Green Point is quickly becoming a popular area for locals and tourists to eat, shop and enjoy a concert or two. Somerset Road is heart of the Green Point area, perfectly positioned as it feeds straight out of the CBD at Riebeek Street through to the Main Road in Seapoint.
Since the new Green Point Stadium was built in 2010, Somerset Road hosts a vibrant mix of restaurants and bars, which light up most nights, servicing locals from the area and tourists sampling the fare.
In Summer, Somerset Road teems with people from the moment the sun rises until last call at the bar at night. Get the lowdown on what to see and do in our virtual Somerset Road tour below, which features all of the restaurants, bars, shops and other cool things you can find along this street.
Shops, restaurants and bars on Somerset Road
While these are just a selection of the various dining and shopping options along Somerset, these are definitely worth a try:
Cape Quarter – Recently revamped, the Cape Quarter is host to a variety of upmarket shops and restaurants. Buy groceries at an upmarket Spar, or curios at Baraka, or browse for a book at the quirky Bay Bookshop. Restaurants include Voila! – European contemporary food, the Cape Malay Food Market, and Andiamo Deli – serving divine pasta, pizza and deli sandwiches. On Wednesdays and Sundays, the Cape Quarter hosts a “Village Market”, which is definitely worth a visit.
*Beware, the “Old Cape Quarter” and the “New Cape Quarter” are separated by a side street, if you find yourself a bit lost, just ask a local – they will be happy to help you find your way.
Bistro 1800° – For something sophisticated, try the signature steaks at Cape Royale Hotel’s restaurant where the name is derived from the Fahrenheit temperature at which the meat is prepared.
Café Extrablatt – For delicious buffet breakfast specials and half price sundowners, head to Café Extrablatt. This German-inspired Café has everything you need for a quick meal or a long lazy afternoon.
Hudsons Burger Joint – Grab a burger at Hudson’s Burger Joint and leave feeling happily satisfied. The food is large, but oh so delicious. Try one of their burger specials, or even submit your own and it may be selected as the Burger of the Month.
Pigalle – For a special occasion, Pigalle’s extensive menu and live music is a perfect combination for a memorable evening. If you’re looking for a function venue, Pigalle also hosts a variety of events and conferences for your convenience.
Beefcakes – The ultimate night out, for the men, and especially the ladies. This cabaret dinner theatre is a popular hens night affair. With themed evenings Mondays to Saturdays and gourmet burgers to die for, it’s a must-do experience. Not for the faint hearted.
El Burro – An authentic Mexican restaurant in Cape Town, try this as a healthy alternative to the usual cheese-soaked nachos. Add a jug of margaritas and you’ll have a recipe for a great night out!
Manos – Somewhat of an institution on Somerset Road is this popular restaurant is owned and run by Mano himself. Think simple, tasty food, good service and reasonable prices.
Limnos Bakery – This unassuming bakery offers over 200 confectionary items, from macaroons and petit fours to chocolate truffles and mousse cakes. Sit down and enjoy delectable desserts, or get them to go, it’s up to you.
Mario’s Italian Restaurant – One of the oldest restaurants in Cape Town, this traditional Italian establishment has been run by the Marzagalli family for over 30 years. Expect a relaxed, informal atmosphere and a warm welcome.
Giovanni’s Deli & Coffee Shop – This deli, populated most mornings with locals getting their caffeine fix, is a treasure trove of specialty meats, imported balsamic vinegars, fresh seasonal vegetables and fine local wines. Get in early, or you’ll fight for a spot.
The Butcherman – The new kid on the block, this restaurant come butcher is taking a new stance on the Cape Town steakhouse. Pick your cut of meat and eat it on the premises, or take it home along with their speciality rubs and marinades for a “lekker” braai.
In addition to these places to eat and shop, you will also find many other worthwhile stops along Somerset Road. Go for a drink at Doppio Zero, a local hangout, or the Slug and Lettuce, a traditional English pub. For a treat, try Gelato Mania, or a coffee at Vida e Café. If you’re looking for groceries, Woolworths is right next-door, and there are multiple ATM’s along the strip too.
What Else Should You Know About Somerset Road?
While the parking for most of these restaurants is on the street, there are a few parking lots within walking distance. If you’re looking for a secure underground parking area, there is ample parking behind Hudsons on Upper Portswood Road.
On days when there are soccer games, concerts or other special events, the road closes to traffic and becomes a walking street, known as the “Fan Walk” – stemming from the World Cup in 2010. If you’re in the area at this time, you can get access to the area from High Level Road, or take a MyCiti Bus, which conveniently stops parallel to Somerset Road.
Once a month at full moon, thousands of Cape Towns avid cycling community take to the streets to ride around the city in bizarre costumes riding bicycles of all shapes and sizes. #moonlightmass, as it is known, takes its route down Somerset Road towards the city amid cheers from many restaurant patrons.
Somerset Road is also not too far from the Seapoint Promenade where many people enjoy morning walks and the sea breeze. If you’re walking your furry best friend, you can find many dog-friendly places along the strip, with water bowls available. Another neighbourhood gem is the newly opened Green Point Park, great for the kids and also pet friendly. Pick something delicious up at Giovanni’s and settle in for an afternoon picnic here.
And that’s not all the Green Point area has to offer, many of the side streets lead to more restaurants and shops; such as Prestwich Street, host to the famous Beluga and Il Leone. It’s up to you to get out there and explore!
Have you been to Somerset Road recently, or during your holiday in Cape Town? Tell us about your favourite Somerset Road experience.