Did you know?
The steam ship SS Kakapo ran aground on Noordhoek beach in 1900 when the captain mistook Chapman's Peak for Cape Point in a big storm and turned left.
A leisurely ride on horseback along a desolate beach is the stuff of dreams, but on Cape Town's Noordhoek Beach, at the foot of the Chapman's Peak Pass, you'll be able to turn your dreams into reality.
Noordhoek is a long stretch of sand linking the town of Noordhoek with the village of Kommetjie. Soft sand, gentle dunes and the wild approach of the Atlantic Ocean against the backdrop of Chapman's Peak Pass and the mountains towards Simon's Town round off the scene.
A number of local stables offer horse riding at Noordhoek at 9am and 1pm, and another in the late afternoon (time is determined by the seasons). The excursion is a two-hour beach horse ride, which also caters for children from the age of 12 as well as inexperienced riders. Riding schools in the area also offer lessons for those wanting more than just a one-off horse riding experience.
The beach is not popular among bathers, but is often dotted with surfers, bodyboarders and kitesurfers when the waves are good. It's also a favourite beach for long walks with dogs.
The rides offer unparalleled scenery, a visit to the wreck of the Kakapo (on the beach) and wonderful birdwatching for twitchers thanks to the indigenous fynbos vegetation that fringes the beach.
Knowledgeable guides and well-behaved horses are the hallmark of the experience, which caters for groups of up to six riders at a time.
Apart from Noordhoek horse rides, there are a rich variety of activities, so you can really make a day of it, with an early-morning ride followed by some surfing, cycling or trout fishing. There are also some beautiful nature walks.
Restaurants and curio shops in the area offer fine cuisine and shopping to round off a day spent at Noordhoek.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Sleep Hollow Horse Riding
Sleepy Hollow Lane, Noordhoek
Tel: +27 (0)21 7892341 or +27 (0)83 261 0104
Imhoff Equestrian Centre
Imhoff Farm, Kommetjie
Tel: +27 (0)82 774 1191
How to get here
Drive along the ultra-scenic Chapman's Peak Pass to get from Cape Town to Noordhoek.
Best time to visit
The Cape is at its most sparkling during the autumn and spring months.
Around the area
Noordhoek is on the tourist route so you could include it in your itinerary when paying a visit to Cape Point or planning a trip over the scenic Chapman's Peak Drive.
Noordhoek is a small village with limited public transport options, so having your own vehicle is the most convenient option.
What will it cost
The cost of a riding expedition varies according to which operator you use, but budget for around R500 per person.
Length of stay
A beach ride takes about two hours but you should arrive at least 45 minutes before departure time.
Where to stay
Noordhoek has a great selection of guest houses and B&Bs nearby
What to eat
The Noordhoek Farm Village is an excellent place to eat. Try the Foodbarn for breakfast or Cafe Roux for lunch.
Arts and crafts at the Noordhoek Farm Village.