There are dime-a-dozen date ideas to explore in Cape Town’s summertime, but when winter comes around, most of us are guilty of opting for the safe bet of Netflix and chilling or a home-cooked meal.
These ideas might be the epitome of romance for the homebody, but for the couple who misses getting out and about, there’s a lot more to the City’s dating scene in winter beneath the iceberg of our weather.
So, what are lovebirds to do? Here are 7 winter dates in the Cape that don’t include Netflix:
1. Go for a romantic meal and get cosy by a fireplace
Exchange the hot water bottle and UberEats for a fireplace, red wine and a delicious meal at a cosy spot.
Simon’s at Groot Constantia is the perfect pick for a dinner date, while Kloof Street House offers you the best of drinks and vintage allure. Looking for more fireplace wonders? A few more choices await you:
2. Go on an out-of-this-world date at the planetarium
Watching the stars has, from the time of our ancestors, been considered flirtation with the universe at its finest.
If you’re looking for an out-of-this-world date pick, then the SAAO planetarium on Observatory Rd is ready to leave you and your partner starstruck. It’s a date – on the second and fourth Saturday of every month at 8pm.
3. Get creative at a cafe and paint something you’ll both keep
Winter means we can’t always rely on nature to paint colour into our lives, but luckily there are a few spots in Cape Town where you can do it yourself.
Whether you and your partner are the epitome of artsy or are looking to have a good laugh and some tasty treats, Cape Town blossoms with creative cafes.
In the city and in Hout Bay, lie the famous creative date spots, the Clay Cafes. These are a fabulous date choice to unlock your love and inner artists. If you’re looking for an ocean vibe, the Pottery has you covered (soon to be in paint) and cocktail-happy. Don’t worry creative lovers, there are even more options for this trope of date choice.
4. Share a whale lot of love as you spot the whales
What says romance like a road trip and some aquatic wonders? Whale-watching season is almost upon us in the Cape, and there’s nowhere better to sightsee than Hermanus.
If you’re part of an adventurous couple who can’t turn down a good meal and a whale-watching wonder, Bietang’s Cave Restaurant & Wine Bar will delight your experience.
Watch as the waves rise and fall as you enjoy an incredible seafood platter and a glass of wine, and get ready to up, move inside the cave if the sea feels particularly feisty that day and get ready to spot a whale friend or two. While you’re at it, check out these spots in H-Town too.
5. Go on the original movie-night date – vintage or modern
The original date night – going to the movies, can take shape at a few spots in Cape Town. Time-tested and filled with popcorn, it’s a classic date choice for good reason, and now that cinemas are back and booming, the big screen awaits.
However, for your next date, why not try somewhere old or somewhere brand new?
The Labia, AKA oldest independent art cinema in the country allows you to enjoy movies the old-fashioned way, and you can buy dinner-and-a-movie tickets for two.
On the side of newness, the V&A Waterfront is now home to Ster Kinekor’s pleasures, and only opened last week. Prestige is also available for the couple who like their movies filled with luxury.
6. Book a bookstore date
The smell of old books has always had a romantic quality about it. If words are your love language and books had your heart first, then a bookstore date should definitely go on your shelf of ideas. For a quaint city setting, try the Book Lounge in the CBD on Roeland Street. As an independent bookshop for hungry minds, the Book Lounge is just waiting for you and your date to dig into any and every genre.
If you’re looking to head out of town, Peregrine Farm Stall along the N2 has a gorgeous book gem beyond its pop-up stalls and cafe.
The little shop, Liberty Books is easily TikTok’s favourite book gem in the Western Cape, iconic for its circular reading nook. Go a little further and you’ll find the Book Bus, which will take you on a literary ride. There are also a few more book lover favourites to try.
7. Frolick with Kirstenbosch National Botantical Garden’s Winter Wonderland
From 25 June to 18 July, the iconic Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens is hosting its annual Winter Wonders Special. If you have kids, this is a perfect date they can join in on as anyone 17 years old or younger receives free entry.
It’s a different way to enjoy the Gardens where you’ll get to experience flora in the winter spotlight. Tea or coffee date afterwards? Head on to the Fynkos Kirstenbosch Tea Room for a cuppa.