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Hike up the Lion’s Head

  • Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

  • Bucket List Experience

Last updated: 30 March, 2024

For the best views of the Cape’s dramatic Atlantic coastline, climb the iconic ‘Lion’s Head’.

This 669m peak is a rewarding walk for nature lovers – within minutes of setting off, the Cape’s classic mountain and seascapes envelop you.

The somewhat challenging hike up is beautiful at dawn, popular at sunset, but best known for daring, full-moon walks. The route involves exposure to heights and climbing metal ladders. Vertigo-sufferers be warned!

Logistics

Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 13+
When: All year around
Duration: 2-4 hours

Getting there & doing it

A number of tour operators offer guided walks, but it’s fairly easy to do independently.

Park on Signal Hill Road (don’t leave valuables in the car due to petty crime) and start walking along the well-marked gravel track. The path loops around the base of the mountain, and the walk to the top takes between one and three hours.

A degree of fitness is required to get to the top, where chains and metal ladders are used for the last part of the ascent. Young children will only manage the lower part of the walk.

When to do it

The trail is accessible all year round. The most popular time to ascend is to witness the rising of the full moon. You’ll need a head torch, and don’t bother unless the weather is fine.

Who to go with: organised tours

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Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

Lion's Head Sunrise/Sunset Hike from Cape Town

  • Cape Town

 Lion's Head Sunrise/Sunset Hike from Cape Town

Viator

We will be hiking up Lions Head, Cape Town's most Instragram'able hike. We plan to either catch the sunset over the Atlantic Ocean or sunrise from the Hottentots Holland mountains. We enjoy some amazing photo opportunities before our descent. During a sunset hike, we descend in the dark using our flashlights (provided). During a sunrise hike, we may hike the first part in the dark using our flashlights (provided). While the hike is regarded as easier than Table Mountain, it still involves steep rocky and narrow terrain at certain points from about half up way and a section where the use of steel handles and chains need to be used to get up 2 pitches of about 3 meters each (only up and not down). Quite adventurous indeed. This hike has been an age old tradition for locals especially during the full moon and on clear/windless nights/mornings where the lights of the city below dazzle and the moon and stars show off its beauty in the night sky.

Price $83

Min age 8

Rating 4.94 / 5 [270 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Hike Table Mountain or Lions Head in Cape Town Like a Local

  • Cape Town

Hike Table Mountain or Lions Head in Cape Town Like a Local

Viator

My hikes are 'Off the beaten Track', less known hikes. Sunrise / Sunset / Full Moon / Day hike options *Always MESSAGE me first* *Minimum 2 persons unless you join a group* Everything from a gentle 2-hour stroll through a forest to rock climbing up Table Mountain under the cable car (no ropes required). All abilities, fitness levels and ages catered for. *depends on weather & time of the year*

Price ZAR 699

Min age 6

Rating 4.97 / 5 [227 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Cape Town: Lion's Head Sunset Hike

  • Cape Town

Cape Town: Lion's Head Sunset Hike

Viator

Cape Town’s most popular hike.  A moderate 1.5 hour ascent. Enjoy panoramic city views and a gorgeous Atlantic ocean sunset. This is the best way to capture a glowing picture of Table Mountain. Learn about the points of historic, cultural and natural interest in the Mother City below as well as across the bay, as if you were soaring in the sky. Descend as the sun falls and see the city lights light up the skyline. A unique view of Cape Town.

Price ZAR 1,650

Min age 10

Rating 5 / 5 [57 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Hike Lion's Head Sunrise or Sunset

  • Cape Town

Hike Lion's Head Sunrise or Sunset

Viator

Lion's Head has a 360 degrees views of Cape Town. Lion's Head is one of the three iconic peaks that frame the city of Cape Town. Lion's Head is the most iconic landmark after Table Mountain. Lion's Head can be reached within fifteen minutes from the city and the summit can be reached within an hour. Lion's Head has Table Mountain as its backdrop and is situated in one of the smallest but richest floral kingdoms in the world. Hiking Lion's Head for sunset is a Captonian tradition. The evening sun often casts a golden glow over the ocean and Cape Town coastline creating a warm and serene ambiance. Then again Hiking Lion's Head at Sunrise create a magical and peacefully atmosphere. The sky changing colors can provide stunning photo opportunities. Small-group tour with a maximum of 5 persons means a more authentic and personal experience.

Price ZAR 1,500

Min age 16

Rating 4.92 / 5 [26 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Lion's Head Hike for Sunrise

  • Cape Town

Lion's Head Hike for Sunrise

Viator

Lion's Head hike is a tour which we recommend to those looking for the best scenic views of Cape Town. The aerial views on Lion's Head are better than those you get while hiking Table Mountain or on other routes. While this hike is the easiest of the Cape Town treks because of the short duration it takes to submit the mountain, a guide is still advised because we would like to share our expert knowledge of the trail with you on a 3 hour hike which takes you from your hotel or accommodation in Cape Town and gets you to the highest point above Lion's Head which is approximately 669 meters above sea level.

Price ZAR 1,474

Min age 0

Rating 4.94 / 5 [18 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Destination guides

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Destination guides including or relevant to this experience

Cape Town

  • Western Cape, South Africa

Aerial view of the whole city at dusk

Destination guide

A vibrant, multicultural city with dramatic scenery, adrenaline adventure galore, Africa’s best art scene, golden beaches world-class wine regions and outstanding gastronomy. All in the shadows of the mighty Table Mountain.