If you are like most people, views rank high as a motivation for hiking Table Mountain. Unique and diverse angles of view allow for a fuller appreciation of the mountain, thereby optimizing your experience of this iconic landmark. While there is much more to Table Mountain than the views, visual inspiration often precedes as desire for a deeper acquaintance.
To an extent, the best viewpoints are in the eye of the beholder. People respond differently to topographical configurations as well as the type of landscape viewed from above. I have seen this many times on hikes: same view, different levels of exhilaration from different group members. Having said that, some viewpoints override personal preferences by offering a combination of grandeur and range as well as doing the mountain justice.
More than two decades of mountain-guiding combined with desultory exploration have given me an intimate knowledge of Table Mountain’s topography. In the course of extensive guiding, I have identified which visual elements find a strong response in people. And through wandering the highways and byways, and sometimes no-ways, I have surveyed the mountain from all angles, vantage points and corners. Below is a handpicked list of my top 5 viewpoints, accessible only by hiking Table Mountain, and covering different areas of the mountain.
In no particular order:
Africa-Fountain Ledge junction. Located in a dramatic location high up India Venster, this viewpoint spans the great northwest corner of the Table Mountain massif. Coming round from the famous front to the seaboard flank of the mountain is beautiful and exhilarating in equal measure. And not out of character with one of the best Table Mountain hiking routes, India Venster.
Blinkwater Peak. The highest peak on the Twelve Apostles – a chain of peaks extending behind the famous tabletop of Table Mountain. Blinkwater Peak rarely sees people, and that contributes to its attraction. It commands panoramic and far-reaching views, providing a fantastic vantage point to get the lie of Table Mountain. To access, follow any Twelve Apostles route through the Valley of Isolation to Table Mountain’s flat-topped summit.
Silverstream Buttress. The best place for a reverse view of Table Mountain’s famous tabletop. Viewed west to east by the vast majority of people, it provides singular east-west views of the “Table”. And then some. A sense of solitude pervades the area, making it ideal for nature-lovers. Set away from all arterial Table Mountain hikes, a 20-minute walk from Maclear’s Beacon brings you to this unique viewpoint.
Llandudno Peak. Located on the southwestern extremity of the Table Mountain range, this humble peak ranks as a personal favorite. Sensational views in all directions make it one of those places around which you plan an entire Table Mountain hike. Again, rarely visited by other hikers, so perfect for those who appreciate beauty amid solitude. Easily accessible from the top of Llandudno Ravine.
Eastern Edge. A viewpoint marked by its significance on the far side of the “Table”, on the opposite end to the upper cable station. Perched above the lush and sheer eastern buttresses of Table Mountain, it offers superb views of suburban Cape Town and distant views of the mountains around the Winelands leading down to False Bay and Cape Point. Despite its close proximity to Maclear’s Beacon (top of Skeleton Gorge option), a popular junction for Table Mountain hikes, it offers splendor without intrusion from others. A perfect spot to enjoy lunch and savor the achievement of hiking Table Mountain.
Table Mountain covers a vast area and as such offers diverse views as well as landscapes. Different routes offer different views, landscapes and even moods. Based on your preferences, fitness level and abilities, we will suggest the best route for you, both in terms of views and overall experience.