No visit to Cape Town is complete without a trip up famous Table Mountain, which reaches 1 085 metres at its highest point and has a broad, flat surface that has given it its name. South Africa’s most famous landmark is part of the Table Mountain National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature is a majestic spectacle: the cliffs of the magnificent flat-topped mountain plunge into crystal seas fringed with the bleached white sands of the Cape Peninsula.
The mountain chain stretches from Signal Hill in the north to Cape Point in the south, and is home to the world’s smallest, yet most diverse floral kingdom, the Cape Floristic Region.
Since the first person laid eyes on Table Mountain, it has exerted a powerful pull. The way to the top has never been easy, and for many centuries only a handful of bold and enterprising people could say that they had climbed it. These days, you can ascend the majestic sandstone cliffs of Table Mountain on foot or by revolving cable car to enjoy some of South Africa’s most breathtaking views.
The glorious views over the ‘Mother City’ start the minute you step into the state-of-the-art cableway. The floor of the 65-passenger cable car rotates 360 degrees on the ascent and descent, each of which takes just five minutes. Explore the walking paths that crisscross the mountaintop and discover the striking viewpoints over the peninsula. There is also a curio shop and restaurant.
The weather can change without notice, so be sure to wear good walking shoes, sunscreen and headgear and take warm clothing (even if visiting in the height of summer).
The adventurous can take a number of guided hikes up the mountain, while out-and-out adrenaline junkies can book an abseiling experience and step off the vertical cliffs 1 000 metres above sea level.
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