Boulders Beach

  • Boulders Beach - South Africa
  • Boulders Beach - South Africa
    © / CC BY Pinterest
  • Boulders Beach - South Africa
    © Dewet / CC BY Pinterest

Situated on the western side of Cape Town’s False Bay is the delightful sheltered cove of Boulders Beach. Crystal clear water meets soft white sand in a series of little “covelets” between enormous, weather worn granite boulders which date back half a billion years.

Boulders is undoubtedly one of Cape Town’s finest beaches, but that isn’t why it is also one of South Africa’s best known. It is actually due to a colony of African penguins that decided to make it their home back in 1982. Also known as jackass penguins they are now well and truly established with thousands of these little black and white critters waddling around the beach and diving in and out of the water.
The penguins are pretty photogenic too. They’re quite happy to pose for photos, however, be warned, they may look cute, but those beaks are razor sharp. Probably the best spot to get a view of the penguins is at neighbouring Foxy Bay where a series of elevated wooden boardwalks have been constructed expressly for viewing the birds.

Boulders beach is a bit of a hike to get to, being around 40km from downtown Cape Town. There is also a charge to get onto the beach as it is part of a National Park, however we still think it is worth the effort.

As an aside, I just thought I’d mention False Bay is the place where all that footage of great white sharks leaping out of the water with seals in mouth was filmed. Not that I’d want to put you off taking a dip - apparently the water is warmer than most of Cape Town’s other beaches!

Nearest town/city

Cape Town

Submit a correction

More Western Cape beaches in South Africa

Current weather (Tue May 21st 22:00)


15.5°C / 60°F

Sea temperature


Boulders BeachFull weather & tide times info »