Hotels in and around the Green Point suburb
Green Point in Cape Town is known primarily for two main aspects – the impressive new stadium built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, and the unbeatable nightlife. This vibrant suburb pulsates with cultures, languages and colours, converged in the name of fun and exploration. The residents are mostly young professionals, who enjoy keeping up the pace.
The main street, Somerset Street, is lined with clubs (many of which are specifically gay and lesbian), restaurants, bars, and bistros. In addition, there are also many businesses and office blocks along here, creating a bustling vibe that never dies.
The area now known as Green Point was called ‘the Common' by most residents and ‘de Waterplaats' (the Foreshore) by the Dutch settlers in the 1700's. It was an area designed for public recreation and sports events. Its prime positioning and fabulous views of both mountains and ocean spelt huge success for this area, the property of which came under huge demand. Land became very costly, belonging only to the wealthy and influential. Due to construction and development, the Green Point Common is the only remnant of a much larger space of times past.
As one of the busiest and most central areas in Cape Town, Green Point enjoys optimal accessibility. Cape Town's international airport is just over 20km away, and takes about 30 to 40 minutes to reach by car (depending on traffic). In addition, Green Point is within walking distance from many tourist attractions, such as Greenmarket Square, the new stadium, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, the Gardens, the city bowl and many more.
Cabs are readily available, but need to be pre-arranged. It is not recommended that you use the minibus taxis in South Africa, particularly if you are not familiar with the local customs. In preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, the country has addressed safety issues around these taxis and plans have been implemented to improve the situation.
Cape Town International Airport is undergoing massive renovations in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. As such, it is equipped to deal with an even larger number of flights from all over the world, making access easier and less costly. Alternatively, visitors that are coming from other areas in South Africa will enjoy the scenic routes and safe roads into Cape Town.
Green Point is abuzz with the heartbeat of a diverse nation. The main street is a mosaic of eateries, coffee shops, boutiques, bars, pubs and clubs, offering some of the best cuisine, wines and parties in the country.
Green Point lies at the foot of Signal Hill, from where the cannon fires every day at noon. This is flanked by Lion's Head and the awesome Table Mountain. Visitors to Cape Town are urged to take the cable car up to the legendary flat top of this icon to see Green Point and the rest of the city from a new, humbling perspective.
The Western Cape in particular is renowned the world over for its superb selection of quality wines. The winelands in and around Cape Town are spectacular as they combine breath-taking views, lovely weather and beautiful flavours. Somerset West, Constantia Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl are included amongst the most scenic and popular wine estate regions and are definitely worth a visit.
The V&A Waterfront is the shopping enthusiasts' Mecca. It is filled to the brim with shops, exclusive boutiques, restaurants and cocktail bars, all overlooking the stunning Cape Town harbour. The Waterfront also serves as the launching point for the ferries travelling to Robben Island every day. This is the site of former President Nelson Mandela's prison cell.
In addition, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens and Cape Point are must-sees for visitors to Cape Town and Green Point.
Cape Town's summers are from December to March, while a wet winter follows from June to August. Winters are cold (approximately 10 to 18 degrees Celsius during the day) and summers are hot, boasting temperatures of over 30 degrees Celsius at noon. These are the windy months, though, and benefit from the offshore winds that cool the coastal areas down somewhat.
Cape Town does not qualify as a risk area for malaria. However, visitors that are planning to visit the other areas of South Africa and / or surrounding countries are advised to take precautions against contracting malaria after consultation with a travel doctor. Insect repellent and sunscreen are absolutely essential in South Africa, regardless of the time of year. Bring your prescriptions for spectacles and medication so that you may restock at a local pharmacy without having to consult with a doctor. It is wise to ensure that tetanus shots are up-to-date as some areas within the city are fraught with litter, including broken glass, cans and metal.
Green Point is right in the heart of Cape Town's CBD. There are areas within it that are not safe, and should be avoided. Consult with your tour operator and / or hotel so that you may be aware of where these places are. When walking around Green Point, visiting tourist attractions, or using public transport (including tour busses), be aware of your personal belongings. Do not leave anything unattended, and do not accept help from strangers if it requires handing over your bank cards, photographic equipment, etc…