27 February 2022
Cape Town is a magnificent city, and its colourful sunsets make its already spectacular views even more breath-taking.
There are several ways to make the most out of a Cape Town sunset – from having a picnic on the beach, hiking to a high vantage point, or even joining a sunset cruise. You can add to the experience by asking friends or family to join you and enjoying a bottle of champagne. Most importantly, don’t forget your camera to immortalise some of the beauty you’ll be seeing.
Here’s an outline some of the top Cape Town sunset spots.
The hike up Lion’s Head is popular among locals and tourists. The views of Table Mountain, Camp’s Bay and the ocean are stunning and even more so when bathed in the golden glow of sunset. If you stay up there long enough, you can enjoy the twinkling city lights as night falls.
If your trip coincides with the full moon, you can back hike down in the moonlight along with many other hikers. Just make sure you take a headlamp if you decide to do this. Also be aware that there are ladders and chains towards the top of the path, which some hikers might find challenging.
Chapman’s Peak Drive is an iconic, winding coastal route from Hout Bay to Noordhoek. While the views along this route are spectacular at any time of day, it’s well worth timing your drive to coincide with sunset. There are several lookout points where you can safely pull over to take photos and soak in the beauty. Chapman’s Peak Drive is a toll road and each vehicle will be charged a fee.
Signal Hill is located between Table Mountain and Lion’s Head and boasts gorgeous views of Table Mountain, Robben Island, the city and the ocean. Get there before sunset to ensure you find a parking spot and then take one of the gravel paths until you find the perfect spot to sit and have a sundowner.
Victoria Road is another stunning route that winds along the Atlantic Ocean. There are places along the road where one can pull over to enjoy the views. To add a touch of class to your sundowners, why not stop for a cocktail or glass of wine at the Twelve Apostles Hotel, which is located on this road?
A unique way to enjoy a Cape Town sunset is on a cruise. Join one of the sunset cruises that leaves the V&A Waterfront Harbour – most of which include a glass of bubbly. You’ll be rewarded with a colourful show as the sun sets over the city and sparkling ocean. After the cruise you’ll be able to do some shopping or have a meal at one of the V&A’s many wonderful restaurants.
The Camp’s Bay strip is a road lined with bars and restaurants. It runs alongside the well-known and picturesque Camp’s Bay beach. Choose a venue that suits you and sip on drinks or eat a meal while you watch the sun going down.
Nicknamed Sunset Rock, this spot is a well-kept secret by Cape Town locals. Follow Ocean View Drive through the suburb of Fresnaye until you reach a dead-end. Park here and bush-whack through the bushes and over a few rocks until you reach a huge, flat bolder that overlooks Clifton and Camp’s Bay. This is the perfect spot to enjoy sunset. Why not take along some snacks and drinks to have while you’re there?
If you want your sunset served with some razzle dazzle, definitely visit one of Cape Town’s rooftop bars. Up Yours at the Yours Truly Café in Kloof Street is a popular rooftop sundowner spot, complete with DJs and other musical acts. From the luxurious Harald’s Bar and Terrace on the 11th floor of the Park Inn by Radisson, you’ll be able to enjoy the sun setting over Table Mountain, the city centre and the harbour.
Some of the most fabulous sunset picnic spots in Cape Town are on its beaches. Pack your picnic blanket and basket, plus something warm to wear as the sea breeze can become chilly when the sun starts setting. From Blouberg Beach you’ll see Table Mountain in the distance with the crashing waves in the foreground as you enjoy your sunset picnic. Clifton, Hout Bay, Glen and Noordhoek beaches are also great spots from which to experience a Cape Town sunset.
Sunset in Cape Town takes place at different times depending on the time of year. In summer (December to February) the sun sets at around 8pm. In the winter months (June to August) the sun usually sets at about 6pm. It’s worth looking up the sunset times when you’re there to make sure that you don’t miss it!