Lions Head Hike – Cape Town

The Lions Head hike has long been a favourite for Capetonians and visitors to the Mother City. A hike up Lions Head is a must in the summer months when the extended daylight hours allow you to enjoy sunsets from the top and be back down for dinner or a braai before night sets in.

Lions Head Trail

The Lions Head trail is easily navigable and takes you up and around the mountainside before a steady ascent to the top. The trail is fairly easy for novice hikers but it’s not for the fainthearted as there are some pretty wild chain ladders and pegs to climb up just before you summit. These ladders are not suitable for children and the elderly; however, there are alternate routes around the ladders.

Lions Head Hike Distance

It should take you just over an hour from the Lions Head parking on Signal Hill to the top of Lions Head if you’re fit, but budget for an hour and a half one way if you feel like taking your time.

If you’ve got time then opt for a slow walk up where you can enjoy the spectacular views of Cape Town from every angle. On clear days you’ll be able to see all the way to the Stellenbosch and Franschoek Mountains, Camps Bay looking down the twelve apostles to the southern peninsula and awesome views of the Cape Town city bowl, Robben Island and up the west coast toward Melkbos. If you’re hiking at the right time of the day the colours are nothing short of extraordinary. The mountainsides of Table Mountain and the Twelve Apostles are washed in a glorious array of colours that fade into the turquoise of the Atlantic.

The Lions Head parking is on Signal Hill Road. If you’re coming from the Cape Town city bowl then head up Kloofnek Road towards Camps Bay and the Table Mountain Cableway.  At the top of Kloofnek you’ll see signage pointing you to the left in the direction of the cable cars and signage to the right taking you to Signal Hill and Lions Head – lookout for the Lions Head parking after about 100 metres.

Lions Head Full Moon Hike

The full moon hike on Lions Head has become famous around the world and is an experience all on its own. On full moon’s you’ll get to the top and it’s not uncommon to see loads of people enjoying their wine while the sun sets in Camps Bay and the full moon rises over Cape Town – an opportunity to experience the Lions Head full moon hike is something you shouldn’t miss out on.

Its April guys and winter is fast approaching. Head up Lions Head after work or save it for those bluebird weekend days. Remember that safety is important on a Lions Head hike. Because the Lions Head trail is in the city many often forget to take safety precautions when they go. It is a mountain, it’s dangerous and it’s uphill all the way to the top. A bottle of water and some proper hiking shoes can go a long way in ensuring a safe hike to the top. Also take a torch, warm top (summer and winter), camera and some snacks.

Lions Head Trail

You know you’ve reached the top – the beacon and view from the top of Lions Head

Photos courtesy Gustible, gnomeza and Petsnake on Flickr.

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