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The Beautiful Beaches Of Cape Town by leilah Jumat
In the Cape Town Winter, between June and August, many Cape Town locals fly across the globe in search of a perfect holiday destination only to return to and relax on the pure white sandy beaches of their hometown. Not because there’s no place like home, but because there’s no place like Cape Town.
South Africa was the first county outside of Europe to receive blue flag beach status – claiming that our beaches have a high level of water quality, cleanliness and safety. Most of the country’s Blue Flag beaches can be found in the Cape Town area. Whether you’re a hardcore surfer, a professional swimmer or a beach Barbie you guaranteed untainted, pure fulfillment on the beautiful Cape Town coastline.
Atlantic Seaboard Beaches
The Atlantic Seaboard is dotted with the trendy, Cosmo beaches of Clifton, Camps Bay and Llandudno. Though the ocean temperature on the Atlantic is somewhat chilly, the beaches are protected from the prevailing wind and offer spectacular views. This is the stretch of coastline where most locals spend their weekends.
Clifton is made up of four inlets with beaches named 1st Beach, 2nd Beach, 3rd Beach and 4th Beach respectively, all of which tucked below the imposing Lions Head for shelter and are accessible via stairs either off Victoria Road or from the various car parks. Clifton 4th is definitely the beach to head to in the summer as it has the busiest vibe. Every Clifton regular knows that in order to get a good parking spot you’ll need to be an early bird as parking is limited. With deck chairs, beach umbrellas and a kiosk snack bar all at your disposal, there’s no question as to why everyone who flocks to this beach only leaves after the majestic sunset.
Less than a kilometer from Clifton is the long, sandy stretch of Camps Bay. The beach is accessible directly from the road, which is lined with beautiful palm trees and a never-ending strip of up market, hip and happening street cafes and restaurants. A few firm favorites include Blues, Café Caprice, Piranha and Summerville. Well-known celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, Salma Hayek and Colin Farrell often frequent this area as they can enjoy sundowners at Camps Bay without the intrusion from paparazzi or the laid-back but friendly locals.
The picturesque surf capital Llandudno is undoubtedly the most stunning beach in all of Cape Town. The beach is accessible via a long, winding pathway – perfect for unusual scrapbook photography. Huge granite boulders hug the beach giving it a private, isolated feel from the rest of the world. Although there are no shops, beach vendors are available selling an array of snacks, drinks and ice creams
Contrasting to the Atlantic Seaboard beaches, False Bay is usually more casual than the chic Camps Bay and Clifton and the ocean current is much warmer. During the holiday season the beach is packed with both locals and vacationers as the shallow waters stretch far into the surf, which makes swimming for all ages safe and pleasurable. Lifeguards are always on duty and as an extra precaution designated swimming areas will be set up between brightly coloured flags on the beach.
Muizenberg is the local hangout for surfers because the vibe is lazy and the swell is first-rate, especially for beginner’s children and long boarders. A glamorous past is evident when you look at the many gracious homes and elegant mansions that dot the landscape. There is also evidence of South Africa’s colonial past visible in the brightly coloured bathing boxes, a legacy of the British occupation of the Cape Colony between 1806 and 1948. There are quite a few cafés directly behind the beach as well as a miniature golf course (Put-Put) and waterslides for family entertainment. There are bathroom and changing facilities available but you’ll need to bring along your own umbrellas, beach rugs and deck chairs.
Though more like a cove than an actual beach, Boulders gets its name from the huge granite boulders that lie strewn all over the beach. The beach is also home to one of only 3 land-based colonies of the African penguin (affectionately known as the Jackass Penguin, as it makes a sound like a donkey) These cute creatures which stand about half a metre tall, can be seen floundering in the waters or interacting with the locals on the shore. Wooden pathways have been specifically built for visitors to see the penguins in their natural habitat. With warm waters and changing tides, Boulders Beach is ideal for swimming and exploring. This idyllic setting demands a lazy afternoon, a good book and the crystal clear water lapping at your feet.
Hout Bay beach has a great location on the Atlantic seaboard and is overlooked by Chapmans Peak and the last remaining leopard in Cape Town on one side and the original fishing village on the other. Hout Bay is a hot spot among tourists and locals with its traditional harbour where anyone with a fishing rod is allowed to get a bit of the fishing action. The harbour hosts a number of great restaurants and Fish on the Rocks offers the best fish and chips in town. Plenty of tasty treats to tickle your taste buds. Hout Bay beach is home to windsurfers, paddle skiers, surfers and general vacationers. So when you plan a visit to Hout Bay beach, come prepared.
Big Bay is one of the more popular beaches on the Bloubergstrand coastline. From the beach you have a picture-perfect view of the famous Table Mountain. The scenic beauty, soft pure white sand and stunning view of Cape Town makes Bloubergstrand a definite must see when visiting Cape Town. There is no real peak period at these beaches; it is always occupied by water sport fanatics like surfers and kite-surfers and sometimes even whale watchers.
When you are spoiled for choice with the most beautiful beaches in the world, with waters that range from luke warm to icy cold, you’ll know why most Capetonians never want to leave home. With the picturesque mountain peaks as a backdrop you’re always guaranteed a sheltered beach to enjoy.
About the Author
Excape Tours and Travel is a world-class inbound tour operator, specializing in personalised safaris, travel itineraries and accommodation in Cape Town.
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