Cape Town's hidden beaches

2014-12-03 09:04 - Natalie Roos
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One thing no local Capetonian would willingly tell you about our city, is that our summers can be painfully short. Right now it’s mid-November and I’m snuggled up in two jerseys and the thought of a beach day is as far from my mind as a trip to space.

The reason locals won’t think to tell you about this phenomenon is because locals have selective memory loss. Because when the wind finally does die down and the sun comes out and the sea glitters in gorgeous jewel tones, the perfection of a Cape Town summer’s day erases all memory of a 72-hour howling South-Easter nightmare.

On a pearler of a Cape Town day you’ll find office bound locals skipping out of their cubicles at 3pm. The parking situations at Lllandudno, Clifton (first, second, third and fourth) and Camps Bay become a gridlocked mess. Lithe bodies line these beaches, soaking up the African sun whilst the brave frolick in the icy waves.

But if you’re less interested in fighting for your spot on the sand and more interested in an unspoilt beach experience where you can’t necessarily count on easy access, but you can count on gorgeous empty beaches and stunning views, then you should venture out to these secret beaches this sumnmer.

Diaz Beach - Cape Point Nature Reserve


(Natalie Roos - Tails of a Mermaid)

The Cape Point Nature Reserve is a treasure trove of unspoilt “secret” beaches. Diaz beach is a sprawling stretch of white sand flanked by turquoise water jagged rocks. It’s quite a walk down to the beach (about 20 minutes), which is wild, with a clean 6ft shore break ideal for surfing. Tip: If you walk to the very end of the beach, keep going and stick to the right. Just around the cliff you’ll find locals of a different kind when you reach the seal colony.

Bordjiesrif - Cape Point Nature Reserve

Adding another stop to your beach tour of the Cape Point Reserve, Bordjiesdrif is another beach with braai facilities and a tidal pool. Visit the Information center at the Reserve for directions.

Buffels Beach - Cape Point Nature Reserve


(Natalie Roos - Tails of a Mermaid)

Another one of the Cape Point Reserve’s hidden treasures, Buffels Beach is a small little gem of a strip of sand complete with a tidal pool and braai facilities. After paying at the gates to enter Cape Point, head to the Visitor’s Information center and ask for directions to the beach. Chances are, you’ll be the only one there.

Kraalbaai - West Coast

If you’re up for a drive, the Kraalbaai lagoon out on the West Coast is well worth it. The clear water is slightly warmer than the waves crashing in the Atlantic and the surrounding seafood restaurant and holiday-town vibe are ideal for a beach day-escape from the city.


Beta Beach - Bakoven


(Natalie Roos - Tails of a Mermaid)

This beach might not be considered “secret” to everyone, but it’s not nearly as popular as the Cliftons. A tiny beach nestled in the quaint streets of Bakoven, Beta beach has a spectacular view of Lion’s Head and is generally pretty empty, especially on weekdays.


Kleinmond - Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve 

While not entirely hidden, this beach isn't necessarily your everyday beach romp. Keep it in mind if you're heading out to, or back from Elgin or Hermanus along Clarens Drive. In fact out along the Hangklip area you'll be spoiled for choice with a number of lesser-known beaches and this one is particularly kid-friendly with its tidal-pool, boats for hire and nearby play-park. 

Smitswinkelbaai - False Bay


(Natalie Roos - Tails of a Mermaid)

You might have driven past this beach several times, without ever venturing down to explore it. That’s exactly why we still classify it as a “secret” beach. The steep 20-minute walk down prohibits most people from reaping the benefits of it’s secluded beauty.

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