Hout Bay

This lively coastal suburb of Cape Town lures visitors with its calm water and fisherman’s wharf, craft markets and scenic drives. 

Nestled between mountain peaks and a sweeping bay, Hout Bay is a picturesque village situated south from Cape Town’s city center. Come here for leisurely beach walks and wildlife spotting, watersports, seafood restaurants and artisanal markets.

Hout Bay’s beach is wide and flat. Go for relaxed strolls and take in the surrounding scenery. Although cold, the water is calm and nice for cooling off on a hot summer’s day. Go to the Mariner’s Wharf to experience the bustle of a working harbor. Sit on the terrace at one of the wharf’s restaurants and sample freshly caught yellowfin tuna.  

Make the short walk to Bay Harbour, a lively market with over 100 stalls offering everything from art and handicrafts to fresh fish and organic food. Live music events add to the vibrant atmosphere. It’s open from Friday to Sunday, except for public holidays. 

Join a boat trip from the harbor and cruise around the Sentinel Mountain to Duiker Island, where you can see a large colony of South African fur seals basking on the rocks. Pass the surf spot known as Dungeons, which is famous for its big waves and annual surf competition. If you’re feeling energetic then sign up for a sea kayaking tour and explore the shoreline and cliffs off nearby Chapman’s Peak mountain. 

Be sure to visit the World of Birds Wildlife Sanctuary and Monkey Park. Spot over 3,000 birds plus mammals such as baboons, monkeys and meerkats in the sanctuary’s walkthrough enclosures. The wildlife park is open daily and is a ten-minute drive from the marina.

Explore the Chapman’s Peak Drive by car or on foot. This 5-mile (9-kilometer) route cuts through the side of a mountain and offers spectacular coastal views from lookout points and picnic areas.

Hout Bay is about a 25-minute drive from the center of Cape Town. Rent a car and drive to the village via the Atlantic coastal road or the route skirting the west side of Table Mountain National Park. There’s a large car park at the marina. A hop-on hop-off tourist bus also stops in Hout Bay.

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