More than 28 million visitors flock every year to Cape Town in South Africa to witness the marvelousness of this beautiful city that boasts countless attractions and unique activities to undertake. People enjoy heading to the iconic landmark Table Mountain, Constantia Valley, Camps Bay, and Boulders Beach when visiting Cape Town.
Moreover, Cape Town is known for its culinary arts, rich culture, and adventurous activities. It is also home to natural marvels such as the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens, the Cape of Good Hope, and Cape Point. Additionally, there are several museums that people enjoy exploring in Cape Town. However, one of the best things to do in the city includes hiking its fabulous trails. There’s specifically a picturesque hike that people travel to Cape Town to complete: the Lion’s Head Hike.
Things To Know About The Lion’s Head Hike In Cape Town
The Lion’s Head Hike in Cape Town suits several skill levels since it’s moderate in difficulty. What makes the hike so attractive is that it’s located between Table Mountain and Signal Hill and boasts sweeping panoramic views. The total distance of the walk is 5 kilometers, and it has an elevation of 669 meters. Moreover, the Lion’s Head Hike can be completed in around 3 hours in total.
- Note: People should not use the coordinates generated in Google Maps when searching for Lion’s head hike trailhead because the application will take them to the wrong starting point. Instead, they should adopt the following coordinates (-33.936899, 18.394841).
- How to get there: Driving to Lion’s Head Mountain in one’s own car is the best way to get to the trail. People take the Signal Hill Road towards the trailhead where there is parking. Another option is to take an Uber. Moreover, it’s also straightforward to get an Uber for the return trip.
- Cost: The entrance to Lion’s Head Hike is free of charge.
- Caution: Although hiking Lion’s Head in Cape Town is safe, people must stay aware as accidents and crimes can happen. This is why they are advised not to walk alone and save the emergency number 086 1106 417 of the Table Mountain National Park on their phones.
How To Hike The Lion’s Head Trail Mountain In Cape Town
People can reach the top of Lion’s Head through two routes. The first is the Chains Route, while the second is the Spiral Route. In all cases, when starting the hike, people will go through a moderately inclined wide gravel path. After around an hour, the trail splits into the different routes of Chains and Spiral. Here, people should make their decision which way to take because the two differ vastly in difficulty.
Regardless of the chosen path, there is a point where people will reach a place with moderate rock scrambling to get to the summit. At the summit, people will have the chance to relax and behold the spectacular and stunning panoramic views. When choosing between the Chains Route or the Spiral Route, people must know that the latter is more accessible to hike than the Chains route. However, the Spiral Route is slightly longer than its counterpart. Beginners and those who fear heights must opt for the Spiral Route.
On the contrary, the Chains Route takes people directly up the mountain and is faster to complete. However, it is difficult because people will need to use chains and metal ladders along the way. Some signs at Lion’s Head don’t use the names of the paths, making it confusing for hikers.
When To Visit And What To Bring When Visiting Lion’s Head In Cape Town
The best times to hike the Lion’s Head are during the sunrise and the sunset. This is because, during the day, temperatures rise, and the weather becomes too hot for hiking. It is better to start hiking around 90 minutes before the sun comes up. That way, people can reach the Lion’s Head summit and enjoy watching the unique beauty of the sunrise from the top. Those who are afraid to start hiking during the night can begin their trip right after sunrise. However, people must make sure to check the weather before starting their hike. That’s because the wind can make the walk very dangerous.
People hiking the Lion’s Head Mountain should bring with them several things. Those include athletic shoes for safety, water to protect against the heat, and sunscreen. Those who are doing during sunrise or sunset should take a jacket to protect themselves against the wind and sudden weather changes. A backpack is essential when taking the Chains Route. Also, for this route, a headlamp is necessary when hiking during the dark. And most importantly, people must bring their cameras with them to document the most impressive and magical views on the Lion’s Head trail and on the summit.