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Update: Cape Town’s water shortage

Home / News Blog / Update: Cape Town’s water shortage

You have probably seen stories in the media by now about the drought in Cape Town, and may be worried about how it might affect your travel to South Africa.  So we decided to share our perspective on the situation as locals and as tour operators.

Firstly, yes we are still showering (quickly) and there’s still plenty of water (and beer) to drink. 🙂

The water shortage is confined to Cape Town itself. We are #StillStomping along the beautiful Garden Route, Overberg, Little Karoo and Addo Elephant National Park. No drought or water shortages are affecting the areas you will visit on our Garden Route & Addo tours. They actually had plenty of rain in the Garden Route and Addo these last two weeks. Go and see photo updates of our weekly tours to these areas on our Instagram and Facebook pages – still as beautiful and lush as always.

In Cape Town the drought is a real concern for locals, and we are doing everything possible to save water until our winter rains arrive in April. For tourists, Cape Town is open for business and everything is going ahead as usual, all you have to remember is to please use water sparingly while in Cape Town. The City of Cape Town is working around the clock to avoid “Day Zero”, and many alternative water sources are coming on line over next few months (such as desalination plants and boreholes).

Attractions that you will probably visit before, during or after your tour with Earthstompers will be open as usual: Cape of Good Hope National Park, Boulders Beach penguins, Robben Island, Table Mountain, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, V&A Waterfront, the Cape Winelands, just to name a few. Restaurants, bars, shops and hotels are open for business and have great contingency plans in place.   More importantly: Emergency services, hospitals and doctors operate as usual. Local tourism organizations have prepared this excellent FAQ list for visitors, please have a look.

When hearing about a drought you get this “desert” picture in your head where everything is dead and nothing grows, but it is not like that at all. If you drive through the winelands with all the vineyards, the Cape Peninsula with all the fynbos vegetation and when you are in the city with beautiful Table Mountain as a backdrop, it all looks “normal” and the scenery is beautiful as always. It is just the reservoirs that are really low in Cape Town. This photo was taken in Kirstenbosch this past weekend.

So, the next question is, what can you as a tourist do for Cape Town and the community?

The answer is simple:

  1. Travel to South Africa. Cape Town and all of South Africa are very reliant on tourism, and without your support the water shortage would not be the only problem, but many people might lose their jobs. “During peak season international tourists only add 1% to the population of the Western Cape. Your impact would therefore be negligible if you use water sparingly”
  2. Use water sparingly when you travel. Take short showers; don’t leave the tap running while you wash hands or brush teeth; reuse your towel rather than having it changed every day.

So in short: TRAVEL TO SOUTH AFRICA, we are open for business and #StillStomping the Garden Route, come and enjoy the beautiful Western and Eastern Cape with Earthstompers Adventures.


Hendrik, Chrissy and the Earthstompers Team


Canoeing adventure    

Wilderness  Suspension Bridge Hike



2 thoughts on “Update: Cape Town’s water shortage

  1. Thank you for the information and look forward to the regular updates.
    As I will be travelling to Cape Town from Australia at the forecast date of ‘day zero’ we are concerned of the situation and the potential for disease and unrest that may unfold. Praying that there is relief in the horizon.

    1. Good day, Keith

      Thank you very much for your message. We believe that combined efforts, together with winter rainfall will give relief to the current situation. We will keep you posted on any new developments. Just keep an eye on our blogs 🙂
      Our tours of the Garden Route & Addo Elephant Park are not affected by the water shortage in Cape Town.
      Warm Regards
      Cindy & the Earthstompers Team

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