Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point: The Incidental Daddy
Having introduced the idea of a visit to Boulders Beach Penguin Colony just outside Simonstown a while back, and with all of the public holidays that lie before us, I wanted to encourage you to continue that journey on to the Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point, where the Indian and Atlantic oceans are said to meet.
This is certainly a place high on the priority list of any visitor to Cape Town, and once you venture out you will see exactly why. The drive from Simonstown towards the park is scenically magnificent, with winding roads that hug the coastline and uninterrupted vistas across False Bay. You may even see a southern right whale if the season is correct.
Situated at the tip of the Cape Peninsula and 60km south-west of Cape Town, Cape Point is a nature reserve within the Table Mountain National Park and has been declared a World Heritage Site. The area is 7750 hectares in size and is rich in Cape fynbos, buck, chacma baboons and Cape mountain zebra – not to mention the incredible birdlife.
There are so many beaches and view points to enjoy if you have the time; actually, you will even find accommodation that can be booked to maximise on your stay, although most visitors head to the lower station and visitors centre and either take the furnicular or walk up to the first lighthouse – now no longer in use. It was commissioned in 1860 and stands at 238m above sea level, although time showed that once the Cape mist comes in the lighthouse could not be seen above it, and a lower lighthouse was added in 1914.
I do make the trip out as often as possible, and try to find the time to visit my absolute favourite beach, almost always deserted. There is something that touches the soul as I stand and look south, knowing that the next piece of solid land is Antarctica. How much water must lies between here and there ... I think of early sailors, ships wrecked, history past and the fish in the oceans – be it Indian or Atalntic. This is a special place. Make a day of it.
Opening hours: 06h00 to 18h00; the Flying Dutchman funicular is open from 09h00 to 17:30.Costs are R80 each to enter and the funicular costs R45 per person.