Platteklip Gorge is considered to be the most popular way to hike to the top of Table Mountain. It’s by no means an easy hike though. It has very few flat sections and requires a good fitness level. But you will be rewarded with an amazing view of Cape Town when you reach the top of Table Mountain.
Let’s discuss Platteklip Gorge in detail.
When to go to Platteklip Gorge
The best time to go to Table Mountain is during the summer months which is from October to March. Make sure you get there early in the morning as it gets fairly hot as this route gets direct sunlight for most of the day. Always check the weather report before going to make sure that conditions on the mountain are favourable.
How to get to Platteklip Gorge
Platteklip Gorge is a hiking trail up the front face of Table Mountain, so you need to turn into Tafelberg Road to access it. Drive past the lower cable station and carry on until you see the Platteklip Gorge sign on your right. There will be a parking area on your left. Park your car in this parking area if there is space available.
What to expect when hiking up Platteklip Gorge
As mentioned earlier, Platteklip Gorge is by no means an easy route to hike. It is a 2.6KM hike which would take you less than 3 hours to complete. It is a straight-up walk up the front face of Table Mountain. You will have to negotiate lots of big rocky steps, especially towards the end of the route.
Due to its popularity, it is a fairly busy route. Quite often you will pass fellow hikers who have stopped to admire the view. You will also find yourself turning around to admire the breathtaking view of Cape Town city, or to take a water break.
When you reach the top of Table Mountain you will more than likely spend some time admiring the breathtaking view. The upper cable station will be within walking distance so you can take the cable car down if you are not up to walking down Platteklip Gorge. There is also a shop where you can get food and water if needed.
What to take with you to Platteklip Gorge
First and foremost, you should always take plenty of water with you when hiking. Platteklip Gorge is no exception. It is a demanding walk to the top, and it gets fairly hot during the day, so you will need to make sure that you are properly hydrated. Also, make sure that you are wearing proper hiking shoes. The weather in Cape Town can be unpredictable and can change quickly. Take at least a warm jacket with you just in case conditions on the mountain make a turn for the worse.
Safety at Platteklip Gorge
When parking your car at the bottom of Platteklip Gorge, make sure that you lock your car and that there are no valuables inside your car that are visible from the outside. Table Mountain is fairly safe, but it is recommended that you never hike alone. If you are hiking solo, make sure you stay close to a group of people along the route. Luckily though, this route is fairly busy so there will more than likely be someone around in case you need assistance during an emergency.