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How to Save Water While in Cape Town

  • Showers are only allowed once per day. Quick showers of no more than 90 seconds are being very strongly encouraged. This is really easy to do if you don’t let the water run until it becomes hot. Just jump into the shower to wet your skin, turn off the water while you lather your body and only turn the tap on to rinse your body again.
  • Washing your hair every day is not permitted. You can extend your time between washes by using dry shampoo. Cute “between wash” hairstyles like braids and ponytails are extremely useful. You can also save a ton of water by using a leave-in conditioner instead of rinsing your conditioner out in the shower.
  • Make sure to use a bucket in your shower to catch excess water. Please use this water to flush the toilet. If your hotel or guesthouse hasn’t provided you with a shower bucket, please insist on one. It’s small changes like this that can save literally millions of gallons of water if everyone makes them.
  • “If it’s yellow, let it mellow” is a phrase that is being adopted all across Cape Town – even in public spaces and the workplace.
  • Re-use your towel for the duration of your visit. You are obviously squeaky clean when you get out of the shower, so please hang your towel up to dry instead of leaving it on the floor or bed. Please also go as far as leaving a note in your room asking the hotel/guesthouse staff NOT to supply you with a clean towel.
  • Don’t let the sink run. Use a plug when washing your face instead of letting the tap run. Turn off the tap while you brush your teeth. Use a cup to rinse your mouth out.
  • Re-use your clothes as much as possible and don’t wash an item after every wear. Make sure to check whether something needs to be washed before you throw it into the laundry.
  • Carry hand sanitizer with you. Avoid using water to wash your hands as much as possible.

Consider the people of Cape Town and how they are going to manage once you return home. These changes might seem like an effort, but being a responsible tourist is absolutely vital.

Introducing this amazing city

Ready to see it all? Here are the top things to do in Cape Town

Days 1-3: Cape Town

Fly into Cape Town International Airport

You’ll want to devote at least three days in Cape Town to explore. The best way to start your trip is with a scenic helicopter flight over the city and southwest coast to get inspired.

Then, start the day in my favorite neighborhood, Woodstock, to explore the local cafes and shops. Be sure to check out the street art along the way.

In the heart of Woodstock, there’s the legendary Old Biscuit Mill Market. With day and night markets, workshop spaces, farm stalls, foodie hot spots, African ceramics, and so much more, you can’t miss this place.

Tip: After you’ve worked up an appetite, you have to try traditional braai (barbecue).

Another must-visit neighborhood is Bo-Kaap. Formally known as the Malay Quarter, this district is a fascinating mash-up rooted in Malaysian, African, and Indian culture. Soak in the vibrant history while you take a walking tour of the area. And don’t miss the cooking classes! This ‘hood does fusion like nowhere else.

You’ll also want one full day to explore Cape Peninsula. Meet the African penguins at Boulders Beach, and then spend the day hiking and taking in the incredible natural beauty.

Days 4-6: 2-Night Safari

Gondwana Game Reserve (Four-hour drive from Cape Town)

The Gondwana Game Reserve is a prime spot to see the Big 5 in their natural habitat. Around every corner, you’ll find African lions, African elephants, African leopards, Cape buffalos, and rhinos.

Kruger National Park (Three-hour flight from Cape Town)

One of the largest game reserves in Africa, Kruger National Park is a top pick. Depending on where you decide to stay for safari, you’ll likely fly to Phalaborwa Airport, Hoedspruit Eastgate Airport or Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport (KMI).

There are a range of eco huts, luxury villas, and campsites to choose from. Some of my favorites reserves in the Kruger are Royal Malewane and Lion Sands Game Reserve.

If you travel through Johannesburg, be sure to extend your layover a day or two! South Africa’s largest city and a forty-minute train ride from Pretoria, Johannesburg is a must-see for any visitor to South Africa.

From the Apartheid Museum to the Botanical Garden to the Wits Art Museum, Johannesburg has an incredibly diverse array of things to do.


Days 10-14

(Option 1) The Garden Route Road Trip

Hermanus, Swellendam, Knysna, Tsitsikamma National Park, Jeffreys Bay, Port Elizabeth

Spend your first night of the Garden Route in Hermanus– the ultimate getaway for locals looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Cape Town. Stay at One Marine Drive in Hermanus for a chill night, then spend the next week stopping along some of South Africa’s best destinations on the Garden Route.

The go-to destination for your next vacation

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