The time just before the sun sets is my favourite time of the day. The rush of the day is drawing to a close and there is a peace in the air as if the city and its inhabitants are breathing a sigh of relief and beginning to rest as the sun’s tired glow is the only thing that remains. The fiery colours that light up the sky during sunset always leave me in awe of this maginicifcent earth we live in. Having grown up in Cape Town, I can safely say that sunsets are magical here. And this is where I suggest you go to chase the sun…
This is the beach where my husband proposed to me as the sun set, so you can understand why it tops my list. Diamond ring and dream man aside, I don’t recall ever seeing a better sunset. Pinks, reds, oranges and purple wisps of find clouds were streaked across the large expanse of baby blue sky and it literally took my breath away even before he popped the question. When the wind picks up in the evening, take your picnic basket into the ‘hook’ ( corner) of the beach where you’ll usually find the surfers and camp out on the rocks as the big red ball of the sun collapses into the ocean.
Hiking up or taking the cable car will get you to the table top where bunches of tourists can found picnicking amongst the rocks and fynbos. There is more than enough space up there to find your own piece of rock and capture the billowing clouds falling over the Twelve Apostle mountain range and the dark blue ocean curling around the Camps Bay land. City lights will begin to switch on and in summer the sun seems to stick around for the longest time wishing never to leave. The horizon is a definite orange and blue line and you’ll be taking photos long after the sun has set.
With Lion’s Head to the right of Table Mountain when standing in the city bowl, there is no quick option of a cable car. But once you’ve hiked up and around the mountain, pulled yourself up by the metal railings on the side and made your way up ladders, your reward will feel much greater in the end. Hikers pile themselves onto the peak in the evening waiting for the final curtain of the day. All sweaty and fulfilled, they munch on their dinner and energisers before making their way down in the moonlight.
Llandudno on the Atlantic seaboard side of Cape Town is also another goodie in the sunset picnic stakes. I have enjoyed countless picnics for romantic dinners and family gatherings whilst candles flickered in brown paper bags and surfers caught the last waves of the day. Children, dogs and giant boulders are silhouetted against the superb sun and there is a good chance that you will be sheltered from the wind on the left-hand side of the beach.