As more and more members of Gen Z journey to the Mother City either to live or simply live it up in what’s arguably one of TikTok’s favourite cities, they’ll likely be met with the same challenges everyone fresh off a flight to Cape Town experiences in that spoilt way – there are simply too many adventure options.
If only there was a pocket guide to shine that sunset lamp light on the must do’s and how to do them… Well, thank the algorithm gods because that’s where this list comes in.
1. Have the brightest pizza experience at I Love The Dough
You’ve just flown across oceans and mountains, and you’re hungry (for adventure, but a meal couldn’t hurt either). You see a brilliant pink light in the distance – you’re simultaneously intrigued and also want to know whether the neon radiance is for sale (for professional reasons). Welcome to I Love The Dough, arguably the most aesthetic pizza parlour in Cape Town. With two locations in town you’ll be charmed with pizza and cocktails that make for the perfect lunch or dinner pairing. And, if you happen to touch down on a First Thursdays, I love the Dough lights up even brighter with groove.
2. Enjoy chocolate quirkiness at My Sugar
If it’s quirky, we’re here for it, and if it’s chocolate, even better. Take a trip to any of the My Sugar spots where you can experience chocolate in the most unique array of colours, shapes and customisations. Your grandma might be confused by your skull-inspired chocolate gift, but we guarantee that your quirky side will nod with approval. Pro-tip: My Sugar cafe in Sea Point is iconic and you can also grab a delicious hot chocolate there.
3. Get thrifty at the hidden gems
We know you’re all about that 70s era, or maybe something a little more Y2K. Other people might think you’re preparing for another themed party, but realistically your thrifted threads have probably become your wardrobe staples. On Kloof Street, Retrostash, Dreamland Vintage and Blood Orange will have you surfing religiously through their thrift picks, adorned with colour and at prices that won’t make your budgeting app wallow in self-pity. Obs is another must-do avenue for the wizards of thrift, with gems like Grand Funk Retro Vintage and Bang Bang Vintage Market. Keep your eyes glued to Thrift Fest too for its moveable fest of all things retro.
4. Make like sushi and roll at the Rollercade
If you haven’t been tempted to get into rollerskating after seeing those amazing rollerskating videos on social media (the ones that make it look super easy) then you need to have a serious conversation with your phone (not that it isn’t listening anyway).
Rollercade at the Waterfront’s Battery Park is the perfect spot to get moving like it’s a 1980s film, boasting beats, skates, and marshals on standby to help you glide with finesse (because it isn’t as easy as the internet says).
- Where: P3, Battery Park, Entrance off Alfred Road or Dock Road
5. Let your plant obsession guide you to Kistenbosch’s Botanical Gardens
If you’re addicted to plants and are convinced that you’re the world’s best plant parent, it’s time for you to meet the overpowered character of all gardens – Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. At Kirstenbosch, you can romanticise your life to the fullest with a picnic at Fynkbos, explore what flora dreams are made of, visit some dinosaur structures and get better acquainted with the Earth this generation will hopefully save.
- Where: Rhodes drive, Newlands
- See more: SANBI
6. Beverage at Blondie
A Kloof Street’s blossoming love, Blondie is one of the newest spots in Cape Town. The best part about Blondie, beyond the warm hues and Princess Diana inspiration, are the kinds of people it attracts. Creative, alternative, bold and unashamedly oneself – Blondie is a spot where freedom flourishes.
7. Paint your own mug and have a cocktail while you’re at it
A craft-focused space, Clay Cafe combines the art of treats like tapas with ceramic painting experiences. Whether ceramic creating is right up your alley, or if you and your go tos are up to learning something new and letting your inner artist bloom, it’s the perfect spot to venture to. Bonus: If you’re worried about making a mess of things, that’s kind of the point. However, you” be guided by a team of those in the know, so your creation can come to life, drenched in expertise.
8. Get hopping to We are Egg
Poised as a “next-generation shopping experience”, We are Egg is an incredible one-stop-shop at Cavendish Square where you can find a melting pot of local and international brands. Sneakers, beauty products, clothes, customisations and food are all on the cards when you decide to hop on over to We are Egg.
9.Have a ‘free’ meal at Two4One Kitchen & Bar
They say Obs has some magic to it, and at this establishment, the spell cast is getting two meals for the price of one, all day, every day. Two4One has quickly become a hot take in Obs for obvious reasons. It’s the perfect urban-esque delight to pop in for a bite with a friend who loves to treat themselves but is tight on money thanks to much of broader Cape Town’s lifestyle costs.
10. Glide with Promenade Mondays
If you love skating and love skating with other humans even more, then joining in on Promenade Mondays is a must. Promenade Mondays happens when all kinds of skaters join forces in Cape Town, and serves as an incredible way to meet new people. As for the actual promenade, Sea Point’s walk of fame sports some of the most gorgeous views in Cape Town where the ocean meets the sky as you glide on by.
11. Enter the artworld with Youngblood Art Gallery
Youngblood Africa offers the kind of space where emerging artists can thrive. You’ll find a lot of contemporary art from up and coming artists at this local favourite, and easily be brushed with inspiration as you explore the different floors filled with its creations.
12. Enjoy an all day breakfast at Butter
For one of the happiest hot chocolates, you’ll ever experience, Butter Cafe on Loop Street is definitely a warm, cheerful and delicious go-to. Serving all-day breakfast, you can pop in to enjoy a delightful hot chocolate with a breakfast of your choice at any time.
13.Dive into a ramen experience at Tjing Tjng
If the recent Ramen craze has got you ready to rumble with ramen, then Tjing Tjing awaits. Easily one of the most aesthetic restaurant houses in Cape Town, Tjing Tjing boasts layers of experiences including its renowned rooftop bar. Going to Tjing Tjing is like teleporting to Japan in all its modern and traditional design adorations – and the food only secures your illusion of being in the breathtaking beyond.
- Where: 165 Longmarket St, Cape Town City Centre
14. Embrace an epic sunset at ‘The Rock’
Signal Hill is known for being one of the most popular sunset spots in Cape Town, but it’s lesser-known sibling, The Rock arguably has competitive views with less crowds. If you’re searching for the sunset road less travelled, the Rock is the perfect spot to end off a day of exploring.
- Where: 405 Ocean View Drive, Bantry Bay
- See more: sit on the rock top and find out!
15. Explore the Crystal Pools hike to find your zen
In a world where everything moves so quickly, sometimes truly enjoying nature’s flow is one of the best things we can do for our mental health. While there are dime a dozen spots in Cape Town to embrace Mother Nature, the Crystal Pools or Steenbras River Gorge in Helderberg should definitely be on your radar. It’s one of the most beautiful waterfall hikes the Cape has to offer, and it’ll definitely put the ‘zen’ back in Gen Z.
- Location: Kogelberg Nature Reserve Trail, Helderberg Rural
- See more: Go explore those crystal pools in real life