Whether you are on a tight budget or a picky eater, sometimes you are just looking for that perfect spot where you can take your own picnic basket!
This is sometimes tricky, because even though Cape Town has an abundance of amazing picnic options on a variety of wine farms, not many (if any) allow you to bring your own food or drinks.
And while it will always be convenient, and the spread they offer will please most people, it is not always very affordable. Also – sometimes (especially with kids) you just want to pack goodie bag full of your favourites, instead of settling for someone else’s picks.
So here is a list of our favourite Bring Your Own Picnic Places - in no particular order:
1. - Arderne Gardens
Location: 222 Main Road, Claremont, Cape Town – Open from 8:00h to 18:00h daily
The Arderne Gardens is a collection of noninvasive trees, plants and flowers from all around the world, creating a garden oasis with Japanese ponds, colossal trees and secret pathways. Densely packed with vegetation, it is a whimsical, romantic setting for a picnic.
The park often has wedding shoots, particularly on weekends, so it’s best to pay it a visit during the week.
Entrance is free, however visitors are encouraged to make a donation in the donation box at the gate.
Dogs on leads are permitted and there is 24-hour security that patrols the garden at all times. Give them a friendly smile or wave hello as you pass by!
2. - Kirstenbosch Gardens
Location: Table Mountain National Park, Rhodes Dr, Newlands, Cape Town
This world-renowned garden has to be one of our favourites when it comes to beautiful picnic spots.
It is situated against the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain, and the abundance of South African fauna & flora makes it quite a spectacular setting for a picnic!
Find a spot on the expansive, rolling lawns, gaze at the magnificent views of Table Mountain, take in the varied fynbos and plant species, go bird watching or cool down next to the refreshing streams.
Opening hrs: Every day from 08h00 to 19h00 during summer (Sep-Mar), 08h00 to 18h00 during winter (Apr-Aug).
- Adult (standard): R200
- Adult (South African resident with ID*): R80
- Child age 6-17: R25
- Child age 0 -5: Free
- South African Student (with student card): R45
- Seniors (South African resident with ID*): Free on Tuesdays excluding public holidays
Please note: Kirstenbosch is a No Bins Garden, rubbish bins are not present in most parts of the Garden. Visitors are expected to take their refuse with them when they leave the Garden and dispose of it responsibly. This discourages scavengers like rats, and keeps the Garden cleaner.
3. - Green Point Urban Park
Location: 1 Fritz Sonnenberg Rd, Green Point, Cape Town
This Biodiversity Showcase Garden is centrally positioned, but once you are inside it’s quiet haven, you feel far away from the stresses of the city.
There are picnic tables, benches, beautiful drinking fountains, and shady spots for picnic blankets where you can sit and absorb the view of your surrounds.
The magnificent mountain views, diverse flora and birdlife all contribute to making it the ideal place to relax with a delicious picnic.
Opening hrs: Monday to Sunday 07:00 – 19:00
Entrance Fee: Free
Security personnel also patrols the grounds and are stationed at entrances.
4. Afrikaanse Taalmonument & Museum
Location: Gabbema Doordrift Street, Paarl Mountain, Paarl – follow the brown signs from Paarl’s Main Street
This historic monument is situated on the Paarlberg and offers unmatched views of incredible views of the Paarl Valley and Boland mountains.
Opening hrs: Mon. to Sun. 08:00–16:45 (last entry at 16:15)
- Adults: R40
- Drakenstein residents with valid library cards: R10
- SA Students and SA Pensioners: R10 (with proof)
- Children: R5 (free under six years)
They also host very popular full moon- and stargazing picnic events with tickets available from Computicket.
5. - Silvermine Nature Reserve
Location: Table Mountain National Park, Tokai, Cape Town
The Silvermine Nature Reserve is situated within the Table Mountain Nature Reserve and offers fantastic hiking, mountain biking and walking trails to waterfalls or through a forest, as well as a wheelchair-friendly boardwalk around the dam.
They also have a large variety of scenic and romantic picnic and braai spots next to as well as further away from the dam. Be sure to pack a pair of binoculars, in order to really appreciate these breathtaking surroundings and striking bird life.
Opening hrs Gate 1: May – August 08:00 – 16:00 | September – April 07:00 – 17:00
- Adults: R45
- Children: R25
6. - The Company's Garden
Location: 19 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town
Located slap bang in the middle of the city, and boasting gorgeous mountain vistas, Company’s Garden is a great spot to relax and get away from the hustle & bustle.
Grab a shady spot on the grass or on one of the benches & enjoy your packed picnic while taking in the beauty around you & maybe feeding a squirrel or two.
Opening hrs: Sep to Mar 07:00 – 19:00 Apr to Aug 07:00 – 18:00
Entrance Fee: Free
The grounds are patrolled by security guards from the City Centre Improvement District (CCID).
7. - Helderberg Nature Reserve
Location: Verster Ave, Helderberg Nature Reserve, Cape Town, 7135
The beautiful picnic spots at the Helderberg Nature Reserve offer shady parking, beautiful trees, a jungle gym for the children and you can bring your own food, drinks, picnic blankets and chairs.
There are also a few benches in the picnic area, surrounded by beautiful trees.
- 1 December – 28 February 07:30 – 20:00
- March & November 07:30 – 19:00
- 1 April –31 October 07:30 – 17:30
- Per Vehicle: R15.00
- Bus R412.00 (prior arrangement only)
- Per Adult R25.00
- Per Child R15.00 (3 years to 17 years)
- Toddler Free (child under 3 yrs old)
- Student R15.00 (valid student card required)
- Senior citizen / Pensioner R15.00 (60 years and older, proof of identification required)
8. - Helderberg Farm
Location: Klein Helderberg Road off, R44, Somerset West, Raithby, 7130
At the Helderberg Farm, you can have either a picnic or a braai! You can also book a space in their Rustic Farm Shed in case of a rainy and cold day! Most of the picnic and braai places have a small bench for 4 – 8 people, but you can bring your own chairs along as well.
You can also buy from Helderberg Farm’s famous strawberries at their kiosk (seasonal) or pick your own (in picking season). Picking closed on Sundays.
Opening hrs: Mondays to Sundays from 08:00 to 17:00. (Gate closes at 17:00 so please be sure to start packing up at 16:30.)
- Picnic Spot (max 10 people): R 25 (plus entrance fee)
- Adults: R 50 pp
- Kids (6 – 18 yrs.): R 25 pp
- Kids (0 – 5 yrs.): Free
- Pensioners (from 65 yrs.): R 25 pp
- If you do not book for a braai or picnic the Hiking Permit Rates are; Adults – R 35 pp & Kids/Seniors – R 25 pp (please ask at Kiosk for more information)
9.- Oudekraal Beach
Location: Off Victoria Rd, Cape Point, Cape Town
Located between Llandudno and Camps Bay, Oudekraal contains at least 40 braai or picninc spots to use.
The beach comprises of huge boulders, pockets of soft sand, and hidden coves nestled in between the rocks.
Explore this beautiful venue and take in the views, while indulging in all the delicious treats in your picnic basket!
Opening hrs: From 8am; daily in summer and weekends only in winter.
- R40 for adults
- R25 for kids.
10. - Beta Beach, Bakoven
Location: 3 Twenty Steps St, Bakoven, Cape Town
Beta Beach is a tiny, secluded strip of sand in Cape Town, tucked behind a couple of bungalows just beyond Camps Bay.
It has stunning views of Camps Bay, Lion’s Head and the Twelve Apostles.
There are also more rocks than sand so be sure to take along some blankets and pillows. But the boulders are perfect to offer shelter on more windy days.
Opening hrs: Always
Entry fee: Free