Cape Town Beaches

Camps Bay copy

My favourite date – a Cape Town beach

Cape Town, the mother city of South Africa, has been voted for the 7th year running as the best city in the world by more than 39 000 readers of The Telegraph who took part in the 2019 Telegraph Travel Awards.

This amazing city has been described as “a coastal gem, lying in the shadow of a cloud-hugged mountain” where “wine flows, penguins waddle and – not too far away – majestic beasts roam”.

Cape Town, a place I used to call home, retained its position despite major shifts in the top 20, such as Kyoto, a brand new entrant, ranking third.

Gerla de Boer Cape Town
The Waterfront in Cape Town

Why is Cape Town the world’s most desirable city?

I have been fortunate to live in Cape Town for a few years, and it was like living in paradise on every level; fantastic food, wine, scenery, stunning beaches and outdoor events. The Capetonians love to socialise and spend time outside. The pace of life is much slower here than in Johannesburg. Not a surprise as there is so much to do and see! When the sun is out, the locals are out! Either on the mountain or on the beach. Don’t be surprised to see people jogging at 5.30 am on the beach or heading down to the gym. Life starts early in Cape Town so they can enjoy the rest of the day socialising and a bit of work, of course!

With so many beaches to choose from, they are spoilt for choice. There are 13 main beaches and on top of that many small beaches too. I have many fond memories of spending time on the beach here with my children when they were toddlers. Building sandcastles, watching the sunset at Llandudno or Camps Bay beach and see the whales play in the bay of Muizenberg. You can’t miss the beaches in Cape Town as the coast is lined with them, but where to go for a deserted beach?

Enjoying beach life is almost like a flirting game, as soon as when people hit the beach, their behaviour changes. They strip off their clothes, parade, impress, have fun, forget the time and indulge in the good life!

The ‘dating’ profile Lonely Planet gave the beaches of  Cape Town could not have been better!

Gerla de Boer Capetown kids

The dating profile of the Cape Town Beaches

  • Looking for: sun lovers
  • Profile: Good-looking, fun-loving, sporty and sociable
  • Age: As older, I get the more vibrant I become
  • Location: All dotted around the Peninsula
  • Interests: Sun, fun and like to meet lots of different people

So why is Cape Town such an excellent beach destination? It has a large number of magnificent beaches from small coves to the larger ones. One of the most famous ones is not Camps Bay Beach, but the small beach at Cape the Good Hope reserve, where many ships stranded over the centuries due to heavy storms, is absolutely stunning too. When you visit Cape Point, it is worth walking down to this beach.

The big question for a Globetrotter foodie is; where to eat, stay and play? Let’s tour the Peninsula.

Blouberg Beach

Just north from Cape Town with stunning views of Table mountain, but also known very their strong winds so excellent for Kite surfing.

Stay @ Bliss Boutique hotel, which has stunning views

Eat @ Moyo and tuck in some fantastic South African fusion food & the sunsets are amazing here. You will never get a better look at Table mountain!

Play @ Blouberg is kite surfing and enjoying the stunning view of Table mountain and the surfers trying to master their kites!

Clifton beach
Clifton beach

Clifton Beach

One of the best beaches in Cape Town and made up of four coves and amazingly some of them quite sheltered. Well, if the Cape Doctor isn’t blowing a gale! Beach no 4 is a blue flag beach, and no 3 is the famous gay beach of Cape Town.

Stay @ The Bay Hotel or Camps Bay Retreat

Eat @ La Med and stay for sundowners too

Play @ Clifton beach is all about soaking up the sun and the ‘gorgeous views’

Camps Bay beach
Camps Bay beach

Camps Bay

The ‘beach’ next door and unlike their neighbour, it’s a long and sandy one and popular with families. Easy to access from the road. Excellent if you want to nip over to the Sandy Beach Club, which is the private beach bar of  The Bay Hotel.

Stay @ The Bay Hotel

Eat @ Sandy Beach Club

Play @ Camps Bay beach is soaking up the sun and nipping down to Sandy Beach club for a dip in the pool

Llandudno Beach

Slightly remote, but a very picturesque beach and excellent for surfing because of the high waves. This is where the rich and famous ‘play’. Large villas are lined up against the hill, and the sunset is stunning. 

Stay @ A private villa

Eat @ Your villa, leave the hassle to your butler

Play @ Llandudno beach is just having fun, life is very laid back in Cape Town

Houtbay beach at sunset
Houtbay beach at sunset

Houtbay Beach

This Fishing village ( and the place which I used to call my second home in South Africa) is a popular beach where locals like to hang out. From here you have stunning views of the bay and Chapmans Peak.

Stay @ Houtbay Manor or in a private Villa

Eat @ Dunes, a no-fuss restaurant. It’s more or less one big sandpit. A great vibe with live music on Friday nights during the summer.

Play @ Houtbay beach is all about being active. It’s great for jogging and walking. You can ‘pick up’ your reward afterwards at Dunes Restaurant.

Sandy Bay

The most tucked-away beaches in Cape Town. Sandy Bay beach is quite a track over the mountain in Houtbay, but worth it if you like to sunbath in the nude. No facilities here though.

Stay @ Houtbay Manor or in a private Villa

Eat @  Houtbay beach, pick up some food and drinks from Woolworths in the village 

Play @ Sandy Bay beach is all about the ‘gorgeous’ view and life around the shipwreck stranded here.

Kommetje beach
Kommetje beach

Noordhoek Beach & Kommetjie

A scenic drive over Chapman’s Peak takes you to Noordhoek Beach, which is one of the longest and widest beaches in Cape Town. Kommetjie is just around the corner from here, which is marked by a lighthouse. Noordhoek beach is one of my favourite beaches, especially during wintertime. I like to perch myself on a rock here and admire the stunning view.

Stay @ De Noordhoek hotel

Eat @ Cafe Roux, The Food Barn or Cape Point Vineyards

Play @ Noordhoek beach is perfect horse riding, surfing and long walks. It is a fascinating beach in winter with its lagoon. Walking down the beach, you might spot the shipwreck!

Noordhoek beach

Noordhoek beach

Misty Cliffs

Yes, it is really true! This remote beach is always covered in a blanket of mist. It’s actually quite small, and it definitely rocks! Waves hit this beach most of the time ‘rocking’ hard.

Stay @ In a private villa or at The Last World Beach

Eat @ Camel Rock and tuck into some fantastic seafood

Play @ Misty Cliffs is mysterious. Fascinating!

Misty Cliffs
Misty Cliffs

Buffalo Bay

When you drive from Cape Point to Simonstown, one of the first turnings at the Cape Good Hope Nature Reserve is this lovely bay called Buffalo Bay. It is excellent for a picnic enjoying the stunning views of False Bay. On a clear day, you will even be able to see the tip of Pringle Bay. (the popular weekend getaway for the Capetonians)

Gerla de Boer Boulders beach penguins

Boulders Beach

Highlighted in every itinerary for their penguin colony. Don’t go to the visitor’s centre, but head off to the small gate down from the car park, which leads you to a small beach with big boulders. Take the turning to the right to the beach in the centre of Simon’s town coming from Cape Point.

Stay @ Boulders Beach Lodge or Rodwell House

Eat @ Boulders Beach lodge or in Kalkbay

Play @ Boulders beach is about swimming with the penguins. 

Pringle Bay

Pringle Bay

St. James

Lined with colourful beach houses. The water is here much warmer, it’s quieter and more laid back than the ones on the Atlantic Sea coast. So if you want to get away from the big crowds, then it is definitely the beach for you. 

Stay @ Rodwell House

Eat @ The quirky Octopus Garden

Play @ St. James beach is mingling with the locals, and you might catch a glimpse of the whales when they breed in Cape Town.

My favourite jewellery seller at Dunes Houtbay

My favourite jewellery seller at Dunes Houtbay

Muizenberg Beach

This beach never seems to be a moment without waves. It’s growing in popularity, and many claim it to be the seaside resort of the future. Only time will tell us if this will happen.

Stay @ Colona Castle

Eat @ Knead, a funky artisan bakery

Play @ Muizenberg beach is learning to surf

Keen to soak up some winter sun? Cape Town the place to go!


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