Table Mountain National Park | South Africa Travel Tips & Reviews | Africa Point
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Table Mountain National Park
Cape Point, Cape Peninsula, South Africa
Table Mountain National Park
Aerial view of Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Table Mountain National Park
Cape Point Nature Reserve, South Africa
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Table Mountain National Park

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Come and see for yourself why the Table Mountain National Park was recently proclaimed one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature.  Walk in the footsteps of the ancient mariners around this hauntingly beautiful but treacherous coastline, see two oceans lap the south western tip of the great African continent and get close to some of the endearing creatures who inhabit this natural wonderland.

 

Best Time to Visit:

The dry summer months from October to May are the best time to visit; Dec-March can be very hot for hiking.
 

How to get there:

Direct flight to Cape Town International, or via Johannesburg by domestic flights (2h).
Check out the full details below
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Mother Nature at Her Best...

The Table Mountain National Park (previously known as the Cape Peninsula National Park) encompasses a large, mainly urban part of the magnificently beautiful strip of land at the south western tip of South Africa. Dramatic mountains spill into the crystal waters of the Atlantic Ocean on one side of the Peninsula, and the Indian Ocean on the other side.  The mountain range extends from Signal Hill, in central Cape Town, all the way to Cape Point, about 60kms south of the city.  All along this incredibly scenic stretch of coastline are stunning beaches covered in bleached white powdery sand, while above them the soaring mountains guard the world’s smallest yet most diverse floral kingdom, The Cape Floristic Region.  The entire National Park is a proclaimed UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Come with us to explore this pristine natural wonder.

 

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Table Mountain, Cape Point, Boulders Penguin Colony and other Highlights

Table Mountain

Dramatic, iconic and recognized all over the world, beautiful Table Mountain, (with or without the famous tablecloth), is definitely the main highlight of any visit to Cape Town, and when you see it for yourself you will understand why it received its’ recent accolade as one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature.  You can hike up the mountain if you are energetic, or even just go for a pleasant walk through the beautiful and ancient shaded Afromontane forest – there are several routes for hikers ranging from easy to rigorous, but if you are less energetic you can get to the top of the mountain on the revolving cable car, which is an experience on its’ own.  At the top of the mountain there are free guided walks which give a great introduction to the flora and fauna and the views over the whole of the Cape Peninsula are just outstanding.  

 

Signal Hill and Lion’s Head

Signal Hill marks the northern-most boundary of the Table Mountain National Park and there are very good views of the city from here.  There are also several walking and hiking trails, including a popular short hike up Lions’ Head for dramatic 360 views of the Atlantic seaboard, as well as the city and the mountain.  Both of these are close to the cable car station and can easily be included in a visit to Table Mountain.

 

Cape Point (aka Cape of Good Hope)

Cape Point (aka Cape of Good Hope) has captivated the imagination of visitors for centuries, since the time of the early Portuguese and Spanish explorers, and has also been known as the Cape of Storms for the treacherous weather that sent many an ancient vessel onto the rocks.  When you visit today you can enjoy walking through the endemic fynbos (indigenous plants unique to this part of the world) to visit a few of the beautiful bays, cool off at one of the deserted pristine beaches, or just admire the incredible views.  You can walk up to the viewpoints or take the Flying Dutchman funicular and have a seafood lunch in the restaurant which has incredible views.

 

Boulders Penguin Colony

Boulders Penguin Colony is en-route to Cape Point and you must make this a stop.  The sheltered beach itself is beautiful, made up of several little inlets between giant granite boulders which look as if they have been carefully arranged in this pleasing pattern; it is a brilliant swimming beach and if you are lucky you may even be joined in the water by some of the African Penguins who have formed an enormous breeding colony at the adjoining Foxy Beach, where you can observe their endearing and comical antics from the wooden walkways that stretch between their breeding sites.

 

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens are another highlight of the Park where no less than 7000 species of plants are cultivated, many of them rare or threatened species, and where you can do several walks and enjoy a picnic.  

 

 

Tours in the Table Mountain National Park

It is possible to experience many of the delights of the Table Mountain National Park on your own, but a much better option for first-time visitors would be to go on an organised tour.  Firstly, you really don’t want to be driving when you could be leaving that to someone else so that you can concentrate on the views, and secondly, your experienced tour guide will enrich the experience for you by teaching you all about the geology, history and flora and fauna of this special place.  

 

 

Activities in and around the Park

This exceptional natural wonderland is perfect for all kinds of outdoor pursuits; walking, hiking, cycling, surfing, and fishing.  Get the adrenalin pumping with a tandem paraglide off Lions’ Head or Signal Hill, or get really up close and personal with a Great White Shark on a cage diving or breaching excursion from Simon’s Town. At Cape Point you can walk the shipwreck trail and see where several ill-fated ships met their end.

 

 

Accommodation in and around the Table Mountain National Park

Because this National Park is largely situated within the densely populated urban areas of central Cape Town, there is very little accommodation situated inside the park, with the exception of a tented camp used for overnight and longer trails.  Instead, you have all the wonderful accommodation options to choose from in and around the city, including B&B’s, hotels, lodges, wine farms and opulent 5-star resorts...the choices are endless!

 

 

How to Get There

There are direct flights to Cape Town International Airport for several destinations all over the world, or you can fly into Johannesburg and then take a domestic flight to Cape Town – 2 hours.  Once in the Mother City, as Cape Town is affectionately known, several parts of the Park are right on your doorstep, while the Cape Point can be reached by road via two very scenic coastal drives.

 

 

Best Time to Visit the Table Mountain National Park

Cape Town is a year-round destination with hot dry summers from about November to March and cool wet winters from May to August.  The temperatures are moderate throughout winter, but sometimes is can rain for a couple of days and then beautiful Table Mountain would be shrouded in cloud and completely invisible!  The very best times to visit would be from October to May when the chance of a lot of rain is slim.  January and February are the busiest and hottest months.



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