lots of individual hotels run by South Africans across the city - iconic names such as the Mount Nelson and Cape Grace are well known. And there are also properties from international chains such as Radisson Blu, NH Hoteles, Hilton and Holiday Inn Express as well as local chains such as Protea and Southern Sun.
The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront is a very popular tourist area, with large hotels casting shadows on the harbour and a wide range of entertainment, dining and shopping options on the doorstep.
Other accessible seafront options include Green Point, Sea Point and Camps Bay, with Hout Bay tucked away on the other side of Table Mountain and offering a more laidback holiday between the forests and the beaches. Away from the city, the vineyard areas also have beautiful converted historic houses offering rooms.
Top five attractions
The unmistakable flat top of this landmark mountain is easily reached via cable car, or, for the more adventurous, by means of a taxing hike.
Take a ferry to see the island and prison where Nelson Mandela spent most of his years in imprisonment during the Apartheid.
You're in South Africa, one of the best producers of New World wines, so if you like a glass of something red, white or even pink, take a tour of the Winelands of the Western Cape.
Victoria and Alfred Waterfront
Even if you don't book a hotel on the popular Waterfront, this is a pleasant place to spend some time, with plenty of harbour cafés and indoor shopping malls. It's also the place to jump aboard boats to Robben Island, and other destinations.
This rough and rugged promontory, while not the most southerly point in South Africa, will certainly make you feel like you're at the edge of the world. It's best avoided on very windy days.
Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon; April: More than 10,000 runners compete in this race around the Cape Peninsula, finishing in the city with a carnival.
Cape Times V&A Waterfront Wine Affair; May: If you can't make it out to the Winelands, get a harbour-side taster from dozens of wine estates. Many restaurants offer special wine-pairing dinners during this event.
Cape Town International Comedy Festival; September: Laugh out loud at local talent, who take to the stage alongside British comedians and comedy masters from the United States and Canada.