1. Empire Cafe
Park your car at surfer’s corner and hop across the railway line to York Road. Up to the left, you’ll spot Empire Cafe’s balcony looking out over the waves the surfers are cruising. While it’s pretty cosy downstairs, I always try shotgun a table right beside the open doors of the balcony. That way you can sip your toasty cappuccino, enjoy a croissant with scrambled eggs, maintain a conversation with friends and hardly ever take your eyes off the brilliant ocean. Don’t forget to take a look at the menu written on the board on your way up the winding stairs.
2. Roots Records
Just across the road, is one the funkiest record stores in Cape Town. They buy and sell vinyl records of all genres and can also convert them to cd if you so wish. Dj’s step right up and get turntables, stereo equipement and other rocking old-school classics and soulful memoirs to play or keep. Walking in, you cannot help but get sucked into the groove coming from the grammarphone. Albums line the walls, windows and shelves; there’s everything from Elvis and jazz quartets to books on 1001 songs to hear before you die. Park off on the colourful couch, read up on some guitar strumming techniques or look at album covers in a book from the 1950’s and beyond. Basically get a musical education and move to the beat as your browse this music mecca.
4. Sinful Ice-Cream Parlor
So what if it’s cold and you’re wearing boots and a warm woolie jersey? Don’t you know ice-cream is even better when it’s about to rain? Get back into surfer’s corner, walk past Knead on the corner and that’s precisely where you’ll find a plethora of mouth-watering ice-cream flavours that will leave you mulling madly over which one to choose. The ones you can never go wrong with are peppermint, addictions and oreo, but there is nothing as refreshing as mango or litchi sorbet on a suger cone. You will get away with a massive scoop in a cone for only R11. No decision at Sinful is a poor one so when you do eventually pull yourself together, get over the urge to buy at least 3 different flavours and choose, you won’t regret it.
5. Walk on Muizenberg Beach
Now some people may not see the need to visit the beach other than to surf it’s waves, but I can appreciate the simplicity of a long walk on it. Take your ice-cream and stroll past the dog-walkers, the stand-up paddle boarders, surfers, little people in wetsuits and multi-coloured changing rooms. Alone or with company this is a sure way to relax your mind, get the blood flowing and allow you to explore endless possibilities in your thoughts. A beach is a place where I can arrive unhappy and never leave in sad state. There’s something about an endless stretch of white sand, ever-approaching waves and carefree beach-goers that’s bound to perk you up, inspire you and send you packing with a new lease on life, if only for a day.
To get to Muizenberg, take the M3 highway all the way from town. Then continue all the way along the Main Road until turning left at the robots outside ‘African Praise’ and right two roads down to get to surfer’s corner.