Heading to the best beaches in Cape Town is an absolute treat, but as every local knows, during the summer, having to fight for your spot on the sand is not all that rare. Unless you get there early, you might have to try a few of the most popular beaches before finding a place to relax in the sun.
But if you’re not up for the hassle, then there’s still plenty of options. Luckily, Cape Town has many secret beaches that provide seclusion and a reprieve from the crowds. Some of these Cape Town beaches not even locals know about, and they’re some of the most beautiful spots around. Here are our top pics of some of the best secret beaches in Cape Town:
- Queens Beach
- Platboom Beach
- Smitswinkel Bay
- Diaz Beach
- Sunset Beach
- Beta Beach
- Waters Edge Beach
- Scarborough Beach
- Windmill Beach
- Oudekraal Beach
- Glen Beach
- Sandy Bay Beach
Private Beaches in Cape Town
Ready to relax on the white sandy beaches with nobody else around? You’ll have to go to one of the many secret beaches that line the Mother City’s shoreline. Pack your picnic basket and get ready for a day spent in complete leisure. Here are some of the best beaches and bays that the beloved CT has to offer.
1. Queens Beach, Cape Town
Located on the south side of the Seapoint promenade, you’ll find this gem of a beach. Not many people know about or visit any of the beaches along the promenade, but they make for the perfect secluded spots.
Queens Beach is not ideal for swimming as the waves can be rather rough, but the beach is perfect for relaxing with a good book. It’s also a very safe beach because there’s plenty of people nearby (walking along the promenade).
Tip from a local: After a day in the sun, be sure to visit Venezia Ice Cream Parlour in Seapoint, which is one of the oldest ice cream shops in the Mother City.
2. Platboom Beach (One of the best secluded spots in Cape Town)
Platboom Beach is located inside Cape Point Nature Reserve. You’ll have to take a long winding and rocky path down to the shoreline, but the isolation and picturesque beauty of the beach makes it so worth it.
You’ll likely only have to share the beach with the local wildlife, which may include ostrich, baboons, dassies, and antelope. So a bit of wildlife watching could be on the cards too.
This long stretch of beach is perfect for those looking to take a long walk along the shoreline, or you can simply relax on the sand, taking in the tranquil surrounds. The colour of the water here is a perfect turquoise blue which is ever so enticing, so be sure to pack your wetsuit for a dip in the chilly waters.
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3. Smitswinkel Bay
This paradisiacal beach haven is located just outside of Cape Point, meaning it’s absolutely free to visit. In fact, you’ve more than likely driven passed it many times without realising it was even there. You’ll have to walk down a windy stepped path for about 10 minutes before reaching the beach at the bottom.
When you get to the bottom, enjoy the white sand stretching out before you and the azure, calm waters. You’ll more than likely be the only one on the beach.
If you want to explore some of the beautiful sea life located in the serene area, be sure to bring a snorkel and goggles with you. With crystal clear waters, you can enjoy great visibility in and amongst the kelp forests.
This beach is by far one of the most beautiful beaches in Cape Town, it’s an absolute miracle that it remains crowd-free, offering an isolated paradise like no other.
Tip from a local: There’s a wonderful beach cottage located in the bay, just a minutes walk from the beach. If you’re looking for a rustic and secluded place to stay for a couple of nights, this cottage is sure to impress.
4. Diaz Beach
Diaz Beach is one of the most popular sights in Cape Point Nature Reserve, yet few people actually venture down the few hundred steps to reach its shoreline. When you reach the bottom you’ll be met by a stunning stretch of coastline and picture-perfect scenery.
The water is a little rough, this is, after all, the Cape of Storms. But the beach is perfect for a little stroll or relaxing in the sand, taking in the beautiful sights.
Tip from a local: This beach spends almost the entire day in the shade of a cliff face. This means that it can get rather chilly, so be sure to pack a windbreaker before heading down to this stunning beach.
5. Sunset Beach (One of the best secret romantic spots in Cape Town)
Situated along the western coastline, close to the famed Blouberg Beach, sunset beach is more than aptly named. Although the sea is rough and it’s not a great place for swimming, the sunsets are absolutely magnificent, with Table Mountain perfectly silhouetted against a backdrop of pink and orange hues.
It’s also wonderfully quiet, with Blouberg Beach drawing the crowds, Sunset Beach is left abandoned. This is perfect for those who know about it, as they’re left to have sundowners on the sand while watching the sun setting over the ocean.
If you’re looking for a romantic date night spot, Sunset Beach is a wonderful option.
6. Beta Beach, Cape Town
Beta Beach is located very close to the popular Camps Bay Beach but remains surprisingly undiscovered. It’s almost always quiet, and the small beach is calm making it a great place for swimming.
With boulders surrounding both sides of the beach, it is sheltered from the southeaster. The boulders also provide a great sunset watching spot above the waves. Grab your camera and take a time-lapse of the beautiful sun setting over the ocean.
Tip from a local: Beta Beach is located close to the Camps Bay strip where you can find a great selection of restaurants along the beachfront. After watching the sunset at Beta Beach, head to one of these wonderful restaurants for a meal to satisfy all your senses.
7. Waters Edge Beach (One of the best Cape Town hidden beaches)
This local gem is a very well kept secret. In fact, when you reach the beach, you may even think it’s not open to the public. But in actual fact, it is. The stunning turquoise waters are surrounded by a kelp forest, it’s a wonderful place for both swimming and snorkelling.
There are also plenty of boulders that stick up out of the water, making a great place for jumping. Spend an entire day basking in the sun before hopping into the water for a refreshing dip. Waters Edge is truly one of the best kept secrets in Cape Town.
Olifantsbos is an incredibly isolated beach situated in the Cape Point Nature Reserve. It’s quite a drive from the main gate, but it’s a beautiful one, so it’s well worth it. Once you get there, you’ll find a completely secluded beach with untouched sands.
The beach is surrounded by fynbos, and shipwrecks are dotted around this part of the coastline. So if you’re a diver who’s ready to explore, this is a great place to start.
There’s a nearby lagoon that draws plenty of birdlife. Making this beach a great place for bird watching and even wildlife spotting. Being Cape Point Nature Reserve, you can expect a visit from some of the baboons that frequent the area, or if you’re really lucky, an ostrich or two.
Tip from a local: Although you’ll see plenty of signs about this, it’s important to mention that you should keep all food well hidden as baboons are rather cheeky creatures, and not afraid of stealing anything they might deem as tasty.
9. Scarborough Beach (One of the best secluded picnic spots in Cape Town)
Scarborough is a neighbourhood set apart from the rest. It’s home to a quiet surfing community, and the beach is almost always empty, bar a surfer or two. There are calm waters near the shore, perfect for an early morning dip.
Scarborough is also a dog-friendly beach, so feel free to bring your pooch along for a splash in the waves, just remember to clean up after your furry friend.
10. Windmill Beach
Windmill Beach is yet another Simon’s Town beach that provides perfectly still waters. Granite boulders shelter the beach as well as the nearby waters, making it a great snorkelling location. It’s also a still place to launch a kayak if you’re looking for a calm start to your journey.
Windmill Beach is also one of the only secluded beaches in Cape Town to provide ablution blocks. After an afternoon on the beach, be sure to stroll through Simon’s Town and take in its old school charm. If you’re up for a bite to eat, dine at one of their many incredible restaurants right along the seafront.
11. Oudekraal Beach
Oudekraal Beach is located along the western coastline between Camps Bay and Llandudno, and is part of the Table Mountain National Park. For this reason, you do have to pay a R30 entrance fee, but it’s money well spent.
The beach is best known to locals at a launching spot for kayakers and divers, but also provides a quiet, wave-free swimming experience. Tucked between granite boulders and kelp forest, the waters are tranquil but incredibly chilly.
Further up the beach, there are braai areas that are shaded by milkwood trees, perfect for a family lunch. If you’re ready to get tucked into the age-old South African tradition of braaing, this is a great setting to enjoy it in.
12. Glen Beach
Glen Beach is another neighbour of the ever so popular Camps Bay Beach, but it’s surrounded only by beach bungalows and granite boulders. It’s incredibly sheltered, from both wind and rough seas, and it is a great alternative to its neighbour, especially during the busy season (December – February).
It’s set against the backdrop of the magnificent Twelve Apostles, which contain some great hikes amongst their many gorges. If you’re looking to escape the throngs of people that flood Cape Town’s western coastline during the summer months, this is a great place to do it.
Tip from a local: There are many luxury villas to rent along the western coastline that make great vacation homes. If you’re looking for a place with great views and epic beach options, be sure to look close by to the wonderful Glen Beach.
13. Sandy Bay Beach, Cape Town
Although not to everyone’s tastes, Sandy Bay is Cape Town’s only nudist beach and is practically untouched. It offers tranquil waters and is fairly secluded. It’s located along the Atlantic Ocean, so the water is fairly cold, but if you can handle icy waters, it’s well worth the visit.
The bay is sheltered by boulders on either side, so the water is fairly quiet. If you want the beach to yourself, visit on a weekday to experience complete isolation.
Which Secluded Beach in Cape Town Will You Visit?
Now that you know all the best options for private beaches in Cape Town, you can hit the sands of some of the most stunning places on earth, and have them all to yourself. Pack a picnic, a beach towel, and your favourite pair of sunnies, there’s a bunch of secluded spots in Cape Town waiting for you.
If there are any secret beaches in Cape Town that you feel I might have missed, feel free to drop it in the comments and I’ll add it to this list of incredible secluded beaches in the Mother City.
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