• Bitten by the whale watching bug Bitten by the whale watching bug We don’t realise how lucky we are in South Africa, and in particular the Western Cape, to have the mightiest of the marine mammals visit our coastline between every year ...
  • The Whale Trail The Whale Trail The Whale Trail is not a new trail, having been around since about 2002, but it has become extremely popular. It is truly a unique experience, perhaps comparable with ...
  • 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa Combine your trip to South Africa with a relaxing, revitalising visit to a health spa and experience Africa at it's finest. Our favourite 10 Pamper-Perfect Spas in South Africa are ...
  • Locals share their favourite getaways Locals share their favourite getaways We ask 30 local South Africans to share their favourite holiday destinations and getaways with us. From the more popular destinations like Knysna and the Kruger Park to ...
  • The Oude Skip hike The Oude Skip hike The Oude Skip walk shares portions of its hike with the larger Karbonkelberg Traverse, which is roughly seven hours of hard walk from Hout Bay harbour to Llandudno ...
  • 10 Amazing Game Lodges 10 Amazing Game Lodges South Africa is world renowned for her game reserves and wildlife. The lodges which allow us to experience these in luxury are no less awe inspiring. Our favourites are ...
  • 101 Things to Do with Kids in Cape Town 101 Things to Do with Kids in Cape Town As much as your kids will tell you they can’t wait for the school holidays, the words "I’m bored" inevitably cross their lips. Our "101 things to do with kids in Cape Town" will ...
  • "World's most beautiful Cities" "World's most beautiful Cities" Open space makes Cape Town special. Renowned English sea navigator Sir Francis Drake once referred to Cape Town as the fairest cape in the world. The city houses the ...

Find Accommodation in South Africa
Subscribe to our Feed
Posted on: Monday, 28 July 2008

Hout Bay – a Delightful Hideaway

Send to Kindle
Hout Bay

Hout Bay

Hout Bay gained its name from early Dutch settlers in the Cape. It literally means Wood Bay, for the timber they gathered there to construct the early buildings in the Cape. After a brief period where the area was used for Manganese mining, the still-existent fishing industry was founded.

One of the main attractions in Hout Bay to this day, aside from the white sandy beaches and mountains that encircled the protected bay, is the harbour. Home to several art and curio stores, restaurants and maritime antiquity dealers, the harbour is a must visit. Take a stroll along the piers, buy freshly caught fish straight from the trawlers when they return from the sea, or enjoy a delicious seafood lunch or dinner in one of the eateries.

Another activity visitors to the harbour may choose to take advantage of is one of the boat trips to Seal Island, just off the coast outside the bay. Often featured on wildlife documentaries, this large seal colony is home not only to hundreds of Cape Fur Seals, but also to that fearsome predator of the deep, the Great White Shark, who prowl the waters around the tiny island waiting for their chance.

Hout Bay

Hout Bay

The boats that take you out on a trip to the island also tour the bay, and often guides point out attractions such as the old fort en route to the island. Another feature of many of these boats is a glass bottom, where you can have a unique perspective of the sea around the Bay, and who knows, maybe spot a seal, or one of those sharks. For beach lovers, besides the main beaches of Hout Bay, there are the options of the nearby, secluded Llandudno, or for the braver, visit South Africa’s only nudist beach – Sandy Bay.

The Sunday Craft Market, featuring local arts and crafts, as well as activities such as pony rides for the kids, is another option for visitors, as is a trip to Africa’s largest bird park, the World of Birds, which is home to more than 400 species of birds and other animals, including monkeys, wallabies and reptiles.

For those who would like to discover more about the history of the area, there is a museum in Andrews Road, which houses a collection of local artifacts, and provides an in depth exploration of the local history, dating back to the Strandlopers, who populated the area thousands of years before its “discovery” by the Dutch.

Hout Bay

Hout Bay

Another great way to explore the area is to take advantage of one of the many hiking trails that meander through the mountains around the town. All of these trails offer the opportunity to experience the Cape’s unique floral kingdom, Fynbos, up close and personal, combined with magnificent views of the town, surrounding mountains and sea.

When leaving Hout Bay, it is worthwhile to take the Chapman’s Peak route, which snakes precariously around the mountain. Views from this road are amazing, and it is possible to stop alongside the road in designated areas and enjoy a picnic.

If Hout Bay is your choice of destination when travelling to Cape Town, find a place to stay by visiting the Hout Bay Accommodation options available. You will find that accommodation ranges from luxurious guest houses to more modest Bed & Breakfasts and self catering options.

Useful Links:
For more destination info see:
Hout Bay Attractions
Cape Town Beaches
Cape Town Accommodation
South Africa Accommodation


Hout Bay views


The SA-Venues.com Team


Photographs, posts and articles filed under "The SA-Venues.com Team" are either very old articles (this blog has been going since 2005!), are a combined effort or have been submitted to us by a third party, the name of which is/should be displayed in or below the actual article. Special offers and general event posts are also found here as they are generally a team effort.

Related Posts:

What Others are Saying

2 comments about Hout Bay – a Delightful Hideaway
  1. March 9th, 2010 at 09:03
    D BOTHA says:



  2. July 18th, 2010 at 20:51
    Günther faltinger says:

    perhaps you can help me to contact old friends who used to live in Hout Bay.They had a business near the hout bay harbour called Beach supply store the name of the family was Elly and Hugo Glück,they had two children Erika and Dieter who must still be somewhere in Cape Town.Perhaps I shall hear from you sometime in the futur.Thankyou for help,greeting from Germany