If you’re in Cape Town on business or you’ve flown into Joburg for a meeting; perhaps you’re in Durban for a conference, add on a day or two to your business trip and spend some time exploring the hotspots and hidden gems of your destination.
Our team have handpicked their top things to do on a business trip in Cape Town, Joburg and Durban. Here’s their take on leveraging bleisure to explore more of South Africa.
What to do in Cape Town between meetings:
“If you only have a few hours in Cape Town, the V&A Waterfront is convenient. It’s a great place to grab a bite to eat with a vibey atmosphere,” says Chantal Kliche, Coastal Manager at Thompsons Travel, who adds that the inner city is packed with attractions and things to do that are mostly within walking distance from one another. “For example, you can combine a picnic at Company’s Garden with a visit to the National Gallery.”
A weekend in Cape Town gives you more options. “Table Mountain is a must-do. You can’t come to Cape Town and not take the cable car to the top,” she says.
For Kliche, a tour of the South Peninsula is a fantastic choice for both first-time and returning visitors. “Chapmans Peak Drive is an iconic experience. If the weather is good, roll down the windows and turn up the music and take a drive you’ll never forget.”
She suggests heading to Simons Town to see the penguins at Boulders Beach. “If you drive back via Kalk Bay and Muizenberg, you’ll have plenty of options to grab a seaside lunch.”
For wine lovers, the Cape Winelands are a must-do. “Give yourself a full day if you’re going wine tasting in Stellenbosch, Paarl or Franschhoek. Closer to the city, the Constantia Wine Route features some historic estates like Groot Constantia,” she advises.
Other top attractions and activities in Cape Town include:
- Taking the ferry to Robben Island
- Exploring the Bo-Kaap on a walking tour
- Hiking up Lions Head
- Perusing artisanal produce at the Neighbourgoods Market
- Dining at an award-winning restaurant
One day in Joburg? Here’s your guide:
Discover the heartbeat of South Africa. Johannesburg, the city of gold, is not only a megacity of skyscrapers, but it’s also home to the world’s largest man-made urban forest.
“Joburg’s attractions are spread relatively far and wide, so if you have limited time, take a tour on the hop-on hop-off city bus to get a good overview before choosing to explore the areas north of the city or touring those in the south,” advises Wendy Schulze, CEO Thompsons For Travel.
“Because Sandton is the primary business hub, most travellers end up exploring the north, which includes Sandton City and Nelson Mandela Square.”
In the south, Schulze suggests a guided tour of Soweto. “This is where Nelson Mandela lived, where the 1976 Soweto student uprising took place. You can’t get the full picture of authentic Joburg without Soweto.” She adds that a Soweto tour is easy to combine with a visit to the Apartheid Museum, another cultural must-see in Johannesburg.
If you have a weekend in Johannesburg, you can take a day trip to the Pilanesberg National Park for a Big 5 safari. Or, head to the Cradle of Humankind to see the birthplace of the human race and explore the cave in which fossils of early humanoids were found. “It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site with an amazing exhibition, so you can learn a whole lot in just one day.”
Things to do in Durban on a business trip:
“Durban is all about the hidden gems,” says Shelley Fourie, Retail Manager Durban –Thompsons Travel. “It’s a city with so many layers, cultural, historical… and this is reflected in everything from the architecture to the food.”
Fourie suggests starting off with a guided city tour, “to get a feel for the city and a taste of its fascinating history.”
Then, she says, try to squeeze in the big attractions, like Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban Botanic Garden and uShaka Marine World.
If you’ve got time for a day trip or two, KwaZulu-Natal is a province of rich natural beauty. “Just a few hours from Durban there’s the Wild Coast, Oribi Gorge, Drakensberg Mountains, Zululand battlefields, Hluhluwe Game Reserve and the charming Midlands Meander, to name a few,” says Fourie.
We do bleisure, best
Is bleisure part of your company travel policy? Let’s talk about the business benefits of this growing travel trend. Contact Thompsons Travel today.