52 favourite places in South Africa – Week 2 Table mountain

As a South African tourist guide I have the privilege to visit some of the most beautiful places in South Africa regularly. I have chosen my 52 favourites, and will share these in this blog.

Table mountain viewed from Signal Hill

Visitor’s often ask me how often I have been to the top of Table mountain – in my 10 years of guiding I have honestly lost count – lucky me!! I have walked to the top of Table mountain  a couple of times using various routes, and have used the Cable Car on all other occasions (that takes only 6 minutes)

Table mountain was named Hoeriekwaggo, by the  people who lived there long before the ships came from the East and the West.  Hoeriekwaggo means the mountain in the sea. The Portuguese seafarers, who sailed around the Cape in the 15th century,  were probably the first people who made the association with a table Taboa do Cabo – which the indigenous people did not, since they had no tables! The Dutch adopted the name – Tafelberg and it stuck.

Table moutain new 7 wonders of the world

Some interesting facts about Table mountain:

It is a UNESCO world heritage site and one of the new 7 wonders of nature.

It is 1088m high at Maclears beacon, which is the highest point

There are about 800 hiking trails on the mountain, and these are frequented by many hikers regularly.

My most awesome experience has been hiking the Hoeriekwaggo trail – a 5 day guided experience which takes you along the Table mountain range from the city to Cape Point. It is really worth it!!

Rainbow & sunset 11 July 2008 007

The  57 square km of Table mountain is home to an astonishing number of plant species: 1470 (the whole of Britain has 1492 different plant species)

As a South African you get a free ride with the Cable Car on your birthday – so enjoy it!!!

Table mountain view from Blouberg Strand

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