Top 15 Beaches and Islands to Visit in Cape Town

Top 15 Beaches and Islands to Visit in Cape Town

Cape Town, situated as it is on a peninsula, enjoys proximity to many beautiful Islands and beaches. The enormous stretches of white-gold sand are just one of the many attractive features of these Islands and beaches, which are also framed by stunning cliffs and mountains. There is no doubt that the place in Cape Town is some of the nicest in South Africa, but despite the water's sometimes brilliant azure and turquoise sparkles, you shouldn't expect it to be warm.

Some of the world's most beautiful beaches may be found on the islands off Africa's coast, along with an abundance of marine life, buildings, and cuisines that draw from a wide variety of cultural traditions, and verdant mountain ranges, and active volcanoes in the islands' interiors.

Camps Bay and Clifton Beaches and some of the island, and the rest of the Atlantic Coast, are always cold since the current here originates in Antarctica. Nonetheless, visitors still come there to soak in some rays, go for a stroll, and put their toes in the icy water. Good waves may be found in the area, however, a wetsuit is required at all times.

Explore the nicest places in Cape Town

The Beaches of Clifton

The Clifton beaches are the most upscale and hip in all of Cape Town, consisting of four stretches of pristine white sand with a backdrop of smooth granite cliffs known as the Twelve Apostles. These beaches are located around six kilometers from the city center and are accessible through steep sets of stairs from the main road. Located in their own little coves and shielded from the wind by huge stones, these beaches are perfect for soaking up some rays.

Each of the beaches on the route to and from Cape Town is as unique as its name. If you're looking for some quiet time, First Beach is the place to go. It's typically less hectic there. If you happen to be taking a dog along for the trip, you'll be pleased to know that they're welcome to run free. Body-boarders flock to this beach throughout the summer because of the nice surf it offers.

Volleyball is a popular summer activity on Second Beach, which draws a younger demographic.

The homosexual beach of Clifton is Third Beach, but everyone is welcome there. Despite its lively vibe, this beach rarely sees as many visitors as others.

Clifton's Fourth Beach is the most popular destination for families, young singles, and young couples. It has earned the prestigious Blue Flag, which is given to destinations that excel in areas including environmental protection, public safety, and water quality. It is also possible to see Lion's Head, the second-most-famous mountain in Cape Town.

Camps Bay

Camps Bay is one of two beaches in Cape Town that compete with Clifton for the title of best. Clifton provides somewhat better shelter from Cape Town's famed wind, which is the sole reason we ranked it lower. Camps Bay is another Blue Flag beach in the vicinity of Clifton.

The beach is spacious and convenient to reach; however, finding a parking spot during the busy summer weekends can be a hassle, so consider using a car service like Uber or taking public transportation instead. It's convenient to stop for lunch between tanning treatments because there's a row of eateries directly across the street. The Twelve Apostles and Lion's Head may both be seen from Camps Bay.

Check out South Beach Camps Bay if you're looking for a place to stay in the Camps Bay area. We rate this five-star boutique hotel among the best in all of South Africa. The hotel's 19 rooms, all of which overlook the ocean and offer balconies or private patios and were designed with a nod to Miami's thriving art community, are decorated in a sleek, modern white. They have full kitchens with complimentary breakfast provisions that are filled daily (included in the rate).

There are two pools for visitors to enjoy, in addition to a fitness centre and bicycles. Visit the property's various works of art. Lionel Smit, a renowned artist from South Africa, created everything of it from scratch.

Bakoven's Beta Beach

Beta Beach in Bakoven, just a kilometer or so down the road from Camps Bay, is more peaceful than Camps Bay and features placid blue waves set against white sand; the water here is normally wave-less but is still on the Atlantic coastline, so dress accordingly.

Because of the breathtaking scenery of Lion's Head, this beach is a popular choice for locals and photographers alike. Beta Beach is also known for its beautiful sunsets. On most evenings, the sun will appear to sink directly into the ocean in front of you, creating a blazing tableau of morphing colors.

Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique

Activities such as swimming with dolphins, snorkeling, and horseback riding are available in plenty on the islands that are part of the Bazaruto Archipelago, which is located in southern Mozambique. Some of the most beautiful islands in the world may be found in the waters off the coast of Africa. The opportunity to swim alongside marine mammals like dolphins, whale sharks, turtles, and manta rays, as well as humpback whales traveling along the shore, and even the critically endangered dugong, is a dream come true for people who are interested in marine mammals.

Llandudno Beach

Located roughly 20 kilometers south of Cape Town on the way to Hout Bay, Llandudno Beach is where the residents flock to get away from the hustle and bustle of nearby Clifton and Camps Bay. This beach, which is tucked away from the main drag on a winding road in an exclusive hillside neighborhood, is a popular destination for picnics, sunbathing, and—for those who can handle the chilly Atlantic—bodyboarding and surfing.

Because of its westward location along the Atlantic coast, it experiences the same breathtaking sunsets as the other beaches in this region.

You'll need to bring in everything you'll need for the day, including chairs, umbrellas, and refreshments, as there are no nearby eateries or shops. The beach is spacious and located in a shallow bay with fine, powdery sand ideal for making sandcastles. People of all ages and social configurations like visiting Llandudno. You may want to get there early on summer weekend days to secure a decent parking spot.

Mohéli, Comoros

The Mohéli Marine Park is the only national park in Comoros, and it is located on the island that is both the most isolated and the least populous of the three main islands. Divers and snorkelers alike have the opportunity to get well acquainted with the exotic animals and amphibians that make their home in the reef. These oceans are frequented by a wide variety of marine mammals, including whales, dolphins, and additional varieties besides those mentioned. Because the island is not yet on the itineraries of most people, individuals who are looking for solitude will find it to be an ideal destination.

Boulders Beach

Travel to Boulders Beach if penguins are your thing. This beach is home to a large colony of endangered African penguins and is located about 40 kilometers south of Cape Town in the picturesque community of Simon's Town on the way to the Cape Point Nature Reserve. Beachgoers who venture to False Bay will find significantly warmer water thanks to the stones that dot the shoreline.

Seeing the penguins prance between the shore and the water is a sight to behold. Please keep in mind that these adorable creatures are still wild animals, so it's definitely not a good idea to come too close for a selfie.


Muizenberg, on the False Bay side (approximately 25 kilometers from downtown), is one of the top surf beaches in the Cape Town area since the water is significantly warmer there. There are a number of businesses in the town behind the beach that provide surf instruction and board and wetsuit rentals, and the waves at this Blue Flag beach are quite mild, making them ideal for novice surfers. There is a section of Muizenberg Beach that is supervised by lifeguards all summer long, making it a popular destination for families.

Photos of colorful shacks on a South African beach are likely to have been taken near Muizenberg. Swimming boxes date back to the Victorian era when women used them to discreetly don full bathing suits. They have been increasingly popular in recent years, appearing in a variety of commercial picture shoots and as the subject of many Instagram posts.

If you're looking for somewhere to stay in Muizenberg, The maize is a family-run B&B that's just a short stroll from the sand. The rooms are spotless and comfortable with lots of natural light from the huge windows and warm wood flooring. It also serves an excellent brunch.


Réunion, an island that is considered to be one of the most beautiful in the Indian Ocean, can be found just off the coast of Africa. Because this territory is considered to be a part of France, it is also considered to be a part of the European Union, and the people who live there are considered to be French citizens. Piton de la Fournaise is an active volcano that may be climbed (when it isn't erupting, that is!). It is possibly the most well-known of Réunion's natural landmarks, yet it is also one of the most dangerous. On this stunning island, you'll discover not only more hiking routes, but also waterfalls from which you can zipline, lava caverns to explore sandy beaches, and delectable food, such as the Réunion carri (curry), which is a specialty dish of the island, and French pastries.


Dolphin Beach, Small Bay, and Big Bay are just a handful of the beaches that make up Blouberg, which is located about 20 kilometers north of Cape Town's city center on the Atlantic coast. If you like kitesurfing, you should visit Big Bay, which is widely regarded as one of the best locations for activity anywhere in the world. Each year, an international kitesurfing tournament attracts competitors from all over the world to compete on the beach.

Less people congregate in Small Bay, therefore you should go there. Many families visit because their children will have a great time building sandcastles.

One of Cape Town's most well-known landmarks, Table Mountain, may be captured in picture-postcard fashion from this location. From Blouberg, you can see the entire city that was built around the 6,000-foot-tall table-shaped mountain in the city's center. Pictures of the sun sinking into the water are especially beautiful when taken on the west coast.

Beach at Hout Bay

Cape Town's Hout Bay is located along the breathtaking Chapman's Peak Drive. One of the most beautiful ocean-facing drives on the earth, the route between Hout Bay and Noordhoek stretches for 7.2 kilometres along the Atlantic coast. If the view appears familiar, it's because you've seen it in a car commercial.

The beach, which is over a kilometre in length and is backed by sand dunes, is located between the cliffs of Chapman's Peak and the Hout Bay Harbour. The beach here is fairly broad in spots, and it's conveniently divided in two by a shallow river. Family-friendly and dog-accepting, Hout Bay Beach is a popular destination for people in Cape Town. A stable is conveniently located close by, so it's not uncommon to see horseback riders out and about on the beach.

After a day at the beach, refuel at one of Hout Bay's eateries before making the journey back to Cape Town. The Lookout Hout Bay is one of the best restaurants in the area. The Hout Bay Hideaway is a great place to stay the night. Four luxurious rooms are available at this seaside B&B. In addition to free WiFi and a breakfast buffet, guests also have access to free parking and an outdoor pool.

Mouille Point Beach

Mouille Point Beach, halfway between the downtown area and Camps Bay, is a great place to go for a stroll in the afternoon. It's convenient to get to this urban beach, also known as Granger Bay, and there are plenty of parking spaces (something that is harder to find around Camps Bay or Clifton). You can see Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned, in the distance from the benches that line the promenade that runs parallel to the beach.

The tidal rock pools at Mouille Point are a hit with kids of all ages. Sunsets are spectacular, and the promenade is also home to a lot of excellent dining options. This is a nice area for a jog if that's your thing.

Long Beach

You can find Long Beach, Cape Town's longest beach, just south of the city center in the Kommetjie area on the Atlantic coast. Its eight kilometers of soft, white sand make it a popular destination for energetic vacationers.

The area welcomes dogs, so you'll see plenty of canine revelers playing on the sand and in the water (which is very cold, however). You'll need a wetsuit, but the surfing is excellent here. At Long Beach, you may also go body-boarding. If you're a sunset fan, you'll be pleased to know that each evening brings new and vibrant displays of color.

São Tomé & Príncipe

Principe, one of the two islands that make up the country of So Tomé & Principe, is the more distant and undeveloped of the two because of its small population of only 7,000 inhabitants. When it comes to islands off the coast of Africa, Principe is the only one on the cusp of becoming officially recognized on a global scale. More tourists have started flocking to the island since a high-end eco-resort developed there. Visitors come to enjoy the island's tranquil beaches and verdant rainforests. The island of Principe has the best chance of gaining full recognition on the global stage. One that should be seen immediately away.

Oudekraal Beach

Oudekraal is well worth the effort it takes to get there, despite its location within the more expensive Table Mountain National Park. Those in the know visit this secluded beach for a braai (beach barbecue) thanks to the nearby grills (the South African word for BBQ). Among the white sand and the shallow tidal pools, you'll find random stones.

Out in the Atlantic, snorkeling can be good if you're prepared with a wetsuit and are willing to withstand the cold. Though tropical coral isn't to be seen, vibrant kelp and a variety of fish can be seen. A special boulder cave is also available for experienced divers.

St. James Beach

St. James Beach on the False Bay shoreline is a leisurely 15-minute stroll from the area's many restaurants and stores in Kalk Bay. The little beach is great for families because it is sheltered from the wind and has shallow rock pools that are much warmer than the open ocean and suitable for children to play in. As an added bonus, the beach is protected from the wind and large waves.

St. James, like Muizenberg, is home to a colorful collection of beach shacks that serve as a popular Instagrammable backdrop. Kalk Bay is a historic harbor and tiny hamlet about 30 minutes from the center of Cape Town, making it a popular destination for day trips from the city.

Glen Beach

While its neighbor, Camps Bay Beach, is known for its lively atmosphere and proximity to tourist attractions, the quieter and more relaxed Glen Beach is just a short walk away and still provides visitors with the opportunity to soak up some rays and make new friends against the dramatic backdrop of the Twelve Apostles. This beach is less popular than its glitzy sibling beach, which is only about 10 minutes away on foot, but you won't have the place to yourself on a sunny summer day.

Glen Beach is sheltered from the strong winds that frequently hit Cape Town thanks to the surrounding sand dunes and granite boulders. During the appropriate months, locals go to this beach for the "wedgie right" surf break, while dog owners bring their puppies to run free and play. During the warmer months, street sellers peddle icy treats and carbonated drinks.

The path to Glen Beach is not clearly marked. If you are coming down from Kloof Nek, it is on the right side of Victoria Road just before the left turn to Camps Bay. On either side of the beach, you'll find parking and a pair of stairs.

Queens Beach

Queens Beach is tucked away in the Sea Point area, far enough from the bustling Sea Point Promenade to feel like a different universe. The beach is often deserted even at the height of summer because few people know about it, and that includes many locals.

Sunbathing or having a picnic on a summer day at Queens Beach is an excellent option because of its proximity to the Sea Point public swimming pool and its protection from the breeze. The surf break here is known as "huge and mushy" by the locals.

Kids can also explore natural rock pools that are home to starfish and other marine life. Arrive in the twilight hours and stay until sunset. These are typically very impressive.

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