Very few experiences in life are as mesmerizing as watching the sun dip below the horizon. In fact, watching beautiful sunsets is one of my favorite pastimes, inspiring the name of my blog and making me write content such as the top sunset spots in Kauai.
When considering the best cities to watch the sunset, Cape Town is high up on the list. But be warned, picking the best sunset spot in the Mother City is more difficult than you’d think. Your choices range from the setting sun being framed by sweeping mountain views, to the joy of sipping a cocktail from a bar on the beach.
To help make your decision, here’s my list of the best sunset spots in Cape Town.
Sunset & Sunrise in Cape Town
Not even Lion King can do the breathtaking African sun any justice. Visiting Cape Town is the perfect opportunity to witness this first-hand, so here are a few details to make sure that you don’t miss it.
What Time Is Sunset in Cape Town?
In summer, you can expect an average of more than 14 hours of daylight, and an impressive 10 hours or more during winter.
Generally, the sun sets at around 8 PM during summer, and around 6 PM during winter. The longest day of the year in South Africa is 21 December when you can expect nearly 14,5 hours of daylight.
Top tip: The sunset time in Cape Town differs from day-to-day. You can find out the current time by looking up Cape Town sunrise and sunset times online.
Cape Town Sunrise
Are you an early bird who loves the sunrise as much as the sunset? On average, the sun rises at around 5:40 AM in summer, and at approximately 7:40 AM in winter in Cape Town.
Top 12 Cape Town Sunset Spots
The geographical layout of the city means that there are countless amazing spots to watch the Cape Town sunset.
1. Signal Hill
Signal Hill is arguably the most incredible place to watch the sunset in Cape Town – all year round. As an elevated spot in Table Mountain National Park, Signal Hill offers an unbelievable view over the Atlantic Seaboard and the ocean.
Pack a picnic, a bottle of delicious local wine and prepare for a cinematic experience. The spot is free to access and is open 24 hours a day – although I don’t advise that you visit after dark.
Keep in mind that Signal Hill is a very popular spot to watch the sunset. While there’s always a place to sit at the viewing point, accessibility can quickly bottle-neck so plan accordingly.
2. Lion’s Head
If you love easy hiking routes and sunsets as much as I do, then Lion’s Head is the perfect spot to kill two birds with one stone. It takes approximately 1,5 hours to reach the top of this popular mountain in Cape Town at a comfortable pace, and the view of the sunset makes every drop of sweat worth it.
Lion’s Head is free to visit and can be accessed 24-hours a day. Don’t forget to pack some snacks, water, and a light jacket for once you cool down at the top.
Although the route doesn’t require years of hiking experience, a moderate level of fitness is required.
3. Table Mountain
As one of the New7Wonders of the World, Table Mountain is a must-do activity for anyone visiting the Mother City.
Ascending Table Mountain for sunset makes the moment even sweeter. The view from the top is incomparable, with sweeping views of the city, the ocean and, of course, the sunset.
The mountain is free to hike and it will take a moderately fit person about 2 hours to reach the top. The alternative, which is equally as memorable, is to take the famed Cable Car which runs from 8 AM to 8 PM (depending on the season). On average, a return ticket costs $23 USD – but tickets are free within a week of your birthday!
4. Kloof Nek Corner
If the thought of hiking Lion’s Head or Table Mountain seems daunting, then Kloof Nek Corner is the smaller equivalent that offers an equally (if not more) breathtaking view of the sunset.
Also in the Table Mountain National Park area, Kloof Nek Corner is the perfect sunset viewing spot for outdoor enthusiasts.
The hike is free to do and it takes about 40 minutes to get to the top if you’re walking at a comfortable pace. The route is easy enough to add the extra weight of a flask of coffee to enjoy at the top with the view.
5. Glen Beach
The above-mentioned views from the mountain spots look down on Glen Beach, a sheltered bay that is nestled between the popular Camps Bay beach and Clifton beaches. As a spot that is beautifully sheltered from the wind, Glen Beach is one of the best places to watch the Cape Town sunset.
The beach is easy to get to by car and is free to visit. Once on the shore, you’ll find plenty of other sunset-watchers set up with their champagne, strawberries and takeaway pizzas. Glen Beach is great for families, lovers and is also one of Cape Town’s best city surf spots.
6. Blouberg Beach (Bloubergstrand)
On the other side of the city, Blouberg Beach is one of the best spots to watch the Cape Town sunset. Time melts away with the sun as it disappears beyond the horizon, leaving you with a beautifully silhouetted view of the majestic Table Mountain.
The beach is free to visit and is the perfect spot to enjoy the sunset with the whole family. There are also restaurants scattered along the road if you want to enjoy a cocktail or meal at the same time.
Keep in mind that Blouberg is known to be the windier side of Cape Town, so you may want to check this detail before getting involved in a mini sandstorm.
7. Kalk Bay
Another great spot to watch the sky painted in different tones of pink and orange is the charming area of Kalk Bay, on the opposite side of the Peninsula than the city.
The quaint little harbor “village” is filled with character and ample spots to watch the sunset from.
Arguably the best spot to watch the sunset in Kalk Bay is the Brass Bell. The ocean-side pub and grub venue offers live music, tasty local food and an epic view of the sky as it changes color with the setting sun.
8. Camps Bay Strip
The Camps Bay strip was built with travelers in mind. The road is lined with a variety of bars, restaurants, and cafes – all of which boast unparalleled views of the sun setting over the beach.
Some key spots to look out for are Cafe Caprice if you’re looking for a sundowner drink that turns into a party. There’s also Tiger’s Milk for a mix of casual and exclusive, and The Raj if you want to enjoy a fine meal.
Whether you prefer your sunset served with a coffee, a cocktail or a meal, the Camps Bay strip will provide.
9. Cocktail Bar
Cape Town is known for its trendy cafes, bars, and restaurants. Many of these cosmopolitan spots are perfectly situated to offer a fantastic view of the sunset – which you can enjoy with a perfectly mixed cocktail in hand.
Some top spots to keep in mind are the Grand Cafe and Bungalow. The Grand Cafe is an exclusive restaurant nearby the Waterfront, set on a private beach and known for its delicious cocktails.
The Bungalow is a stylish restaurant next to Clifton beach, with an ocean (and sunset) view terrace.
10. A Seaview Restaurant
The sunset in Cape Town provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic dinner or festive meal. There are countless dining opportunities in Cape Town, many of which offer mesmerizing views of the sunset.
One of the most popular spots to enjoy a meal with a view of the setting sun is The Lawns at the Roundhouse, just above Camps Bay.
The view of the sunset is framed by the ocean, the sky, and the 12 Apostles Mountain Range. By the time that you leave, both your belly and your heart will be full.
11. A Rooftop Bar in the City
Cape Town’s city center boasts several high-rise buildings, many of which have a bar on the rooftop. The elevated view of the sunset accompanied by a vibrant atmosphere is hard to beat.
Top rooftop bars to look out for include Sky Bar in De Waterkant, The Silo Rooftop Bar near the harbor, and The Waiting Room in the city center.
There are plenty of places to choose from depending on your budget, your vibe, and your location.
12. Sunset Cruise
I’ve provided a few suggestions on where to watch the sunset from a mountain, a restaurant, and a beach, but what about the ocean? A sunset cruise from the Waterfront Harbor is an unforgettable experience, and one of the best ways to watch the Cape Town sunset.
The cruise prices from the V&A Waterfront start at around $16 USD, and normally include a refreshing glass of bubbly to enjoy with the cruise.
As an added bonus, the Waterfront is a great place to enjoy the evening once the sun has disappeared and you return to the docks.
Best Sunset Spots in Cape Town
The low cost of living, the wide variety of fun things to do and the rich culture and heritage of the city make Cape Town a fantastic place to visit. After you’ve experienced a sunset in Cape Town, you’ll be hard-pressed to find another view that can compete.
While not many places can compare to Cape Town sunsets, there are countless natural wonders across the globe. From photographing sunsets to discovering flower fields in Europe – the world is your oyster.