Running the Cape Town CBD
In the build-up to the Two Oceans, I’m sure many have been hitting the streets to get their training runs in. Cape Town is filled with a ton of great options and routes if you get tired of running your usual neighbourhood.
Popular options like Sea Point Promenade, Rondebosch Common and the Two Oceans Half Marathon Route have become the go-to spots for most. However, after a couple of early morning runs through the city, thanks to my boy Quaniet, I started to see the road differently. It’s actually a really great way to get to know our beloved Cape Town CBD from a fresh perspective.
So one morning in January, I woke up early and just hit the road, hoping to map out a route through the CBD that I thought would be fun.
My route through Cape Town CBD
The first thing you need to do is find a parking spot. I usually go for a landmark like a park or opposite a shop – or whatever doesn’t look too dodgy
I chose a spot in Woodstock close to Roodebloem Road. It’s pretty safe in the surrounds, but use your common sense – obviously don’t leave any valuables in plain sight.
The route started with the gentle hill climb up Roodebloem Road, through University Estate and then joining De Waal Drive towards the city.
My personal highlight of the run came quite early on. Once you finish the 2km climb and start the descent from De Waal Drive into Gardens, you get amazing views of the city. On your left you have Devil’s Peak and Table Mountain hovering over you. On the right, you have the harbour and CBD still and calm in the morning sun.
On this particular morning it started out misty, but this lifted by the time I got into Gardens.
Just after the Engen Garage in Gardens, have a look out for the Mount Nelson Hotel on your left. This is where I turned right into the Company’s Garden and ran along Government Avenue.
Government Avenue and the run through the Company’s Garden is really picturesque. With the early morning sun filtering through the trees, it felt like I was running through Central Park.
At the bottom of Government Avenue, I turned left into Wale Street and headed up the short incline into Bo-Kaap.
If you are feeling beat, Bo-Kaap provides some awesome photo-ops for you to catch your breath 🙂
I continued running parallel to Buitengracht Street while weaving towards Walter Sisulu Avenue. Here I turned right and ran next to the Cape Town International Convention Centre towards the Foreshore.
I turned right again into Heerengracht Street and ran across the Foreshore – luckily, Mariam’s Kitchen was closed or my run might have turned into a fast food binge 🙂
I continued into Adderley and then turned into Strand Street. A quick photo-op on the Grand Parade and then of the Castle of Good Hope and I was off on the home-stretch down Sir Lowry Road / Victoria Road to Roodebloem where it all started.
In all it was just under 13km’s. What I liked was that you get to see a few landmarks from a totally different perspective during those early runs.
I’ve included my Strava output below:
Although I’ve been completely obsessed with the trails, running the city is a really cool experience and I’ll probably be trying to mix it up a bit more with a few of these thrown in.
I think this route in reverse would be pretty challenging as there’d be more climbs to face with a steep downhill run to end off at the bottom of Roodebloem Road.
So if you get tired of pounding the pavement around the same old spots, go out and have a run through the CBD. I guarantee that you’ll feel like a tourist in your hometown 🙂
If you’ve been hitting the road and have any cool routes through the city, please feel free to share in the comments section below.