9 Best Camping Places In Cape Town And Surroundings

best camping places in cape town

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The Western Cape is blessed with many fantastic camping places. With so many great spots dotted around the province, you may be surprised to know that you don’t actually need to travel far to escape the big city lights! In fact, there are a number of decent camping sites within the larger Cape Town area and I’m here to highlight 9 of the most popular!

From a glamping hideaway in Kommetjie to a semi-rural park in Melkbos and Earthdance festivities at Kogel Bay, the range of experiences is varied. Sun, sea, and mountains are never far from the mix (this is Cape Town, after all!). Pack your tent and gear and prepare to discover a colourful ensemble of the city’s top camping sites.

1. Best For Facilities – Ou Skip Caravan Park

Ou Skip Caravan Park in Melkbosstrand is a coastal haven for holidaymakers, offering a relaxed escape just a stone's throw from the pristine beaches of the Atlantic Ocean
  • Address: 1 Otto du Plessis Drive, Melkbosstrand, Western Cape (30 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates (electricity included):
    • January to December (high season) – R725 per night for 2 people
    • April to August – R270 per night
  • Things to do:
    • Get competitive on the mini golf course
    • Stroll the 20 hectares of parkland or wander along the beach
    • Tuck into delicious fresh seafood at one of Melkbosstrand’s restaurants like Cafe Orca

One of the largest caravan parks in the Western Cape, Ou Skip has something for everyone. There are over 80 tent sites and over 60 dedicated caravan setups (both have a six-person maximum). You’ll find plenty of tree cover and grass area, as well as decent space between campers.

Add to that the beach on your doorstep and the awesome views of Table Mountain – it’s easy to feel like you’ve found the perfect getaway.

Ou Skip provides scores of amenities, including:

  • Swimming pool
  • Games room
  • Playground
  • Trampoline
  • Shop (in season)
  • Laundry facilities
  • Wifi (but the coverage is not great, which is the case at many of the places on this list)

Five ablution blocks with hot water showers service the large campsite. This 3-star resort is generally well-maintained. Unfortunately, Ou Skip is not pet-friendly.

Tip: Don’t your own camping gear? No worries, the resort’s Bush Camp package provides you with a tent plus an A-frame shade port. Bedding, cutlery, fridge, 2-plate stove, braai grid, and internal lighting are all included (R850 – 2 people per night for the December – January high season).

2. Best For A Surf Trip – Imhoff Caravan Park

Imhoff Caravan Park in Kommetjie is a coastal retreat where the tranquility of nature meets the allure of the Atlantic Ocean
  • Address: 54 Wireless Rd, Kommetjie, Cape Town (42 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Site fee:
    • From R750 per night in high season
    • From R450 per night in low season (up to six people)
  • Things to do:
    • Surfing
    • Skimboarding
    • Horse riding
    • Gin and rum tasting

One of the longer-running campsites in the Cape Town area, Imhoff Caravan Park is located in the laidback coastal enclave of Kommetjie, which is known for its surfing, fishing, and birdwatching. Semi-rural Kommetjie has a friendly vibe with a nice sprinkling of shops, cafes, and pubs.

The campground has 75 grassed stands for caravans and tents, all with 15 amp electricity and built-in braai facilities. Stands on cement slabs are also available. While the facilities are fairly old, the management and team work hard to ensure it’s kept clean and camper-friendly.

Expect to wake in the morning to the sounds of birdsong and perhaps the crash of waves. With the beach just 100 metres away, you’ll often see horseback riders in the shallows and surfers riding the swells.

This shoreline boasts a number of epic surf spots and many surfers have used Imhoff as their base to hit legendary breaks such as Outer Kom, The Hoek, and Long Beach. Whether you’re swimming or surfing, just be prepared for the cold – some days the water is so cold it will give you a shooting ice-cream headache!

Imhoff Park facilities include a children’s playground, a games room, and a TV room. The roads are all tarred and the camp lighting is good.

Tip: A visit to Imhoff Farm around 2.5 km away is a treat. This original Cape homestead hosts an array of artisan shops and restaurants. Great coffee and delicious ice creams are winners here. Closer to the campsite, Deep South Distillery offers fascinating gin and rum tastings.

3. Best for Natural Biodiversity – Soetwater Resort, Kommetjie

  • Address: Lighthouse Rd, Kommetjie, Cape Town (49 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates for 2 people: R250 to R320 per night (depending on the season)
  • Things to do:
    • Fishing and crayfish diving in season
    • Swimming in the man-made tidal pools
    • Hiking and biking

Located in Kommetjie, Soetwater (Sweet Water) Resort benefits from a beautiful location near Slangkop Lighthouse. The campsite boasts great views of the mountain, sea, and the lighthouse. On top of this, the area’s rich biodiversity features rock pools, dense offshore kelp beds, and abundant birdlife, including the endangered African Black Oystercatcher.

The camping facilities comprise electrified and non-electrified stands (for a more authentic camping experience) as well as chalets. While the ablutions are cleaned regularly, I find that the standards tend to slip when the camp is full. Bring your own toilet paper (this is advisable wherever you’re camping).

The swimmer-friendly tidal pools, picnic tables, and braai pits make it a popular destination for day trips. Cute sandy coves add to the attraction.

Tip: Although Soetwater can get quite crowded, it’s a great spot to adventure with the dogs since it’s pet-friendly (provided your companion is kept leashed).

4. Best Small Campsite – Slangkop Tented Camps, Kommetjie

Slangkop Tented Camps in Kommetjie offer a unique coastal glamping experience at the doorstep of the Atlantic Ocean
  • Address: Off Lighthouse Road, Kommetjie (46 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates: From R750 per night for 2 people
  • Things to do:
    • Hiking
    • Biking
    • Game viewing in the Cape of Good Hope section of the National Park

Tucked among milkwood trees in Table Mountain National Park, Slangkop Tented Camps is a wonderful marine-theme retreat 100 metres from the ocean. The glamping-style setup has a maximum capacity of 12 people, with six 2-bed tents, shared amenities, a kitchen, a boma, and a sheltered braai area.

With hot water, electricity, and clean ablutions, the site is well-run and secured by professional SANParks staff. There is also a play area for small kids, but your four-legged friends will need to stay at home because the property isn’t pet-friendly property.

A trail to Slangkop lets you explore the surrounding rugged mountain, coastline and diversity of flora and fauna. If you take a tour of Slangkop Lighthouse – reputedly the tallest in the southern hemisphere – you might want to stop in at Espresso Kommetjie nearby for a great cuppa, wholesome food, and craft beer. This is also a neat area to discover by bicycle.

Note: You are not permitted to leave the camp by vehicle after the close of check-in times. Check-in time is between 14:00 and 17:00 in winter (April to September) and between 14:00 and 18:00 in summer (October to March).

Tip: While decent bedding is provided, the tents can get chilly in the winter so bring an extra blanket (sleeping bag) or extra clothing layer.

5. Best For Hiking – Smitswinkel Tented Camp

  • Address: Off the M65, Table Mountain National Park, Cape Point (50 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates: From R900 per night for 2 people
  • Things to do: Discover Cape Point Nature Reserve

Located in a gum plantation across the road from the entrance to the Cape Point Nature Reserve, Smitswinkel Tented Camps is an ideal base from which to discover the surrounding southern peninsula.

The well-maintained camp uses solar power and has a maximum capacity of 12 people. It provides six 2-bed tent huts with shared amenities, a communal kitchen, a big fireplace, and a braai area (tip: You’ll need to bring your own braai wood!). A thoughtful layout affords each unit a degree of privacy.

The main attraction here is Cape Point. This rugged coast leads to the southernmost tip of the Peninsula, where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet. Hike, bike, and explore all that this iconic peninsula has to offer. Entrance to the reserve is around R100 (R400 for foreign nationals).

From the site, you can also hike the short trail to Smitswinkel Bay. The cute coastal village of Simon’s Town, famous for its penguins, is a 15-minute drive away. There is a small attractive caravan park called Millers Point near Simonstown which other campers have told me is pleasant though the booking process can be frustrating.

Note: There are baboons in the larger area so keep your food secured and out of sight.

6. Best For Families – Zonnekus Holiday Resort And Caravan Park

Zonnekus Holiday Resort and Caravan Park in Melkbosstrand is a coastal haven offering a perfect blend of relaxation and recreation
  • Address: 13/141 Zonnekus Road, Morningstar, Cape Farms, Philadelphia (29 km from Cape Town)
  • Rates: R320 to R630 for 2 people (depending on the season)
  • Things to do:
    • Visit the beach at nearby Melkbosstrand
    • Durbanville Wine Valley is under 20 km away and well worth a day trip

Located in a rural pocket, close to the beach at Melkbosstrand, Zonnekus Holiday Resort is a relaxed destination for the whole family. The resort offers 28 caravan and tent camping sites, supported by communal ablution facilities with lovely hot water showers using borehole water. A maximum of 6 people per site is permitted and a range of chalet accommodations are also available.

After a morning shower, enjoy a good strong brew at the chilled rustic coffee shop. Follow this with a wander through the tree-dotted grounds to two swimming pools, a play park, trampolines, and a small farm yard. Here, little ones can interact with ponies, goats, chickens, tortoises, parrots, and other animals.

Braai facilities are ready and waiting to be fired up any time of day. Alternatively, there is a decent, reasonably-priced restaurant.

A hard-working team ensures the campsite is well maintained and cleaned, making it one of the most pleasant and well-serviced facilities in this part of the Western Cape.

Zonnekus is in the heart of a working farm area so the wifi is not very good. They have a pet-friendly attitude but speak to them first if you want to bring your furry friend camping, bearing in mind there are other animals on site.

Tip: For an energetic outdoor activity, Ground Zero Paintball offers run-and-gun action a mile from the camp.

7. Best For Beach Camping – Kogel Bay Resort

  • Address: R44 Helderberg Rural, Clarens Drive – between Rooi Els and Gordons Bay (55 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates: R250 to R320 per night (depending on the season)
  • Things to do:
    • Stroll the gorgeous beach
    • Hike to Crystal Pools on the Kogelberg Nature Reserve Trail

Kogel Bay is the perfect spot to enjoy magical sunsets on a sandy beach beneath towering mountains.

This vibey resort has over 200 sites, spread across four large areas. Pitch your tent near the beachfront to access awesome sea views or choose a pitch further back among trees. In terms of amenities, Kogel Bay doesn’t have electric plugs, so be sure to bring a power bank to charge your phone. Several communal blocks provide the ablution essentials.

The surroundings are truly magnificent. Imagine 4 km of white sandy beach, majestic mountains, and indigenous fynbos. While the mountains tend to shelter the beach from summer’s South Easter wind, a strong northerly or westerly wind can kick up sand and pound your tent.

Because of this, it’s best to check the weather forecasts in advance – you don’t want your trip to be spoiled by high wind! If it is a bit windy, I’d suggest pitching your site among the trees, as they offer some shelter against onshore winds.

Be aware that baboons are frequent visitors to the grounds so safeguard your food.

Watch this space: Earthdance Cape Town was held at Kogel Bay in September 2023- look out for details for Earthdance 2024 if you’re keen to join the celebrations.

Tip: Ongoing roadworks on the R44 might cause delays or affect access to the resort, so be sure to check the situation in advance.

8. Best For Affordability – Silverstroomstrand Resort

Silverstroomstrand Resort in Melkbosstrand is a coastal retreat where the sound of waves and the fresh sea breeze set the stage for a serene getaway
  • Address: Silwerstroom Road, off West Coast Road R27 (60 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Rates: R250 to R320 per night for 2 people (depending on the season)
  • Things to do:
    • Braaing
    • Beach activities
    • Dog walking (pet friendly)
    • There is a slipway for launching boats

Silwerstroomstrand is a City-run coastal resort located on Cape Town’s west coast. Forming part of the Cape West Coast Biosphere Reserve, the resort is bordered by the nature reserve to the south, which has several interesting trails for the avid hiker.

The resort offers camping, caravan, and braai facilities, as well as bungalows. However, the main attraction here is a long stretch of coastline that incorporates a small bay to the south and the Silwerstroom River to the north.

The best part? The beach is Blue Flag-rated with relatively calm, chilly waters. It also boasts a slightly warmer tidal pool, which is a popular splash-play area for younger children and the elderly. For safety during the busy season, lifeguards patrol the beach.

If you’re looking to take a break from the city, this is a decent value-for-money option!

9. Best Riverside Camping – Berg River Resort

Berg River Resort in Paarl is a scenic riverside escape, offering a perfect blend of natural beauty and outdoor recreation
  • Address: R45 Franschhoek Rd, Paarl South – on the banks of the Berg River (70 km from Cape Town CBD)
  • Stand Fee: R800 to R1,175 per night (depending on season)
  • Things to do:
    • Birdwatching
    • River tubing
    • Trampolining
    • Watersliding
    • Exploring the Winelands

For our last campsite, I’m going to send you out a little further afield, around an hour out of Cape Town. Let me tell you, the journey is well worth it and this lovely haven is too good to miss out on!

Spread over 11 hectares on the banks of the Berg River, in the heart of the Cape Winelands, Berg River Resort offers a variety of accommodations for every type of happy camper – 180 partially grassed stands for tents and caravans (most of which have power), a self-contained Bush Camp, plus cosy self-catering chalets.

There is tons of fun to be had here. Besides volleyball, putt-putt, and roller skating, much of the action is centred on the water. Dive into the river for a refreshing swim, float off on a tube, or venture further on a canoe.

And if you’re looking to do some exploring beyond the resort’s borders, I’d highly recommend you delve into the renowned Cape Winelands. The campsite is situated between the famous Paarl and Franschhoek wine regions, giving you ample choice when it comes to picking a spot to enjoy some wine tasting.

Whether you’re after a chilled weekend getaway that involves a sneaky spa treatment or an energetic adventure involving tons of water activities, Berg River Resort has you covered!

Tip: Water levels in the Berg River usually drop by peak summer. To fully appreciate the river, it’s good to visit before this time.


Is camping in Cape Town safe?

While Cape Town has beautiful beaches and mountains, being isolated on the mountain, beach, or a rural retreat can expose you to danger. The best advice is to only pitch your tent in established, reputable spots and follow the truism that there is safety in numbers. Many facilities have security on site and law enforcement often patrols by checking on things.

If you plan on hitting the trails while camping, check the city’s safety resource TravelWise and keep abreast of SANParks Safe Hiking advice/ contact information.

Are there dog-friendly camping places around Cape Town?

There are several campsites around Cape Town that welcome dogs, provided they are leashed. Many City of Cape Town-managed sites are pet-friendly, while private grounds such as Imhoff Park and Zonnekus Resort allow dogs if they don’t pose a danger to children and other animals.

What is the best time to go camping in the Cape Town area?

The peak camping season is over the December-January summer holidays and the low season is from around April to September (when some facilities are temporarily shuttered). The best time to go is often outside these periods since you’ll typically have nice weather without the crowds.

What are good camping sites near Cape Town?

There are many good camping sites in the Western Cape within 2 hours of Cape Town. Hermanus, Gansbaai, Porterville, Citrusdal, and the Breede River Valley towns of Montagu, Ceres, and Rawsonville are some of the places with pleasant camping sites.

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