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“Highlight of my time in Cape Town!”
Review of Coffeebeans Routes

Coffeebeans Routes
Book In Advance
More Info
$107.26*
and up
Cape Town Jazz Safari
More Info
$85.81*
and up
Township Tour of Cape Town
More Info
$119.18*
and up
Cape Town Food Tasting Tour
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: We create contemporary, urban experiences around urban stories in Cape Town and Johannesburg. They provide deep insights and plenty of fun. We operate a portfolio of long-form and short-form specialist creative travel programmes, and we custom-make experiences around pretty much any topic.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Highlight of my time in Cape Town!”
Reviewed May 11, 2014 via mobile

If you're looking for an authentic Cape Town experience this is the company you want to book with. I did the jazz safari and township futures tour both guided by Michael. He is extremely knowledgeable about the history and culture of the area. He actually takes you for a walking tour of the townships instead of driving past in a van like other companies. This is an experience you won't get with any other company in town. Thanks again!

Helpful?
Thank Dalemelnychuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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48 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    36
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Culinary tour”
Reviewed May 9, 2014 via mobile

This was an outstanding opportunity to experience the cultures and histories of Cape Town's different racial and ethnic groups. The food experience was terrific but much more significant was the chance to learn about life in the townships. The tour included a meal in a private home, an unforgettable experience. Our guide, Michael Letlala, was excellent

Helpful?
Thank RPA169
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montclair, New Jersey
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Maybe its good, never got the chance”
Reviewed March 13, 2014

Make sure you book well ahead of time. During my recent visit I sent an e mail on Monday requesting a booking for the upcoming Friday night. On Wednesday I sent a follow up e mail. At which time I was told the Friday evening was full and they never received my first e mail. Disappointing.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
Thank monclair4006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Surbiton, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
114 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Township Futures”
Reviewed January 14, 2014

Booked in the Township Futures tour through Coffeebeans Routes for a group of 4. Visited Langa and Gugulethu to see the work being done by entrepeneurs and visionaries within the townships. Great to see a different perspetive being taken on the townships and how they really are the centre of Cape Town. Well worth it.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank marionjd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Needham, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
75 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Disappointing experience”
Reviewed October 7, 2013

We took two tours (Jazz Safari and Inner City tour) with Coffeebeans Routes and canceled a prescheduled third after the second of those. While Michael was an enthusiastic and likeable tour guide, and Coffeebeans Routes provided a safe way to visit a township, based on our experiences I would not recommend it to other travelers.

The reasons:

At the Jazz Club, the second stop on the Jazz Safari, we waited and waited for the band but none arrived. We ended the evening by leaving without completing the main part of the evening. The band’s non-appearance was apparently related to Heritage Day, a public holiday. This is something Coffeebeans should have known about. We paid about $250 for the Jazz Safari--2/3 before arriving in Cape Town and $80 (800 ZAR) earlier that evening, for our daughter to join us.

On the Inner City Tour there were two of us and on the first stop we discovered that the Bo Kaap museum was closed because of the holiday. For the Inner City Tour we paid $160 or so.

Coffeebeans Routes offers tours that sound good and many previous TripAdvisor reviewers have enjoyed. But our experience was that they were poorly organized and unaccountable for the quality of product they offer.

Heritage Day clearly made a big difference to our experience (the band didn't turn up, the museum didn't open), but the fact that Heritage Day happens should be a surprise to the people at Coffeebeans Routes. They weren't responsible for the band or the museum not being available, but clearly Coffeebeans Routes didn't feel responsible for providing a good experience to us either. A company with integrity would have taken it on the chin and provided a rebate/refund, at the very least for the $80 (800 ZAR) we paid on the night of the Jazz Safari, but nothing was offered.

The bottom line: What we received was MUCH less than we had expected and paid for and my advice to others, based on this, is to book elsewhere if you can.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank AlbertStone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
oneiain, Owner at Coffeebeans Routes, responded to this review, October 10, 2013
Dear Albert,

I am sorry that you and Dana found the experiences so disappointing. Let me try and address your issues.

What I have seen from your posting, is that we need to improve our follow-up system, because we should not have discovered your dissatisfaction through this forum, but almost immediately after your experiences. We are looking at ways to improve this.

The Jazz Safari. I must correct you: we book Swingers every week, and we are always aware that for some or other reason, they might not have music that night. So we always make sure. As we did on this night. Heritage Day had nothing to do with there being no music - this was the whim of the venue. When we booked, it was business as usual, the regular great house band and jam session etc. It was on arrival that we discovered that either the person who took the booking was misinformed OR the owner pulled the gig at the last minute. We have been let down by jazz venues in Cape Town before, so we check and recheck. When things happen such as they did on this night, it is because the owners and managers got something wrong. You have no idea how often I dream of owning a great venue where we have the control. We have had a jazz venue sell on our pre-paid booking of 20 places because of a mixup between management and new staff. You can imagine the embarrassment.

These are elements over which we have no control. And it's a risk factor we deal with all the time. But - that doesn't change the disappointment over not having this part of the programme take place. And our bad, knowing that it didn't, was not immediately getting in touch the following day to follow up. I am sorry for that, and as I indicated, we are relooking our system. I believe however that the main part of the evening, in the home of Hilton Schilder, was lovely and enjoyed by all.

On the Jazz Safari front, I am very happy to refund you 50% of the ticket price for your three tickets.
(your pricing by the way is out - you did not pay 250USD for the jazz for the two of you, it was 174 USD, and then the 895ZAR cash for your daughter on the night yes.)

Secondly, the city tour. You mention only one element of the tour, the Bokaap, which wasn't the entire tour. The Bokaap Museum was closed yes, but we never include it, on any tour. It is not a very well put together museum. So it being closed on that day is a moot point. You visited the District Six Museum, which was open (and I read your great review of it, which I imagine was from the tour, or maybe you returned there outside of the tour?). And then the tour followed the theme of forced removals out of the historic centre to Guguletu and the home of Blackie and Sheila Tempi, for an experience of a new centre, a part of the city becoming a major node. Heritage Day activities had no impact on the execution of this tour. And so I find myself wondering what the real disappointment was with this tour?
(your pricing comment is also incorrect here - you paid 135 USD and not 160USD)

Once again Albert, I am sorry that you did not experience our offerings as we intended. If you come back to Cape Town, apart from the refund on the Jazz Safari, I would be happy to offer you a tour of your choice at no charge. If your daughter is still here and would like to take up that offer with a friend, please do get in touch.

Thank you
Iain Harris
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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