Frequently Asked Questions
We are aware that there are probably a million and one things you would like to know and prepare for before getting ready to hike up Table Mountain. We have put together a list of frequently asked questions to help you plan your Table Mountain hike.
What is the best hike on Table mountain?
It would be almost impossible to pin point a winner, as there are so many beautiful routes offering different experiences. Our most recommended half day hike is India Venster and our most recommended full day hike is Kasteelspoort.
How long does it take to hike up Table Mountain?
Table Mountain half day hikes take 3 hours and full day hikes take 5 hours to complete. This is an estimate and has an average fitness level factored in. Hike duration varies route depending.
What is the quickest hiking route up Table Mountain?
The quickest and most direct hiking route up Table Mountain is Platteklip Gorge and roughly covers a distance of 3km. It takes +/- 2 hours to complete this hike up and 1 hour to hike down – depending on fitness levels.
What is the best time to hike Table Mountain?
The best time to start a hike up Table Mountain in summer is soon after sunrise between 5-7 am. Nothing beats a hike up Table Mountain in the early hours of the morning. Starting early beats the hot temperatures later in the day, during Cape Towns hot summer months and provides peace and tranquillity during the hike. During Cape Town winters it is a lot cooler and the best time to hike Table Mountain varies during the other seasons.
How fit must you be to hike Table Mountain?
Table Mountain is steep. You can hike at your own pace, although a relatively good fitness level is required to reach the summit of Table Mountain.
Do we stop for rests?
Yes resting is a must when hiking Table Mountain, rest breaks are allocated at beautiful lookout spots along the way.
What if we don’t want to continue the hike?
We can look at options to re-route or you can end the hike if you wish.
What if the weather conditions are not suitable?
If the weather is not suitable on the day and the client would not like to reschedule the hike, then a full refund will be issued. We liaise with clients beforehand. We constantly monitor weather forecasts and we will alter any hiking experience accordingly.
How do we get there?
Clients generally choose to take their own transport, as it is generally a short ride and low cost from anywhere in Cape Town. It also free’s up opportunity for hikers to spend time exploring the top and visiting the restaurant after the hike.
Where do we meet the guide?
At our designated meeting spots which are either at the lower cable car station on Tafelberg road or at the start of a route close by, they are clearly marked and easy to find.
Why use a Table Mountain guide?
- A guide will liaise with you and pair you with a hike according to you expectations, experience and fitness levels.
- Our guides are trained to assist you in various situations, from changing climates to a struggling hiker.
- Check and access the weather reports in advance, this may result in changes to routes and times.
- Extensive knowledge and experience provides you with a safer and more fulfilling experience on Table Mountain
- Years on the mountain will introduce you to the most enjoyable routes and beautiful lookout spots Table Mountain has to offer.
- Although Table Mountain is hiked by many without a guide, these hikers are usually locals, with great experience and an understanding Table Mountain’s environmental hazards.
Do the guides have special training?
Of course, all guides are registered at the department of Economic development and tourism and are trained under the Cathsette regulation as accredited mountaineering guides.
How big are the groups?
Group sizes are always small, but can reach a size of 8 people, although it very rarely gets to that. It may just be yourself or a couple more travellers may join in too. We always acknowledge the expectations and fitness levels of our clients and we will never pair a group together if we don’t think it would make an appropriate match.
Do you take private hikes on Table Mountain?
Yes we offer private hikes. On a private hike you will have your own guide and only those in your group will be able to attend.
Do we need to book?
Yes booking in advance is both recommended and helpful to us. There is a lot of planning a preparation that goes into our guided Table Mountain hikes and giving us some time helps us to arrange your perfect hiking trip.
Can we eat there?
Sure you can, you may bring snacks and eat on the hike if you wish. Table Mountain’s restaurant on the top, offers a wide variety of food and drinks. There is certainly something there for everybody.
What must we wear? What must we bring?
- 1.5 liters of water is recommended, bringing more never hurts although too much will add weight to your hike.
- Sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, camera.
- Back pack (not essential)
- Good hiking shoes / solid trainers
- Comfortable loose fitting clothing.
- Summer hiking involves shorts and t-shirts, although it is always advised to carry a warm layer and light jacket in case the climate changes.
- Winter hiking will be a different story, bring a water proof jacket and wear layers so you can adjust accordingly during the hike . A fleece is a great way to keep warm in winter. Loose comfortable trousers are recommend although in winter shorts are common too. Feel free to bring gloves and a hat.