The Cape Point Nature Reserve
Cape Town



The Cape Point Nature Reserve is situated on the Cape Peninsula, the unmistakable finger shaped piece of land extending south into the Atlantic Ocean and the most south westerly point in Africa. The area was proclaimed a nature reserve in 1938 and was incorporated into the Table Mountain National Park in 1998.

The Cape Peninsula is now one of the top tourist attractions in South Africa, offering a wide range of activities to visitors. It's combination of rugged natural beauty, quaint tucked away beaches and renowned bio-diversity is unique to Cape Town.

There is a wide range of flora and fauna on the Cape Point Nature reserve including some 1,100 species of 'fynbos' (Cape indigenous plants) , many of which are endemic to the area. There also some 250 species of birds and a variety of animal life.


The first European to sight Cape Point in 1488 was the Portuguese seafarer Bartholomew Dias who named it the "Cape of Storms". He was followed in later years by Vasco Da Gama. Navigational beacons named the Diaz Cross and the De Gama Cross have been erected in the reserve to commemorate these explorers and their voyages of discovery, which led to the  establishment of trade routes to the West Indies and the Far east.

The Peninsula was named 'Cape of Good Hope' by the Portuguese king John II.

Since those early days  many ships have fallen victim to stormy seas and  treacherous rocks while attempting to round the Point. The remains of five such wrecks can still be seen along the Peninsula coastline.

Archaeologists have discovered traces of stone artifacts on the Cape Point Nature Reserve which date back some 200,000 years. Since then the region had been occupied by the San who became known as Strandlopers (beach walkers). They were displaced by the Khoi who migrated to the Cape from the north about 2000 years ago. The Khoi people were occupying the Cape when the first settlers arrived in the 17th century.

On the Point itself there are viewing areas, a restaurant and a curio shop which are situated at 214m and reachable by funicular, or if you're feeling energetic, on foot. There is also the Buffelsfontein visitor centre and conferencing facility.

Apart from simply enjoying the scenery, a number of activities can be pursued in the Reserve. These include accommodation, hiking on a variety of trails, cycling, fishing and surfing. Information about these activities and necessary permits can be obtained at the main entrance, or at Cape Town Tourism offices.




You'll find a SANParks document outlining the various fee structures including accommodation and organised hiking trails in the Table Mountain National Park here: Tariff information

Here are some illustrated brochures you can view and download:

Brochure 1 Brochure 2

The map below provides a view of Cape Point and the Cape Peninsula as well as clickable links to accommodation in Cape Town and the various Cape suburbs.

cape peninsula,cape town,kommetjie

More information on the Cape Peninsula here: The Cape of Good Hope

For cheaper access to numerous Cape Town attractions: The Cape Town Pass

milnerton cape peninsula table view cape peninsula tyger valley cape peninsula kuils river cape peninsula century city cape peninsula cape town city bowl,cape town cape peninsula atlantic seaboard cape peninsula,cape town,kommetjie Top images © South African Tourism

References:
http://www.exploresouthafrica.net/
http://www.sanparks.org/
http://www.capeinfo.com/