EC Partners

EC Cape Town 30+ Travel Guide and Activities

Famed for its unusual flora and fauna, could there be a more exotic destination than Cape Town? Its appeal lies in its diversity; a multicultural city where old and new come together to make something spectacular. Backed by the rugged Table Mountain, Cape Town is blessed with awe-inspiring natural beauty.

Climate

Cape Town is special in each of its four seasons:
Spring (Sept – Nov) – the flower season; where the mountains and fields form a kaleidoscope of colours (min. 13 degrees, max. 25 degrees)
Summer (Dec – Feb) – the beach season; hot summer days, perfect for swimming and sun tanning on our white, sandy beaches (min. 17 degrees, max. 29 degrees)
Autumn (Mar – May) – the hiking season; temperate days for hiking as the forests start to change colour and little waterfalls begin to flow (min. 13 degrees, max. 27 degrees) Winter (Jun – Aug) – the whale season; when these magnificent creatures visit our shores to breed (min. 11 degrees, max. 20 degrees)

* Temperatures are noted as minimum or maximum averages

Money
  • Currency – South African Rand referred to as
    Rand (ZAR)
  • Most shops and hotels will accept all major
    credit cards, although AMEX is not commonly accepted
  • The main banks in South Africa are ABSA, Capitec, FNB, Standard Bank, Nedbank.


Banking hours:

Monday to Friday – 09h00 – 15h30
Saturday – 08h30 – 11h00
Students on a study visa may open a local bank account. The closest bank to EC is Standard Bank, which is opposite the Clicks Pharmacy on Long Street. You will need the following to open a bank account: – Valid passport with study visa – an EC confirmation of study letter – proof of Cape Town residential address

Public holidays 

2024 Public holidays on a weekday:
1 Jan, 21 Mar, 29 Mar, 1 Apr, 1 May, 17 Jun, 9 Aug, 24 Sept, 16 Dec, 25 Dec, 26 Dec

5 things to see
  • The view from the top of Table Mountain
  • Wild animals on safari
  • Nelson Mandela’s prison cell on Robben Island
  • The views from the Cape Point lighthouse; the most south-western tip of Africa
  • Whales swimming in the ocean on the Hermanus coast
 
5 things to do
  • Hike up Lion’s Head during the day or at full moon
  • Visit a local township
  • Wine tasting in the Cape Winelands
  • Snorkel with seals
  • Dine at an African restaurant

 

Telephone Country Code

South Africa’s Country Code is +27.
Cape Town’s code is (0)21.


Electricity

220/230 volts; 50 Hz. Wall plugs are domestically manufactured and are not compatible with foreign plugs. Adaptors are widely available in major supermarkets.

Loadshedding
South Africa has a constrained electricity supply. When the electricity supply is limited, loadshedding is implemented. This means that power is switched off in certain areas at certain times. Students should download the “Eskom se Push” app which will inform students of loadshedding times should loadshedding be implemented at short notice.

Tap water
Cape Town is in a water-scarce area and is prone to drought conditions. Please use water responsibly and try to save water where possible. Cape 


Town has good quality tap water which is safe to drink, although the taste may differ to what you are used to. Bottled water is widely available at all supermarkets.


Transport
  • The MyCiti bus is the most common form of public transport within the city centre and the Altantic Seaboard area. This is a modern bus system with electric buses which run regularly and mostly on time. Students will need to purchase a bus card and load credit onto the card. Bus cards are available at all bus stations and selected retail stores. The closest bus station to EC Cape Town is the Adderley Street Bus Station.
  • E-hailing taxis such as Uber and Bolt and commonly available in Cape Town and are well-priced. Most students use e-hailing taxis to travel around the city and it can be cheaper than using the bus when sharing a taxi. An e-hailing taxi can usually arrive within 3 minutes of ordering one.
  • It is advised not to use the train service as it is unreliable and does not run efficiently

Useful Information

Driving Age

The legal driving age in South Africa is 18 years old, although most car hire companies require drivers to be at least 21 years old. Cars drive on the left-hand side of the road in South Africa.

Alcohol Age

The legal age for alcohol in South Africa is 18 years. It is illegal to consume alcohol in public.

Smoking laws

The legal age for smoking in South Africa is 18 years.

Insurance

Students are required to have health or travel insurance when attending an English course at EC. If you need to see a doctor, please speak to the EC staff to arrange an appointment for you. For more serious injuries or illnesses, students should visit a private hospital. The closest hospital to the school is the Netcare Christiaan Bernard Memorial Hospital. Depending on the urgency of the situation, medical fees can either be paid directly and then claimed back from your health insurance company or the health insurance company would need to issue authorisation to the hospital to administer medical care.

Useful Links
Visa

For up-to-date visa information please visit our Visa Requirements page

Cost of Living

Coffee/Cappuccino  

€1.35-€2.00

Bottle of water / soda (0.33 litre) 

€0.50-€1.00

Fast-Food combo meal 

€3.15-€5.15

Restaurant meal

€6.50-€13.00

Fitness club (monthly, 1 adult) 

€17.00-€50.00

Public transport (local transport) 

€0.65-€1.40 (one-way)