The great Table Mountain National Park spans an incredible strip of land covering an area of some 221 km2, stretching all the way from Signal Hill in the north down to Cape Point in the south, and is home home to two world-renowned landmarks in the form of Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope. The Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve is home to what is known as the Cape Point section of the Table Mountain National Park and covers the most southern area of the Cape Peninsula, stretching from Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope in the south, as far north as Scarborough on the Atlantic coast and Simon’s Town on the False Bay coast.
Containing both the storied Cape Town rocky promontories of Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope, Cape Point is considered an obligatory point of interest for most tourists to the Cape and indeed, outside of the Flying Dutchman funicular, the lighthouses, the famed Two Oceans restaurant, and the spectacular views up at the Point, the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve is home to an array of fynbos, over 250 species of birds, buck, ostriches, Cape Mountain zebra, and of course the ever entertaining (and occasionally slightly threatening) Chacma baboons, of which there are five distinct troops!
With no predators roaming the grounds, this is an open to walk park and indeed features loads of picnic spots, walking trails, biking routes, tidal pools, and small isolated beaches to enjoy. Also, given its nickname of the ‘Cape of Storms’, the coastline itself is littered with stories of doom and actual shipwrecks that have occurred over the ages, so there’s that to be chased down as well.
Given the popularity with international tourists, Cape Point itself can get quite busy at times (so, so many big busses!), but if you can find a day when it is a little quieter than most, then this natural gem is one of those Cape Town crown jewels that any outdoor lover really should make time for, and even if you aren’t an outdoor person, the drive alone is worth it for all the spectacular coastline views on offer!
As for this particular visit from us in the middle of May a year or two ago, our wonderful day of exploring did come with the caveat of the funicular not actually running on the day, meaning a slightly strenuous (but very rewarding) walk up the top was in order!