Table Mountain – Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa
End-of-the-World Views and Lodging to Match
More than 3,500 feet above the fair city of Cape Town, the view from Table Mountain captures the mountains, city, and ocean, as well as virtually unspoiled wilderness, all in one breathtaking panorama. A cable car ride takes just five minutes to reach the flat “tabletop” summit that gave the landmark mountain its name, and which is visible to sailors 40 miles out at sea.
Most of the Cape Peninsula’s 2,200 species of flora can be found on the mountain, which is ablaze with blooms, including more than 100 species of iris, between September and March. Capetonians are understandably fond of coming up with picnic hampers and a bottle of wine from one of the celebrated vineyards nearby. Sunset here is the quintessence of romance. Fortunately, Table Mountain’s cable car system runs frequently, so you don’t have to face the only alternative: a two- to three-hour hike to the top. Some of the less strenuous routes begin in the magnificent Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, on the eastern slope. There’s such a rich display of South Africa’s indigenous plants there that you may forget about making it to the top at all.
With Table Mountain as its backdrop, and on the exciting Victoria & Albert Waterfront, the tony Cape Grace Hotel is one of the continent’s top-ranked accommodations for its near perfect service, beautiful guest rooms, and stunning views, either of the harbor or the mountain – or both.