Cape Town is hailed the tourism capital of South Africa. It is famous for its incredible beauty with its towering mountains, historic vineyards, white beaches, and turquoise ocean. The waters of Cape Town have plenty of adventurous activities to offer. We made a list of the epic ocean experiences you should not miss when you come to visit our beautiful city.
Great White Shark Cage Diving
Get the chance to experience one of the ocean’s most majestic and feared predators up close! Great White Shark cage diving is one of the epic ocean experiences you will get to enjoy in Cape Town. This popular ocean activity is an adventure you should experience at least once in your lifetime.
Cape Town offers some of the best sites in the world, having a large number of the Great White sharks in their natural habitat. Gansbaai has been called the capital for Great White Sharks in the world. The Dyer Island near Gansbaai, has the densest populations of great white sharks. It is arguably one of the best places to go shark cage diving in the world. False Bay is also a great place for viewing great white sharks, especially around Seal Island just off the coast of Simon’s Town. Shark Alley is also a popular spot for shark cage diving and breaching. This adventure activity can be experienced all year round, but the best time for shark cage diving is during the months of May to October.
Book your shark cage diving tour now.
Seal Snorkeling is one of the epic ocean experiences Cape Town has to offer. It is a great and easy way to observe one of the ocean’s friendliest creatures without all the extensive training and complicated equipment required for scuba diving.
Snorkel with hundreds of playful Cape Fur seals at Hout Bay’s Duiker Island. The Duiker Island is home to about 5 000 seals and lies within the Karbonkelberg marine protected area, part of Table Mountain National Park. Seal snorkeling is a wildlife adventure that brings you real close to these playful and curious animals in their natural habitat. The Cape Fur seals of Duiker island are not fed nor trained. They behave naturally and interact with snorkelers on their own terms. It is definitely a once in a lifetime adventure to snorkel with seals in Cape Town. Don’t dare miss it!
Book your seal snorkeling experience now
Kayaking has become one of the top ocean adventure activities in Cape Town. It allows you to obtain a different perspective of the land and a deeper understanding and appreciation of the ocean. This epic ocean experience offers a spectacularly different view of Cape Town’s beautiful coastline and magnificent mountains. Kayaking in Cape Town guarantees a fantastic opportunity to explore the beautiful coastline of the city and experience the rich marine life from a small, yet safe and stable craft. Not only can you encounter amazing marine life, but sea kayaking is also a great outdoor activity for the whole family.
There are numerous places in Cape Town where you can sea kayak and get the chance to experience the thrill of an encounter with seals, dolphins, whales, and other sea creatures. Take the opportunity to see the penguins of Boulders Beach from a different vantage point. You can also explore the rock gardens of Paternoster, the long open beaches near the Berg River mouth, Langebaan and Saldanha Bay. A number of guided tours are offered by kayaking tour operators in Cape Town.
View our list of the Top 5 kayak tour operators in Cape Town
Stand-Up-Paddleboard (SUP) Adventure
Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUPing) is one of the fastest growing water sports in the world and it is quickly growing in popularity with Cape Town’s adventure seekers. It is an offshoot of surfing. Instead of lying down in wait of a wave, you stand up on the board and use a paddle to propel yourself through the water. The coastline stretching from the West Coast right around False Bay offers a multitude of SUP spots to pick from. Popular SUP spots you should definitely check out include Big Bay, Blouberg, Table View, Milnerton, Melkbos, Three Anchor Bay, Camps Bay, Clifton 4th, Hout Bay, Fish Hoek, and Muizenberg. Big Bay has already played host to a number of world-class SUP events.
Gravity Adventures is the perfect tour operator to take you on a SUPing adventure, or kayaking.
Another epic ocean experience available in Cape Town is scuba diving. Best known for its shipwreck and kelp forest dives, as well as dives with cow sharks and seals — Cape Town has many diverse and beautiful scuba diving sites. There are three major scuba diving highlights in Cape Town for divers with any level of experience. Encounter prehistoric looking seven-gill cow sharks in the kelp forests of False Bay, just off Miller’s Point. Scuba dive with the seals at Partridge Point and Seal Island in False Bay, Strawberry Rock on the Atlantic side and the kelp forests at Duiker Island in Hout Bay.
You can also dive around the shipwrecks that can be accessed by boat and from the shore. Famous shipwrecks include SS Maori, SAS Pietermaritzburg, SS Clan Stuart, Antipolis, Astor, Smitswinkel Bay Wrecks, Katzu Maru, and many more. Guided scuba diving in Cape Town is offered all year round by professional and reputable dive centres. They also offer a range of courses from beginner to advanced.
Book your scuba diving experience now.
Freediving entails learning how to hold your breath, equalising properly and diving underwater. This epic activity enables you to experience the ocean and its life in a more natural and personal way. In freediving, it’s just you and the ocean. There is no need for complicated gear.
Cape Town is one of the top recreational freediving locations in the world. The city has a number of spots ideal to explore the incredible world below the waves without the need for artificial breathing devices. There is an incredible mix of freediving opportunities such as seal and shark adventure freediving. No freediving experience? No problem. You can easily take up freediving courses taught by highly skilled and experienced instructors. Start freediving today!
Click here to learn how to free dive.
Surfing and Kitesurfing
Cape Town is an idyllic surfing and kitesurfing destination for beginners and pros alike. We all know how surfing works. Kitesurfing, on the other hand, utilises the power of the wind using a kite to propel you across the water. It is fun and challenging with many people getting hooked on to this new sport. Cape Town is home to many beaches that do not only boast fantastic conditions but breathtaking natural beauty too. A popular kitesurfing destination in Cape Town is Blouberg. Blouberg’s Big Bay is a global kitesurfing hotspot. It has the perfect combination of waves, wind and and the epic backdrop of Table Mountain. Multi-day courses are offered in Cape Town that will teach you how to master the ways of the waves and wind.
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