Following the famous Smuts Track to the Table Top, walkers walk through flower-strewn fynbos and past waterfalls and frog-filled streams, enjoying sensational views of Cape Town, False Bay and the city’s surrounding mountain ranges, snow-capped in winter. Reaching the highest point of the mountain, Maclear’s Beacon, the views open up to take in Table Bay and Robben Island, landmarks that guide hikers across the flat-top and to the cable car for an easy way down.
Africa’s greatest garden, Kirstenbosch, sets the scene for this iconic hike. Hikers set off through immaculate landscaped gardens only to plunge into the indigenous forest that cloaks Table Mountain’s eastern flanks. A winding path leads to Skeleton Gorge, a deeply scored ravine that steepens gradually as you ascend, leading to a ladder section and after, a small stretch of boulders to negotiate. The forest walk is cool and shady; birdsong and the sound of running water provide the soundtrack all the way up until the unlikely spectacle of a white sand beach greets hikers- perfect for a lunch stop.
Please note: The difficulty level of this hike is moderate to tough. The total distance covered from Kirstenbosch to the Table Mountain cable car is approx. 4 miles (6.5 km) and takes between three and five hours.