Photos: Cape Town calls

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  1. Spectacular view

    The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, with Devil's Peak, left, Table Mountain, center, and Leeukop, right, in the background. (Corbis) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Main Street

    The Main Street in Simon's Town in Cape Town, South Africa. Located on the eastern side of the Cape Peninsula, Simon's Town is home to a key naval base. (David Rogers / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Colorful architecture

    A man walks through the Bo-Kaap area, a predominantly Muslim area of Cape Town with houses painted in bright colors lining many of the streets. (Dan Kitwood / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Eggman cometh

    The "Eggman" from Benin laughs as he speaks on a fake telephone at Greenmarket square. "Eggman" has become a popular tourist attraction at the famous outdoor market where he walks around as a living sculpture looking for tips. (Nic Bothma / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. On the waterfront

    Diners sit outside the Den Anker restaurant on a waterfront pier in Cape Town's Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. (David Rogers / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. National treasure

    The King protea (Protea cynaroides) - the national flower of South Africa - is displayed at the world-renowned Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. (Steve Ann Toon / Corbis) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Fresh from the vine

    A farmworker picks red cabernet grapes on Ongegund Farm in the Durbanville Hills area. Smooth and elegant with a medley of tastes as diverse as the terroir which yields it, South Africa's wine industry has proved it ages well 350 years after grapes were first pressed in the Cape. (Rodger Bosch / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Majestic mountain

    A climber abseiling down Cape Town's most famous landmark, Table Mountain. The majestic mountain rises 3,563 feet above sea level at its highest point. Of the many ways to ascend the mountain, the best way is to take the cable car ride to the top. (Henrik Trygg / Corbis) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. The easy way up

    The upper cable station on Table Mountain. From the top of the peak, sightseers can get a panoramic view of the Cape Town area. (Anna Zieminski / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. View from above

    An aerial view of the Clifton area. (David Rogers / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Color on the sand

    Colorful beach huts line St. James Beach. (David Rogers / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Scenic harbor

    The picturesque natural inlet of Hout Bay, just outside Cape Town. (Francois Xavier Marit / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Charismatic critters

    African Jackass penguins waddle out to sea at Cape Peninsula. Named for their call, which resembles a donkey's bray, the penguins are found only off the coast of South Africa. (Nic Bothma / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Monster swell

    South African big wave surfer Andy Marr surfs a wave at an offshore reef known as Dungeons off Cape Town. (Nic Bothma / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Eye for adventure

    Kiteboarders glide across the water, with Table Mountain in the backdrop. (Dan Kitwood / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Ancient overseers

    Camps Bay Beach is overlooked by the Twelve Apostles. (David Rogers / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Victoria and Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town
    Corbis
    Above: Slideshow (16) Cape Town calls - Cape Town calls
  2. Image: South Africa FIFA 2010 World Cup tourism
    Jon Hrusa / EPA
    Slideshow (33) Cape Town calls - Scintillating South Africa
  3. Gianluigi Geurcia, Stephane De Sakutin / AFP - Getty Images
    Slideshow (10) Cape Town calls - 2010 World Cup stadiums
updated 4/2/2007 10:06:21 AM ET 2007-04-02T14:06:21

Many of the Waterfront activities have been designed with children in mind, making it Cape Town's foremost family destination. The top attraction here is the Two Oceans Aquarium. Face painting, drawing, and puzzles are on offer in the aquarium's Alpha Activity center, and staff often arrange sleepovers and excursions to interesting and educational locations for ages 8 to 12. Call tel. 021/418-3823 to find out what special kids' entertainment will be available when you're in town. On the way, stop at the Scratch Patch, where kids literally scratch through mounds of semiprecious stones, selecting their own "jewels," after which they can play a round of crazy golf.

Catch the kiddies' Blue Train in Mouille Point (tel. 021/434-8537; Mon-Fri 3-5 p.m., Sat-Sun 11-5 p.m.); next door is a maze and an outdoor putt-putt (crazy golf) course. In town, the noon Planetarium show is held every Saturday and Sunday, where they attempt to answer simple astronomy questions, like "Why is the sky blue?" and "Is the sun round?" To get there, take a stroll along Government Avenue (enter from Orange St., opposite Mount Nelson) armed with a bag of nuts to feed the almost-tame squirrels. Afterward, take high tea in the Mount Nelson gardens, or head for Deer Park Café, a child-friendly restaurant that opens onto a public playpark. End the day by ascending Table Mountain in the rotating cable car -- the ride alone is a thrill for kids, but the views are equally rewarding; pack a picnic, but don't forget the sunblock, hats, and a warm layer, should the weather turn.

A gentler experience is to chill out with a picnic next to a burbling stream at Kirstenbosch Gardens, or head for the shady oaks at Le Pique Nique, Boschendal, near Franschhoek. Then visit Butterfly World (tel. 021/875-5628), where 22 different species of butterfly flit about a tropical garden, or Drakenstein Lion Park (tel. 021/863-3290), a sanctuary for captive-born lions -- both are near Paarl. Other kid-friendly attractions in the Paarl area include Le Bonheur Crocodile Farm (tel. 021/863-1142).

Closer to town is a walk through the World of Birds Sanctuary, Valley Road (tel. 021/790-2730), in Hout Bay; then take one of the cruises to Seal Island, departing from Hout Bay Harbour. Imhoff Farm (tel. 021/783-4545) in Kommetjie offers country-style refreshments, camel rides, horseback riding, crafts shops for kids, and a snake and nature park to entertain.

When all else fails, there's always the beach. Try Boulders, where the temperature is slightly warmer, tidal pools are safe, and the penguins add unique entertainment value. Visit the Warrior Toy Museum (tel. 021/786-1395) on Georges Street, Simon's Town, on your way.

For a complete listing of what to see and do in Cape Town, visit the online attractions index at Frommers.com.

Frommer’s is America’s bestselling travel guide series. Visit Frommers.com to find great deals, get information on over 3,500 destinations, and book your trip. © 2006 Wiley Publishing, Inc. Republication or redistribution of Frommer's content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Wiley.

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