Cape Town - where to stay?

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Oct 1st, 2005, 04:50 PM
  #1
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Cape Town - where to stay?

I'm thinking of visiting SA in late November. Will be traveling alone. Was wondering where to stay in the Cape Town environs that would be reasonably priced, safe and convenient? (Hope I'm not asking for too much!) Are some of the areas such as Sea Point & 3 Anchor Bay, or other similar suburbs convenient to see the important sights and to get into the waterfront area & centre of the city if I don't have a car? I don't want to rent a car due to a vision problem. Also, can I easily travel by public transport to the wine country, Hermanus, etc?

Thanks for any replies.
Aunt_A is offline  
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Oct 1st, 2005, 08:59 PM
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We were in Cape Town July 2004. Stayed at Breakwater Lodge, which is across the road from the waterfront. Had nice restaurant there as well. Different types of rooms are available. Very safe. It was an old prison, now it is part university and part lodge. We would stay there again. You can also book different day trips from the lodge which we did. I think i found it under bootsnall website.
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Oct 2nd, 2005, 05:13 AM
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Hello,

Take a look on the Portfolio Collection website, www.portfoliocollection.com -- there is a wonderful selection of B&Bs, guesthouses, and boutique hotels for all budgets. I spent a month in SA staying in Portfolio properties and I was never disappointed.

If you won't have a car, you should not stay on the coast or in the southern suburbs (e.g. Claremont and Constantia) as those areas are quite far from the sights in the centre of town and you would really need a car to get back and forth.

I would suggest a place in one of the City Bowl suburbs -- they are quite conveniently located for the musuems and other sights. Try places in Gardens, Tamboerskloof, or Green Point. Rikki's offer a great, low cost public transportation option; taxis are also plentiful.

I would advise against using public transportation to get to the wine country. This would involve taking the train, and trains in Cape Town are not the safest in the world. Even if you did take the train to the winelands, you would still need a car to get around to the various wineries. Hiring a private guide with a car is not very expensive, and a much better way to see those areas. Selwyn is a private guide in Cape Town who occasionally posts here, and is highly recommended.

Cheers,
Julian
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Oct 2nd, 2005, 05:20 AM
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A resonably priced option is the stilness manor in constantia. they will also proviude transport to the attractions. I suggest this property because it is small and personal, being on your own, you'll be welcomed and looked after, whereas in the hotels you are likely to be"just another" guest.

You will need someone to take you across to the winelands, as the estates are spread around and there really isn't a public scheduled service that runs the route, yet!

There are taxi's that make the run from Cape Town to Hermanus, however these carry the general populace and frequently run with excess passengers making the journey unpleasant and unsafe.

Again I would suggest that you hire someone to run you out there: I do know that Grootbos, which is a stones throw from Hermanus, will pick you up in Cape Town and run you out to their property for a reasonable fare, once there they will take you into the town and arrange sightseeing trips for no extra charge. Maybe that is an option?

Lastly: The vibe in Sea Point has become iffy and is perhaps not that great for a single tourist after dark. I would encourage you to find alternate places to stay if you are not street wise and planning on "hoofing" around the streets.

And yes the taxis are available there and will get you from A-B without a hassle and a small fare.
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Oct 2nd, 2005, 05:30 AM
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On one of my trips, I stayed at The Victoria & Alfred Hotel, which was reasonably priced and is right in the center of the V&A waterfront (you can walk the waterfront, to the boat to Robben Island and into the city). Its a great location, and a very nice hotel.
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Oct 7th, 2005, 03:33 PM
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Aunt_A

Firstly there is no public transport to Hermanus or the winelands (there is a train service from Cape Town to Stellenbosch that I definitely do not recommend you use). I would suggest that what you do is you book yourself onto scheduled group tours so as to experience these areas.

In terms of where to stay the below is a stock answer that I generally advise to visitors BUT ESPECIALLY to you as you will be travelling on your own and you are going to be hit by single supplement costs wherever you go. These costs are seemingly more "gentle" in guesthouses. I ALWAYS recommend that my visitors stay in guesthouses and not hotels. I do this because owners of South African guesthouses are generally marvelous hosts. The ones that I use as a tour guide definitely are as such. In your case as a single traveller the facility of having happy Capetonians to advise you such as guesthouse hosts could be a very handy factor. Bear in mind that guesthouses represent excellent accommodation that is much more personalized at MUCH better rates than hotels. Guesthouses are marvelous venues to stay in and their rate also includes a fantastic breakfast. At most guesthouses you enjoy this meal in the wonderful, friendly breakfast room. When you are in a guesthouse you have total freedom of movement.. Itis a wonderful free and easy style of holidaying. What also is most important is that because of the size of the guesthouse you will NOT be in amongst the hordes of tourists as you might only have a couple of other guests at the guesthouse while you are there. Thus you get great accommodation, personalised attention as well as wonderful value in a very safe place to stay when you reside in guesthouses and that is why I recommend them so highly.

In terms of guesthouse (B&B) accommodation at a good price I would suggest the following places:

Craigrownie Guesthouse
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http://www.craigrowniehse.co.za/

Wonderful venue. Well appointed. Friendly staff. Near the sea. Fantastic breakfast. A short taxi or bus ride away from all. Away from all the action yet close to it. A new facility at the guesthouse is a free broadband internet connection.


Avanti.
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www.avanti.co.za

Tried and tested ranking amongst the best value for money in Cape Town. HIGHLY recommended. Very close to a bus service that will take you back and forth to the Waterfront.


Albatross Guesthouse
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http://www.albatrossct.co.za/

Sister to Avanti. Well located. Excellently priced. Perfectly safe. Excellent host with very clean well appointed rooms. Also Very close to a bus service that will take you back and forth to the Waterfront.



The Bay Atlantic
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http://www.thebayatlantic.com/Default.htm

Smallish rooms but wonderfully located in a safe area in Camps Bay. Magnificent sea views and fabulous swimming pool. Hosts are also very friendly. You will need to use taxis to and from this venue. Please remember that taxis in Cape Town are efficient and reasonable in price.



Davids
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http://www.davids.co.za/

Wonderful venue with fantastic hosts. Close to city as well as the Green Point strip where there are many restaurants. Well appointed and has to be amongst the best value in Cape Town. Taxi will be needed to get back and forth. Highly recommended.


Cape Standard
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http://www.capestandard.co.za/home.htm

Well located. Lovely guesthouse with super friendly host. Great value for money and certainly not expensive. Rooms are done up in a rustic manner with all conveniences available. Great breakfast area. Taxi will be needed to get back and forth.

OK Aunt_A I hope the above helps you in puting your whole Cape Town travel plan together.

Enjoy our city when you visit us.

Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa

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Oct 8th, 2005, 12:01 PM
  #7
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Thanks everyone for the responses and advice, especially Selwyn, who must've spent an hour typing his reply! I'm sorry to say that I've decided not to visit SA right now. I'm going to wait till I have someone to do it with, so that I will be comfortable renting a car and seeing everything I want to. It's too long a trip from the US to make to just visit Capetown, even though I know I'll love that city! And if I have to start taking tours (which I tend to be allergic to) it'll run up the cost to above my budget. Perhaps next Spring or Fall this will fall into place for me. I'm going to save Selwyn's B & B recommendations so as to have them when another opportunity presents itself. So, instead, I'm going to head off to Israel & a visit to Petra in Jordan, where the transportation infrastructure is such that getting around is easy & affordable.

Thanks again.
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