- (see below for whom to contact for Permits that may be required )
Cape Town has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. It is no surprise that South Africa was one of the first
countries outside of Europe to earn blue flag status for some of her beaches.
The west side of the Cape Peninsula has
a very definite style of beach. This is where the more fashionable set go to see and be seen, particularly along the Atlantic
Seaboard, also known as Cape Town’s ‘Riviera’, which stretches from the V&A Waterfront on the north
shore of Table Mountain up as far as Hout Bay and is connected by one of the most picturesque, scenic drives along Victoria
Beaches here enjoy longer sunshine hours
and incomparable sunsets. There is a spectacular selection of unspoilt beaches with seas that are usually 3 to 4 degrees colder
than the Indian Ocean but this doesn’t seem to worry anyone soaking up the sun against the backdrop of blue skies and
Clifton is the closest beach to The Glen and is an extremely popular hangout for locals and international jet setters
- you’re here to be seen and to share space with the latest designer costumes and sunglasses. Clifton has four beaches
called 1st, 2nd etc and 4th beach has blue flag status, not least because of the turquoise water and white sands. These beaches
are Cape Town’s premier beaches, divided by granite boulders and packed with beautiful people in summer. Clifton 3rd
is designated a gay beach, although not a nudist beach.
Camps Bay just up the road from
Clifton, is a long, sandy beach with palm trees and a fantastic promenade lined with trendy restaurants, cafes and cocktail
bars. Here Cape Town’s fashionable set mingle with visitors to the city against one of the most beautiful backdrops
of Lion’s Head and the 12 Apostles. The beach is very popular for sundowners and in hot weather it’s a beach paradise.
From Camps Bay you can walk to Glen Beach - a small beach set in a little enclave and great for surfing.
Sandy Bay, a bit of a clamber across the boulders from Llandudno or a walk from the car park, is enclosed by sand dunes
and well protected from the wind. It’s Cape Town’s nudist beach and not as busy as the other beaches, possibly
because of the walk. But you can escape the crowds here and don’t have to be naked in order to experience the beach.
It's also a well known cruising ground for gay men.
Llandudno, set in an exclusive neighbourhood, is one of the most photogenic beaches in Cape Town and definitely one
of the most beautiful. If you’re not a strong swimmer then settle for a dip as the currents are strong but great for
surfers and sunsets here are notorious. Parking can be a bit of a headache but this does mean it doesn’t get too crowded.
Big Bay has two rocky outcrops that jutt out into the sea, creating a bay. Blouberg has some lovely rock pools and
the viewpoint from here of the bay and Table Mountain has graced many a postcard.
Table View has a number of restaurants and venues for sundowners and Dolphin beach is the first of this series of beaches
reached from the M14 and synonymous with kite-surfing.
Milnerton is well known for its lighthouse, which sits virtually on the beach and is great for swimming as, unlike
Dolphin beach, it is manned by lifeguards. There are also a number of beach cafes and restaurants here.
Mouille Point, Seapoint and Three Anchor Bay
They don’t have much beach to speak of - they’re more ocean front than beach. However, Saunders Rocks at
Seapoint has a little tidal pool and Three Anchor Bay has a tiny, little beach. It’s the promenade that draws people
here. This walkway is right near the sea and is a haunt of joggers, walkers, dog walkers and families.
Hout Bay is a protected harbour bay great for walks and horse riding with spectacular mountain surrounds and views
over the Holland Hottentots Mountains in the distance. The Chapman’s Peak side of the beach is better for sunbathing
and swimming is good here as the waves are gentle. Fish and chips are the order of the day and a stroll along the pier to
view the fishing boats is a treat, particularly if you can spot the odd Cape Fur seal or whale, during season.
Noordhoek beach, at the end of Chapman’s Peak drive and south of Hout Bay, has a gorgeous, incredibly wide expanse
of sand perfect for long walks, horse riding and local surfers. Views of the bay are spectacular and the beach is lined with
dunes that offer shelter from the wind. The beach borders on local wetlands and because of its size, is rather isolated so
swimming or walking on your own are probably not a good idea.
Long Beach at Kommetjie is just that, a long, sandy beach very popular with surfers. There is also a large tidal pool
here great for swimming with some spectacular views.
Witsands, between Kommetjie and Scarborough, is popular with surfers, windsurfers and kite-surfers alike. For locals,
this is a haven as it’s further from Cape Town and thus not very well known. The beach is big and there are plenty of
sand dunes, which contribute to the beauty of the natural surrounds.
Misty Cliffs is wonderfully remote with some of the most awe-inspiring views of the Atlantic. Waves here can get notoriously
big, so it isn’t really a swimmers paradise and even surfers take along an extra fin. It is popular with locals, divers
and those wanting to escape it all.
Scarborough is the last residential suburb before Cape Point. The beach is large with plenty of sand for sunbathing,
popular with surfers and body boarders and has some beautiful views. Because it’s so far from Cape Town, it never gets
crowded here although it can get busy in summer. When the wind blows, it’s an ideal spot for flying kites and kite-surfing.
Information courtesy of THE GLEN BOUTIQUE HOTEL, CAPE TOWN