Simon's Town

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View of Simon's Town

Simon's Town (often incorrectly spelt as "Simonstown") is located at the east side (False Bay side) of the Cape Peninsula near Cape Town, South Africa and is home to the South African Navy.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Follow the Main Road (M4) south from Cape Town via Fish Hoek to the Cape of Good Hope along the east side of the Cape Peninsula.

By train[edit]

There is a regular MetroRail service from Simon's Town to Cape Town via Fish Hoek, Kalk Bay, Muizenberg, Wynberg and Claremont. Be sure to buy a first-class (metro plus) ticket ; these are not expensive. Although safety on trains has been an issue in the past, in recent times MetroRail has put a lot of effort into improving the situation and now the Cape Town-Simon's Town line is considered totally safe and reliable. The journey from Cape Town takes just over an hour.

A good option is to buy MetroRail's special "hop on, hop off" tourist ticket. This allows you unlimited travel between Simon's Town and Cape Town for an entire day; you can get off and on at any station. The cost is a very reasonable R25.

The train station is at the north end of Simon's Town, about a 10 minute walk to the centre of Simon's Town. Alternatively you can grab a ride on the back of a Rikki Taxi (see "Getting around" below).

By plane[edit]

The nearest airport is that of Cape Town, a good hour's drive away. You can also go on a trip with Civair from the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town along the Cape Peninsula.

Get around[edit]

Simon's Town is small enough to get around by foot (it takes less than 30 minutes to walk from one side to the other). From the train station to the centre of town is a 10 or 15 minute walk (turn left as you exit the station).

If you really don't feel like walking you can take a "Rikki" taxi. A "Rikki" is a small minibus which usually runs from the train station to Boulders Beach (and beyond if requested). Unlike other minibus taxies, Rikki's do not hoot their horn constantly so you must keep an eye out for them. Their vehicles are unique in that they are obviously a minibus but much smaller in size and painted white (often with an advertisement on the back) and often flash their lights.

A Rikki taxi meets every train that arrives at Simon's Town station. It costs R3.00 to go from the station to central Simon's Town and R5.50 to go to Boulders Beach.

Golden Arrow buses travel between Fish Hoek and Simon's Town, going as far as Boulders Beach, Murdoch Valley, Rocklands and Seaforth.

See[edit]

The Boulders Beach penguin colony is close by.
  • The penguin beach of Boulders is just outside Simon's Town.
  • Bronze statue of Just Nuisance (a Great Dane and the only dog ever to be enlisted officially in the Royal Navy) in Jubilee Square
  • Simon's Town museum
  • The South African Naval museum

Do[edit]

Stop in Simon's Town and stroll around the harbour and the little shops along the main road. Then have something to eat, before you leave for Boulders, just outside the town (in the south).

  • Swim at Seaforth Beach
Seaforth beach
  • SAS Assegaai submarine museum +27 21 786-5243, e-mail: . SAS Assegaai, formerly the SAS Johanna van der Merwe, was one of three Daphne-class submarines acquired from France during 1970 to 1972, which became the first submarines to serve in the South African Navy. She was renamed SAS Assegaai (Assegaai is the Afrikaans word for 'spear') in 1999 and was the last of the SA Navy’s Daphne class submarines in commission and finally decommissioned in 2003. Currently she is preserved as a floating museum but will be preserved ashore at the Naval Museum by 2013. R40 per person (R20 for children under 12 years old).

Buy[edit]

Eat[edit]

  • Bertha'sQuayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront +27 21 786-2138. Right on the water's edge overlooking the harbour.
  • Cafe Pescado118 St George's Street +27 21 786-2272.
  • Cape Point Chinese.
  • Harbour ViewQuayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront.
  • Just SushiQuayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront. Best Sushi in Cape Town.
  • QuarterdeckJubilee Square, off St George's Street +27 21 786-3825.
  • Salty Sea DogWharf Road +27 21 786-1918. Fish and chips fresh from the sea.
  • The Captain's Table88 St George's Street.
  • The Meeting Place98 St George's Street +27 21 786-1986. Excellent (but expensive) food, with great views north over False Bay. There is a restaurant/cocktail bar upstairs and a deli/coffee shop downstairs.
  • The Sweetest Thing82 St George's Street +27 21 786-4200. Coffee shop with fantastic cakes and pastries.
  • Tibetan Tea HouseCorner of Harington & St George's Streets +27 21 786-1544. Restaurant and art gallery, with Tibetan food.
  • Seaforth RestaurantSeaforth Beach Seaforth Road Simon's Town 7975 +27 21 786 4810.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

  • Miller's point. Camping
  • Quayside HotelSimon's Town Waterfront, Jubilee Square +27 21 786-3838fax: +27 (0)21 786-2241, e-mail: . Luxury hotel overlooking the harbour and False Bay. Part of the Relais Hotels group. From R395 per person.
  • Whaleview Manor +27 21 786-3291. Stunning guest house with overlooking False Bay. Friendly and caring staff. Mentioned in DK Eyewitness Travel Guide.

Go next[edit]

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