From shaded forests to spectacular winelands: these are the Cape’s best picnic spots.
Cool forested valleys, dramatic mountain peaks, verdant botanical gardens, vineyard-carpeted landscapes, and soft white sand beaches: wherever it is you feel most at peace, the Cape boasts a variety of picture-perfect settings in which to reconnect with nature over a lovely meal and perhaps a bottle of local wine. Here are the best of those locations!
Wine farm Picnics
For a totally lazy day spent under the shade of a towering oak tree, head to the Cape’s winelands with its various wine routes. Here, the picnics are gourmet and prepacked for your convenience (booking in advance is almost always required).
- Allée Bleue’s (Groot Drakenstein) “chicnics” have become a signature event in the Cape winelands.
- Grande Provence (Franschhoek) offers Grand Country Picnics on their shaded lawn and sculpture garden.
- Spier (Stellenbosch) serves up farm-style picnic hampers packed with seasonal favourites.
- Buitenverwachting (Constantia) head to the wine cellar or outside on the lawns under the centuries-old trees for a picnic.
- Cape Point Vineyards (Noordhoek) delivers a gorgeous picnic experience in the vineyards.
On those special, yet rare summer days when the notorious south-easterly winds die down, and there isn’t a cold front raining on everyone’s parade, just about any of the Cape’s beaches offer a wonderful venue for a picnic. When the wind does pick up, however, the sheltered coves of Llandudno (near Hout Bay) and Clifton beaches (at the base of Lion’s Head) can be trusted to offer respite, epic sunset views, and soft white sand for a pleasurable picnicking experience.
Mountain and Forest Picnics
Cape Town’s splendiferous mountains and their forested valleys are fantastic venues for outdoor lovers, where every vantage point, pool of shade, or babbling stream is a potential picnic spot.
Table Mountain’s Cable Car is currently running its half-time summer sunset special for locals (email@example.com).
Signal Hill, accessible by car, is a particularly beautiful place to catch the sunset, as is Lion’s Head, but which requires a bit of a slog to the top.
For a shaded forest picnic, Newlands and Tokai forests are popular choices. Further afield, Paarl Mountain Nature Reserve and Silvermine Nature Reserve have a number of picnic spots near spectacular lookouts, large reservoirs, waterfalls, and even caves.
Picnic at Grande Provence
The world-famous Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden (Newlands) has earned its reputation for good reason! Sprawled across the eastern slopes of Table Mountain and home to a colourful abundance of plant and bird species, these botanical gardens are a favourite picnic spot for locals and visitors.
The recently opened Norval Foundation (Steenberg) is also now offering South African themed summer picnics, which guests can enjoy in its astounding sculpture garden.