False Bay is a huge bay on the eastern side of the Cape Peninsula, south of Cape Town. The Bay got its name from early seafarers, who without the aid of modern navigation systems, would round the eastern tip of the Bay believing it to be the Cape of Good Hope and that they should thus sail north-west along the western shores of Africa. Only to court near or real disaster as the came upon the northern shores of False Bay.
The Bay is flanked to the west by (the eastern shores of) the Cape Peninsula. To the north lies the southern suburbs and “townships” of greater Cape Town. The eastern shore of the Bay is framed by Kogelberg (Bullet Mountains), part of the Hottentots-Holland Mountain Range.
At the southwestern tip of False Bay, which is also the southwestern-most point of the continent of Africa, lies Cape Point. The southeastern tip of the bay is marked by Hangklip (‘Hanging Rock’), a massive buttress ‘leaning’ towards the ocean. These two beacons stand sentry over the wide-mouthed entrance to the Bay. On a clear day you can see Hangklip from Cape Point and vice versa, a distance of roughly 30km (±18mi).
From the earliest days of colonisation False Bay was the logical choice for harbouring a fleet. In modern times Simonstown on the western shores of the Bay is the South African Navy’s headquarters in terms of naval activities. Simonstown is also home to Boulders Beach and its colony of African Penguins.
In the north-eastern corner lies Vishoek, offering some of the best swimming in Greater Cape Town. The water on the eastern, False Bay side of the Peninsula is a good 6 deg C warmer than that on the western side. Thereafter the coast is dotted with popular coastal hamlets, including St. James, Kalkbaai (with a small fishing harbour) and the surfers’ haven of Muizenberg. After a stretch of empty coastline Strand and Gordon’s Bay are very popular coastal destinations for families. The scenic coastal drive from Gordon’s Bay to Hangklip, Clarence Drive (R44), along the Bay’s eastern shoreline is worth exploring.
This is a circular 5 day scheduled tour departing from Cape Town. Route 62 journeys through the valleys and mountain passes of the Klein Karoo. On the Garden Route you’ll focus on Knysna You return to Cape Town via the Cape South Coast. Mountain scenery, wildlife, ocean and more.
Highlights: Oudtshoorn , Cango Caves , Route 62 , Garden Route , Knysna , Oudtshoorn ostrich farms , Mossel Bay , The Garden Route Game Lodge , The Bartolomeu Dias Museum , Swellendam , Hermanus , Cape Agulhas .
Cape Point marks the point where the mountain range extending southwards from Table Mountain, some 60 km away, eventually terminates in the Atlantic Ocean. The Point features steep cliffs and rough seas. It is wonderfully scenic.The best views are gained from the base of the lighthouse (1860) at the top of the ridge.
Simon's Town, 40 km from Cape Town, is the headquarters of the South African Navy. It features a medium-sized harbour and at times a number of warships. The town has a collection of small museums, a couple of shops, some very nice restaurants and a variety of accommodation options.
A colony of approx. 3000 African Penguins reside just outside Simon's Town at Boulders Beach. Even though it is a residential area the thriving colony was born when two wild breeding pairs started breeding there in 1982, Boulders Penguin Colony is one of the popular stops for tourists on the Cape Peninsula Tour.