Photo Caption: Do you know where this beautiful lighthouse is in Cape Town.
There are a lot of life lessons to learn from lighthouses. We love this quote by Anne Lamott which highlights one of them…”Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking for boats to save; they just stand there shining.”
Follow @secretcapetown for more and tag us or use #secretcapetown to be featured.
Photo by @majesticash06
Need To Know Information
- Where: Slangkop Lighthouse, Lighthouse Road, Kommetjie, Cape Town
- Operating hours: The Slangkop Lighthouse is open to the public from Monday – Friday 10am – 3pm (hours may differ) | During Cape Town’s summer months (October – April) the Lighthouse is open on weekends as well
- Contact details: 021 783-1717
- Distance from Cape Town: +/- 43km | +/- 45 – 60 minutes depending on your route
About Slangkop Lighthouse
The Slangkop Lighthouse is a white circular lighthouse located in the town of Kommetjie. It is the tallest cast iron tower in South Africa, standing 41 meters high with a circumference of 33 meters. The lighthouse consists of 272 cast iron segments each weighing 500 kg, made in England and bolted together on site.
The lighthouse forms part of the Marine Protected Area of the Table Mountain National Park and is also one of South Africa’s oldest lighthouses. Sir Francis Hely-Hutchinson, the Governor of The Cape of Good Hope, had it constructed as a safeguard against shipwrecks along the rocky shoreline of the Southern Coast. The First World War halted the construction process, and it was only completed in 1919, instead of 1914. Since then, its revolving electric light, which has an approximate candle power of 5 000 000 C.D, flashes four times per 30 seconds. The light reaches 33 nautical miles out to sea. The Slangkop Lighthouse used to be a three-man station, but following its automation in 1979, it has been manned by a Senior Light keeper only. The lighthouse draws its power from the Cape Municipality and has a standby diesel generator that takes over in the event of a break in the mains supply.
Slangkop Lighthouse Tours
The lighthouse is open to the public. Guided tours are offered at the lighthouse on weekdays from 10 am to 3 pm. During the tour, you can climb the spiral staircase to the top of the lighthouse and witness the magnificent views it offers. It is 144 steps to reach the top but the view is absolutely worth the climb. You will also learn more about the history with interesting stories about the lighthouse from the Senior Lighthouse Keeper.
This beautiful lighthouse is definitely worth the visit. Go to capepointroute.co.za to book your tour.
**Interesting fact: Although fully automated, the Slangkop Lighthouse is one of the few lighthouses in the world that is still manned by a lighthouse keeper. If you’ve ever wanted to shake hands with a real live Lighthouse Keeper? Now is your chance!
Getting to Slangkop Lighthouse
The winding road that slithers along the Atlantic coastline towards Kommetjie (often described as a snake-like drive) will lead you to Slangkop Lighthouse. After parking in the dirt parking lot, you can simply walk over to the lighthouse. While you need to book a guided tour to gain access into the lighthouse, you are welcome to walk around the lighthouse and take as many photos of this stunning Cape Town attraction while you’re there.
Slangkop Lighthouse Trail
After admiring the Slangkop Lighthouse, we highly recommend heading down to the boardwalk trail/pathway nearby. This trail heads all the way back around to Kommetjie along the seafront, boasting spectacular ocean views and stunning scenic surroundings.
Keep in mind that it can get incredibly windy by the lighthouse (especially during Cape Town’s winter months) and the rocks can be particularly slippery.
Besides visiting the renowned Slangkop Lighthouse and enjoying a walk along the seafront boardwalk, visiting the picturesque seaside village of Kommetjie should undoubtedly be on everyone’s Cape Town bucket-list. Nestled between the Slangkop Mountain and the Atlantic Ocean, Kommetjie is one of the most unspoilt settings in Cape Town. It is also home to several of the Western Cape’s most magnificent beaches, which has remained largely untouched by the masses – With Long Beach being a firm fan-favourite.
Long Beach boasts over 5km of white sand and is regarded as one of the top beaches among local and international surfers. It also has a reputation for crayfishing, especially between November and April. Another one of Kommetjie’s must-see attractions is the ‘kom’ or basin, after which Kommetjie is named. This natural basin forms a little harbour perfect for small boats, and is one of the best sites on land from which to view seabirds- Kommetjie features no less than three times in the Cape Bird Route. Kommetjie is also a great place to go scuba diving.
Other nearby points of interest/attractions include:
- Imhoff Farm (3.23km)
- Higgeldy Piggeldy Farmyard (3.23km)
- Noordhoek Beach (5.41km)
- Noordhoek Farm Village (5.78km)
- Solole Game Reserve (6.07km)
- The Red Herring Trading Post (6.66km)
- Chapman’s Peak Drive (7.21km)
- Soetwater (7.4km): Soetwater is a coastal conservancy which lies south of Kommetjie below the coastal road to Misty Cliffs.
- Cape Point Vineyards (10.4km)
- Misty Cliffs (7.2km)
- Scarborough (9.5km)
- Crayfish factory beach (6km)
- Cape Point (33.7km)