Full moon hike up Lions Head

Hiking up Lions Head at full moon is a great Capetonian tradition. The hike itself takes about an hour to an hour and a half up, and then about an hour down. So no need to leave work early. The mountain tends to be quite busy on any evening and especially full moon, so don’t expect a romantic evening of  hiking alone.

To get there drive to the top of Kloof Nek and take the first road to the right. Follow this road for about a km, until you see all the cars parked on the right hand side of the road. Park here and after enjoying the already amazing view of the city, head up the jeep track behind you.

The jeep track winds around Lions Head so after 5 minutes walking you come to some outstanding views over Camps Bay and the 12 apostles. Follow the road around until you overlook Bantry Bay. Here the wide road becomes a smaller path which continues to wind around the mountain until you are above your car and overlooking the city again. Here the path becomes quite narrow and you need to negotiate a ladder and a couple of precipitous ledges. (only those with a real fear of heights need to worry. The path is quite wide and clear)

The chains

You then come to a choice. Up the ladders or around the back of the mountain to a short scramble up above Campe Bay. I recommend the chains up and the longer way down. But of course the choice is up to you. The 2 routes meet at 3 pine trees marking a scramble up to the final spine of the mountain.

The last 20 minutes is quite steep and has one ladder. There is a steep drop on the left, but again, only those with a real fear of heights need to be worried.

The ladder to the top of Lions Head

Once at the top there is a large flat area with fantastic 360 degree views. Having left at around 5.00pm, you should be at the top  by 6.30pm.

The 12 Apostles and Camps Bay from Lions Head hike


Table Mountain from Lions Head


 This gives you time to watch the sun sink over the sea at Camps Bay.

The sun sinking into the Atlantic

Then behind you the moon rising over the Stellenbosch mountains and city. Fantastic.

The moon rising to the East of Cape Town

Be carefull going down. Although the full moon should provide good light it is important to take a torch as there are some trecherous places on the way down so you need to be sure of your footing.