KITESURFING HOLIDAYS - CAPE TOWN
The Cape Doctor is the name for the strong, persistent and dry south-easterly wind that blows along the South African coast in summer, and is particularly strong around the Cape Peninsula. Known as the Cape Doctor because it is believed to help rid Cape Town of its pollution and smog. Consistently the spot of choice for the world's best riders in freestyle and waves, from October to March. Why? Because the wind is unbeatable, the area boasts 30+ kite spots, offering a huge variety of riding, from flat water to five or six metre waves. Also, unlike most good kite spots, one of the world's most vibrant cities is a short drive away.
The northern part of the Cape Peninsula is where most of the kitesurfing takes place, so we'll focus on those spots here. There are some amazing places elsewhere though. Scarborough and Cape Point south of Cape Town provide serious wave riding conditions. Flat water can be found, most notably at LANGEBAAN 90 minutes up the road with warm water, too! Head southeast of Cape Town city and you'll reach MUIZENBERG where the wind comes cross-on from the right, but head east from here and the Indian Ocean is much warmer. Far too many spots to mention.
Sunset Beach is the first spot you come to as you head north from Cape Town. It has the most consistent wind in the peninsula and is the first place to get windy as the Cape Doctor kicks in. A general rule is that if one spot gets too windy for you, drive a few spots north and the wind won't be as strong. Cross-offshore winds and beach break conditions here. Shops to visit here: Watersports Warehouse (see tab above).
DOLPHIN / KITE BEACH
A little further around the bay you come to Dolphin Beach (Table View), popularly known as Kite Beach. Most kiters stay in Table View and this is the area's main beach, with special views across the bay to its namesake mountain. Southeaster cross-shore winds and you'll catch some good waves. Shops to visit here: Best kiteboarding, Liquid Force, Naish Suntrax, Ocean Spirit (see tab above).
'Big Bay' comes next with a pleasant grassy rigging area. A lot of residential development has sprung up here, but it remains a hugely popular kite spot, in spite of it being a relatively 'small' bay. This spot is also busy with windsurfers, so keep the peace. The wind is cross / cross-onshore from the left again. Shops to visit here: Cabrinha (see below).
HAAKGAT & MELKBOS
Drive north a few clicks and Haakgat is a small beach holding a big, advanced rider's wave. Melkbosstrand (Melkbos) requires a little further drive to get to up the coast, but works when other spots to the south are getting blown out. As a rule; when the sou'easter is cranking, head north in search of less wind. The beach is huge here. Cross-shore winds and beach-break conditions.
WIND, WEATHER & WATER
Air temperature averages 25°C - 30°C during the summer months. The Cape Doctor can blow 5-7 days a week, gradually picking up through the day and often still very strong in the evenings. The southeaster comes in cross- and cross-offshore from the left on the northern beaches and is generally reliable and strong during the summer, from October to March (December and January being peak wind season). Moderate in the morning, it frequently builds to 30+ knots by mid-afternoon. Get up early or drive further north for less wind. 25 - 35°C / 77 - 95° are typical day air temperatures in the summer, dipping to around 20°C / 68°F at night. Contrasting with the hot air, the Atlantic Ocean is relatively cold, averaging 14°C / 57° so you'll need a spring/winter suit.
Cape Town international airport (CPT) - 40 kilometres to kite beach in Table View. Airport transfers are typically £25 / €30 / US$45
The public transport system is unreliable so it's necessary to hire a car. Hire cars should cost £20 / €23 / US$30 per day / £250 / €280 / US$400 per month. We used ACKER RENTALS when the Kiteworld team visited, who offer classic Mercedes Benz and specialise in wind sport customer rentals.
As you'd expect from a big city, there's plenty of choice in accommodation, from guest houses, hostels and luxury self catering homes in Table View, Sunset Beach and Big Bay, to budget and extravagant hotels in the city. Almost anything is available.
FOOD AND DRINK
Cape Town comes near the top of many a travel writer's list of recommended destinations and is renowned for great food and wind with excellent restaurants found in and out of the city. Table View has the relaxed beach-life vibe, or head to the city for more upmarket and/or authentic cultural experiences. Dine like royalty, for the price of a good steak at home. Well developed, there are shopping centres and supermarkets within walking distance of your accommodation in Table View.
No problem. You can easily fill every day around the beautiful Cape with endless attractions, including: Table Mountain, Lion's Head, Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point as well as sizzling night life, wine farms, wildlife, safari (we went to AQUILA GAME RESERVE, a couple of hours from town), world-class surf, a cable park and much more.
Cape Town has plenty of shops click here or the tab above