A magical thing about Cape Town is that, even on a busy holiday weekend, you can travel 20 minutes out of the city and find yourself on a deserted beach. And not only deserted, but with a postcard-worthy view of Table Mountain, warm waves perfect for boogie-boarding, and – most thrilling of all – a pod of playful whales frolicking in the surf.
While Bloubergstrand’s expansive coastline can be prohibitively windy during the summer months (making it a mecca for kite-boarders the world over), one of the city’s best kept secrets is the still, golden-hued days of April, May and June.
During these balmy months, the green waves of the West Coast are a great place to head to unwind. Take a comfy blanket to lie on, a book and a flask of tea, and lose yourself in the warmth of the sun and the calming roar of the ocean. Or, enjoy a meditative walk the length of the beach, searching amongst the flotsam for interesting shells and deep sea treasures.
If you get peckish, a short drive further along the coast takes you to a little seaside restaurant called Ons Huisie (‘Our Little House’). One of the earliest buildings in the area, it dates back to the 1800s, when it was a rustic fisherman’s cottage.
It’s a charming spot, steeped in history. And, it’s just the place to enjoy West Coast delights like a Strandloper’s Mussel Pot, West Coast Potjie, or – everybody’s favourite – battered hake and chips. It’s almost obligatory to wash this all down with an ice cold beer (or three).
When you can drag yourself away from your sunny table, take a look inside the restaurant at their selection of photographs showing what the area looked like 150 years ago. Those were the the days when families journeyed to the seaside in horse-drawn wagons.
If you feel like dessert, an ‘auntie’ in a caravan serves heavenly soft-serve ice creams. These are best eaten on a bench overlooking the rocky beach. Even though you’re just a short drive away from the bustling city, the laid back vibe of this part of the world will make you feel like you’ve stumbled on a secret road back to your childhood holidays.
Ons Huisie is open for breakfast, lunch and supper 7 days a week. They don’t take bookings, so be prepared for a short wait during busier times.