Cape Town has an outstanding number of spots with high quality waves - in fact it has some world class spots. No matter what the wind and swell are doing, you are almost always guaranteed to find something, as long as you are prepared to drive. Of course, some of the spots are for the hardcore only. This guide is aimed mainly at surf kayakers and mainly beach breaks, although I have included a few more serious spots as well.

Disclaimer & Notes About this Article:

As with any guide, this article is based on my personal experiences and thoughts. Although the main target audience would naturally be surf kayakers, other wave riders might be able to benefit a little from this too. It must also be noted that Cape Town has MANY other spots, several others which would be too hardcore for 99% of surf kayakers and these I have not shown. I have, however, shown some of the advanced spots to keep people fired up and motivated to push themselves. For a full guide, buy a book, and even then they won’t show you the secret spots. For ease of placing photos, I will run the spots alphabetically. Some spots may be up to 100km away from Cape Town, but I’ve kept most of the spots close by. I’ve also given the GPS coordinates which I’ve read off of Google Earth. Most of them are of the wave itself, others may point to the parking lot, but in the end, you’ll find what you’re looking for. It would be too laborious for me to give decent directions for each and every spot so if you don’t have a GPS, then look these up on the internet and then you can easily correspond the positions to your map. With all of that in mind, enjoy!

Kommetjie – Outer Kom - 34° 8'43.08"S  18°19'0.05"E

This is a point break that runs left, on rocks and kelp. It can get really, really big and powerful and is for experts only. Swimming is not an option. It can handle a light SE wind and even a mild NW but needs a NE wind to really cook. The rides will be long and well rewarded, mistakes will be properly punished though.

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Todd Post at the Inner Kom on a very big day. Kommetjie_05 copy

The Inner Kom on a small day. Kommetjie_06 copy Kommetjie_07 copy

Outer Kom not really even working.  Kommetjie_08 copy

Outer Kom in a light NW wind on a sweet day. Kommetjie_G_Earth

Kommetjie – Inner Kom - 34° 8'38.49"S  18°19'7.85"E

Just inside of the Outer Kom is another little point break that also runs left. You have to sit in the kelp and take off from there. Popular with bodyboarders, mainly beginners. The kelp would be extremely off putting for kayakers. Both the Inner and Outer Kom need to be reached by launching from the rocks, but you could launch from inside the bay too. Not ideal for paddling. Take it on high tide only as the water is mostly higher than the kelp. Well, at least it helps mentally not to see it all the time.

Kommetjie_Inner_and_Outer_G_EarthA zoomed in version.

Llandudno - 34° 0'31.08"S  18°20'31.50"E

A west facing beach that gets really good. Very powerful and hollow, breaking on sand. Options left, centre, and the right, which is the best they say. The parking situation gets extreme in summer, go very early if you don’t want to struggle. The locals can potentially be a problem too. I’ve not seen this spot work much in winter and it seems to be affected by the NW wind. Freezing cold water in summer, but beautiful colours. When you’re warming up afterwards you can feast your eyes on the ladies stalking around the beach. If Llandudno is too much, or too busy, then take the long walk to the nudist beach, Sandy Bay. A bit smaller but also great. Best in weekdays when you don’t have to look at ugly, old skeletons strutting their stuff. I don’t believe you’ll see hot, naked woman here. So make your priorities are right and you’re going to kayak only.

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Photo by Peter Lambert. Llandudno Sacha Specker  copy

Sacha Specker at Llandudno. Photo by Peter Lambert.  Llandudno_01 copy Llandudno_02 copy

Big, windy and ugly.  Llandudno_03 copy

On a small day on a SE wind. Llandudno_G_Earth

Melkbosstrand - 33°43'34.10"S  18°26'30.15"E

Another one of my preferred haunts (also mainly because Karmers, Derde Steen and Melkbos are closest to me). The spot referred to is the one opposite the purple house (the only building) on the beach side of the road. I think this spot is also known as Beach Road, as well as Tube Wave. It is protected by an outer reef but can still get quite big. Depending on swell, there are lefts and rights to be enjoyed. The first wave in the front is usually very hollow and powerful, even though it’s not that big – kayakers watch out. Sometimes one will throw a blunt and on landing you hit the sand at the bottom! In front of the first kelp is some action but usually just to the right and further back is some more action, which is better for kayaking. When the swell gets biggish there is a strong rip current head out left to right, be careful. More than one surfer has been rescued. If you swim in your kayak, you might have to say good bye to it and swim. The launch is gently shelving though and you can park within metres from the sand. There are also showers and a shop on weekends – this is the purple house. Can get very busy with bodyboarders but you might find yourself to be the oldest around. Very friendly and chilled, I’ve never had an issue with anyone here. If the waves are too small here, head north to opposite of Ou Skip Caravan Park, and north of here too. Less in quality, but greater in size. Melkbos holds a SE quite nicely, although when it gets very strong you will struggle to catch waves as it blows you back up the face, even when it’s bigger than 2m on the face. Overall, an excellent spot for all wave riders.

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Big day on Christmas Day, 2008. Melkbos_04 copy Melkbos_05 copy Melkbos_06 copy Melkbos_07 copy Melkbos_08 copy Melkbos_09 copy

Adrian Tregoning on a fun day. Last four photos by Trevor Tregoning. Watch the front wave on a low tide – hollow, powerful and shallow.  Melkbos_10 copy Melkbos_11 copy Melkbos_12 copy Melkbos_13 copy Melkbos_14 copy

Adrian Tregoning on a solid day in a very strong SE wind. Last three photos by Todd Post. Melkbos_G_Earth

Muizenberg - 34° 6'28.94"S  18°28'16.99"E

Extremely popular with longboarders. They will be in the waters en masse, as well as sharks. Several attacks have occurred here, but there are shark spotters. The wave is generally weak and lacks power but you can get very long rides, even good rides! I would imagine this wave to be great for kayaking in very big swell. It doesn’t get big very often though as the swell loses energy as it has to wrap around Cape Point and force its way into False Bay. It’s offshore in a NW wind, so that’s great when they blow in winter so often. The beach is very gently shelving and ideal for beginner kayakers. There are many waves to get through and if it’s big you will be tired once you reach the backline, no doubt. There are showers, bathrooms and shops to feed yourself. Parking on weekends during summer is beyond extreme, go early. If you are bored, amuse yourself with the car guards or bergies, always fascinating. Safety can be an issue. Be friendly to the car guards, even then you might have your window smashed anyway as has happened to a friend of mine.

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Rowan Walpole enjoying a light NW wind on a winters evening. Muizenberg_04 copy Muizenberg_05 copy

Luke Longridge getting rid of some water. Note the crowds. Go early!  Muizenberg_G_Earth

Noordhoek - 34° 5'46.37"S  18°21'7.27"E

This place can really cook. Breaks on sand but can deliver severe punishment to inexperienced kayakers. Beware of the locals though, they will not be happy to see a kayaker there and one of my mates has already been beaten up with a bat. Best to go bodyboarding here and blend in. Enjoy it!


Photo by Peter Lambert. Noordhoek_G_Earth

Platboom - 34°20'13.31"S  18°26'54.65"E

A great spot for kayaking in the Cape Point Nature Reserve. Works on a bit of NW wind but not on SE. On a SE wind during summer you may find windsurfers here, otherwise it’s quite quiet. The more hardcore spots are all in the kelp, breaking on rocks to the right of the beach and here you will often find surfers and bodyboarders. Stay away unless you are expert. The beach is relatively friendly. It’s a great spot when there is no wind and I rate it highly. The waves can get quite hollow but this depends on wind and tide, wind can change this spot very quickly. When the swell is big, stay away as there is a very strong rip current working left to right and forty five degrees to the beach. It is rather abundant in wildlife and I’ve been buzzed by a small shark once, seen a huge ray as well as an octopus relaxing at the backline, very strange. The parking is ample and there are no crowds, the only downside is the long distance you have to drive (as with many good spots) and the baboon problem in the parking lot. They are very brave and if you leave your car door open and walk away they will climb in (I see it every time and it’s happened to us once!) and help themselves to whatever they feel is good for them – be ultra careful. I’ve seen them steal a six pack of beer out of a guys car while 5 of them were sitting inside. I believe they may have to shoot a few soon. And why? Because people are so stupid to feed them, mainly tourists. There was an argument on a windsurfing forum (I windsurf too in case you are wondering about the windsurfing info on some of the spots) that the tourists were feeding these baboons last year. Not a good idea, you sign their death warrant, poor things.

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Big, windy and ugly – stay away. Platboom_02

Inviting. I love this wave. Platboom_03 copy Platboom_04 copy Platboom_05 copy

Rowan Walpole enjoying himself on a  quiet stretch of paradise. Platboom_G_Earth

Pringle Bay - 34°20'41.30"S  18°49'51.94"E

Works best in a light SE. If it’s NW, just head to Betty’s Bay down the road. So you’re pretty much always sorted. Breaks similar to Betty’s, not quite as good. Worth a peek if you’re in the area.


Scarborough - 34°11'59.46"S  18°22'13.09"E

The beach can work really beautifully with hollow waves that run smartly. There is a bit of a rip current so be aware of that. This spot doesn’t work that often and usually we’ll drive past Witsand, look at Scarborough and then drive back to Witsand or head elsewhere. When it works though, it’s great. The wave is surprisingly powerful and luckily it can handle some SE wind too. There is also a point break there but this almost never works, conditions need to be right. When the swell is massive, this place gets pretty serious as you can see in the photos.

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Silverstroomstrand - 33°35'23.53"S  18°21'36.06"E

Beach break that will always be bigger than the Cape Town spots when they’re really small. Needs very little wind or best yet, a light NE wind which is hard to get. Can be hollow and powerful, depending on the sand. A 3km walk south will take you to the infamous spot known as Gas Chambers. Experienced kayakers only, even though it breaks on sand.


Sunset Beach - 33°51'30.47"S  18°29'21.66"E

These days the beach is getting quite steep, with a mean shore break. There also seem to be more and more pebbles as time goes on and the sand is getting less. Very popular with windsurfers and you will not find parking on a windy summers day. The SE wind is strongest at Sunset Beach and Milnerton and gets weaker as it moves northwards. Once it gets too windy here the guys move to Big Bay, and then if it’s nuclear, the Melkbosstrand, just past Ou Skip Caravan Park. Sunset Beach though isn’t a great place to kayak. It breaks on sand and the waves don’t have great form, unless it’s blowing NE, which is rare. You’ll be lucky to get a good day here but it might still be worth it if the wind is light, or maybe early summer mornings before the SE gets strong. SW and NW winds are horrible here, don’t bother.

Sunset Reef – You’ll see if when you climb onto a boat and head south from Hout Bay…

This wave sits offshore, between Hout Bay and Kommetjie – far away from Sunset Beach described above. It breaks on a reef, is accessible only by boat and is bloody big. It has a short ride but it’s mostly about dropping in. Definitely for expert watermen only, with boat backup. Has not been kayaked but hopefully will one day. Surfers and some hardcore bodyboarders charge this wave when it works.

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Windy, SE summer days you will have loads of company, go early in the morning to avoid them, and the wind. Sunset_Beach_06 copy Sunset_Beach_07 copy Sunset_Beach_08 copy Sunset_Beach_09 copy Sunset_Beach_10 copy

Adrian Tregoning at Sunset on a solid but ugly SW wind day. Last five photos by Trevor Tregoning. Watch the shore break these days. Sunset_Beach_G_Earth

Thermopylae - 33°53'55.29"S  18°24'32.81"E

A big left wall of water that gives long rides. It needs a huge swell to get working and when it does, it’s awesome. You’ll find tons of people in the water though, so good luck with getting waves. There are two take off zones that I’ve seen and one of them is basically on the wreck of a ship called the Thermopylae. Breaks on rock and kelp and the launch is off rocks, good luck to any kayakers.

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Tsaarsbank - 33° 8'58.72"S  18° 0'12.56"E

I wasn’t sure if I should add this spot or not. It is quite far from Cape Town and in the nature reserve at the Langebaan Lagoon. If there is no wind, or a NE wind, then I suggest you try it out. There is a sand bank with a left and right forming, giving very fun rides for a kayaker. Watch out for the strong rip currents though. It breaks on sand but there are rocks right in front of the parking lot, stay away from them. Luckily that’s easy enough. Not for beginners because this is an isolated spot with no option of rescue but at least you won’t have crowds here. There is a wreck about 4km away from the parking lot with various waves all around, most of which are not worth much, but close to the parking lot I’ve had a smoker of a session. The wreck makes a pleasant walk if your better half is with you. If you’re staying in Langebaan it is one of the only options anyway.

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Witsand - 34°10'41.17"S  18°21'5.77"E

This bay can handle a lot of NW wind, really handy for those winter days. Breaks on sand but has two or three rocks to be aware of. There can be some powerful rip currents around here when the swell is big too. A great spot for all kinds of kayakers. Small waves tucked in on the right hand side of the bay, bigger on the left. The big wave spot, Crayfish Factory is on the far side if you find Witsand too boring. I recommend this spot for sure. Less crowded than a lot of other spots but if it’s NW you might be joined by a number of kiters and windsurfers. Witsand can handle a lot of swell.

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A huge day – expert kayakers only. Witsand_03 copy Witsand_04 copy Witsand_05 copy Witsand_06 copy Witsand_07 copy Witsand_08 copy Witsand_09 copy

Adrian Tregoning on a NW wind day. Photo by Rowan Walpole. Witsand_10 copy

Big, with loads of NW wind. Witsand_G_Earth

Woodbridge Island - 33°52'53.55"S  18°29'14.63"E

Basically Milnerton. Similar to Sunset Beach, but the beach is not as steep, and the waves always smaller here. Can be fun, but mostly lacks quality. Large parking area and showers. Read up on Sunset Beach as they’re quite close to each other and very similar.

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Yzerfontein - 33°20'36.58"S  18° 9'30.99"E

Protected mostly from the SE wind if you tuck in behind the rocks. This place can get pretty good, but it’s a bit of a drive north from Cape Town. On a strong SE wind it’s also an ideal spot for windsurfing. Definitely check it out. It will have waves when Cape Town is flat, as with most West Coast spots north of Cape Town.

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BONUS PHOTOS OF CAPE TOWN – all bonus photos by Peter Lambert.

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Elands Bay XRandomExposures copy

Exposures. XRandomGas Works 08 copy

Gas Works. XRandomJames Taylor at Gas Chambers copy

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Onrus beach break.  XRandomOnrus Beachbreak4 copy

Onrus beach break.  XRandomOnrus Beachbreak5 copy

Onrus beach break.  XRandomRaptors copy

Raptors. XRandomSecret Spot44 copy

Secret spot :-) XRandomWashing Machines 30 copy

Washing Machines. XRandomWashing Machines copy

Washing Machines. XRandomWest Coast Secret Spot 69 copyWest Coast – secret spot… 

Well, that’s it! I hope you found that useful. If you find any major errors, please let me know, otherwise don’t bother I’m not interested, unless it’s to tell me how useful you found this article! Take care, and keep charging. Any surf kayaking questions, shoot.

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Photography by: Adrian Tregoning, unless otherwise stated. A huge thanks to Peter Lambert for the use of his high quality photographs.
All Words by: Adrian Tregoning.