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Your Ultimate Guide to Cape Town’s Best Beaches

Your Ultimate Guide to Cape Town’s Best Beaches

As a coastal city, Cape Town has a lot to live up to when it comes to its beaches, but let us tell you, it definitely doesn’t disappoint! With breathtaking views and crystal-clear waters, you’ll be blown away by the beauty of this city’s beaches.

Choosing which beaches to visit in Cape Town can be tough with so many stunning options, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! We’ve put together a list of the absolute best beaches that should be on every beach lover’s bucket list.

The Best Beaches in Cape Town

1. Camps Bay Beach

Camps Bay Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Beautiful white sand beaches
• Being a hangout spot for celebrities
• Luxurious restaurants and hotels
• Water sports (surfing, paddleboarding, and swimming)
• Jogging
• Yoga
• Beach volleyball
• Whale watching

Camps Bay Beach is located in the picturesque suburb of Camps Bay, just a 15-minute drive from Cape Town city centre. 

This beautiful beach boasts a long and wide stretch of white sand, lined with palm trees and surrounded by the breathtaking Twelve Apostles mountain range. 

The water is crystal clear and refreshing, with waves that are perfect for surfing, paddleboarding, and swimming. It’s also a popular spot for jogging, practising yoga, and playing beach volleyball with friends.

This luxurious beach is also a favourite hangout for celebrities and offers a range of high-end hotels and fantastic facilities, including showers, toilets, and changing rooms. 

You’ll also find a variety of restaurants, cafes, and bars along the beachfront, as well as a fun-filled children’s playground.

Fun Facts about Camps Bay Beach

• Camps Bay Beach was once a hotspot for shipwrecks due to the treacherous waters and rocky coastline.
• This stunning beach is not only a favourite spot for locals and tourists but also a popular filming location for movies and TV shows. In fact, you might recognise it from the Black Mirror episode “San Junipero.”
• Winter is a great time to visit Camps Bay Beach because it’s prime whale-watching season! Southern right whales migrate to the area, and you might even catch a glimpse of these majestic creatures playing in the water.

2. Muizenberg Beach

Muizenberg Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Warm and shallow waters
• Family-friendly atmosphere
• Water sports (surfing, kitesurfing, swimming)
• Whale watching
• Walking tour
• Hiking

Muizenberg Beach is located in the suburb of Muizenberg, about 30 minutes from the city centre of Cape Town. Unlike other Cape Town beaches, the water here is warmer and the waves are ideal for beginner surfers to catch some waves.

But that’s not all – Muizenberg Beach has much more to offer! You’ll find a variety of accommodations, restaurants, cafes, surf shops, and surf schools all along the beachfront. 

You can also see the seaside village and learn from locals through a walking tour. If you want a challenge while feeling the sea breeze, you can also hike the Muizenberg Peak Loop.

Fun Facts about Muizenberg Beach

• One of the most iconic features of Muizenberg Beach is its colourful beach huts. These have become a symbol of Cape Town’s beach culture and provide the perfect backdrop for your beach photos.
• Did you know that during World War II, Muizenberg Beach was used as a military observation post? The ruins of this post can still be seen on the mountainside above the beach today.

3. Clifton Beaches

Camps Bay Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Pristine white sands and glistening waters
• Deluxe hotels and villas
• Sunbathing and people-watching
• Swimming
• Beach games
• Snorkelling and diving

Clifton Beaches are a series of four small beaches named First, Second, Third and Fourth beaches, situated in the suburb of Clifton, about 10 minutes from the city centre of Cape Town. 

Each beach is a picturesque cove surrounded by beautiful granite boulders, soft white sand, and clear turquoise water that you won’t be able to resist dipping your toes into.

As you walk along the beachfront, you’ll see a variety of luxury apartments and villas, providing the perfect spot for sunbathing and watching people go by.

All four beaches have their own distinct character and amenities. First Beach is perfect if you’re looking for a restaurant or bar, while Second Beach is ideal for playing beach games. 

If you prefer a quieter spot with fewer crowds, Third Beach is the perfect retreat, while Fourth Beach is the most popular and busiest of them all.

One tip for you: If you’re visiting on a windy day, make sure to check out the Second and Third beaches. They’re protected by the cove formation, so they’re the best beaches to visit when the wind is up.

Fun Facts about Clifton Beaches 

• They are consistently rated among the best in the world, attracting both celebrities and locals looking to soak up the sun and enjoy the breathtaking scenery.
• You might recognise these beaches from their appearances in several movies and TV shows, including the South African series “Tali’s Wedding Diary” and the Hollywood film “Safe House.”
• If you’re a fan of beach volleyball, you’re in luck! Clifton Beaches are a popular spot for tournaments, with several annual competitions held throughout the year. 

4. Boulders Beach

Boulders Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Penguins
• Family-friendly beach and waters
• Abundant marine life
• Swimming
• Penguin-watching
• Picnic
• Snorkelling

Located in Simon’s Town, Boulders Beach is a beautiful cove with soft white sand and stunning boulders that create a unique and picturesque landscape.

But the real stars of the show are the adorable African penguins that call this beach home. These cute creatures can often be seen waddling and swimming around the beach, making for an unforgettable sight.

As a part of the Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area, Boulders Beach is dedicated to protecting the penguin colony and their habitat. Visitors can observe the penguins without disturbing them from a boardwalk and viewing platform.

Just remember to be respectful and mindful of their nesting areas while you’re enjoying the sand, sun, and sea.

But that’s not all, the beach also offers picnic tables, public restrooms, and a small snack bar for visitors’ convenience. And if you’re looking for more active pursuits, snorkelling is a popular activity thanks to the clear water and abundance of marine life.

Fun Facts about Boulders Beach

• Boulders Beach is home to over 3,000 African penguins, making it one of the few places in the world where visitors can get up close to these endangered animals.
• The penguin colony at Boulders Beach has a heartwarming success story, starting with just two breeding pairs in the 1980s and growing into a thriving population that visitors can observe up close.
• The beach’s picturesque scenery and charming penguins have caught the attention of filmmakers, and Boulders Beach has been featured in popular movies and documentaries like “March of the Penguins.”

5. Llandudno Beach

Llandudno Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Quiet and undisturbed beach
• Long, flat, and clean promenade
• Kite flying and surfing
• Sunset picnics
• Swimming and surfing
• Whale watching

Llandudno Beach is a hidden gem tucked away in a beautiful crescent-shaped bay surrounded by large granite boulders and steep mountains. The soft golden sand and clear, refreshing water create a perfect oasis for relaxation and fun.

Since the beach is secluded, it’s a good idea to bring your own food and drinks. Remember to take your trash with you when you leave so we can all help keep this natural wonder clean and beautiful!

While swimming, sunbathing, and surfing are popular activities here, we want to remind visitors to be mindful of the strong currents and big waves. We also highly recommend a sunset picnic or a leisurely walk along the shore – the views are simply breathtaking.

Llandudno Beach is a popular spot for whale watching during the winter months, too.

Fun Facts about Llandudno Beach

• Llandudno Beach is named after the Welsh town of Llandudno, which shares its crescent-shaped bay and rugged landscape.
• The beach has been featured in several films and TV shows, including the surfing documentary “The Endless Summer II” and the reality TV show “Survivor: South Africa”.

6. Hout Bay Beach

Hout Bay Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Being one of the busiest fishing harbours
• Seal population
• Water sports (surfing, kayaking, swimming, paddle boarding)
• Sunbathing
• Fishing
• Seal watching

Hout Bay Beach is a beautiful destination situated on the Atlantic coast of the Cape Peninsula, perfect for those who enjoy scenic views and fun water activities. 

This wide and sandy bay is surrounded by the Chapman’s Peak mountain range and Sentinel Peak, providing breathtaking views of the landscape.

The water at Hout Bay Beach is clear and cool, making it a perfect spot for swimming and cooling off from the warm weather. Though, it’s worth noting that visitors should be wary that the water can be rough at times. 

Sunbathing and surfing are also popular activities that visitors can enjoy. In addition, kayaking is a fantastic way to explore the bay and get a different perspective of the surrounding area.

On top of its recreational activities, Hout Bay Beach is also a popular spot for fishing. In fact, it’s one of the busiest fishing harbours in the Western Cape.

Visitors can enjoy fishing from the beach or from one of the nearby piers. The beach’s natural beauty and tranquil atmosphere make it a great place to spend a relaxing day with loved ones.

Hout Bay Beach also has several restaurants and cafes to offer, providing a variety of dining options for visitors. The beach is a perfect place to enjoy some delicious food with a stunning view of the sea.

Fun Facts about Hout Bay Beach

• Hout Bay Beach is known for its seal colony, which can often be seen lounging on nearby rocks or swimming in the bay. Visitors can take a boat tour to get a closer look at the seals.
• The annual Hout Bay Sandcastle Competition is held at the beach each year, drawing participants from all over the world to create elaborate sand sculptures.
• Hout Bay Beach is a popular filming location for movies and TV shows, including the BBC nature series “Blue Planet II” and the South African TV series “Suidooster”.

7. Strand Beach

Strand Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• White sand and calm waters
• Being ideal for family trips
• Water sportsSunbathing
• Whale watchingJogging
• Tidal pool for swimming and a water park for children

Strand Beach, or as some locals call it,  Melkbaai Beach, stretches for five kilometres along False Bay and boasts soft white sand and calm waters that are perfect for a refreshing swim or a relaxing day soaking up the sun.

The beach is surrounded by a beautiful promenade that is ideal for a leisurely stroll or an invigorating jog, providing magnificent views of the ocean and its surroundings. 

And when you’re ready for a break, you’ll find plenty of amenities nearby, including public restrooms, showers, and food vendors selling delicious snacks, ice cream, and refreshing drinks.

Whether you’re a seasoned surfer or just looking to try something new, Strand Beach is the perfect spot for some fun in the waves. 

And if you’re travelling with children, they’ll love the water park and tidal pool, perfect for splashing around in a safe and controlled environment. 

For added peace of mind, there is also a designated swimming area with shark nets to ensure everyone’s safety.

Fun Facts about Strand Beach

• Strand Beach is one of the longest beaches in South Africa.
• Strand was created in 1714 as a tourist and fishing resort almost 200 years ago.
• The beach has a long history, dating back to the Stone Age, with signs of early human settlements. There are other shipwreck relics along the beach, notably the SS Zeewijk, which went aground in 1727.

8. Bloubergstrand Beach

Bloubergstrand Beach
Known forAvailable activities
• Stunning views of Table Mountain from across Table Bay
• Occasional turbulent winds
• Kite and windsurfing
• Swimming

Bloubergstrand Beach is a beautiful destination that boasts a long and wide stretch of white sand decorated with shards of shells washed up from the water of the cold water and crystal-clear waters.

Its location also provides stunning views of Table Mountain and Robben Island in the distance, making it a popular spot for photography and sightseeing.

In addition to its natural beauty, Bloubergstrand Beach is a well-known kite surfing and windsurfing spot, thanks to the strong winds in the area. Kiters and locals also call this place Kite Beach. 

There’s even an annual Red Bull King Of The Air competition held at this beach.

Don’t worry if you’re not a pro, there are several kitesurfing schools nearby that can help you get started.

If water sports aren’t your thing, Bloubergstrand Beach offers plenty of opportunities for swimming and sunbathing, making it a great place to relax and soak up the sun. 

Fun Facts about Strand Beach

• Bloubergstrand Beach is often cited as one of the best spots in Cape Town to watch the sunset. As the sun sets behind Table Mountain, the sky and sea turn into a stunning array of colours.
• The beach is also a popular spot for paragliding, with several paragliding companies offering tandem flights over the beach and surrounding areas.
• Bloubergstrand Beach was the setting for the famous “Big Bay” scene in the South African soap opera “Egoli: Place of Gold,” which ran for over 20 years.

FAQs on Cape Town’s Beaches

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