The Mother City has something for everyone - I studied in Cape Town for 5 years and got to know the City from a student's perspective i.e. on a shoestring. Although I'm no expert in "shoestring accommodation" in Cape Town; many of our days there were planned with little to no cost in mind so perhaps I could help with some things to do that won't break the bank....
A two-day itinerary (well, some stuff to fill two days)
Cape Town's City Bowl is a good place to start, pack a day pack and fill your water bottle, head to Long Street in the morning and explore the boutiques, restaurants and markets which are dotted all over. Green Market Square, which is on the corner of Long Street and Longmarket Street, is full of African souvenirs and art which can be picked up for a good price, if you've got your bartering shoes on.
Weather depending, a trip up Table Mountain is a MUST. There are two ways up and two ways down: walk or take the famous Table Mountain cable-cars. Bear in mind that if you walk up Table Mountain then this will most likely take you the good part of 3 hours or so depending on your fitness. Don't be fooled, it is a proper hike to get up there!! The cable-car is your quickest option but not the cheapest. A good balance is to take the cable-car up to the top and, if you are up to it, walk back down. Either way, if you've walked up and down or you simply took the cable car, by now you will be a little thirsty and hungry. I'd suggest either heading into the V&A Waterfront for a lunch and a few beers and some window shopping. Or head to Camps Bay for a cocktail and a walk along the beautiful beaches.
Clifton Beach (anyone of them as there are four) is also a great option if you want to take a picnic and some sundowners and watch the sun go down, in my opinion the best place to see a sunset is Cape Town's coastline.
Other great vantage points to watch the sun go down are: Llandudno Beach, Signal Hill, Camps Bay and Lion's Head.
If you missed the V&A Waterfront on day one, I'd still recommend checking it out. Perhaps for a breakfast (or grab a breakfast roll from the Simonsberg shop inside the V&A and take it with you) and watch the working harbour in action. Early morning is a great time of the day for some photos to be taken, especially with Table Mountain as a backdrop and if you’re lucky enough the seals should be tanning themselves around the rocks.
If you're into early mornings and beautiful scenery then take a drive out to Simon's Town for a cup of coffee. Head back along the coast through the lazy town's of Fish Hoek & Kalk Bay and head over to Hout Bay via Chapman's Peak or continue south from Simon's Town through the even lazier towns of Scarborough and Kommetije (Korm-e-key). Stop over in Hout Bay after taking in the view from the bottom of Chapman's Peak (I've seen whales in the bay there before) and grab some fresh fish and chips for lunch at Snoekies. Cut back into Cape Town via Llandudno (be sure to take a stroll on the beach and along the rocks) and Camps Bay.
What you discover in between will be up to you but hopefully I've painted a very very small picture of some of my favourite things do to if I had two days in Cape Town. Use the map below to find the places mentioned and plan your visit, if you have any questions please post them below.
Would you recommend this destination: Yes
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5