The V&A Waterfront is the Mother City’s top attraction where world-class retail spaces and luxury residential apartments rub shoulders with a working harbour, all with Cape Town’s magnificent Table Mountain as the backdrop. Your journey of discovery starts here. The Waterfront is more than just a shopping mall, it covers 123 hectares and welcomes around 24 million visitors per year.
At the Victoria Alfred Waterfront Cape Town, you will find everything to meet a wide variety of tastes from restaurants, stores, hotels, museums, heritage sites, yacht cruises, helicopter trips, kiddies activities and numerous other tourist attractions.
Shopping at Victoria Alfred Waterfront
The V&A Waterfront has more than 450 stores that offer a variety of goods. From fashion and accessories to health, homeware and audio-visual equipment, there’s something for everyone. Seven fantastic shopping districts cater for every need and budget. All of them, excluding Breakwater Point, boast delicious places to eat so you can grab a bite while you browse.
We suggest you start your visit at the main mall, The Victoria Wharf shopping centre which houses a variety of local retailers, designer boutiques, international brands and small kiosks as well as two supermarkets. It opens onto the harbour and boasts restaurants with stunning views.
The Watershed is a unique Cape Town space with over 150 local designers and crafters where you will find the best in fashion, homeware and décor, ceramics, gifting, art and curios, all handmade and crafted by South African designers.
The Silo District situated on ground level in Silo 4 and 5, it’s the newest art and culture hub at the V&A Waterfront with a range of dining experiences, premium brands and the best in local design and arts.
The Clock Tower shopping centre located right next to the harbour’s historic Clock Tower; the one houses the contemporary South African art, fashion and curios and the other the original port captain’s office dating back to 1882.
Other precincts include The Alfred Mall housing exclusive art and jewellery, The Breakwater Point housing upmarket car showrooms and the toy kingdom and finally The Canal District which is an all new pristine urban park where you can find luxury cars, bikes and designer homeware.
Where to eat
Over 80 restaurants, bars, coffee shops and fast food outlets ensure that there’s something to indulge even the most discerning tastes at the V&A. From quick cuppa catch-ups to candlelight fine dining, you’re bound to find the ideal setting for every occasion. Just about every restaurant at the V&A has a harbour view, some from a balcony and others from a table a few steps from the ocean.
The V&A Food Market can be found between the Alfred Mall and the Watershed. It has a wonderful array of artisanal street-food stands in a market setting. Sip a rich latte or craft beer as you browse the food stalls before tucking into one of the waterside tables.
The V&A Food Court in the main Victoria Wharf Shopping Centre is where to go for a quick bite or takeaway. The outside tables have a view over the Amphitheatre, so don’t be surprised if you you’re treated to a free concert with your meal.
Activities for the kids
The Victoria Alfred Waterfront is a popular destination for kids as the whole precinct is child friendly with lots of activities for kids to enjoy.
You will find dedicated kids playgrounds at the Amphitheatre, on the Clock Tower precinct and at the Watershed. These play areas are a favourite for kids of all ages and will keep them occupied for ages as they enjoy the fresh air and make new friends.
The Scratch Patch in Dock Road is also popular with the young ones and kids love fossicking through the sea of polished gemstones that cover the floor. Next to the Scratch Patch you will find the Cave Golf facility where the small ones have access to an 18-hole indoor putt-putt course.
If you looking at taking the young ones out on the ocean you have choice between the Jolly Roger Pirate Boat offering morning, afternoon and sunset cruises, and Tommy the Tugboat takes kids on entertaining cartoon themed trips.
You can also take them to meet the local sea life at the Seal Pens at Robben Island Gateway as well as the North Wharf, where the harbour seals like hanging out.
Staying at Victoria Alfred Waterfront Cape Town
Close to the City centre, the V&A Waterfront is renowned for its host of conveniently located accommodation, whether you’re on a budget or looking for a unique six-star experience. Staying at one of the more than a dozen Waterfront hotels has its advantage as you will be in walking distance of Cape Town’s top tourist attraction. The area is safe, walking friendly and serviced by all sorts of public transport including the Hop On Hop Off Red Bus.
The City Lodge located at the main entrance into the Waterfront and the Breakwater Lodge at the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business are the two three star establishments. The Silo Hotel is a unique upmarket hotel situated at the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa(MOCAA). The Cape Grace is an international award-winning five-star hotel that has been home to celebrities and world leaders including former US President Bill Clinton. The One&Only; Resort is one of the world-famous luxury resorts located in the heart of the Waterfront Marina and has a six star rating.
Photo: Silo Hotel credit: @parisverra
Other must-visit activities
The Two Oceans Aquarium has an incredible diversity of marine life on show. Get up close and personal with penguins or dare to dive with predators. This is one for the whole family.
Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (MOCAA) – Since its opening, the museum – the Thomas Heatherwick designed building is a work of art itself- has received nothing but worldwide acclaim.
The Cape Wheel treats visitors to a 360-degree view of the city, Table Mountain, Robben Island, Cape Town stadium and the Paarl mountains from 40 metres above the ground.
#Instamoments – Head to Silo Square or Old Pierhead Square to capture the perfect holiday selfie or insta-update in front of one of the large yellow frames that perfectly frame Table Mountain, one of the new seven natural wonders of the world.
The Victoria Alfred Waterfront Cape Town has become a significant part of defining the Mother City. It is a place where locals and tourists rub shoulders seamlessly and fantastic memories are created. It is a place that you will probably visit more than one time. Our advice would be to grab a brochure when you arrive as the V&A Waterfront is great for walking and is filled with unforgettable experiences waiting to be explored.
Please feel free to leave any comments or ask any questions you might have on your visit to Cape Town’s premier tourist destination.
Updated information from V&A Waterfront marketing material https://www.waterfront.co.za/