We stayed in Muizenberg for most of our trip to South Africa as we were doing the IVHQ surfing volunteer program (see our IVHQ post for more info on the surfing program) . Muizenberg is about 20-30 minutes south of Cape Town and it is known for its surfing. It is a small beach town with a few surf shops and restaurants. The beach is always packed with people surfing at all times of the day. Along the beach there is a long line of colorful beach huts which are iconic to the town.
Muizenberg has a great, relaxed beach town feel to it. People are always walking into the shops and restaurants right off the beach in wet suits, swim suits and flip flops. You can see the Muizenberg mountains from the beach and from pretty much wherever you are in the town. Since you are on the coast the weather is much cooler in Muizenberg than in Cape Town and there is always a pretty strong breeze. Although it is a bit of a drive outside of Cape Town it is a nice place to stay for a few days, especially if you are looking to surf.
Surfing in Muizenberg
We surfed twice per day while we were volunteering with IVHQ, but if you are just there for a visit you can rent boards just across the street from the beach. Multiple surf shops in the town rent for pretty reasonable rates (wetsuits and boards). One thing to note is that there are Great White sharks in the bay and while sightings in the surfing area is rare it can happen. There is an organization called Shark Spotters: https://sharkspotters.org.za that keep a look out from the mountains and there is a flag and siren warning system to communicate conditions to the surfers/swimmers. There were no warnings the whole week we were there and honestly once you’re in the water you kind of forget about it.
Places to Eat & Drink in Muizenberg:
- Live Bait for a nice seafood dinner and a view of the beach. This restaurant is on the second story of a building along the beach so it offers great views from the large windows in the dining room.
- Tiger’s milk for sit down burgers/pub food
- Easy Tiger for more fast food/quick burgers on the go
- Bootlegger Coffee Company for the best espresso in the mornings. We walked here every morning and then sat on the beach to watch the waves while drinking our coffee.
- Lagerchinos – inexpensive drinks and pub food. Nice outdoor seating for a beer after a day on the waves
- The Striped Horse – Bar with good live music
- Rolling Wood Surf & Skate – This is a place that was introduced to us by another volunteer the first day. It is a little surf shop that sells really cool boards but also has coffee and some of the best carrot cake we’ve ever had – don’t miss it!
- Blue Bird Garage & Food Market- we headed to this market with some of the other volunteers on the first day we arrived. It is full of people selling crafts and food/drink venders selling some amazing food! The market is open every Sunday.
About 10-15 minutes from Muizenberg is Kalk Bay. This is a small beach town with more shops and restaurants- more of a vacation town feel than Muizenberg with a lot more shopping if that’s what your looking for. The streets are lined with small shops selling clothing, crafts, furniture and antiques.
Places to Eat & Drink in Kalk Bay:
- Olympia Cafe- great coffee and great food. We recommend trying the mussels. They were some of the largest mussels we have ever had!
- The Brass Bell- this place has a wonderful beach view and a small walled off tidal “pool” area where you can swim in the ocean. This is surrounded by large boulders that you can walk out on when the tide is low. We ate here twice just for the view and the food was also great. On Wednesday nights this restaurant turns into a huge Karaoke bar. We did go to Karaoke night with the other volunteers one night at the Brass Bell (the IVHQ volunteers go every week). Be prepared for a crazy, college bar night experience if you go on Wednesday night.
Links to our other South Africa posts:
- IVHQ Surf Outreach: Volunteer Program in Muizenberg South Africa
- Cape Town Essentials
- Road Trip – Cape Peninsula South Africa
- Wine Tasting in Franschhoek South Africa