What better way is there to be out in nature than when you’re armed with fresh bread, cheese, olives, preserves, and of course, excellent wine? It is one of the best ways to spend a day and the Mother City has a plethora of perfect picnic spots available for locals and travellers alike. From mountain-tops and beachfront views to picturesque gardens and natural forests: there’s a picnic spot to suit every occasion and mood.
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden
The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden is an impressive 36 hectare garden and nature reserve, encompassing 528 hectares of natural forest, indigenous fynbos, and protected flora and fauna. As it’s considered to be one of the most beautiful gardens in the world, it’s the ideal location for your next picnic. You can take your own basket and blanket (but no chairs, tables or umbrellas) or you can order one from the Kirstenbosch Tea Room and Moyo Restaurant. Customise your Garden Gourmet Picnic basket for two by ordering anything from the menu or, if you have a larger group, you can order a picnic basket in advance. The garden is open daily from 8am to 7pm (September to March) and from 8am to 6pm (April to August) at R60 per adult.
Jonkershoek Nature Reserve
Jonkershoek Nature Reserve, which includes the smaller Assegaaibosch Nature Reserve, lies in the rugged Jonkershoek Mountains near Stellenbosch. This beautiful and well-maintained World Heritage Site is a popular stop for those looking for botanical beauty and preserved trails. Excellent for hiking, trail running and mountain biking; Jonkershoek features magnificent waterfalls, mountain fynbos and a host of suitable picnic locations, including grassy lawns and a braai area. Strictly enforced park limitations of 60 people per day ensure that your picnic ambience won’t be spoiled by noisy crowds.
Blaauwklippen Wine Farm
Nestling in the heart of the Stellenbosch Wine Region, Blaauwklippen is one of the oldest wine farms in South Africa. This historical place not only provides the perfect backdrop for your picnic, but it also has a menu filled with delicious picnic platter options to treat your taste buds. All platters are prepared using the freshest ingredients to complement Blaauwklippen wines, so expect a mouth-watering meal of biltong pâté, homemade cheese straws, Parma ham, Camembert, Halloumi, Brie, homemade preserves, freshly baked bread, quiche, samoosas, brownies, cheesecakes and tartlets. Book your picnic 24 hours in advance to secure your spot.
This peaceful sanctuary of over 1 500 trees is a beautiful natural forest in the southern suburbs of Cape Town. Sit amongst the cypresses, pines and giant Californian redwoods or take a 6km hike up to Elephant’s Eye Cave if you’re feeling adventurous. Be sure to bring a hat and water as the zigzag path to the top is steep and offers little shade. If you prefer to take things a little easier, there are tranquil walks with trickling streams and indigenous birdlife underneath a shady canopy of trees. Tokai Forest is also proclaimed to be one of the best outdoor braai spots in Cape Town, so take the whole family along or enjoy a well-deserved picnic after you’ve traversed the mountain.
Boschendal Wine Farm
Reunite with friends and family on the lush green lawns of Boschendal Wine Farm. This particularly scenic estate rests in a valley between Franschhoek and Stellenbosch, offering a tranquil setting for any picnic. Choose from two exquisite picnic options, each with its own gorgeous venue and picnic style. However, both options comprise of seasonal produce that is naturally grown on the farm. The Rhone Picnic offers spectacular views of burly mountains, vineyards, and the historical Rhone Homestead. Enjoy delicate pâtés, freshly baked bread, fresh salads, cold meats, homemade whole grain mustard mayo, artisan cheeses and decadents dessert at a beautifully set table or on a picnic blanket under the trees. Those opting for a more casual feel will enjoy the Werf Garden Picnic, which is held under the trees of the Pavilion lawn. Recline in a hammock or simply spread out on a blanket under the gently rustling trees. You’ll find your basket stocked chock-full of farm produce and artisanal treats, such as pâtés, baguettes, seasonal salads, cold meats, cheese and homemade preserves. Pre-book your picnic to avoid disappointment.
If watching the sun set over the ocean with a glass of bubbly in hand sounds like the perfect picnic to you, then be sure to take a trek up Lion’s Head. This iconic mountain can be summited in an hour and once you reach the top, you can enjoy panoramic views of Cape Town, the harbour, Table Mountain and the ocean with a stillness and serenity that can’t be put into words. The best part is that your picnic isn’t limited to the daytime as full moon hikes are a popular alternative. Just be sure to take a headlamp, warm jacket, comfortable shoes, a backpack filled with drinks and food, and good company.
The Company's Garden
In the heart of the Mother City lies the Company’s Garden or Cape Town Gardens. This large public park is home to hundreds of curious squirrels and makes for another excellent picnic spot when you next feel the desire to grab your wicker basket. This botanical sanctuary includes a rose garden, a Japanese garden, a fish pond, an aviary and lush lawns that are open to the public between 7am and 7pm. Walk along the tree-lined avenues or relax on a park bench in the oldest garden in the country. It’s a popular spot for locals and well-worth a visit.
Start planning your holiday to Cape Town today to go to one of these perfect picnic spots. Call one of our Flight Centre travel experts today or take a look at our Cape Town holiday deals to get you off to the right start.