Winter School Holidays – things to do with kids

South African Winter School holidays (25 June – 17 July 2011) are creeping up on unsuspecting busy parents which means the kids will be out of school and needing to be entertained. So unless you are planning a family vacation (Cape Point Route can help with accommodation) you’ll need to keep the kids busy and amused, and on top of it all, the weather in the Cape is cooler and dry days are not guaranteed. With this in mind we have compiled a list of suggestions of what to do with the kids these winter school holidays on the Cape Point Route – a first class destination for residents and visitors alike.

HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION:

Villa St James is a glorious 16 sleeper mansion with heaps of space for the kids to run around indoors and out! Great getaway with a couple of families and with the June/July holiday special of 5 nights for the price of 4 – it’s a bargain break! R300 per person with a minimum daily rate of R3000! More…


TAKE THE TRAIN WITH THE KIDS:

Hop on the train from Muizenberg – Simon’s Town or vice versa for a scenic 25 minute journey hugging the coastline. The Kids LOVE it! Cape Town – Simon’s Town takes about 50 minutes and is a fun excursion. Call metrorail for times. 0800 656 463. Consider catching the water taxi for part of the return journey. More… Or better yet book the Vintage Steam Train on 19  June. More…


RAINY DAY KIDS ACTIVITIES:

Shipwrecks:

Drive the Cape Point Route coastline looking for shipwrecks that are littered along the coast and imagine being an early explorer in the area. Easy wrecks to spot are the Maori off Llandudno Beach in Hout Bay and the Kakapo Wreck on Noordhoek beach. The captain of the Kakapo took a seriously wrong turn, and parked on the beach.

Lighthouses:

This goes well with the Shipwreck exploring on a rainy day – where you can talk about the Cape of Storms and visit one of the lighthouses that were built to help ships avoid the dangerous coastline. Slangkoppunt Lighthouse is the tallest cast iron lighthouse in South Africa and a great kid’s activity to climb to the top. The energy expenditure is worth it for the interesting facts, legends and panoramic views at the top. Roman Rock Lighthouse, Simon’s Town is the only lighthouse built on a rock, and the bottom lighthouse at Cape Point has the brightest beam in South Africa. More…



Scratch Patch and Mineral World:

Visit Mineral World and Scratch Patch in Simon’s Town. This Aladdin’s cave of semi precious gemstones has the kids scratching around to fill a small bag with beautiful tumble-polished gemstones from hundreds and thousands that cover the floor. There is also great shopping for mums and dads who aren’t themselves engrossed in also finding their favourite gemstones! More…


Simon’s Town History:

Catch up on some history on a rainy day. Visit Simon’s Town museum for a full history of the area from Hunter-gatherer days, through the Anglo Boer War to Navy stories. Meet Simon’s Town’s famous Great Dane dog, Just Nuisance, by visiting his statue on Jubilee Square. The Warrior Toy Museum has a huge display of dinky toys, dolls, model cars and trains. More…


Clay Cafe:

Unlease your creative child by taking the kids to Hout Bay where you choose unpainted mugs, bowls, plates or sculptures and decorate them with your own design. Paint your own pottery then leave it to be fired and return to collect it a week later. Great on a rainy day.  R40 per item. Tel: 021 790 3318

Planet Kids:

This large indoor play and activity centre for children is perfect for a rainy day.  Planet Kids has custom made jumping castles, an intergalactic ball, fun ramps and a space slide, spacecabs and spaceboards & designated areas for under 3’s. There is also a work room for workshops and the Flying Saucer Cafe. Perfect rainy day fun. Look out for holiday workshops. Tel: 021 788 3070

Save our Seas Shark Foundation:

This centre in Kalk Bay is dedicated to conducting research around sharks and changing people’s attitudes to sharks. Education and awareness is a major focus of the centre – so kids are welcome. Loads of shark displays, a shop, multimedia movies and you can cross the road to explore the rock pools at Dalebrook.  A great day out.  Tel: 021 788 6694

KIDS AND WILDLIFE:

Spend a day in Cape Point Nature Reserve and tick off lists of animals- various small mammals, antelope, zebras, eland, ostriches, baboons and birds.  Don’t make the mistake of only heading for the viewpoint – take some time to explore the park, beaches, walks and history. Entry fees: R80 adults and R20 kids. More…



Cape Point Ostrich Farm:

Take the kids on a tour of this breeding farm and learn about the life cycle from egg to ostrich! See every growth stage (if you are lucky you may see an ostrich hatch – hot tip – Friday is the best day!) to a full grown ostrich – the biggest bird in Africa! Tour: R45 adults and R25 for kids (Don’t forget the fabulous Ostorante Restuarant for delicious ostrich meat cuisine). More…


Boulders Penguin Colony:

One of the main tourist attractions on the Cape Point Route but kids don’t tire of seeing the penguins – especially whilst building sandcastles on Boulders Beach. These black & white feathered friends are on the beach year round. Winter is a great opportunity for the kids to learn more about the penguins. More

World of Birds:

A great winter activity in Hout Bay. Africa’s largest bird park has over 3000 birds for the kids to learn about  as one wanders through walk through aviaries. World of Birds is home to other small mammals like the inquisitive meerkats and the ever popular squirrel monkeys in the monkey jungle which clamber and climb on the delighted kids. Adults R70, Children R40. More…

Seal Island Boat Trip:

A perennial favourite to see the Cape Fur Seals in their natural environment on Duiker Island.  Drumbeat Charters leaves Hout Bay harbour on 40 minute cruises at 08h30; 09h15; 10h00 and 10h45. At only R25 for kids this is a fun activity and easily accessible with a boat ride thrown in for good measure! More…

ACTIVE KIDS:

Sunscene Adventure Course:

Located in Scarborough, Sunscene has real outdoor adventures in a fun, safe environment with experienced guides. Climbing walls, giant cargo net, the wonky bridge and the Flying Fox will  have the kids entertained for hours and sleeping well that night. Children’s parties operate throughout the holiday period at R80 per child (min 14 kids). Sunscene also hosts Adventure Day Camps at R250/child during the holidays, with minimum groups of 10 from 09h30 – 15h30. More…


Landsailing:

It’s fast and fun and safe. The 3 wheeled go-kart with windsurfer sail will have you flying around the track and is suitable for kids from 8 years. Smaller children can go in tandem with an adult – but this should be prebooked. Hour sessions are R200 for adults and R100 for kids. Half hour sessions available. More…


Walking and Hiking:

Silvermine Nature Reserve has gentle trails that are suitable for kids – the circuit takes your round the reservoir but try the waterfall walk on the opposite side of Ou Kaapse Weg. Take the kids along Jaggers Walk, Fish Hoek or follow the Muizenberg- St James walkway- undulating paths right next to the sea with rock pools, and the chance to see whales in winter. Don’t forget the Kakapo shipwreck.

Fishing:

Winter fishing trips are great for kids aged 4 – 12, where half day inshore fishing trips can be arranged to catch snoek or hottentot. This is big action and a memorable day out on the water, it’s fun, it’s educational and jam packed with the thrill of the catch. Experienced skipper, boat, all equipment including bait and tackle is provided – you’ll have the kids hooked! More…


Horse-riding:

Noordhoek is horse country in Cape Town and what better activity than having your kids interact with these equine creatures. Beach horse rides are possible for kids over 14, but there are kiddies bush rides for an hour (R275 per child) or half hour pony rides for the little ones (R110 per child).

Adults can do a 2 hour horse-ride on Noordhoek Beach with spectacular views of Chapman’s Peak. There are 3 trips daily and costs are R500 per adult. Novice and experienced riders are welcome and all equipment is provided for both adults and kids. More…



Sea-Kayaking:

Gliding across the water surface, having seals wave their flippers, as you paddle past is an activity that you just can’t experience on TV. Young adults may paddle on single kayaks (12 and up), but younger kids should go in a double kayak with a proficient adult. Previous kayak experience is not necessary as the boats are safe and stable and straight up fun! More…


Surfing:

Muizenberg is known for its long wide expanse of sandy beach with kid- friendly waves and colourful bathing boxes. “The Corner” is a Cape Town hot spot of surf culture for learners and professionals alike, with great waves for beginners especially in winter. Kids as young as 2 years old have taken surf lessons, so suitable for all ages and in any weather! More…


DESTINATION SPOTS TO TAKE THE KIDS:

Noordhoek Farm Village:

This charming village in Noordhoek is Child Friendly with a Capital C – great playground for kids to roar around in and an open “village green” for the kids to play within easy viewing of parents who can chill out at one of the restaurants whilst monitoring their children’s energy expenditure. All the restaurants welcome kids and have children’s menus. Check out the FREE Saturday morning kids activities between 10h30 and 12h30 – no booking required – just arrive and let the kids participate in themed craft workshops and puppet shows. A great resource for parents and some fabulous shopping too. More…

Imhoff Farm:

Situated on the Kommetjie Road, Imhoff Farm is easy to spot with the unusual sight of camels on the roadside. Camel rides are available at the farm and provide a unique experience through the fynbos. Indulge in a country meal or great pizzas at the Blue Waters restaurant or pick up some cheese from the cheesery for a picnic and other supplies from the Free Range Farm Shop. Pop in at Artichoc – stocking mouth watering Belgian chocolates. The Higgeldgy Piggeldy Farmyard is home to some very friendly animals and the kids can walk and pet the friendly animals – goats, pigs,sheep, ducks, chickens and rabbits. The Imhoff Snake and Reptile Park at the farm is one of the must do things with kids – seeing reptiles and snakes and if they are brave enough to have a photo with the giant python – “Julius Squeezer” ! More…

CAPE POINT ROUTE KIDS:

Travelling with kids allows one to see a destination not as a place but with new eyes and new vision. The Cape Point Route is no exception to that philosophy. With land, sea and fresh air; natural beauty, child friendly accommodation establishments and restaurants – the Cape Point Route is a natural choice of holiday destination for the whole family. So if you aren’t a kid, be one again and come out to play on the Cape Point Route – its worth more than a night’s stay, its worth at least three. Call 021 782 9356 for more details, view the website www.capepointroute.co.za and take a look at the family packages and the winter family holiday specials.

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