East of Cape Town is where you’ll find the wide and spreading Cape Flats. The Cape Flats, which once hosted a thriving neighborhood of farmers, fishermen, and families, were forcibly separated during the Apartheid era. Black residents were sent to Khayelitsha, Langa, and Mitchell’s Plain townships.
There are numerous reasons to explore this intriguing area of Cape Town, even though it is still frequently connected with its history of poverty. The bustling marketplaces in Philippi and the Cape Flats provide a fascinating look into South Africa’s real history and culture. Also, it’s simple to overlook the difficulties experienced by residents when there are so many parks and other open areas to enjoy.
A trip to the Cape Flats will undoubtedly be a remarkable experience in contrast to the luxurious surroundings, whether you’re interested in politics, or history, or simply want to do something unique and original.
TOP 8 POPULAR ATTRACTIONS TO EXPLORE IN CAPE FLATS
The Southern Suburbs offers an incredibly diverse list of neighborhoods reaching from the slopes of Table Mountain towards the False Bay coastline, each with its own individualistic appeal.
1. Mitchells Plain Art
2. Langa Drumming
3. Wembley RoadHouse in Athlone
4. Athlone Stadium
5. Trojan Horse Memorial in Athlone
6. Nantes Park in Athlone
7. Khayelitsha Isibane see Afrika Choir
8. Langa Beads
Things to Do in the Cape Flats
Cape Town’s Cape Flats is a vibrant and historic community that has much to offer visitors. The area is home to a number of important historical landmarks as well as authentic cultural experiences.
1. WALKING TOUR OF GUGULETHU
Join Liziwe for a forty-minute walk through the shanties of Gugulethu to experience the everyday life of Gugulethu.
You will get to interact with the local community, visit Mzoli’s place (Shisa Nyama) – a local braai hotspot, catch a local taxi (iphela) around Gugulethu and Nyanga, visit a Sangoma, the traditional healer of the township and see the Gugulethu 7 memorial stones.
Location: NY111, No 121, Gugulethu, 7750, Cape Town
Contact details: +27 21 633 7406
2. AMY BIEHL MEMORIAL TOWNSHIP TOURS
The Amy Biehl Memorial Township Tours offer visitors the opportunity to explore the cultural township of Gugulethu and to support the community through the programs administered by the Amy Biehl Foundation, a non-profit organization.
Location: Amy Biehl Foundation, 7th Floor, 1 Plein Street, Cape Town, Western Cape
Contact details: +27 21 462 5052
3. KHAYELITSHA CRAFT MARKET
Tourism is one of the main draws to this township, despite the fact that it is still recognized for its extreme poverty. You will have the chance to explore the locals’ artistic abilities as well as see how they live their daily lives.
You can buy a wide variety of trinkets, pottery, beading, paintings, baskets, and many other products at the market, all of which were handcrafted by the township’s citizens. It’s worth visiting the Baboon Man, who creates magnificent baboon figures out of cement.
In and around Khayelitsha, there is a lot to see and do, and it’s fascinating to see how inventive the residents of this area are. You can purchase an intriguing African memento.
Location: St Michaels and All Angels Anglican Church, Khayelitsha, Cape Flats
Contact details: +27 21 363-5837
4. PHILIPPI VILLAGE
An old cement factory in Philippi has been given new life and re-purposed into an entrepreneurial and recreational/retail hub. The Hub, which calls itself ‘the business catalyst for the Cape Flats’, has as its main function to build entrepreneurs in South Africa, something the World Bank has suggested South Africa desperately needs.
Location: Philippi Village, Cwangco Crescent, Philippi 7781 Cape Town
Contact details: +27 21 200-8193
5. THEATRE IN THE BACKYARD
Without an audience or a stage, a cast of actors performs as Theatre in the Backyard. The actors push themselves beyond their comfort zones, and the audience follows suit, moving the play beyond the stage and into the real world.
Theatergoers in Cape Town can take in a fresh kind of performance. The audience, for whom there is no designated seating, is left to make their way about the area and the performers while the actors use whatever “props” they can find to help them.
Any discomfort is quickly forgotten because the audience is invited to join the director and his performers for a home-cooked meal and beer after the performance.
Location: Cape Flats
Contact details: +27 21 813-9829
Places to Stay in Cape Flats
There are a number of safe and affordable accommodation options for tourists visiting the Cape Flats. Guest houses and bed and breakfasts are popular options, as they offer a more personal experience than a hotel.
1. LODGE 36 ON SHAANTI
For business, there are conference facilities back at Lodge 36 on Shaanti, where you can hire photographers, flower arrangements, audio-visual equipment, and photocopying facilities.
The establishment also has self-catering facilities adjacent to its B&B offering. You can choose from either a 4-sleeper or a 2-sleeper, both with equipped kitchens and secure parking areas. Lunch and dinner are strictly Halaal. Airport transfers and Wi-Fi facilities are available on request.
Location: Gatesville, Cape Town, 7764, South Africa
Contact details: +27 21 637 3286
2. LUNGI’S B&B
Located in a traditional house refurbished in 2009, Lungi’s allows visitors to immerse themselves in the local community, with Gladys preparing a breakfast that includes traditional African dishes, while snacks and drinks are also available to guests.
Lungis has three guest rooms with twin beds. The red room has a bathroom en suite, while the yellow and green room uses a communal bathroom and toilet. The colors of the guestrooms and the lounge have been carefully chosen by Gladys, while the garden offers a snug corner to sit in and enjoy the township vibe.
Location: Khayelitsha, Cape Town, 7784, South Africa
Contact details: +27 21 762 1543
3. CHEVAL VAPEUR
Cheval Vapeur offers self-catering Philippi accommodation on a horse farm in the heart of Cape Town’s seasonal wetlands.
Philippi is secluded and peaceful but surprisingly close to many attractions in Cape Town. Zeekoevlei Bird Sanctuary and The Royal Cape Gold Club are close by. The Waterfront and City Bowl are within a 30-minute drive away. The Paarl and Stellenbosch wine routes are about 40 minutes away. Guests can reach the Cape Point Nature Reserve within an hour.
Location: Philippi, Cape Town, 7750, South Africa
Contact details: +27 82 901 8295
4. LIZIWE’S GUEST HOUSE
Liziwe’s Guest House is a highly recommended Gugulethu Bed & Breakfast providing accommodation in 8 guest rooms for tourists visiting the Cape Flats region.
Location: Ny111 No121, Guguletu, Cape Town, 7750, South Africa
Contact details: +27 72 035 9560
5. HOTEL VERDE
Located 400m from Cape Town International Airport, Africa’s greenest hotel showcases some of the most advanced, environmentally conscious technological installations, construction methods, procurement, and operational practices in the world.
Offering 145 rooms, conference facilities, a restaurant, a bar, an indoor gym, an outdoor jogging trail, and gymming equipment, with an eco-pool and 24-hour deli; it not only offers every luxury but also the added element of extensive green features.
Location: 15 Michigan St, Airport Industria, Cape Town, 7490, South Africa
Contact details: +27 21 380 5500
Places to Eat & Drink in the Cape Flats
Food is an important part of any culture, and the Cape Flats are no exception. The area is home to a variety of restaurants and cafes that offer a taste of the local culture. From traditional Cape Malay dishes to African-inspired food, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
1. IMIBALA RESTAURANT AND CRAFTS
This Cape Winelands deli also has a wide range of dishes such as spicy biryani, comforting creamy cheese crepes, and delicious helpings of beef and vegetable lasagnas. It also caters to functions and private events as well as being open to takeaway deliveries which can be done for any location in the district.
Location: 11 Bright St, Somerset West, South Africa
Contact details: 021 8512364