Romantic Things To Do in Cape Town on a Budget

Words: Jess Spiro

Whether you’re into Valentine’s Day or not, it’s getting to that romantic time of the year. If you’re choosing to forgo the fancy restaurants in search of something a little more original, we’ve got you covered. These are our picks of the most romantic things to do in Cape Town that won’t break the bank if you’re smart about it.

Experience a Sunset over the city from up on Table Mountain

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Table Mountain is nothing short of a wonder, and we’re exceptionally lucky to have it be part of our daily lives. During the summer months, local residents are able to purchase half-price tickets for the sunset special, which means you can ride to the top at 18h00 and settle down with your SO to watch the sunset. It’s the perfect place to reconnect with nature and your special someone.

Budget Busting price: return tickets are half price after 18h00. Pay R145.00 for the sunset special (usually R330 return for an adult) until 28 February. Only valid for SA citizens with a valid ID
LocationTafelberg Rd
Hours: First up, 08h00, last up 19h00, last down 20h00
Contact: 021 424 8181

Take a Romantic Stroll on the Promenade

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Long, endless walks will never not be romantic. You can hold hands while you stroll and discuss your hopes and dreams. Failing that, you can always discuss the weather or the fun characters who parade up and down the prom – of which there are many. Stop in at the Winchester Mansions for a sundowner if the moment grabs you.

Budget-busting price: Free! A cocktail at the Winchester will set you back around R65 at most.

Visit Kirstenbosch Gardens

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Is there anything more romantic than a stroll through a beautiful garden? We think not. Kirstenbosch is the perfect place for a casual date. Walk hand-in-hand through this rich floral kingdom, settle down for a picnic (here are some picnic food ideas) or see the gardens from new heights at from the Boomslang skywalk. It’s also ideal to take a blanket, a picnic basket and a bottle of your favourite vino.

Budget-busting price: Adults: 70 | SA Students (with card): R40 | Children (6 – 17 years): R20 | Under 6 years: Free
Location Rhodes Dr, Newlands, Cape Town,
Hours: Sep-Mar (Summer) Mon-Sun 08h00-19h00 | Apr-Aug (Winter) Mon-Sun 08h00-18h00 | Conservatory Mon-Sun 09h00 -17h00
Contact 021 799 8783

Take a Coastal Drive

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

If you need a reason to remind you why Cape Town is one of the most incredible places in the world, take a drive along to Chapman’s Peak. Better yet, take the drive with your special person.

Put some tunes on, roll down the windows and take a slow drive along one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world. If you need lunch or dinner en route, our pick is The 12 Apostles, The Chapman’s Peak Hotel or Tintswalo Atlantic (check out these restaurants with a view).

Budget Busting price: R 47 for a regular car and your petrol cost!

Pack a Picnic – Beach, Signal Hill or Park

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

BEACHES – There is no shortage of world-class beaches in this town, so why not make the most of them by setting up a fabulous picnic. Some beaches like Bakoven will have braai facilities so you can even cook dinner and then enjoy it with your toes in the sand. Our favourite is tucking into takeaway sushi on a blanket as the sun sets.

Budget Busting Price: free! Check out these ideas for picnic food that you can make yourself.

SIGNAL HILL – If you’re looking to embrace nature and all the mountains that go with it, without having to summit one, a little picnic on Signal is a great low-maintenance romantic activity. Pack a basket of all your favourite treats, spread out a blanket and enjoy the endless views of Cape Town.

Budget Busting price: free! Check out these ideas for picnic food that you can make yourself.
Location  29 Military Rd, Schotsche Kloof, Cape Town, 8001

PARKS – We literally have an endless assortment of parks to choose from in Cape Town, no matter where you are. Check out our list of parks in Cape Town and then pack in your checkered blanket, some tasty food and off you go.

Budget Busting price: Free! Check out these ideas for picnic food that you can make yourself.

Visit the Two Oceans Aquarium

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

There’s something magical about pretending you’re a kid again and the aquarium does just that to us. Grab that special someone and head down the V&A for an unusual and educative day out. End off your day-date with a stroll through the Food Market for a glass of bubbly and some oysters and you’ll have nailed the perfect romantic day.

Budget Busting Price: R185 at the aquarium, R140 for SA students and pensioners with a valid ID or be smart and book online and save – online tickets are discounted. Also, if you’re a Valentine’s birthday baby then you get in for free! (free for SA residents on their birthdays)
LocationDock Rd, V & A Waterfront, Cape Town,
Hours: Monday – Sunday: 09h30 – 18h00
Contact: 021 418 3823

Share an Ice Cream

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Who doesn’t love ice cream? Really, who? And we have so many great places to choose from in the Mother City. Take your BAE to one of our amazing local ice creameries and enjoy a double scoop of something sinful. Our favourites are Unframed, The Creamery, The Dairy Den, Crumbs and Cream and Kristin’s Kickass Ice Cream. Choose your favourite and tuck in – this is a no judgement date and the calories don’t count, so if you can’t choose from all the amazing flavours, go for a third scoop.

45C Kloof Street and at the V&A Food Market |

The Creamery
Shop 4, Newlands Quarter Dean Street, Newlands |  Shop 2, New Cumberland Building Park Road, Mouille Point | Shop 16, Palmyra Junction 4 Palmyra Road, Claremont |

Crumbs and Cream
16 Regent Rd, Sea Point and at the V&A Waterfront |

Kristen’s Kick-ass Ice Cream
Noordhoek Farm Village, Village Lane, Noordhoek |

The Dairy Den
148 Main Rd, Sea Point | Facebook

Visit the Planetarium and Digital Dome

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Why not cosy up to your partner and watch an interactive, informative live show. Have fun and learn more about the oceans, the earth, the human body and more on a virtual tour. It’s where art and technology meet, an unconventional twist on a romantic date under the stars. Promises to be a memorable outing filled with edu-tainment.

Budget-busting price: Adults (19 years and older): R60 | Children, pensioners, SA Students (with card): R30
Location:  25 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town
Hours: Shows Daily. 09h00-17h00
Contact:  021 481 3800

Check out their website to see what shows are on schedule:

Create Your Own Art Piece At Clay Cafe In The City

Have you ever wanted to have your very own Ghost moment like Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze? This is your chance! This cute little studio is an adults focused space where you can be creative, learn new techniques and just have some fun while enjoying great tapas, wine and relaxing.  Have a romantic date with your partner and let your creative juices flow.

Budget-busting price: Studio fee of R40pp, plus the price of your chosen item/s.This includes the cost of your x3 paints, tools you use, firing and glazing process)
Location:  23 Wandel Street, Gardens
Hours: Mon-Fri  14h00-21h30
Contact:  061 917 4191

Spend The Day At World of Birds & Monkey Park

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Why not take a walk through the largest bird sanctuary in Africa, with over 400 different species. Stroll through the 100 aviaries and observe flamingos, canaries, eagles, and more. Get up close and personal with birds indigenous to South Africa. Don’t forget the Monkey Jungle, you and your partner can interact with curious little squirrel monkeys. It’s a fun-filled day for everyone.

Budget-busting price: Adults: R130 | Children (age 3-16): R50 | Pensioners and SA Students (with card): R85
Location:  Wildlife Sanctuary, Valley Road, Hout Bay
Hours: Daily. 09h00-17h00
Contact:  021 790 2730

Share A French Crêpe With Your Loved One

Romantic things to do in cape town

Have a romantic and sweet, literally and figuratively, breakfast or dessert with your partner at Swan Cafe. For the guilty and gluten-free there are sinfully good-for-you savoury buckwheat-based galettes and more yummy treats. This little French-styled cafe and crêperie is transported straight from a Paris sidewalk, it will leave you feeling romantic just by being there. Enjoy a delicious meal that won’t break the bank, so eat up and Bon Appétit!

Budget-busting price:  Crêpe’s run around R65-R120
Location:  Corner Buitenkant & Barrack Street, Zonnebloem
Hours: Mon to Fri: 08h00 -16h00 | Sat: 08h00 -15h00 | Sun: 09h00-13h00
Contact:  079 45 44 758

Take a Bike Ride

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

Don’t own a bike? No problem. You can hire one from Up Cycles located in 4 spots in the Mother City and you and your better half can go careening down the promenade, wind in your hair, carefree. It’s a super fun way to explore.

Hire from the Sea Point Promenade, Camps Bay, the Silo at the V&A and Waterkant Street in the CBD. Why not hire on a Saturday morning from Sea Point and cycle down to the Oranjezicht City Farm Market where you can pick up a coffee, a killer bagel from Kleinskys and even perhaps a chocolate tart to share from The Queen of Tarts. Date bliss.

Budget Busting Price: R80 for an hour, two hours: R120, three hours: R165, half day: R240, full day until sunset: R300
Location: The Sea Point Pavillion (next to the pool) | 5D V&A Silo, V&A Waterfront | 50 Waterkant St, Cape Town | 69 Victoria St, Camps Bay
Hours: Sea Point closes at sunset, Silo 5 (Opens 30 mins after Sea Point/ Closes 30 mins before Sea Point, Camps Bay (Opens 30 mins after Sea Point/ Closes 30 mins before Sea Point), Breakaway Cafe is open Monday to Friday from 06:00 – 17:00 and closed on weekends and public holidays.
Contact: 074 100 9161

Challenge your Significant Other to a game of Putt-Putt

Romantic things to do in Cape Town

It sounds cheesy but there is something nostalgic about a game of putt-putt as a date. If you want the date to continue after the game, you should probably quash your inner competitive spirit and let your partner win.

You can play outdoors on the Sea Point Promenade, or at the V&A Waterfront Indoor course (next to the Scratch Patch).

Budget Busting Price: Mouille Point: R25 | Cave Golf: R20 and R20 deposit for your putter
Location: Mouille Point Putt Putt Beach Road, Mouille Point | Cave Golf 1 Dock Rd, V & A Waterfront, Cape Town
Hours: Everyday, closes at 21h00 | Monday – Sunday: 09h30 – 17h30
Contact: 021 434 6805 | 021 419 9429

Visit Franschhoek for some Wine Tasting

Valentine's Day events

We have one of the oldest wine routes outside of Europe, so why not make the most of it by spending a fun day exploring Franschhoek wineries. You can hop on the Wine Tram if you want to avoid driving. You can stare into your beau’s eyes while discussing the merits of some of the best wines in the country. For more info on our favourite places for wine tasting in Franschhoek check this list.

Budget Busting Price: The hop-on/hop-off wine tram ticket costs R260 pp but many wine tastings will be free if you opt to purchase wine.
LocationFranschhoek Square, 32 Huguenot Rd, Franschhoek
Hours: Monday – Sunday: 09h30 – 17h00
Contact021 300 0338

Decided to stay in and cook for your Valentine? Great idea, check out this romantic menu for two.
Please note: Prices and availability are correct at the time of publishing and are subject to change. 

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