Timbuktu Café is Observatory’s best kept secret. It’s located on the Lower Main Road and much like its sister restaurant, Madam Taitou, it specializes in Ethiopian cuisine.

The restaurant is painted in a deep shade of red and is filled with mismatched furniture and pretty rugs. Green and red draping is hung throughout the space and various artwork line the walls. Exposed brick, dark pallet wood, velvet seating and delicate fabrics create a sophisticated yet relaxed dining environment.


The menu at Timbuktu Café is purely Ethiopian and it’s had raving reviews from locals and tourists alike. The menu prices are very reasonable and the dishes are great for sharing with friends and family. The Kifto is a firm favourite and consists of very lean beef, warmed in Ethiopian spiced butter and served with cottage cheese and salad on Ethiopian flatbread. If you are new to Ethiopian cuisine, we suggest ordering the Sergenya, a typical Ethiopian festive platter consisting of portions of all Timbuktu Cafés’ dishes.


If you prefer something vegetarian, there is plenty on offer. Try the Gomen (spinach and greens cooked the Ethiopian way) or the Shiro Wot (spiced chickpea flour cooked in Berbere sauce). Don’t forget to order a steaming coffee after your meal – Ethiopia has some of the finest and most distinctive coffee in the world.




Head west on Nelson Mandela Boulevard/N2. Take exit 2 for Searle Street toward Zonnebloem. Turn left onto Searle Street. Turn left to merge onto Nelson Mandela Boulevard/N2 toward Somerset West. Take exit 5 for Browning Road. Continue onto Browning Road. Turn right onto Main Road/M4. Turn left onto Lower Main Road. Destination will be on your right.


-33° 56' 32.25''


18° 28' 7.68''
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16 Lower Main Road
Cape Town


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Food Served
Light MealsVegetarian
Average Price$$
Payment accepted
Trading Hours
Monday - Sunday: 11:00 - 23:00
Child Friendly
Outside Catering
Smoking Section
Outside Seating
Load Shedding
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