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Cape Town in South Africa is famous for its extensive cultural attractions and a vibrant nightlife scene. This capital city is also home to many beautiful snorkeling destinations. From large bays to rocky reefs, there are tons of places that you can go for snorkeling in Cape Town.
Though Cape Town has temperate waters, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find any snorkeling opportunities. Cape Town is practically beaming with snorkeling destinations. The snorkeling community has especially grown in the past few years, which is mainly due to the popularity of fur seal colonies. Not only the seals, the Mako sharks and the Blue sharks also attract a lot of snorkelers.
Snorkeling in Cape Town, is an ultimate wildlife experience that you should not miss. In this article we have put together a list of best snorkeling places in Cape Town, which you should definitely check out.
10 Amazing Snorkeling Places in Cape Town
Cape Town is home to many amazing snorkeling destinations. The underwater life is rich with marine creatures like fur seals, blue sharks, mako sharks. Seven gills sharks, whales and dolphins. Simply dive into the blue waters and take a nice look at the exceptional marine life in Cape Town. Take a look at our list of places for snorkeling in Cape Town, South Africa.
1. Pyramid Rock
Pyramid Rock, located in Castle Rocks, is an inshore rocky reef near Miller’s point. Pyramid Rock got its name due to the massive, pointed rock which is visible both during low and high tides. The reef is well protected against North Western winds, which is why winters may be the best time to visit this reef. Nonetheless, Pyramid Rock is a great snorkeling destination. Once you reach this snorkeling site, you will see that they offer both individual as well as group snorkeling tours. Dive into the deep blue waters of the False Bay and explore the wide array of marine life. Pyramid Rock is home to a variety of shy sharks, cow sharks, gully sharks and fishes. You can also reach this spot by swimming from Shark Alley, another place for snorkeling in Cape Town.
Location: False Bay coast, Cape Peninsula, Cape Town, South Africa.
2. Windmill Beach
Windmill Beach is one of the most popular snorkeling destination on False Bay. The place is beautiful and apart for snorkeling, a perfect spot for photographic expeditions. The Beach is very much exposed to the south easterly winds and thus it is advised to visit this place on a calm day. The granite boulders that you see around the beach, is home to a colony of South African Penguins. The underwater life includes seals, cow sharks and many varieties of cold water fishes.
Location: False Bay, South Africa
Timings: Open 24 hours
3. Sandy Cove
This snorkeling spot is located in Oudekraal Beach. There is a steep descent down the road, through which you can reach the Bay. The bay is surrounded by kelp forests and in the center is a four to five meter deep sandy patch, making it a perfect spot for snorkeling. The bay is teeming with a variety of small fishes as well as Shy sharks and Pajama sharks and Electric Rays in the marine life. The beach is protected from south easterly winds but not from north westerly swells, hence the best time to visit this destination would be summer months.
Location: North Oudekraal, South Africa
4. Long Beach
Long Beach is another snorkeling spot in Cape Town, located in Simons Town. The place is especially calm and tranquil, making it a perfect spot to relax. Visitors come to this beach to swim as well as snorkel in the sea waters. Snorkeling here takes you to the underwater life, where you can see many cow sharks as well as a variety of aquatic plants. The beach is open to people all throughout the year, so you can go snorkeling any time you want.
Location: Simons Town, Cape Town, South Africa.
Timings: 9 AM – 6 PM
5. The Old Harbor in Hermanus
The quaint town of Hermanus attracts a lot of snorkeling enthusiasts due to its great whale watching opportunities. Reaching the Bay is relatively easy and once there, you get the chance to see the Southern Right Whales. Diving into the water, you will see many other variety of small fishes and kelps. If you are lucky enough, you might also be able to hear the Whales. The harbor is open to visitors all throughout the year but the best time to visit the place is during winter and spring months.
Location: Hermanus, Cape Town, South Africa.
Timings: 8 AM – 5 PM
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6. Hout Bay
Hout Bay is the perfect place for seal snorkeling in Cape Town. Under the deep Atlantic Waters you will see many cow sharks and Cape fur seals. Unlike other snorkeling destinations, Hout Bay allows you to interact with the seals. The seals are very playful and you will enjoy a great time with them. If you are a beginner, then you can take the guided tour to enjoy a great snorkeling experience for the first time. Similar to Pyramid Rock, Hout Bay is also open to snorkeling all throughout the year.
Location: Hout Bay, Cape Town
7. Miller’s Point
Located in False Bay, Miller’s Point is a shoreline line rocky reef, a perfect place for snorkeling. A lot of people come for snorkeling and scuba diving in this beautiful location.
You will always find something new and interesting at Miller’s Point. The underwater life boasts of 7 gill cow sharks and gully sharks. The place is surrounded by kelp forests, which makes it a habitat for many variety of underwater fishes.
Location: Murdock Valley, Cape Town, South Africa
Timings: 7 AM – 6 PM
8. Shark Bay
Shark Bay is one of the best snorkeling destination for shark spotting. The sharks tend to thin out between September to December, so winter might be the best time for snorkeling in this location. While diving into the waters, expect to spot a lot of cow sharks and the best thing is these sharks are not dangerous and you can float about and spot as many sharks as you want. The place is also open to free diving, although you need to have a free diving pass to go for a dive here. Swimming through the waters, you can also reach Pyramid Rock, another snorkeling spot in Cape Town.
Location: Gansbaai, South Africa.
9. Partridge Point
Partridge Point is one of the best snorkeling spot in Cape Town. Partridge Point is located on the south of Simon’s Town and you can spot the playful Cape fur seals in this spot. The extensive reef offers great visibility, which means when you dive into the water, you will see a vast number of seals in the water. The best route to reach Partridge Point is through a boat ride. Once here, don’t forget to visit the popular Seal Rock and the Peter’s Pinnacle.
Location: Western Cape, South Africa.
Timings: 9 AM – 2 PM
10. Cape Point
Cape Point is a part of the Table Mountain National Park and consists of multiple protected bays that are ideal for snorkeling and free diving. In the right weather conditions, this location becomes the perfect spot for snorkeling in Cape Town. Here, you will find a variety of sea life including a variety of fishes and Cape Fur seals. You can spot Cape Fur Seals all-round the year in this snorkeling spot.
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Timings: 7 AM – 5 PM
Cape Town, as we can see here, is home to many underwater diving spots. There are so many snorkeling and scuba diving spots in Cape Town worth exploring. Here, you have your list, now go ahead and started exploring the underwater scenery of this lovely place. Plan a trip to South Africa, head to Cape Town and go underwater!
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