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May 21, 2013

Top places to be in Observatory

Quirky Observatory is a must-visit spot in Cape Town. Photo courtesy of kosmoseleevike

Quirky Observatory is the bohemian soul of Cape Town … it is here where you will find some of the Mother City’s most interesting residents and visitors enjoying the sights, sounds and tastes of this whimsical suburb’s numerous cafés, theatres and bars.

Deriving its name from the first Royal Observatory which was located in the area in 1820, Observatory found its footing as a residential and business area in 1916. Known for its characteristic Victorian architectural influences and English street names like Sussex and Norfolk, Observatory is also the location of Groote Schuur Hospital, South Africa’s most famous hospital and the place where the world’s first heart transplant was performed by Professor Chris Barnard in 1967.

In close proximity to the University of Cape Town, Obs, as it’s known to locals, is student central but that’s good news for you – it means you, too, can enjoy the value-for-money entertainment and gourmet options available.

We take a look at the top places to be in Observatory on your next visit to inspirational Cape Town:

Where to stay

Rest your weary heads downs for less at the affordable Green Elephant Backpackers, Rainbow Lodge & Backpackers or Riverview Lodge.

A mere 10-minute drive from the bustling city centre and within walking distance of the Main Road and public transport options, these lodgings are perfect for your stay.

Where to take the kids

If you’re travelling with your little ones, Observatory is the perfect spot for them, too.

Home to the illuminating South African Astronomical Observatory and the entertaining South African National Circus (keep an eye on their website for their open-day shows), there is plenty for tiny visitors to see and do.

Where to eat

Whether you’re sampling the delicious sweet treats at the Queen of Tarts or indulging in a decadent dinner at the lavishly decorated A Touch of Madness, you’re spoilt for choice in the gourmet-savvy Obs.

Where to be entertained

Cape Town’s finest thespians and comedians are born in the bosom of eccentric Obs, so catch the up-and-coming talent at the dramatic Magnet Theatre, or book your tickets for the weekly Jou Ma Se Comedy Club showcase at The River Club,

Where to have a drink

Sundowners are a must in Cape Town and the local Observatory watering hole, Obz Café, with its recently refurbished New York-esque decor, is the ideal place to get your sweet cocktail fix.

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