Travel bucket list idea:
Drive Chapman’s Peak
Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa|www.chapmanspeakdrive.co.za|
This 9km stretch of road, etched into soaring cliffs, with 114 curves and a 593m drop off to the ocean, ranks as one of the most spectacular drives in the world and should be on every visitor’s list.
‘Chappies’, as it’s affectionately known, also sees cyclists, bikers and runners enjoying the sweeping, staggering coastal views: think giant boulders, seal colonies, pounding surf, dramatic cliffs and miles of endless blue stretching into the horizon.
For an extra special treat, book a night at Tintswalo Atlantic, a romantic and alluring hideaway set in the ancient milkwood forest at the foot of Chapman’s Peak. Remote but spectacular.
Getting there & doing it
The toll road (R52 one-way) runs between the suburbs of Hout Bay and Noordhoek, and is well signposted for self-drives. If you drive from the city, head over Kloof Nek and along the scenic Victoria Road that takes you from Camps Bay to Hout Bay. Turn left at the sea and right into the main road leading through the village. From Noordhoek, turn left at the foot of Ou Kaapse Weg, following the signs to Chapman’s Peak. Allow 3-4 hours from the city, including view stops.
You can also cycle it. Start at the Hout Bay beach car park and cycle to Noordhoek (a more gradual climb than the other way round). About 9km. Bike & Saddle offers bike rental and guided cycle tours.
After your trip, when you’re back on the Hout Bay side, stop at old favourites the Chapman’s Peak Hotel or Dunes for sundowners and a casual supper. The Foodbarn or Café Roux in the Noordhoek Farm Village are also both excellent for a stop-over bite.
When to do it
The road is open all year round, and 24 hours per day, but it is occasionally closed after heavy rain, due to the risk of rock falls. It’s especially beautiful in the late afternoon, with superb sunset views.
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