Cape Town Secret Hidden Beaches You May Never See

Ask the concierge at your hotel which beaches are best to visit in Cape Town, and they will roll off names like Clifton, Sea Point, Muizenberg, Boulders, and Camps Bay. If you like crowds of beautiful people, well that’s your fancy. I prefer to visit one of these Cape Town secret hidden beaches I discovered on cycling trips while at school.

Twelve Apostles Mountain Range. Cape Town secret hidden beaches
Twelve Apostles Mountain Range: Photo on Panoramio by Pavel ŠpindlerCC BY 3.0

My Discovery of Cape Town Secret Hidden Beaches

First of My Secret Hidden Beaches: Queens Beach

The Sea Point Promenade entices strollers, joggers, and cyclists past famous beaches. Yet few stop to visit this gem of a little beach, except perhaps on New Year’s Day. It has starfish in pools for little kids, ‘big and mushy breaks’ for surfers, and soft, white sand for families to laze on all day long.

The water temperature is chilling in winter, like all Cape Town beaches, and decidedly bracing at the height of summer. Once in the ocean the main attractions are obvious. Choose gazing up at the Table Mountain massive with cable cars going steadily up and down. Or watch gallant paragliders hurl themselves off cliffs beneath colourful sails.

Clifton Beach, Cape Town secret hidden beaches
Clifton Beach Cape Town: Photo on Flickr by zolsimpression / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

A Quiet Backwater Glen Beach Yet Close to Action

Glen Beach is the second of my Cape Town secret hidden beaches. It has a soft spot for me since I was born in a nursing home overlooking it. Glen Beach is at the northern extreme of famous, crowded Camps Bay Beach. It gets few visitors because it is separated by climbing boulders, and remote from hotels, restaurants and pubs.

To me, this is the best place in the world for being alone, letting dogs chase Frisbees, and climbing sand dunes baked in the sun and sliding down again. Its only near neighbours are beach shacks. Look up, and you see the Twelve Apostles mountain chain standing sentinel. There are great hikes up there I must tell you about.

Glen Beach, Cape Town secret hidden beaches
Glen Beach ,Cape Town: Photo on Flickr by Charlie Dave / CC BY 2.0

Third of My Secret Hidden Beaches: Beta Beach

Most people visiting the Beta Beaches walk down from small luxury bungalows overlooking them. This truly is the playground of the rich and famous. But the beaches are public spaces and anybody may swim and suntan there. As you can see from the photo, these tiny stretches of sand nestle between giant boulders.

Beta Beach, Bakoven,camp bay
Beta Beach, Bakoven: Photo on Flickr by Jonathan Gill / CC BY-NC 2.0

The large granite rocks have the effect of quieting the wind to breezes, and calming the ocean to sedate swimming spots. Best go there at low tide when there is more sand. And rise early in the morning if you expect a parking space. On second thoughts, leave the hire car at the hotel, and catch the bus that stops at all three of my secret hidden beaches. Then follow the sloping walkway between the bungalows to the sand.

About Richard Farrell

Richard Farrell

I tripped over a shrinking bank balance and fell into the writing gig unintentionally. This was after I escaped the corporate world and searched in vain for ways to become rich on the internet by doing nothing. Despite the fact that writing is no recipe for wealth, I rather enjoy it. I will deny I am obsessed with it when I have the time.

My base is Umtentweni in South Africa on the Kwazulu-Natal South Coast (30.7167° S, 30.4667° E). I work from home where I ponder on the future of the planet, and what lies beyond in the great hereafter. Sometimes I step out of my computer into the silent riverine forests, and empty golden beaches for which the area is renowned.

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