South Africa’s scenic coastal road: The Chapman’s Peak Drive

If you are planning a trip to South Africa, you should not only stay in Cape Town but also make day trips to other parts of the country. There are so many things to do! The classics are safaris, such as the popular in the Kruger National Park, wine tours in the sunny Winelands, the Cape of Good Hope, or the Garden Route to the eastern part of the country. These destinations can be easily reached within a day trip from Cape Town by rental car. However, it is usually a good idea to spend at least one night at your destination to avoid spending too much time in the car (and to be able to drink more of the fantastic South African wine indeed!)

Unfortunately, we didn’t do it that way. Hence we had to drive back to Mother City after every trip, which I can’t recommend, as this limits the reachable radius around Cape Town considerably. For example, we couldn’t do the famous Garden Route in the east of the country for this reason, which is a shame and on the list for our next trip. However, we were able to do many shorter routes instead, which was also fun. One of the most remarkable road trips led us through the legendary section on the panoramic coastal road along the Atlantic Ocean:

Chapman’s Peak Drive

The coastal road on the Cape Peninsula, in the south of Cape Town, is probably one of the most beautiful panorama roads in the world. The way was already built at the beginning of the 20th century and has primarily served as a connection between Haut Bay and Noordhoek since then, which is why motorists also have to pay approximately 2,50 € (USD 2.70) for passing.

Starting in the picturesque fishing village of Hout Bay, the road winds its way along steep mountain slopes for nine kilometers and reaches its top at 160 meters above sea level. Breathtaking views emerge behind every bend. The journey is the reward!

Fortunately, the rocky coastal road offers numerous viewpoints from which you can admire and photograph the coastal landscape to the Atlantic Ocean. The Chapman’s Point itself is located at 160 meters above sea level and is mainly a viewpoint. From there, you have some great views of Kommetjie and the deserted Long Beach of Chapman’s Bay.

In our case, we drove a return route, e.g., we took the M6 in Cape Town and made it to Noordhoek just the make a u-turn there and drive the same way back again. It is also possible to combine the panoramic road with exploring the South Peninsula a little bit more, with visits in Simon’s Town and the Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip. You can also take the M4 via Kalk Bay and St. James on to Muizenberg.

View of the 8km long “Long Beach” of Noordhoek

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