Hiking Table mountain South Africa is one of the most amazing experiences Cape Town has to offer and in my opinion by far the most incredible. It is a regular occurrence hearing travelers say that hiking Table Mountain in Cape Town was the highlight of their trip.
If you are coming to South Africa from abroad and have a trip up Table Mountain on the agenda, I would not hesitate to hike up rather than taking the cable car. I can not even begin to tell you how much more you will get out of it and how rewarding it will be. Get up close and personal and see Table Mountain from another perspective – the one many travelers don’t get to see, get out of the regular tourist trap.
Firstly if you are going to hike up Table Mountain just once I would strongly recommend you take a route that will blow your socks off. There are many hiking routes up Table Mountain. What ever you do you don’t want to get stuck on a forever lasting stair like route, with restricted views and little scenery. It’s really important that you choose a route that will fit your expectations as well as your fitness levels. Take a route with an enjoyable terrain and mind blowing views to get the most out of your Table Mountain hiking trail, don’t get stuck on a slump.
It is with utmost importance that you begin your hike early in the morning. Cape Town summers are not to be trifled with. The routes heat up quickly in the morning so rather wake up early and begin your hike up Table Mountain close to sunrise. It is common to start a Table Mountain hike as early as 05:30 in the peak of summer.
If you have a good pair of hiking shoes it is definitely a bonus, if you don’t trainers will do. Be careful wearing trainers if it is wet as the rocks can get slippery. Wear comfortable clothing and always take something warm for the top, it gets cold, even in summer so be prepared.
Use a Table Mountain hiking company. There are several hiking companies in Cape Town that lead hikes up Table Mountain. Go for something authentic and local, rather than the big ones that try to get a piece of the market with knowing little about it. Table Mountain hiking guides have extensive knowledge when it comes to Table Mountain hikes and they will show it to you best.
Get your Table Mountain hiking trip booked early into your holiday rather than later, leaving it too late could cause a disappointment due to poor weather conditions which can occur all year round. The cable car shuts down due to strong wind conditions. Wind speeds at the top of the mountain can pick up quickly in summer and it makes hiking uncomfortable so be sure to plan well around the weather.
Be careful about what you read from other travelers. Every individual is different and what you may find an easy hike others may not and vice versa. Everybody is writing articles on the Table Mountain hike they have conquered on their travels and this gets hard to gauge. Speak to an expert and make sure you understand what you are getting into. There are many different routes on and around Table Mountain and there is something for everyone – it is important to find out which Table Mountain hike will suit you best.
Once you have hiked to the top of Table Mountain or should I say once you reach the summit, you will find a truly magical place. A flat stretch of rock 3 km wide, overlooking the Cape Peninsula. It’s a truly remarkable sight and I would recommend spending some time there afterwards. Enjoy the scenery and the breathtaking views from every angle and visit the restaurant for a well deserved meal and refreshments. Take the cable car back, or hike back down on another route.