The Atlantic Seaboard is found between the Table Mountain range and the chilly Atlantic Ocean. Also known as Cape Town’s ‘Riviera’ it stretches from the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront on the north shore of Table Mountain all the way down the Atlantic side of the Cape Peninsula and includes the suburbs of Mouille Point, Green Point, Sea Point, Fresnaye, Bantry Bay, Clifton, Camps Bay, Bakoven, Llandudno to popular Hout Bay a little suburb featuring a great working harbour. The Atlantic Seaboard is a popular destination for local Capetonians and visitors alike.
Green Point and Mouille Point are closest to Cape Town’s city bowl and most photographs feature the iconic world-class rugby and a football stadium with its beautiful curved lines built for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. In addition, there are several sports clubs, a century-old golf course and the lovely Green Parka public urban park just a little way back from the Mouille Point Promenade. One of the oldest operational lighthouses in South Africa is also found overlooking the ocean at Mouille Point with a string of restaurants, one of our favourites being Café Neo that serves wonderful Greek tapas and is a great meeting point for working Capetonians.
The red and white stripes of the lighthouse signal the start of the promenade that runs along the coast leading to the sea-facing suburb of Sea Point. The Sea Point Promenade is much-loved exercise space for joggers, skaters, cyclists, dog walkers and anyone wanting to enjoy its wide walkways that run along the ocean where big crashing waves occasionally drench joggers – much needed on a hot summers day!
Bantry Bay is a luxurious coastal suburb along Cape Town’s Atlantic Seaboard featuring some of Cape Towns luxury boutique hotels and guest houses.
The upmarket suburb of Clifton which continues towards Camps Bay are two of the most luxurious and expensive addresses in Cape Town but Clifton is also famous for its pristine beaches. Clifton has four beaches with crystal clear icy cold water, named 1st to 4th Beach. These beaches are protected from the wind making it the go-to beach to watch the sun go down. In summer many of the luxury charter boats anchor off Clifton beach for sundowners and parties adding to the overall atmosphere of the playground of the rich and famous. Clifton is the beach to be seen at and attracts some of the most beautiful people in Cape Town drawn to its perfect white sands and aquamarine blue water.
The beach at Camps Bay lies below the magnificent slopes of Lion’s Head with the Twelve Apostles which are 12 peaks that make the mountainous backdrop to Camps Bay. The beach below is wide and flat featuring bright yellow sun umbrellas and a lively promenade with a strip of excellent restaurants with side tables that spill onto the pavement and cocktail bars that feature little dance floors to dance away the sand from your toes, once the sun goes down. This is where to head to for sundowners and a spot of electric dance music and is always lively and upbeat. Camps Bay also features some of Cape Town’s most luxury boutique and 5-star hotels.
Further along past the luxury 5 star 12 Apostles Hotel and Spa, on the famed Chapmans Peak Drive and about 9 km beyond Camps Bay lies the secluded seaside suburb of Llandudno. The beautiful beach has boulders and white sand and impossibly turquoise water that’s popular among surfers. Llandudno has no shops or restaurants so you need to be self-sufficient for your day at the beach. If tanning naked is your thing Llandudno’s Sandy Bay beach is popular with nudists and there are secluded little beaches to explore amongst the rocks.
The historic fishing village of Hout Bay is next along the Atlantic drive. Its mountain peak resembles a rhino horn and is called The Sentinel. The harbour is a real working harbour featuring down to earth restaurants that offer pub-style seafood and fish and chips. The bustling weekend Hout Bay Market boasts an array of quality foodie stalls featuring artisan foods and produce not found just everywhere as well as live music, and interesting clothes and art and crafts. You can easily spend a few hours at Hout Bay Harbour and finish off your day with an inexpensive boat trip to Duiker Island, home to a large resident seal population. Two of the cruise options are glass-bottom boats which add to the excitement.
You can continue this drive all the way along the staggeringly beautiful Chapmans Peak Drive to Noordhoek which leads to Kommetjie, Scarborough and eventually Cape Point, but most people who have the time opt to do that on another day. This is a drive where you want to stop and take photo’s look for whales or sharks and just soak up the views. Chapmans Peak Drive is one of the World’s most beautiful drives and is also hugely popular with South Africans who stop to picnic or enjoy sundowners in what has to be some of the best mountainside ocean scenery in Africa.