This stunning hike at Cape Agulhas takes you through sand dunes and fynbos to a nice viewpoint where you can see the Atlantic and Indian Ocean meet. Near the end, there is a nice little lagoon to cool off. An ideal walk if you stay at the SANParks rest camp.
This hike is in Agulhas National Park and is unfortunately not available for day visitors. It starts at the Agulhas rest camp, which is 10 km from the Cape Agulhas Lighthouse. From Cape Town it is 223 km and takes 2.5 to 3 hours to get here via the N2, R316 and R319. We can recommend spending the night at this rest camp as it has a stunning location and the chalets are really nice. Read more about the rest camp in our weekend trip report.
We did this hike in May 2019, and started the hike at our chalet, but it is possible to start it at the parking lot a bit further towards the coast. First, we started off with a swim at the lagoon as we needed to be refreshed after the lighthouse hike, but you can also leave the swim till the end.
- Take a sunhat and and put on sunscreen, as the sun is bright despite the sea breeze.
- Ask at the SAN Parks reception for a map with descriptions, we did a variation on the Two Oceans Hiking Trail.
- There are shortcuts, making it a 3 km or 4.5 km hike.
- Keep an eye out for route markers as they are sometimes not clear. An app like MapsMe will help.
- We actually did half of this hike one afternoon, and ran the rest the next morning, which worked out very well.
- Bring swimwear for a refreshing swim in the lagoon at the end.
After a refreshing swim in the lagoon, we walked towards the right along the coastal path. A bit later, this joins a track which you follow for half a kilometre, at which point you turn off on a trail towards the right. There are steel and wooden markers, sometimes with numbers, showing you the route. The path is sandy in many places, as you walk through some beautiful fynbos.
Along the way, you will see many different birds. For example, we saw some Cape Bulbul, Mousebirds, Scrub Robins and a Common Fiscal that kept on following us. The black and white Fiscal was super friendly and she followed us for almost a kilometre before leaving.
Shell Middens Along the Agulhas hike
This area has been inhabited by humans since humans existed. The evidence for this is shell middens – where people thousands of years ago ate shellfish and discarded the shells into a rubbish heap. So middens are basically rubbish dumps. But not full of plastic like today, just full of organic material.
Shell middens aren’t actually super impressive to look at and are easy to miss, but once you know what they are, it’s cool to think of our ancestors hanging out just where you are now, eating shellfish.
There was interesting vegetation along the Agulhas hike, lovely flowers, and beautiful shells on the beach. You wind through the vegetation, up and down sand dunes and limestone cliffs. The perfect walk to unwind.
Distant Sand Dunes
As we head inland and up, we saw sand dunes in the distance. From the furthest point inland, at the top of the hill, you can see the flat plains to the north. There are some salt pans there, good for bird spotting apparently, but we didn’t go there since it was a bit out of the way. There is also the view of the Atlantic and Indian ocean meeting, the namesake of this Two Oceans Trail.
The trail takes you gradually down again, going along the road to the rest camp for a little bit before turning off to the left into the sand dunes. Shortly, we arrived at the lagoon and the spectacular views of the ocean. A fitting end of this pretty Agulhas hike.