Beginner-Friendly Hikes in the Western Cape

Discover a collection of easy and scenic hikes in the Western Cape that are perfect for beginners. From Lion’s Head to Newlands Forest, explore breathtaking views, lush forests and cascading waterfalls. Find hiking tips, essential gear and safety reminders for an unforgettable adventure.

Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or new to the world of trails, the Western Cape offers an abundance of beginner-friendly hikes that will ignite your sense of exploration and leave you yearning for more. It is important to note that some hiking trails may require a small fee for conservation but there are many trails that are free of charge! Here a few of our favourites easy hikes around the Western Cape:

Lion's Head

One of the most popular trails among the Cape’s many hikes. It may seem daunting at first but is relatively short, offers stunning views and is a wonderful way to get your workout in.

• Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
• Entry fee: Free
• Duration: Approximately 1.5 to 2 hours (round trip)

Highlights: Panoramic views of Cape Town, Table Mountain, and the Atlantic Ocean

Cecilia Waterfall Hike

A scenic wonder and a doable hike for beginners wanting to test the waters. Once at the waterfall, there’s the option to ascend the mountain and take in more stunning views or drop in Kirstenbosch and explore its fauna and flora. With an array of different trails one can do, Cecilia is a lovely route for the adventurous hiker seeking exploration and a different route every time.

 

    • Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
    • Entry fee: Free
    • Duration: Approximately 1.5 to 2 hours (round trip)
  1.  Highlights: Cascading waterfall, lush forest surroundings

Silvermine Reservoir

A nature lover’s dream. Silvermine is a gorgeous place to spend your day wandering through the reserve, exploring the hiking trails and top-rope climbs and your furry friends are more than welcome to join you (must be kept on a leash). Climbing the cliffs in Silvermine is a big highlight for many hikers as there is a wide range of grades, from around a 13 for beginners to a challenging 28 for the pros.

 

    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Entry fee: Free with a Wildcard or under R50 for South Africans and under R150 for foreigners
    • Duration: Approximately 2 to 3 hours (circular route)
  1.  Highlights: Peaceful reservoir, fynbos vegetation, beautiful mountain views

Pipe Track

Starting at the corner of Tafelberg Road and Kloof Nek, the Pipe Track is an easy trail with stunning views of Camps Bay, Lions Head and the Atlantic Ocean. It is also very likely that you’ll pass through some beautiful ravines and rockery. There are quite a few to rest and take in all the views.

 

    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Entry fee: Free
    • Duration: Approximately 1.5 to 2 hours (one way)
  1.  Highlights: Coastal views, fynbos vegetation, proximity to Table Mountain National Park

Newlands Forest

A local favourite, Newland Forest offers a lush and tranquil indigenous and dense forest covering much of the eastern slope of Table Mountain. Enthusiastic hikers use the forest as an entry point for the four trails that lead to the top of the mountain, including Skeleton Gorge, Newlands Ravine and Nursery Ravine. Dogs are permitted to be off their leash once on the trails.

 

    • Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
    • Entry fee: Free unless you bring your pooch along (day fee)
    • Duration: Approximately 2 to 3 hours (one way)
  1.  Highlights: Forest walk, lovely views of Cape Town and the Southern Suburbs

Elephant's Eye Cave

Said to be one of Cape Town’s easier walks with breathtaking views over False Bay and the Southern Suburbs, Elephants Eye is definitely a great beginner’s hike. Walk through indigenous fynbos and if you’re feeling brave enough, take a dip in the Silvermine Dam.

 

    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Entry fee: under R50 per person
    • Duration: Approximately 1.5 to 2 hours (round trip
  1. Highlights: Cave exploration, scenic views of False Bay and the surrounding mountains

Kloof Corner

By far the easiest hike on the list, Kloof Corner is short, simple and still offers amazing views considering how short the hike is. It is the perfect sunset hike, especially in winter with the sun setting so early. There are a few steep sections to pay attention to but for the most part, the trail is wide and stable.

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Entry fee: Free
  • Duration: Approximately 1 hour (round trip)
  1.  
  2.  Highlights: Beautiful views of Lions Head and the whole of Table Bay

Here's a few tips for your next hike:

 

  • Bring a Backpack – a comfortable backpack to carry all your essentials.
  • Hydration is key – stay hydrated throughout your hike by bringing a reusable water bottle.
  • Snacks – pack some energy-boosting snacks like trail mix, granola bars, or fresh fruit to keep you going.
  • Sunscreen – protect your skin from the sun’s rays with sunscreen.
  • Bring a Hat – A hat or cap to shield your face from the sun, you will not regret it!
  • Sunglasses – some days are brighter than others, protect your eyes from the sun and glare.
  • Comfortable shoes – this is important in avoiding unnecessary injuries. Wear sturdy, comfortable hiking shoes or boots
  • Layers of clothing – dress in layers to adapt to changing weather conditions.
  • Rain jacket – the weather in Cape Town is generally unpredictable. Always be prepared for unexpected rain showers with a lightweight, waterproof jacket.
  • Insect repellent: Keep bugs at bay with insect repellent.
  • Camera – capture beautiful scenery and memories with a camera or smartphone.
  • First aid kit – pack a basic first aid kit with band-aids, antiseptic wipes, and any necessary medications.
  • Portable phone charger – ensure your phone stays charged for emergencies or capturing photos.
  • Trash bags – it is vital to keep our hiking trails clean so we can keep coming back. Avoid littering!
  • Whistle – a whistle can be useful for attracting attention in case of emergencies.
  • Positive attitude – most importantly, bring a positive attitude and a sense of adventure!

Remember to check the specific requirements and recommendations for your chosen hike. It is also advised to hike in larger groups and never alone for safety reasons. Enjoy your hiking and tag us on Instagram and Facebook in all your hiking content!

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