Friday, 26 September 2014 00:00

Cape Town

One of the planet's most breathtaking cities, Cape Town is, by population, the second largest settlement in South Africa. Nature surrounds this multicultural city, which nuzzles between a rugged range of mountains and the sea. For a spectacular overview, hike to the peak of flat-topped Table Mountain, or glide up on the cableway.

The hour-long hike up Lion's Head also provides panoramic city vistas. On Table Mountain's eastern slopes, the magnificent Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens lie within a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Strolling along the waterfront boardwalk, visitors might see whales spouting from the harbor. Penguins waddle along the golden beaches in False Bay, while south of the city, Cape Point is home to abundant wildlife and diverse botanical wonders. One of Cape Town's top attractions is the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront.

Reminiscent of Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, visitors come here to shop, dine, and enjoy the many entertainment venues, including Two Ocean's Aquarium. Camp's Bay, rimmed by beautiful boulder-flanked beaches, offers chic shops and cafes. At sunset, nature lovers stake a spot along spectacular Chapman's Peak Drive in a dusk ritual known as "sundowners" to watch the sun sink slowly into the sea.