Hike up Table Mountain from

Kirstenbosch Gardens

Enjoy a guided hike on Table Mountain with Ridgway Ramblers

If you are in Kirstenbosch and look towards Table Mountain you will notice the square prominant block of rock almost directly above you. This is Castle rock. Nursery ravine is the path that takes you up the left side of Castle Rock.

Castle Rock above Kirstenbosch Gardens


The quickest way to the gorge is to park at top (Rycroft Gate) and enter the botanical gardens here. Then head straight up the path towards the mountain basically following your nose straight up. There are quite a number of paths leading down into the main part of the garden but as long as you keep going towards the mountain you will eventually hit the contour path. Once you get to the contour path turn right towards Newlands. You now get a 15 minute flat section along the contour path before getting into the gorge itself. Take a moment to enjoy the views over the gardens, Bishops Court and False Bay. The turn for Nursery Ravine is well signed. You can’t miss it.

The Nursery Ravine route is well sign posted


Now you begin a steady hours slog up the mountain. The first half of the path zig zags through beautiful Afromotane forest in a steady climb. There is a small river that runs on the left of the path most of the way up which through the lower half of the gorge has water throughout the year.

The path climbs steeply through the forest


After about half an hours steep climb you pass the last trees and can see the path zig zagging on up. This a good place for a break and to enjoy the view.

Enjoying a break at half way rock

The path continues to zig zag steeply up the hill through pristine fynbos. In February and March the King Proteas are flowering and quite magnificent.

The path continues through pristine fynbos


The last 1/4 of the path is quite broken up and rocky. If you choose this route down it is this first section which is the most difficult. Going up is not difficult but is a bit slower going than further down the path. The last few metres are up a ladder. Not as steep as the ladders in Skeleton Gorge and with a good handrail.

The ladder at the top of Nursery Ravine

From the top of Nursery Ravine you can turn right to go towards Skeleton Gorge and Smuts track. Or left towards Constantia Nek.