Winter at the water’s edge: fun activities at the V&A Waterfront

26 July 2017

Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront is a favourite stop for locals and visitors alike. With an amazing selection of restaurants and markets, top-class shopping, multitalented musicians and performers and, of course, beautiful views of the harbour and Table Mountain, it’s no wonder this vibrant hub is one of the Mother City’s Big 7 attractions.

Here is our pick of fun things to do at the V&A Waterfront:

Engage with the strange and bizarre at Ripley’s Believe It or Not!

The famous Ripley’s Believe It or Not! collection is on show at the V&A Waterfront, and should definitely not be missed. Robert Ripley, the man behind the attraction, travelled to 201 countries in 35 years “seeking the odd, the unusual, and the unexplained”.

The collection has grown into one of the most bizarre exhibitions of all times – here’s your chance to see oddities such as shrunken animal heads, a wax figure of the tallest man who ever lived and a nest of dinosaur eggs.

What to know:

  • Hop off at Stop 2 at the Clock Tower ticket office
  • Tickets to Ripley's Believe It or Not! cost R150 for adults and R120 for kids under 16. Tickets are available at the door or via Webtickets

See the city from up high with a ride on the Cape Wheel

A visit to the V&A Waterfront is not complete unless you’ve taken a thrilling ride on the giant Cape Wheel, Cape Town’s answer to the London Eye. The experience offers panoramic views of the city, the Atlantic Ocean and Table Mountain. Each rotation takes about 20 minutes and the wheel operates until 10.30pm every day – perfect for a romantic sunset trip!

What to know:

  • Hop off at Stop 1 at the City Sightseeing ticket office
  • Adult tickets cost R120, kids up to 17 years pay R60, and tots under four ride free of charge. There is also a VIP Gondola that can be yours for R800. Tickets are available at the Cape Wheel or via Webtickets
  • Top tip: get a 20% discount on the Cape Wheel with your City Sightseeing ticket

Test your rugby skills and knowledge at the Springbok Experience museum

The official museum of the South African Rugby Union is a world-class, modern, interactive attraction telling South Africa’s rugby story since the 1800s. The museum is known for making rugby “come alive” through technology-driven and audiovisual exhibits, and fun games allowing parents and kids to test their rugby skills against “virtual” Springboks. See historical objects and memorabilia, such as rugby jerseys worn by famous players, trophies, photos and even good-luck charms.

What to know:

  • Hop off at Stop 1 at the City Sightseeing ticket office
  • Adult tickets cost R75; students, scholars and pensioners pay R50; and kids under five enter free of charge
  • The museum is open from 10am to 6pm every day, except Christmas Day

See the V&A Waterfront by boat with the City Sightseeing Harbour Cruise

Enjoy the V&A Waterfront from a different angle by cruising through the harbour, past attractions such as the Nelson Mandela Gateway and Chavonnes Battery Museum. Look out for large cruise ships, yachts and the SAS Somerset (the only remaining boom defence vessel left in the world). The cruise takes approximately 25 minutes and tours depart regularly throughout the day.

What to know:

  • Hop off at Stop 1 at the City Sightseeing ticket office
  • The City Sightseeing Waterfront Harbour Cruise departs from and returns to the jetty outside the Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront
  • Waterfront Harbour Cruise tickets cost R40 per person (R35 if you book online) and R20 for kids
  • Total tour duration: approximately 25 minutes
  • Commentary is available in 15 languages: English, Afrikaans, Arabic, French, German, Dutch, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish and Zulu. There’s also a special channel for kids