Last Updated on January 18, 2024 by thecapetownblog
Watching the sunset in Cape Town is always a treat, but do you know what makes it even better?
Why, a champagne cruise, of course!
Since Cape Town is a coastal city, taking a boat cruise along the Atlantic coast is a pretty popular thing to do here. And with this cruise, the experience gets even better thanks to flowing bubbles and pretty skies. Honestly, it’s a lovely way to spend an evening here – and could be a great way to kick off a fun night out.
I did the champagne cruise recently, so I decided to do a full write-up here, containing everything you need to know, my honest opinion on it, and some tips to make the experience even better.
What is the champagne sunset cruise in Cape Town?
Once you set sail, the crew come around handing out glasses and bottles of bubbly as you sail along the Atlantic Coast towards the Green Point lighthouse, where the boat turns around. The views are gorgeous and there’s upbeat music on board (although we did start off on a rather sombre note with Luther Vandross’ Dance with My Father).
It’s a fantastic way to get the full effect of Cape Town’s stunning natural beauty at sunset, because you get prime views of Table Mountain and Lion’s Head as you cruise along. We also had a lot of fun snapping photos and even reliving *that* famous scene from Titanic.
How much does the champagne sunset cruise cost?
It costs R580, which is approximately £24 or $31 at the time of writing. The price includes the boat trip, and one bottle of bubbles between two. The crew brings them over shortly after you set sail, so you don’t even have to get up to retrieve them!
If you get through that, there’s a bar on board where you can buy more drinks, or the crew will come round to offer more bubbles, which you will have to pay extra for. They’re not pushy about it, though. We declined as we were almost back to shore by the time we had finished ours.
Where does the champagne sunset cruise depart from?
The cruise departs from the V&A Waterfront, at the harbour. You’ll need to check in at the kiosk before your departure time to get your tickets printed out, and then you’ll wait to board the boat outside of the Life Grand Cafe.
The kiosk is in the harbour area, out the back of the shopping mall. Don’t worry – it’s really easy to find.
You only really need to get to the kiosk about 15 minutes before the departure time, but my tip would be to arrive a little earlier than that. That way, you can be at the front of the queue to get the best spot on the boat, which is at the front by the nets.
What time does the cruise depart?
Times do change according to the season, but during the summer it departs at 7 PM, just as the sky starts to get pretty. During the winter, when the sun sets earlier, it leaves at around 5 PM, but the exact time will be emailed to you after you book.
(Don’t worry, they gave me permission to use this photo)
What should I bring on the sunset champagne cruise?
Definitely bring your phone and/or camera, because you’ll want to snap lots of photos! I also recommend bringing a jacket or jumper, even in the summer, because it gets chilly out at sea, especially towards the end of the cruise.
What did I like about the champagne sunset cruise?
I loved the beautiful views and how much fun the experience was! There was a great atmosphere on board because they played exactly the kind of cheesy pop music that I like. I also thought that it was good value for money.
To be honest, I think it’s hands down one of the best boat trips in Cape Town!
What didn’t I like?
I really have no complaints, but I will say that the bubbles weren’t of the best quality. The bubbles were of the sweet JC Le Roux variety, which all Capetonians know isn’t the best quality. But it’s drinkable and hey, when you’ve got your friends and beautiful views, does it really matter if the wine is sub-par?
Can you get seasick?
I would say that it’s possible. No-one in our group did, but the waves did get choppy as we got further out to sea, which had us all “whooping”. However, if you’re prone to seasickness, it might be worth bringing some tablets with you, or even taking one beforehand.
Are there toilets on board the boat?
Yes, there are, and they’re very clean. I just mention this because as someone with a pea-sized bladder, this was a real concern for me, especially since we were drinking.
Do I need to tip?
Tipping is optional. The crew have a tip bucket at the end so you can bring some cash to put in it at the end when you get off the boat. I tipped R100 for our group of 4, although I did notice that a lot of people didn’t tip.
Is this experience suitable for kids?
It depends on what you’re comfortable with as a parent. There were no kids on board our boat, and since it’s a champagne cruise, it does have a bit of a party atmosphere. However, it was nothing too wild so I think it would be fine, but there are also more suitable options for families. There were lots more children on the daytime boat cruise that I did.
Are there other options available?
Yes, the same company also operates a pre-sunset champagne cruise which is a bit cheaper at R360 (£15/$19). It’s still a 90-minute cruise with the same bubbles, and you go at golden hour so you’ll still be able to take fantastic photos. However, I really wanted to do the sunset one because I knew it would be even more beautiful.
How to book the sunset champagne cruise
I booked the sunset champagne cruise for my group through Viator. I’ve always found it really easy to book through them and they have a lowest price guarantee, so really, what have you got to lose? Plus, you can book in your own currency which means no transaction fees!
And if you enjoyed this post, you may also like…