Seeing Cape Town on a student budget

January 1, 1970

by Zandile-chehore

Cape Town is one of the most stunning cities not only in Africa, but it is also world renowned. For students with a taste for adventure and would like to explore this amazing coastal city but are slightly uncertain because you might think your student budget might not cover this adventure.
Below are a few places in Cape Town that encompass all its cultural, natural and historical aspects that make an amazing and affordable holiday destination that will not make a dent in your student budget. The places shown below will include all the student discounts to ensure maximum enjoyment at a minimum expense. For all student discounts, a student card must be provided and all Iziko museums are free on Fridays for students.

Castle of Good Hope

As one of the oldest standing colonial building in South Africa, it would be impossible not to visit Cape Town and not set foot on this star fort. It was constructed in late 1600 and holds Cape Town’s history behinds its doors. The castle is situated in the centre of the CBD and close to all the modes of transports as the train and bus stations are found a walk away. Not only does it have museums, galleries, tours, and restaurant but it also transforms at night to host different events such as Galileo Open Air theatre.
Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00
Adults: R50 Students: R25

Green Market Square

This is a multicultural and multicoloured flee market that sells African fabrics, crafts, and art. It is hard to believe that it was a vegetable and fruit market but only makes sense as it is the oldest market in Cape Town. It is situated just before Long street and between Long and Shortmarket street. For those wanting to sit and enjoy the African music that is occasionally playing, there are many restaurants and cafes enclosing the market.

Opening Hours: 9:00-16:00, Monday to Saturday
Entrance: Free

Slave Lodge

Located at the corner of Adderley and Wale street is the former Supreme Court which is now known as the Slave Lodge. The picturesque building holds behinds its doors the history of South African slaves and its many exhibitions brings back to life the lives of slaves that grazed our shores. The exhibitions are always changing and brings a futuristic and innovative way to look at the past. This is an educational and informative quickly before making your way to the gardens down the road.

Opening Hours: 10:00-17:00, Monday to Saturday
Adults: R30 Students: R15

The Company’s Garden

From humble beginnings of a vegetable garden for the Dutch East Indian Company in the 17th century to being the oldest public garden in South Africa with exotic plants set at the back of the Houses of Parliament. The gardens provide a meeting place for all ages as it contains the South African National Gallery, planetarium and a restaurant surrounded by scenic and rare trees. They also feature the rose garden (for the romantics) and the Japanese garden.

Opening Hours: 7:00-17:00
Entrance: Free
Disclaimer: These opening hours and entrance fee pertain only to Company’s garden.


A short distance uphill away from the city centre, you will find another cultural hotspot the Malay Quarter. It is appropriately named the Malay Quarter as it is enriched with the Cape Malay heritage, culture, and history seen in its food, architecture, and hospitality. The Bo-Kaap has the oldest and largest mosque in South Africa and also host the Bo-Kaap museum. It will impossible to not see this historical landmark with its brightly and multicoloured houses. Bo-Kaap is a residential area, therefore, it is free, the only cost that you will incur is the restaurant and the museum.

Museum Opening Hours: 10:00-17:00
Adults: R20 Students: R10

Seapoint Promenade

Wanting to see the amazing coast of Cape Town but not willing to go into the icy-cold waters then the promenade is the perfect place to be. It offers 11kms along the coast for strolling, running, cycling and parks for the kids. Just across the road there many restaurants that offer amazing cuisine also not to forget the public art exhibitions and gyms. Wanting to cycle along sea but do not own a bicycle, worry not as there is a bicycle renting company with many different pick-ups and drop-off points. For those still fancying a swim, there are swimming pools and tidal pool provided as it is a rocky coastal line.

Entrance: Free

V & A Waterfront

The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront was named after Queen Victoria and her son, Prince Alfred in the late 19th century. The waterfront is found in the oldest functioning harbour in South Africa at the end of the promenade. It is a conglomeration of history and a modern take on retail therapy. It has many retail shops that are close to 500, museums, restaurants, historic landmarks, aquarium and The Cape Wheel that provides magnificent views of Cape Town. Not to forget the recently opened Zeit Museum of Contemporary Art Africa which brings breath-taking and exceptional contemporary African art is also situated in the waterfront. This is a departure point for those wanting to visit the place which held former president Nelson Mandela, Robben Island. The waterfront has something for everyone and offers many activities at varies prices.

Entrance: Free.

Table Mountain

Voted as one of the seven wonders of the world it is unimaginable to visit Cape Town and not go on top of this world-renowned mountain. At the highest point, you would be standing 1000m above Cape Town. There are many ways to conquer this Mother City giant either by hiking or cable car or both.  There are many routes to hike though a bit steep and will test your fitness level and the cable car is a 5-minute long ride with a 360-degree view while ascending. Atop this majestic wonder, you will find a café with an amazing view of Cape Town.  A wi-fi lounge is available for those that want to stay connected.  The mountain offers a sunset special at the end of the year where adults pay half price after 6 pm allowing you to see Cape Town transitioning from day to night. The prices below are for return tickets but one-way tickets are available.

Opening Hours: 8:00 – 21:30 (varies with different seasons)
Adult: R305 (8:00 – 13:00) R275 (after 13:00)
Students: R130 (only on Friday)


By Zandile-chehore

I am a student living in the heart of the city of Johannesburg and calls Cape Town home. I like to think that I am adventurous and outgoing. Aspiring doctor, poet and author.


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