Cape Town’s Victoria & Albert Waterfront (V&A), attracts roughly 24 million visitors each year, making it one of Africa’s most-visited tourist destinations.
Set between the iconic Table Mountain and Robben Island, it is clear to see why the V&A is at the top of Cape Town’s bucket list of must sees. Whilst being home to many upmarket shops and restaurants, don’t expect a standard “shopping mall” experience, as this magnificent working harbour is much more than that!
never@home is less than a 10 minute walk away from the V&A and with many awesome things to do and see at here, we are confident you are going to love this charming place as much as we do! To ensure you maximise your time, we have narrowed down the long list of things to see and do at the V&A to 7 of our favourite.
Two Oceans Aquarium:
With more than 3,000 different marine creatures for you to see – including sharks, penguins and turtles, the Two Oceans Aquarium is one of the finest in the world. By visiting the aquariums exhibits you will immerse yourself in the wonders of the ocean and learn so much.
The aquarium is fully interactive and we highly recommend that you make the most of the opportunities they offer. Be sure to check out feeding times as it sends whatever is being fed into a feeding frenzy, allowing you to take some great action shot photos.
At an additional cost to the entrance fee, a penguin encounter will allow you to get up close and personal with South Africa’s favourite feathered friends – you might even be lucky enough to have one sit on your lap.
This Victorian Gothic-style clock tower is an iconic feature of the V&A’s working harbour. Built in 1882, it was originally built as the Port Captain’s office. You certainly won’t miss it with its striking red walls.
The Robben Island information centre is also situated next to the clock tower. Here you are able to purchase a ticket to the famous Robben Island prison. From the clock tower you might also be lucky enough to spy a few Cape Fur Seals. These adorably fluffy sea creatures have decided to make the stylish harbour their home rather than off shore islands, like you would normally expect – seals with impeccable taste!
The wheel of excellence:
Whilst being relatively minute compared to it’s big wheel competition, in cities such as London and Paris, this wheel still has one heck of a view! A 20 minute journey in one of the wheels 36 fully-enclosed cabins will take you 50 metres into the sky where you will observe breathtaking panoramic views of Cape Town, Table Mountain and Robben Island. And if you are looking to impress you may want to opt for a VIP cabin which will include a glass of champagne and canapés.
A well worth a visit within the V&A. The Nobel Square is home to four bronze statues of men who all received the Nobel Peace Prize for their achievements. The statues strategically stand in a semicircle a few feet away from each other overlooking the square. Their positioning symbolises the fact that they were men of the people for the people. The statues include; Nelson Mandela, F.W. de Klerk, Desmond Tutu and Albert Luthuli.
The V&A offers a variety of boat tours all offering various services from – champagne tours to sunset cruises or even an excursion on a pirate ship! Our personal favourite is the sunset cruise – nothing beats a sunset over the ocean while sipping on a glass of bubbles! And if you have your lucky charms with you, you might even spot dolphin, whale or penguin during the trip.
We highly recommend you experience the markets at the V&A. The V&A Food Market offers an array of street food served within an authentic market environment, topped off with live music, craft beer and lekker vibes.
The Watershed, also placed at the V&A, is perfect for unique handmade South African souvenirs to take back home with you. From ceramics and furniture to fashion and jewellery – the V&A has you covered!
On Saturdays from 09:00 – 14:00 you may also wonder around the Oranjezicht Market, Granger Bay. We recommend you visit on an empty tummy and fill it with something scrumptious from the wide variety of foods offered at this farmers-style market.
Take a wander:
Finally we recommend you simply taking a wander around the V&A. Half of the V&A’s appeal, is that there is always something new happening- no day is the same.
One day you might come across street performers and an exhilarating exhibition or on another day you might find yourself listening to some awesome African musicians.
Whatever you choose to do at the V&A Waterfront – be sure to embrace the moment and enjoy every second!