Hiking is a fantastic way to strengthen friendships, improve your health and spend some time enjoying all that Mother Nature has to offer. Cape Town is blessed with some of the most beautiful hiking trails in the world that range from Sunday afternoon strolls to hardcore endurance trials for the fitness fanatics.
So why don’t you and your friend’s pack the bakkie canopies with all your hiking equipment, snacks and water bottles, and get ready to tackle one of these fantastic hiking trails:
Lion’s Head: There is a popular tradition among Capetonian’s, which happens once a month, where we hike up Lions Head. The tradition is that we hike up the mountain and sip bubbly and snack on picnic foods, while we watch out for the full moon. Armed with trusted hiking boots, a camera and a backpack filled with mouth-watering foods, groups of people set off to hike up the mountain around 5pm. Once at the top, hikers find a nice spot, pop open the bubbly and enjoy a picnic while watching the sunset over Robben Island.
Kasteel Poort: This hike is definitely not for the unfit. The cable car does, however, offer an alternative route for those who are not willing to tackle the trail by foot. From the top of Kasteel Poort you will be able to see all the way across the Twelve Apostles, and once you reach the front of the mountain, you will get fantastic views of the city bowl.
Chapman’s Peak: This hike starts 700m before the major lookout point at the drive’s highest point and, after a 30-minute hike, you will arrive at the plateau between Noordhoek Peak and Chapman’s Peak. The trail starts off as an easy stroll, as it winds around the lower part of Chapman’s Peak drive, but this quickly changes as you reach the Chapman’s Peak proper. The final ascent can only be described as a desperate struggle to catch your breath as you scramble up the steep climb. This is all worth it once your reach the peak though. From there you will be able to see Hout Bay, Karbonkelberg and the Noordhoek Amphitheatre.
Blackburn Ravine: This 4.6 kilometre walk on the mountains overlooking Hout Bay is ideal for dog walkers. The hike starts at the East Fort car park just before the Chapman’s Peak Drive tollbooth. The fort itself is worth a quick look before heading up the wide gravel path – this is the only strenuous part of the route. While walking up the mountain, stop off along the way for a picnic or a cool off dip in the river. If you are feeling up to it, go up the final climb – it takes you to the lookout deck at the top of Blackburn Ravine. This is a strenuous walk, so pack some extra water bottles for yourself and your dog.
Kommetjie Beach hike: Take a walk from Noordhoek to Kommetjie. It is an 8 kilometre trail that will take you about 4 hours to complete. You start off walking through the bushes, but soon hit the beach path that heads southwards towards the wreck of Kakapo. The hike takes you around the point at the end of the beach where you will see cray fishing boats, the remnants of a trawler wrecked in 1974 and the popular surfing spot, Bokram beach. As you round the corner, you will arrive at the resort village of Kommetjie. Ensure that you take your camera for this hike, as you will have the chance to capture amazing pictures of the stunning scenery and local birdlife.
This is a guest post from Chantel Harris