Table Mountain: Everything to know before you go

Table mountain is a stunning mountain in Cape Town that towers 1086 meters over the gorgeous beach city. Did you know it was also picked as one of the new 7 wonders of nature back in 2007! 

There are many ways to enjoy this beautiful mountain and here are the tops things you need to know about before you head there. 

View from Table Mountain

View from Table Mountain

Table Mountain Facts

  • This mountain was once an island!
  • It now boasts more plant species per square kilometer than a tropical jungle.
  • Trails run the length and width of the mountain

How to get up the mountain

Hiking at the top of Table Mountain

Hiking at the top of Table Mountain

You have three main options to experience Table Mountain. You can:

  1. Climb one of the many hiking trails up yourself
  2. Take a group hiking tour - the mountain has many trails to explore
  3. Take a cable car to the top of the mountain

Climbing Table Mountain

First off, please know that hikes to the top of Table Mountain are challenging even under the BEST conditions. You should not take this hiking adventure lightly, pack sufficient water, and make sure you know where you are going. Full disclosure: I took the cable car instead of hiking.

If you do plan to hike there are two main trails that take you to the top. Platteklip Gorge route and Smuts Track. Click here for full details on each trail. 

Having a romantic moment at the top of Table Mountain

Group Tours - Table Mountain

If you aren't an experienced hiker there are a couple of great tour companies that hold guided hiking tours around and up the mountain. I recommend this company.

They offer a variety of tours including a 12 apostles hike, Platteklip gorge hike, and a hike from Skeleton gorge to Table Mountain summit. Prices start at 850R per person. 

Table Mountain Cable Car

This is the option I took, and the best one if you are short on time. The cable car is a quick and relatively inexpensive option as well. Here are a couple things to know before you take the cable car:

Table mountain ticket prices
  • Tickets can be purchases either one way or round trip.
  • The first car goes up at 8:00 am. Last car up is at 7:00 pm. The last car down is at 8:00 pm. (Times subject to change and weather conditions)
  • Buy your tickets online before you go. The ticket line can get extremely long! 
  • You don't have to print the tickets, just show them on your phone screen.
  • During peak hours (like sunset!) the line to get on the gondola can get HOURS long. Make sure you get there early and factor this into your day.
  • Once on the top of the mountain, there are many hiking trails to choose from.
  • The top of the mountain also has a restaurant, store, bathrooms, and bar.
  • Private events can also be held at the venue on top of the mountain. 

Final Thoughts

No matter which way you choose to go, enjoy this beauty! 

One last thing... even though researching ahead of time is great, I definitely recommend bringing a guidebook along with you. Here are some books I recommend...

A super common question I get is: what camera do I use for my travels. The body is a Nikon D3300 and this is the wide angle lens I use and love - I am seriously obsessed with it. 

My full guide that includes all the camera gear I take on every trip is here.

 

And of course, if you have any questions DO NOT hesitate to reach out to me via Instagram, Twitter, or just shoot me an email (tessajuliette@gmail.com). 

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Heading to South Africa soon and need some information on Table Mountain. Check out everything you need to know here!

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