1. On Tour
Pack a picnic. Mount Nelson Hotel's team of specialist chefs are famous for their personalised portable feast baskets.
2. Education Station
Familiarise yourself with Cape Town's natural and social history at museums leading off Government Avenue, in and around the city's Company Gardens. Children under 16 enter for free at most of the Iziko museums and don't forget to buy a packet of peanuts to feed the garden's squirrels before you leave.
The Iziko SA National Gallery contains longstanding collections of works by big name classic and contemporary local and international artists. Contemporary fans shouldn't miss the William Kentridge collection and Jane Alexander's haunting 'Butcher Boys' sculpture.
Part of The SA Jewish Museum is housed in the city's first synagogue. It features a life-sized groundbreaking replica of a Lithuanian settlement or 'shtetl' and other fascinating interactive displays.
Mount Nelson Hotel is over a century old and fascinating stories and legends abound. Longstanding hotel staff are always happy to recount anecdotes relating to the property's rich heritage – don't forget to ask.
3. Go Fish
Cape Town is famous for delectable seafood and fresh line fish. Opt for the city's best fried calamari and oversized seafood platters on the verandah of The Chapmans Peak Hotel in Hout Bay or the freshest no-frills fish 'n chips at Kalky's in the Kalk Bay Harbour.
Splash out on fancy sushi and other delicacies at one of the many establishment eateries on the Atlantic Seaboard or in the city centre. Wakame in Mouille Point does excellent Asian-inspired dishes with a view, and Millers Thumb (in Kloofnek Road) is a city institution known for superb seafood and line-fish served straight-up or Cajun grilled to perfection.
If you prefer to admire your fish (and other sea creatures) before you eat it, visit the Two Oceans Aquarium at the V&A Waterfront.
Mount Nelson Hotel has a specialised Children's Concierge facility to assist with family friendly excursion ideas and pre-book tickets etc.
4. The World Market
Sample the Western Cape's best artisan foodie products and produce at the Neighbourgoods Market at the Biscuit Mill on Albert Road in the vibey Woodstock precinct every Saturday morning. Also on offer: hip fashion, vintage shopping, art, design and quality people-watching.
Sababa is best for flavourful middle-eastern delicacies cooked on the spot; New York Bagels' cream cheese and lox is legendary (as is their cheesecake), and stock up on Peanut Butter Choc Chip biscuits from Dunk.
Heartworks stocks an inspiring range of original handmade local jewellery and décor items. Their quirky hand-embroidered cushion covers make excellent souvenirs.
Mount Nelson Hotel offers a complimentary shuttle service to and from the market on Saturday mornings upon request.
5. Smart Art
Woodstock is also home to three of the city's leading art galleries. You'll find two of the country's top contemporary galleries on Sir Lowry Road: the Goodman Gallery and the Michael Stevenson, and the edgy Whatiftheworld which showcases young, upcoming contemporary artists in Albert Road, near the market.
The iArt Gallery in Loop Street and at Wembley Square in the East City precinct is best for collectable pieces by established contemporary artists.
6. Wined Up
A one-hour drive from the city centre and you're in wine country. Franschhoek and Stellenbosch boast some of the world's finest wine estates. Opt for a guided wine route tour, or hire a car and set off to explore two or three wineries. Most have their own restaurants, or explore the town centres for local fare.
For something new, try The Delaire Graff Estate. Situated in the Helshoogte mountain pass it boasts a magnificent David Collins-designed restaurant.
Classic award-winning wine lands eateries to try include Reubens or The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Francais in Franschhoek, or, Constantia Uitsig closer to home in the Constantia wine lands (just twenty minutes from the city centre).
Ask Mount Nelson Hotel's Executive Chef Rudi Liebenberg and the knowledgeable Concierge team to share their list of 'hidden gem' restaurants and wine estates with you – or book an evening at the Mount Nelson Hotel on the Chef's Table for a once in a lifetime Cape culinary adventure. Ask Chef Rudi >
7. One Stop Shopping
The recently extended Cape Quarter in De Waterkant precinct off Somerset Road in Green Point is where it's at for upmarket art, design, fashion, books, kitchenalia and furniture, and good coffee shops and restaurants abound in the two open-air piazzas.
The Green Shop is great for original eco-friendly gifts and gadgets; Galleria Gibello showcases affordable art by photographer Caroline Gibello; Wild Olive does heaven-scented and beautifully packaged handcut soaps and toiletries, and head to Dillon & Jada for hot African fashion.
The Cape Quarter is located just ten minute' drive from Mount Nelson Hotel and regular complimentary shuttles are available to transport guests (and their shopping bags) there and back upon request.
8. Hot Tickets
Cape Town central lights up after dark from Wednesday to Sunday. Afro-chic, grunge, funk and electro converge on Long Street. Try The Waiting Room upstairs at Royale Eatery for house and electro or The Daddy Cool Bar at The Granddaddy Hotel for laid-back DJs and live jazz.
Heritage Square on Bree Street offers a selection of bars and restaurants popular with the local after-work drinks crowd. Try HQ's Friday night festivities or the more relaxed Caveau wine bar and deli. &Union across from the square is a beer salon and charcuterie popular with a hip after-work crowd.
Join the likes of Robbie Williams, Michael Buble and Kate Moss and sip cocktails on the garden verandah at Planet Champagne and Cocktail Bar at Mount Nelson Hotel – a favourite celeb-spotting destination.
9. Free to Be
Some of the best things to do in Cape Town are free. Make like a local and take an early morning walk or jog along the Sea Point promenade with friends and family, or a romantic sunset stroll with somebody special. The walkway is safe and secure and offers magnificent views over the bay. Stop by Mouille Point's Newport Deli for hot chocolate or gelato before or after.
Have a beach day at one of Clifton's four pristine beaches. The water here may be on the chilly side, but even on the windiest of days, the beaches are sheltered and calm – making them picnic perfect. Locals will tell you that Fourth Beach is for families; Third Beach is a 'pink playground'; Second Beach is a teen favourite, and First Beach is a hit with the mid-20s to 30s set.
10. Great Gathering Point
Visit the impressive Green Point stadium, where several of the World Cup 2010 matches were held. Book a personalised tour or attend an event. In addition to sporting occasions, music concerts and other large-scale activities take place here.
By Benita Kursan, a writer based in Cape Town specialising in travel and culture.
Can you add an 11th 'must'?