Discover some of South Africa’s best wine estates, historical landmarks, foodie havens and picturesque accommodations in Cape Town’s Helderberg region.
The area, which includes Gordon’s Bay, Strand, Somerset West and Macassar, boasts spectacular sights and attractions that will leave you spellbound.
Here are some towns to check out when you visit The Helderberg Region:
Located 45 minutes from the Cape Town City Bowl, Gordon’s Bay is a quiet beach town boasting some of the best sunsets you’ll ever see. It is an exciting destination that is truly unique in South Africa. One of the reasons for this is the fact that it boasts not one, but two stunning harbours! Visitors can marvel at the picturesque Gordon’s Bay Harbour, as well as the Blue Flag-rated Harbour Island Marina. This marina is a sight to behold, with large cruisers and other sea craft safely moored, providing an exciting backdrop for seaside dining and sipping on the excellent local wines.
Gordon’s Bay is most famous for its picturesque beaches (namely Bikini Beach and Main Beach), countless fish and chips spots, seaside views, the Crystal Pools hiking trail that leads to gorgeous natural rock pools, picnic spots, quirky shops, and the iconic Clarens Drive – one of the most scenic coastal routes in the world.
Strand (meaning beach in Afrikaans) is a seaside town with a stunning long beach and a perfect stop for swimming, sunbathing, and beach activities.
Surfing and the many surfers who frequent Strand have imbued the seaside town with a laidback culture. “The Pipe” is a specially designated surfing area famous for its waves. If you are lucky, you may even share the waves with dolphins.
Strand also offers other thrilling water sports such as board sailing, powerboating, and paddle skiing. The town’s promenade features a mix of restaurants, cafes, and shops for those who want to unwind in a picturesque setting. Visitors can also enjoy a trip to the town’s main beach called Melkbaai, hailed as one of the safest bathing areas in the country. Strand also offers many family-friendly activities, including a water park, mini-golf, and a tidal pool at Harmony Park. A wide variety of organised sports is available, including an internationally rated golf course, tennis courts, rugby fields, and squash clubs.
Nestled between the Helderberg Mountains and the ocean, Somerset West offers an unbeatable combination of natural beauty and luxurious living. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or a bit of both, Somerset West has something for everyone.
Take a stroll through the historic town centre and marvel at the well-preserved Cape Dutch architecture, hike at Helderberg Nature Reserve, or indulge in some of the world-renowned wines produced in the area’s many vineyards.
The area also boasts world-class golf courses, art galleries, antique shops, and bespoke spas. If you decide to spend the night, check out its vibrant nightlife, live music shows, and sought-after restaurants and bars.
With its warm climate and friendly locals, Macassar is the perfect destination for those seeking an authentic South African experience.
The town, known for its vibrant culture and stunning natural beauty, is located between the Hottentots Holland Mountains and the Indian Ocean, offering a breathtaking backdrop for its visitors. From its sandy beaches to its rolling hills, this attraction showcases a bit of everything.
The town is rich in history, with many historic sites and landmarks to explore. One of the main attractions for Muslim-friendly travel is the Kramat of Sheikh Yusuf Al-Makassari – believed to be the pioneer of Islam in South Africa. Visitors can also learn about the town’s past at the nearby Macassar Pottery Museum or stroll through the charming streets lined with quaint shops and cafes.
For adventure seekers, there’s hiking, surfing, and fishing.
The Lwandle Migrant Museum, off the N2 and en route from Strand to Gordon’s Bay, is dedicated to the history of black migrant workers in South Africa’s apartheid era.
A memorial to the system of migrant labour, single-sex hostels and the control of black workers through the passbook, it is one of only a few museums in South Africa that covers this aspect of our history.
Visitors to Lwandle can also enjoy a walking tour around the township, watch crafters at work, taste traditional beer, and see other historic sites in the community.