Table Mountain National Park is located in the southwestern tip of South Africa neighboring the city of Cape Town. The park covers an area of 85 square miles (221 sq km).
The national park is part of the larger UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Cape Floral Region World Heritage Site. It protects over 1,100 indigenous vegetation species. Several of these are endemic occurring nowhere else on earth.
Table Mountain National Park is not known for wildlife; however, it is present to be experienced as part of your visit. Hartebeest, fallow deer, dassie, rock hyrax, and zebra are some of the species you might encounter.
Humpback whales, Bryde’s whales, southern right whales, and killer whales, also known as orcas, can be experienced in the waters off the coast of the national park. Seals and dusky dolphins are two of the other marine species that might be seen.
Birdwatching is a popular activity in the national park. There are over 250 species of birds with some of the highlights including African penguin, ostrich, and a variety of songbirds and sunbirds.
Table Mountain Highlights
The national park is part of the ecosystem that surrounds Cape Town, South Africa. Table Mountain and Cape of Good Hope are two of the attractions that serve as highlights amongst many other facets of Cape Town that draws tourist from around the world.
Table Mountain is renowned for the elongated flat top that sits atop the mountain. The summit occurs at 3,558 feet (1,084.6 m) which is not all that tall for a mountain. It is not the height but rather the unique presentation of a long flat top that serves as a backdrop for the city.
The plateau top of Table Mountain measures two miles (3 km) across from one end to the other. This plateau is nestled between Devil’s Peak to the east and Lion’s Head to the west.
The summit of the mountain may be reached either by a cable car or by hiking to the top for the more adventurous. Hiking up the mountain is one of the leading activities of those visiting the area.
Table Mountain is located at the northern end of the Cape Peninsula mountain range. The range runs from Cape Point in the south to Table Mountain in the north.
Cape of Good Hope
Cape of Good Hope is a rugged headland located on the southern tip of Cape Peninsula in South Africa. It sits on the Atlantic Ocean side of the peninsula. Most people find this landscape to rather remarkable and photogenic.
The oceanic meeting point occurs between Cape Agulhas and Cape Point which is 0.75 miles (1.2 km) east of the cape. The cape serves as a waypoint whether on the Cape Route or the Clipper Route.
Trails of Table Mountain National Park
Table Mountain is known for panoramic views over the city and the amazing coastline. There are numerous trails that allow hikers to explore around and atop the famous mountain. The majority of trails are rated moderate with some difficult trips to challenge the adventurous.
Lion’s Head Trail: This is a moderate rated loop trail ascending 1,079 feet (328.88 m) while traveling 2.6 miles (4.18 km) around. The highlight of the trail is the panoramic views. The terrain is rocky but a manageable hike to great vistas.
Constantia Nek Trail: this is another moderate rated trail with a longer trek covering 9.1 miles (14.65 km) while ascending 1,935 feet (589.78 m). Part of the trail is paved while the other portions are on rocky terrain. There are chances to see wildlife and wildflowers while taking in the astounding views of the surrounding landscape which includes a lake.
Cape Point Trail: this is a 1.7-mile (2.73 km) trek out to a lighthouse with views of the ocean and coastline. The trail ascends 610 feet (185.9 m) and is partially paved making it a popular excursion. Wildflowers may blanket the coastline and bird watching is a popular part of the trek.
Chapmans Peak Trail: this is rated moderate while ascending 1,295 feet (394.72 m) over a 3.1-mile (4.99 km) trek up to the summit of Chapmans Peak. Although you may see wildflowers along the way, then it is the panoramic views that make this journey worth the effort.
Platteklip Gorge Trail: This is a challenging steep trek ascending 2,276 feet (693.72 m) over 1.6 miles (2.57 km) to capture stunning panoramic views out over the area. There is a chance to see wildlife and wildflowers. Take a hat and sunscreen, there is no shade or escapes from the sun.
Table Mountain Highlights
- Table Mountain
- Cape of Good Hope
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