The Western Cape has some of the most spectacular sunrise viewing spots in South Africa and visitors are advised to rise early not to miss out. Liesl Venter rounded up a few places to consider.
Seeing the sunrise at the top of Table Mountain is an experience unlike any other, says Briony Brookes, Communications Manager at Cape Town Tourism. “Now, before you decide on doing this, you should bear in mind that the Cableway doesn’t operate that early in the morning, so you might have to hike up the trail in order to see this one-of-a-kind view but it’ll be worth your while.”
Spitzkop Viewpoint on the R339 between Knysna and Uniondale
This is highest viewpoint in the area, says Keagon Borchards, @Knysna IT and Marketing Co-ordinator. “With 360-degree views to Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, the Knysna Forest as well as the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma Mountains, it is a view to appreciate.”
According to Monika de Jager, Manager at Namaqua West Coast Tourism, this is possibly her favourite sunrise spot – especially in winter. “The vastness of the skyline and the arid plains with the Matzikamma Mountains in the background is unique. The Knersvlakte has such a unique bio-diversity and ecosystem, which adds to the magic.”
Another great place to see the sunrise is Muizenberg Beach, says Brooks. “Here you’d be able to sit on the clear white sand while taking in the fresh sea breeze.”
The V&A Waterfront
Most tourists know the Waterfront for being a lively and energetic place at night. “However, the place has a really refreshing feel to it in the early hours of the morning. Take a stroll along the docks and admire one of the most beautiful sunrises the Mother City has to offer,” says Brooks, who believes that foreign visitors should be encouraged to experience sunrises while visiting the province. “It is something that is known to be truly spectacular and their vacation wouldn’t be complete without it.”
The Cape Karoo
Few places can compare with this vast region with its clear skies that provide an unmatched tapestry in which to enjoy a sunrise and, of course, a sunset, says Tim Harris, Wesgro CEO. “The Swartberg Pass at the Teeberg lookout in the Klein Karoo, Weltevrede Road in Prince Albert and the Nuweveld mountains in the Karoo National Park, all have spectacular mountainous views.”
Safe and secure
Most sunrise spots in the province are generally close to the city or towns and offer a number of other experiences to enjoy.
“Like anywhere in the world, visitors should always be aware of their environment, particularly when navigating outdoor trails they do not know well. Pay attention to general safety rules and, when exploring the outdoors, do not go alone and make somebody aware of where you intend to go and when you are likely to return,” advises Harris.