Follow the Main Road (M4) south from Cape Town via Fish Hoek to the Cape of Good Hope along the east side of the Cape Peninsula.
There is a regular MetroRail service from Cape Town via Fish Hoek, Kalk Bay, Muizenberg, Wynberg and Claremont. Be sure to buy a first-class (metro plus) ticket; these are not expensive. Although safety on trains has been an issue in the past, MetroRail has put a lot of effort into improving the situation and now the Cape Town-Simon's Town line is considered totally safe and reliable. The journey from Cape Town takes just over an hour. A good option is to buy MetroRail's special "hop on, hop off" tourist ticket. This allows you unlimited travel between Simon's Town and Cape Town for an entire day; you can get off and on at any station. The cost is a very reasonable R20/R25. However please be aware that there is a MetroPlus and a Metro option on the coaches and the corresponding tickets are first and second/third class. There are no obvious differences in the coaches but if you sit in the wrong one you can be fined.
1 Simon's Town station is the terminus for the line and located at the north end of Simon's Town, about a 10 minute walk to the centre of Simon's Town. Frequently, the sand dunes can cover parts of the line and you may have to exit at Fish Hoek and hop on to a MetroRail provided bus service that takes you to Simon's Town. Alternatively you can grab a ride on the back of a Rikki Taxi (see "Getting around" below).
The nearest airport is that of Cape Town, a good hour's drive away. You can also go on a trip with Civair from the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town along the Cape Peninsula.
Simon's Town is small enough to get around by foot (it takes less than 30 minutes to walk from one side to the other). From the train station to the centre of town is a 10- or 15-minute walk (turn left as you exit the station).
If you really don't feel like walking you can take a "Rikki" taxi. A "Rikki" is a small minibus which usually runs from the train station to Boulders Beach (and beyond if requested). Unlike other minibus taxies, Rikki's do not hoot their horn constantly so you must keep an eye out for them. Their vehicles are unique in that they are obviously a minibus but much smaller in size and painted white (often with an advertisement on the back) and often flash their lights.
A Rikki taxi meets every train that arrives at Simon's Town station. It costs R3.00 to go from the station to central Simon's Town and R5.50 to go to Boulders Beach.
- Rikki's Taxis, ☏ , (mobile), ✉ email@example.com.
- Golden Arrow Buses, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also hire bicycles, including motorised and electric assist bicycles to get around and take a trip to cape point or nearby villages.
- Simon's town is home to a large colony of the endangered African Penguin. The penguins can be seen at a variety beaches along the coast here, the most famous and highest concentration being at Boulders Beach. Access to Boulders Beach and the visitors centre costs R60 for adults, however a smaller number can often be seen for free on the adjacent Seaforth Beach.
- 1 Boulders Beach, ☏ . Boulders Beach is a sheltered beach made up of inlets between granite boulders, from which the name originated. It is a popular tourist stop because of a colony of African penguins which settled there in 1982. R76 per adult per day R41 per child, per day.
- Along the main road through Simon's Town there are a number of museums on the False Bay side, including the Simon's Town Museum, South African Navy Museum and a Toy Museum.
- , ☏ . 09:30-15:30. Museum showcasing the history of the South African Navy Free.
- Bronze statue of Just Nuisance (a Great Dane and the only dog ever to be enlisted officially in the Royal Navy) in Jubilee Square. Just Nuisance's grave can be found at the top of the hill above the town.
Stop in Simon's Town and stroll around the harbour and the little shops along the main road. Then have something to eat, before you leave for Boulders, just outside the town (in the south).
- Swim at Seaforth Beach
- Sea Kayak Trips, Town Jetty, ☏ . Take a sea kayak trip to the Penguin colony.
- SAS Assegaai submarine museum, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. SAS Assegaai, formerly the SAS Johanna van der Merwe, was one of three Daphne-class submarines acquired from France during 1970 to 1972, which became the first submarines to serve in the South African Navy. She was renamed SAS Assegaai (Assegaai is the Afrikaans word for 'spear') in 1999 and was the last of the SA Navy’s Daphne class submarines in commission and decommissioned in 2003. She is preserved as a floating museum but is closed for safety reasons. R40 per person (R20 for children under 12 years old).
- 1 Bertha's, Quayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront, ☏ . Right on the water's edge overlooking the harbour. As the largest restaurant in town, you should always be able to get a table here without a booking. The menu is similarly large with a good selection of steaks, fish, burgers, salads etc. Has free WiFi, however this can be temperamental.
- 2 Cafe Pescado, 118 St George's Street, ☏ . As with everywhere in this area you can get a great choice of steaks and seafood here, however where they really stand out from the rest of the restaurants in town are the wood fired pizzas available to eat in or take away. Has a bar at the back and free WiFi.
- 3 Harbour View, Quayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront, ☏ . Eat inside or out on the balcony overlooking the harbour. They also have a takeaway counter next door and sell a selection of items such as springbok or crocodile pate. Has good free WiFi.
- 4 Just Sushi, Quayside Centre, Simon's Town Waterfront, ☏ . Maybe the best sushi in Cape Town.
- 5 Quarterdeck, Jubilee Square, off St George's Street, ☏ .
- 6 [formerly dead link] Salty Sea Dog, Wharf Road, ☏ . Fish and chips fresh from the sea. The kingklip is particularly recommended.
- 7 The Meeting Place, 98 St George's Street, ☏ . Excellent (but expensive) food, with great views north over False Bay. There is a restaurant and cocktail bar upstairs and a deli/coffee shop downstairs.
- 8 The Sweetest Thing, 82 St George's Street, ☏ . Coffee shop with fantastic cakes and pastries.
- 9 Seaforth Restaurant, Seaforth Beach Seaforth Road Simon's Town 7975, ☏ . Overlooking the beach where penguins waddle around as you eat. Go on a Tuesday for their 'all you can eat' prawn special, or Thursdays 'all you can eat' calamari.
- 10 Saveur, Quayside centre, Simon's Town Waterfront, ☏ . Tu-Su. Fantastic food with great midweek specials, very popular so booking ahead is recommended. Tuesday night is 1/2 price steaks, Wednesday is 2-for-1 burgers and Thursday is seafood night.
- 1 Two and Sixpence, 88 St Georges Street. M-Sa 11:00-02:00, Su 11:00-23:30. A pub popular with locals and visiting navies, as such you can find plaques and signed perry buoys from various countries ships hanging from the wall, along with flags draped from the ceiling. Screens numerous football games, occasional live entertainment and free WiFi.
- Boulders Beach Lodge, 4 Boulders Place, Bellevue Road, Boulders, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Situated above Boulders Beach. Self-catering units also available. From R395 per person.
- British Hotel Apartments, 90 St George's St (Main Road), ☏ . Fully equipped self-catering apartments in the centre of Simon's Town.
- Central Hotel, 96 St George's St (Main Road), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. In the centre of Simon's Town.
- Lord Nelson Inn, 58 St George's Street (Main Road), ☏ , ✉ lordNelsonHotel@yahoo.com. Old-fashioned hospitality in a traditional British inn.
- Simonstown Accommodation, 29 Penguin Drive, Glen Marine, Simons Town, ☏ . Amazing mountain and sea views with secure parking and DSTV.
- Miller's point. Camping.
- [dead link] OatLands, Froggy Pond, ☏ . Camping.
- Quayside Hotel, Simon's Town Waterfront, Jubilee Square, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Luxury hotel overlooking the harbour and False Bay. Part of the Relais Hotels group. From R395 per person.
- Seagetaway, 10 Rocklands Rd, Murdock Valley, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Self catering cottage. Magnificent sea views. From R800 for the cottage per night sleeps 5.
- Simon's Town Backpackers, 66 St George's St (Main Road) (5-minute walk from the train station), ☏ , ✉ capePax@kingsley.co.za. Well run hostel with wooden floors, large community room and Balcony towards the bay. Parking in the street. double R360.
- TopSail House, 176 St George's Street (Main Road), ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Budget accommodation in an old convent, which has been converted into a delightful guest lodge.
- Whaleview Manor, ☏ . Guest house overlooking False Bay with friendly and caring staff.
Simon's Town is relatively safe compared to the rest of the Cape Town area, however this is still South Africa and so keep your wits about you and keep expensive possessions hidden. Tourists have often been caught out at ATMs here, whilst not often violent, a 'helpful' local changes the ATM language to Afrikaans and then forcefully offers assistance to get your money out - that being the largest denomination offered, which is then grabbed before they run off.
If walking on any of the trails out of Simon's Town, particularly over the top of the hill to the west and towards the Kleinplass Dam, there has been a history of violent crime and muggings as you get closer to the Red Hill Settlement (township).