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Boulders Beach

Get a privileged close-up view of an African penguin colony among the spectacular rock formations at this beach that also offers excellent swimming conditions.

At Boulders Beach, get ready to capture that perfect penguin photograph as members of the large, African penguin colony that inhabit these sands waddle their way to and from the ocean. Few places in the world offer such intimate encounters with these creatures. With safe swimming and stunning scenery on offer as well, Boulders Beach is well worth the 25-mile (40-kilometer) trip from Cape Town.

The penguin colony here began in 1983, from just two breeding pairs. Now, more than 2,000 penguins call this area home. Three boardwalks offer great views into their favorite spots on the beach. For the best views, follow the boardwalk through the dense bush and over the sand dunes towards Foxy Bay, where most of the birds congregate. While the colony is fenced off, you are more than close enough to look the birds in the eye.

Once you’ve viewed the penguins, make your way back to Boulders Beach to enjoy a day in the sun. The large, shapely formations of the granite rocks for which the beach is named provide ample shade and the sparkling waters are safe for swimming. Being on the Indian Ocean side of the cape, the water is also much warmer than many of the other Cape Town beaches. Rangers patrol the beach daily.

While the penguins are unquestionably the main attraction, the waters around this beach teem with life. Keep an eye out for whales, seals and dolphins as you enjoy your afternoon in the sun.

Boulders Beach is part of the Table Mountain National Park, and there is a small charge to enter. However, the park’s stewardship means that guided tours, as well as kayak and boating trips, are offered. Ask for details at the information center on entry if you are interested.

Boulders Beach is located 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) from Simon’s Town, which is the last stop on the Southern railway line from Cape Town. The beach is open daily year-round, with longer hours during summer.


Guide to Exploring Boulders Beach


Top Hotel Deals

See all 471 properties near Boulders Beach
Boulders Beach Lodge And Resta £60
Boulders Beach Lodge And Resta

Boulders Beach Lodge And Resta

4 Boulders Place, Boulders Beach, Cape Town, Western Cape
     
    3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in Cape Town, this beach guesthouse is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Boulders Beach, and within 9 mi (15 km) of Fish Hoek Beach and Kalk Bay Beach. Kalk Bay Harbour and St. James Beach are also within 9 mi (15 km).

    Whale View Manor Guesthouse £111
    Whale View Manor Guesthouse

    Whale View Manor Guesthouse

    402 Main Road, Murdoch Valley, Simon's Town, Cape Town, Western Cape
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Offering direct access to the beach, this Cape Town guesthouse is within 1 mi (2 km) of Fisherman's Beach and Boulders Beach. Simon's Town Country Club and Cape Floral Region Protected Areas are also within 1 mile (2 km).

      Dunearn Simon's Town
      Dunearn Simon's Town

      Dunearn Simon's Town

      Boulders Beach, Cape Town, Western Cape
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Situated in Cape Town, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Simon's Town Country Club and Boulders Beach. Fisherman's Beach and Cape Floral Region Protected Areas are also within 1 mile (2 km).

        Tintswalo at Boulders Boutique Villa
        Tintswalo at Boulders Boutique Villa

        Tintswalo at Boulders Boutique Villa

        7 Gay Road, Simonstown, Cape Town, Western Cape
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated by the ocean, this spa bed & breakfast is 0.3 mi (0.4 km) from Boulders Beach, and within 9 mi (15 km) of Fish Hoek Beach and Kalk Bay Beach. Kalk Bay Harbour and St. James Beach are also within 9 mi (15 km).

          Boulders Beach House
          Boulders Beach House

          Boulders Beach House

          185 McFarlane Ave, Simon s Town, Cape Town, Western Cape
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in Cape Town, this beach holiday home is within a 5-minute walk of Simon's Town Country Club and Boulders Beach. Fisherman's Beach and Warrior Toy Museum are also within 1 mile (2 km).

            Penguins View Guesthouse £56
            Penguins View Guesthouse

            Penguins View Guesthouse

            1 Bellevue Road, Simons Town, Cape Town, Western Cape
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated near the beach, this guesthouse is within a 5-minute walk of Simon's Town Country Club and Boulders Beach. Fisherman's Beach and Warrior Toy Museum are also within 1 mile (2 km).

              Boulders Beach Villa
              Boulders Beach Villa

              Boulders Beach Villa

              7 Links Crescent, Simon's Town, Cape Town, Western Cape
                 
                4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Offering direct access to the beach, this Cape Town villa is within 1 mi (2 km) of Simon's Town Country Club and Boulders Beach. Fisherman's Beach and Warrior Toy Museum are also within 2 miles (3 km).

                Boulders Beach Villa
                Boulders Beach Villa

                Boulders Beach Villa

                7 Links Crescent, Cape Town, Western Cape
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated near the beach, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Simon's Town Country Club and Boulders Beach. Fisherman's Beach and Warrior Toy Museum are also within 2 miles (3 km).