5 of the best markets in Cape Town

The slowfood movement and the revival of crafted goods has resulted in a plethora of markets in Cape Town. These are a couple of my favourites.

1. The Neighbourhood Goods Market at The Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock.  This award-winning market stands head and shoulders above the rest. It has over 100 specialty traders every Saturday, including local farmers, fine-food purveyors, organic merchants, bakers, butchers, artisan producers and designers. Wander through the old  warehouse and courtyard at the Old Biscuit Mill or chill on hay bales outside.

2. The Porters Market,  in Tokai. Probably my most visited market, because I love the MoerKoffie, the amazing bacon and egg rolls, and the Marimba’s. The market is the perfect place to stop off after a bike ride, or walk in Tokai forest. Look out for the handmade breadboards, Karoo lamb, chocolate brownies, raw honey and heritage seedlings.

3. The Slowmarket and Treasury Market, in Stellenbosch. If you’re willing to trek out to the Winelands, this market is worth the trip. Well organised and laid out around the Oaks and Cape Dutch buildings of Oude Libertas, the Slowmarket offers quality, gourmet treats, quirky crafts and some great finds. After quaffing champagne over breakfast, I came home laden with marinated olives, cheese, a Havanna hat, a real Indian embroidered throw, a bird brooch and the intention to return. The Treasury craft market, within the larger market, is only there on the first Saturday of the month.

4. The Bay Harbour Market in Hout Bay. This market has grown into a sprawling mix of great food and crafts. Its popular – especially on the weekends when there’s live music –  so expect a busy, vibey atmosphere.

5. The Earthfair Market, in Tokai. This small market has some gems – curries, cheesecakes and fresh organic juices. Try By Nature for organic nuts and dried fruit, Constantia Cheesery for delicious cheeses without colourants additives or preservatives, and SaladLover for the best vegetarian, gourmet selection of salads you could wish for.

Two Angels in Knysna

The Knysna Festival is around the corner, and for anyone entered into the fun, there is always a mad scramble for accommodation. Last year, as a festival virgin, I entered the 21km run, gathered a motley crew of faithful supporters and planned the pilgrimage.

By a stroke of luck, we found accommodation at the Two Angels (previously Rockery Nook) on Leisure Isle, in full view of the Knysna Heads.

We rented ‘Lovers’ Nook’ cottage,  the ‘Oyster Nook’ studio, and a small loft room upstairs.  The ‘Nooks’ were both stunning – stylishly decorated and very comfortable with en-suites, kitchenettes and incredible views, but the loft room was a tad basic – no frills but fine for overflow accommodation that you could put your kids into.

Best part of our stay? Hard to choose between the incredible sunsets on the lagoon, waking up to the lapping, rushing sounds of the incoming tide, or early swims and lazy bike rides around Leisure Isle.

Best places to eat? If you’ve had enough of relaxed mojito’s and braai’s at the house,  venture out and try champagne and oysters at Sirocco on Thesen Island or breakfast at East Head Café http://www.eastheadcafe.co.za/

And yes, we also ran a race that required us to get up in the middle of the night, queue to catch a thumping taxi into a dark, muddy, freezing forest, just to run all the way back – and it was fabulous fun.

Book accommodation at Two Angels through www.perfecthideaways.co.za. Tel: 021 790 0972, or email: stay@perfecthideaways.co.za