Visitor Info


Cape Town Cycle Tour coming through Simonstown

Simon’s Town welcomes all visitors to our beautiful part of the world.  Here is some information which we felt might be useful.

Weather


Simon's Town weather is generally mild - it's rarely ever too hot or too cold.

In summer while Cape Town central can bake in the heat we are cooled by our onshore breeze, which ranges between moderate to quite strong winds. This typical summer south-easter breeze is called "The Cape Doctor"

In winter the temperature rarely drops below 12-14C when it's rainy and when it's not rainy we can have over 20C with clear blue skies. Generally the weather swaps between these two states every 3 or 4 days.

WindFinder is a great site for the weather forecast.



Simon's Town is statistically one of the safest towns in South Africa. You can feel at ease walking down the road or to local beaches and shops/restaurants, but as in any other town or city in the world, one must always be mindful of your surroundings and belongings. Here are some tips for keeping safe anywhere you go:

  • Avoid carrying large sums of cash, don’t carry cameras in plain sight and do not leave belongings unattended.
  • Heed the advice of your hosts or locals on where to go after dusk. Avoid walking in deserted and dark places at night. Park in a secure, well-lit area with street guards.
  • Never allow strangers to assist you in any way at ATMs or cash points.
  • Street children and beggars may approach you for a handout. If you wish to help, consider giving food or donating to a registered charity.
  • Keep copies of all valuable documents in a safe place.
  • When hiking, be prepared for weather that can change rapidly, even in summer. Bring along a map, comfortable walking shoes, enough water and sunblock, as well as something warm to wear. Start heading back well before dark and don’t venture away from the demarcated paths. Tell a friend or your host where you are going and when you expect to be back. It is not advisable to hike on your own.  If you’re not visiting as a group, consider joining a local tour guide or Hiking Group.

EMERGENCY NUMBERS
Emergencies from a mobile: 112
Emergencies from a landline: 107
South African Police Service: 10111
Medical & Fire Emergencies: 021 535 1100
Table Mountain NP Emergencies: 021 480 7700
Sea & Mountain Rescue: 021 948 9900
National Sea Rescue Institute: 082 911
Baboon Monitors: 071 588 6540
Shark Spotters: 078 174 4244
Ambulance: 10177

SAFETY WHERE YOU STAY

  • Place your valuables/passport in a hotel safe.
  • Never leave your personal property unattended.
  • Close and lock the door when you are in your room.
  • Don’t open the door without first checking who’s asking to come in.
  • Use registered, qualified tour guides.

SAFETY IN YOUR CAR

  • Have your keys ready as you approach your car.
  • Always lock your doors. Park in well-lit areas at night.
  • Keep enough distance between your car and the one in front to enable you to change lanes and drive away in a hurry.
  • Don’t give lifts to strangers.
  • Look around before entering your driveway.
  • Be aware of strangers begging at intersections and avoid giving them money – rather give responsibly by donating to a known charity.
  • Never open your window when approached by a stranger.
  • If you think you are being followed drive to a busy place or a police station.
  • Keep your valuables out of sight – i.e. stash it, don’t flash it.
  • After you’ve parked your car, make sure it is properly locked before you walk away, to ensure you don’t become a victim of thieves who use “remote jamming” devices.

SAFETY OUT AND ABOUT

  • Don’t walk in deserted or dark areas.
  • Stay in a group and on lit paths.
  • Keep all possessions close to your body and in sight.
  • Don’t use your cellphone while walking and keep it, and your wallet safely tucked away.
  • The use of headphones may distract you from what’s happening around you.
  • Plan your route beforehand.
  • Avoid the obvious visibility of valuables such as jewellery, cameras, laptops and tablets.
  • Don’t carry large sums of money and avoid counting it in the open.
  • Don’t keep all your money in one pocket.
  • Use accredited taxis and cabs.
  • Don’t leave handbags under tables, on the backs of chairs or on restroom hooks.
  • Don’t leave cellphones or wallets on restaurant tables.
  • Keep your credit card in sight all the time.
  • Don’t leave drinks unattended.
  • Tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return.

SAFETY AT ATMS

  • Use ATMs in well-lit and safe places.
  • Don’t allow your card to be removed from your sight.
  • Don’t accept help from strangers or give out your pin number, not even to persons claiming to be bank officials.
  • Watch out for the people standing very close to you and looking over your shoulder as you type in your pin.
  • Never leave your card in the ATM. If it gets stuck or swallowed, follow instructions provided on the ATM machine.
  • Make sure you are not followed after a transaction.

GIVE RESPONSIBLY
Street children and beggars may approach you for a handout. If you wish to help, consider giving food, donating to a registered charity or contact Cape Town Tourism for advice. You may also encounter aggressive begging in the CBD. This is intimidating behaviour that can make you feel threatened.  You may also be followed around persistently despite your having said “no”.
How to deal with it:
Make eye contact and say “No, please leave me alone” firmly and clearly.
If you feel threatened or uncomfortable in any way, walk into the first open venue and ask for assistance.

Shopping in Simon’s Town is a great experience and you can literally walk along the cobbled streets and alleys from one side of the town to the other.  Take a day to explore various antique, interior and lifestyle, locally produced curios, clothing stores and unique handcrafted jewellery stores.  The Simon’s Town Pharmacy sells a variety of items apart from health & beauty products, and there are a few small grocery shops selling essential food and other emergency items.

If you’re looking for a wider variety of grocery, clothing, household, and electronic shops, visit Harbour Bay Mall, only 3km North of Simon’s Town Central.  Here you will also find a variety of restaurants, a beauty salon, hair stylist, a taylor, optometrist and the Harbour Bay Medical Centre.

The Simon’s Town Pharmacy / Drug Store with in-house nurse is well stocked and offers a full service 6 days a week. The dispensing professionals can offer advise no matter how far from home you are and provide all those things you need to enjoy your holiday by the sea.

If you need a medical doctor or other medical service, the Harbour Bay Medical Centre is located only 3kms from the centre of Simon’s Town. Here you will find General Practitioners, Dentists, Physiotherapists, Optometrists and Pathologists.

Cape Medical Response

CMR was specifically formed in April 2001 to service an urgent need for Advanced Life-Support paramedic services in the Far South area. Their services include advanced life-support emergency medical services.  They assess the situation and the condition of the patient in need of medical attention and immediately begin treatment and stabilize or resuscitate the patient.  They determine and arrange for the most appropriate emergency transport by ambulance or helicopter and continue with care until the patient is handed over.

24-HR EMERGENCIES: 082 782 4444 / 021 782 4444

The Cape Peninsula is perfect for self-drives, as the roads are not too busy and you might prefer the flexibility of driving between the various attractions and small towns which are all within 20km radius of each other. For this it will be best to rent a car in Cape Town or at the Cape Town International Airport.

If you prefer a tour guide or local transfer company to drive you, you’ll have the benefit of local knowledge and insight.  These service providers would also be able to advise you on activities and restaurants to best suit your needs.  Make sure to book their services in advance.

Uber drivers are occasionally available, but not always. Alternatively, hire a bicycle or scooter to explore this beautiful part of the world – weather dependent, of course.

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