Study Abroad in Cape Town

College Study Abroad

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 cape town study abroad

Explore Cape Town, South Africa

With stunning mountains and seascapes, Cape Town is a developing nation striving for innovative solutions to solve vast economic, political, and social challenges. As one of South Africa’s most popular destinations, Cape Town is a diverse city with endless opportunities for students to reach their personal and professional goals. 

When you study abroad in Cape Town, you’ll experience the multicultural atmosphere that this dynamic city has to offer. From a vast coastline and exciting cultural activities, to the legacy of the colonial and apartheid past, Cape Town is a unique study abroad destination students are sure to remember.

where is cape town located
Study abroad students looking out over the lake in Capetown, South Africa
Study abroad Cultural dance in Cape Town, South Africa

Every CIEE study abroad program has frequent cultural excursions and activities uniquely designed to complement the program’s academics and enhance students’ cultural immersion. In Cape Town, past tours and excursions have included:

  • Visits to Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, built on top of the docks at the Port of Cape Town
  • Cooking lessons for traditional foods from the Cape Malay, isiXhosa, and Afrikaans traditions
  • Dance lessons drawn from local groups such as isiXhosa and amaZulu
  • Tours of iconic sites like Cape Peninsula, the Cape Flats, Robben Island, Table Mountain, and cultural hubs like Bo Kaap, Grabouw and District Six

If you’re a student looking to learn the history, culture, and traditions of Cape Town, CIEE’s tours and excursions allow you to do just that! Whether you want to explore the culture of Cape Town or study at one of the top universities in Africa, our Cape Town study abroad programs offer something for everyone.

Study Abroad university of cape town south africa


CIEE Cape Town
Our location in Cape Town is part of the CIEE Open Campus Block Network. CIEE Cape Town is located in the Rondebosch district near the University of Cape Town campus.

University of Cape Town (UCT)
Established as South African College in 1829, UCT is internationally recognized as Africa’s leading research university with beautiful grounds and attractive buildings. The UCT campus includes a range of commercial, medical, recreational, and sporting facilities.

intern or volunteer in cape town


Depending on their program of study and availability, students may be able to participate in an internship or volunteer. For students looking to intern in Cape Town, they may be able to work in a non-paying position across a number of fields, including business, marketing, the restaurant industry, and more. 

Students looking to volunteer in Cape Town may tutor students in English and math, work on AIDS/HIV projects, and mentor troubled teens.

Study Abroad Programs in Cape Town

Pocket Guide to Cape Town

  • Currency
    South African Rand

    Spoken Languages
    English, Afrikaans, Xhosa

    Available Transportation
    Metrorail, Golden Arrow Bus, Combi, feet

    Famous Local
    Lauren Beukes, author of Zoo City, which won the Arthur C. Clarke prize for Science Fiction in 2011

  • Climate
    Warm, dry summers; cool wet winters

    Places to Explore
    Table Mountain – dramatic plateau that forms a backdrop to Cape Town

  • Airport
    Cape Town International Airport (CPT)

    Social Norms
    When greeting someone, it is considered impolite not to ask how they are – and you need to wait for an answer!

    What to Pack
    Backpack, comfortable shoes, sunscreen, mosquito repellent

Frequently Asked Questions


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Cape Town is a good place to study abroad because it’s one of the most diverse cities with 11 official languages, a warm Mediterranean climate, and mountainous landscapes. With thriving creative industries, a rich history, and endless natural attractions, Cape Town is a one-of-a-kind study abroad destination for adventurous students.


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Cape Town is generally regarded as a laid back city with a low cost of living compared to other cities. Living in Cape Town will give students the opportunity to experience a diverse city with a variety of natural landscapes and exciting nightlife.


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Yes, Cape Town is safe for students to study abroad, but with any major city, students should take certain precautions to keep themselves and others safe. We advise students to travel in safe areas of the city, keep their personal belongings secure, and stay on trails when hiking.


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In order to ensure our students feel welcomed, supported, and empowered while studying abroad, CIEE staff completes comprehensive diversity equity and inclusion (DEI) training. Staff provide students with advice, resources, and ongoing support both before and during their study abroad program in Cape Town.
For more detailed information on diversity in Cape Town, visit our Diversity in Cape Town page.

Study Abroad Scholarships & Grants

cape town south africa study abroad students

APPLY IN 1,2,3!

You may be wondering if there are any South African scholarships to study abroad in Cape Town. CIEE offers scholarships and grants for study abroad programs in Cape Town to students with demonstrated financial need, proven academic merit, and for specific CIEE programs. Students can apply for scholarships through 3 simple steps:

  1. Search for and apply to your dream program
  2. Review all available funding opportunities
  3. Complete the Scholarship & Grants portion of your application

living in cape town hike



Based on students' Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) from their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and enrolled institution. Complete the Scholarships & Grants portion of your program application to be considered for all awards to which you are eligible. 


Based on academic achievement. Complete the Scholarships & Grants portion of your program application, along with an essay, to be considered for all awards to which you are eligible. 


Other scholarship awards are based on program or alumni status. 


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Cape Town Study Abroad Reviews

  • "The program exceeded my expectations and provided us with not only fun trips and great information, but an amazing group of faculty that I became close with."

    Jaleesa P., Eckerd College
  • "Really rich programming around cultural immersion and very considerate staff who care about the well-being of students."

    Emily M., Brown University
  • "The people, places, food, and landscape are absolutely amazing!"

    Logan F., Susquehanna University
  • "It is such a great experience and you learn so much in a short period of time."

    Robert L., Wofford College
  • "The overwhelming support I got from staff was amazing! Very genuine good-hearted people."

    Pauline S., Marymount University