Welcome to Cape Town! Gorgeous nature, rich culture, and culinary adventures everywhere you look. but what about everywhere you overlook? Cape Town is a thriving oasis for locals and tourists, and Capetonians love a good weekly drink at their favourite dive bar.
If you’re not a local, you may need a little help finding a trendy watering hole that’s perfect for you. Keeping in mind the diverse walks of life that adorn the Mother City, we’ve put together five of our favourite dive bars in Cape Town, just for you…
Check them out.
Self-described as “a little bar with big personality”, SurfaRosa is unique, with the laid-back surfer vibe fused with an edgy punk rock influence.
In 2019 SurfaRosa was dubbed the 19th best dive bar in the world and has continued to attract a vibrant mix of vivacious locals and travellers from across the globe. Expect great pizza, quirky staff, “hit-the-spot” drinks, and an all-around fabulous vibe.
2. Dust and Dynamite Saloon
Referred to as a “hidden gem”, this saloon has character everywhere you look, with its wild, wild west-styled, fancy-old-school decor, it's overwhelming in all the right ways. If you’ve had a long day, you can be sure that there will be an ice-cold beer waiting for you behind these swinging saloon doors!
For a unique, honky-tonk experience, channel your inner Texas ranger, put on your cowboy hat, and get ready for a dive bar adventure that will have you feeling like you’ve stepped onto the set of a classic western movie scene.
3. Cause | Effect
Cause | Effect was voted SA cocktail bar of the year, which is no surprise when you discover their experiential menu of not just the most creative and awe-inspiring cocktails, but also their lavishly scrumptious food that can effortlessly be paired with the perfect drink, by one of their extremely knowledgeable and charming staff. This is a dive bar experience you do not want to miss!
Inspired by Cape Town’s oceans, mountains, fynbos, and vineyards, this vibrant and wonderful watering hole can be found at the V&A Waterfront. Using raw ingredients and effecting them into flavour, Cause | Effect aims to study, discover and create authentic and delicious flavours from the Cape, that never cease to please the senses.
Situated in the heart of Camps Bay, Chinchilla has it all! From panoramic views of the ocean, a white sandy beach just a stone’s throw away, and towering palm trees, to the iconic Lions Head and the Twelve Apostles mountains on the other side; this is a dive bar to remember! A beachy, boho vibe meets a unique chic elegance that invites you to relax, unwind, and have a drink. We can’t think of a better place to enjoy a delicious, world-class cocktail and bask in a glorious Cape Town sunset after a day of work, can you?
5. The Athletic Club and Social
Refined yet edgy, cosy and romantic, casual and indulgent, these are all words used to describe this trendy dive bar. Not many people know that this three-story saloon used to be an underground speakeasy-type bar, where everyone and anyone was welcomed to enjoy a drink and socialise together under one roof, an act that could’ve seen you arrested during apartheid.
The building dates back to 1900 and has three bars, each with its own eclectic and quirky decor. An ambient adventure awaits you in this inspiring place of history. Enjoy Mediterranean-styled tapas and an old-fashioned drink on the balcony, or cosy up in a corner and romance the night away over a candle-lit dinner, there is no wrong choice.
If you’re a travelling wanderer and you’d like to find your next exciting spot to visit in South Africa, check out Veldskoen Travel.