ActivitiesCape Town

Signal Hill – The best sunset spot in Cape Town

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Signal Hill, Seinheuwel in Afrikaans, is a hill in Cape Town. Situated next to Lion’s Head and Table Mountain, it provides an amazing 360° view over both these famous mountains and the city. And it’s free!

Signal Hill, Cape Town

Signal Hill is part of Table Mountain National Park, and popular as a sunset spot with locals and tourists alike. It’s called Signal Hill because they used to communicate weather conditions and approaching ships with signal flags from up there. Some people also know Signal Hill as Lion’s Rump because of its shape.

You get a nice view of Table Mountain and Lion's HeadYou get a nice view of Table Mountain and Lion’s Head

Signal Hill Sunset Picnic

Signal Hill, with its amazing view, is the perfect spot for a sundowner. There are a couple of picnic tables, but most people are sitting on the ground on the side of the hill. Some sort of cover is spread out there, so you don’t really need a blanket to sit on.

Before heading up Signal Hill Drive, we went shopping for some cheese, crackers and a bottle of wine at Woolworths. Signal Hill is probably one of the best picnic spots in Cape Town, especially at sunset.

However, it’s not the spot for a romantic one on one sunset picnic, as you’ll be sharing this experience with many others. Make sure you get to Signal Hill at least 45 minutes before sunset to secure a good spot.

Looking for something more adventurous to do on Signal Hill? Check this out:

How to get to Signal Hill?

Getting to Signal Hill by car

If you have your own vehicle, like we did, you can drive up to the Signal Hill summit by yourself. It can get pretty crowded up there, especially at sunset. Make sure you arrive there at least 45 minutes before sunset in order to find a parking spot. Signal Hill is clearly signposted and less than a 5 minute drive past Lion's Head.

There will be plenty of other people around to enjoy sunset with youThere will be plenty of other people around to enjoy sunset with you
Found ourselves a great picnic spotFound ourselves a great picnic spot

When the sun has set, it’s best to leave as quickly as possible. Everyone will be trying to leave in a short span of time, causing a traffic jam on the narrow Signal Hill Drive. You’ll want to get ahead of that!

People were still driving up while we were heading down. With cars parked on both sides of the road, it was impossible for 2 vehicles to pass each other. Result: 10 minute standstill before we could continue driving. And we were one of the first to leave.

Our guidebook also mentioned Signal Hill getting unsafe after dark, so make sure you do leave with the crowd.

Getting to Signal Hill with Uber or Lyft

If you don’t have a car at your disposal, you can take a regular taxi to go up to Signal Hill. Another option is getting an Uber or Lyft, the modern version of a taxi. Click here for more information on Uber, and here for more information on Lyft.

Getting to Signal Hill on a hop-on hop-off bus

You’ve probably seen the red open-top City Sightseeing busses on one of your trips before. They are operating in Cape Town as well! In summer, they offer a 3 hour Sunset Tour ending at Signal Hill.

Passengers won’t be allowed to hop off during this tour, but there are plenty of wonderful photo opportunities. At Signal Hill you do get to hop off to enjoy a picnic or a drink while watching the sunset. Definitely an interesting option to consider when looking for a way to get to Signal Hill. Click here to check it out:

A more active alternative sunset spot

Another popular sunset spot in Cape Town is Lion's Head. However, in order to get there, you’ll have to hike a pretty challenging path for about an hour one way.

If you want to watch the sunset at Lion’s Head, this means you’ll have to hike back to the car park in the dark. Because of that it’s recommended you do this hike with a guide. The view is said to be amazing though! Check out these guided Lion’s Head sunset hikes, or do you prefer sunrise?

What time is sunset in Cape Town?

We advised you to be at Signal Hill at least 45 minutes before sunset. Now, at what time is sunset in Cape Town? We always check the standard Weather app on our iPhone, but there are a ton of free sunset apps (some of which are very sophisticated) available in the App Store as well.

If you own an Android phone, you can download the free Golden Hour app for example, or browse the Google Play Store for other options.

You can just Google “What time is sunset in Cape Town” (or something similar) as well and Google will tell you immediately.

Table Mountain photo opportunityTable Mountain photo opportunity

When visiting Cape Town, you should definitely check out the view from Signal Hill. Go before sunset and bring a bottle of wine, some snacks and a friend for a lovely sunset picnic. Enjoy!

Have you been to Signal Hill yet? How was it? We’d love to read about your experience in the comments! If you haven’t been yet, definitely put it on your Cape Town bucket list!

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Signal Hill - The best sunset spot in Cape TownSignal Hill – The best sunset spot in Cape Town