Scenic Chapman’s Peak Drive
Just outside the bustling city of Cape Town, in the Western Cape Province of South Africa, is a mountain by the name of Chapman’s Peak. Its name has become synonymous with two large annual events, namely the Two Oceans Marathon and the Cape Argus Cycle Race. Many locals and visitors travel along the Chapman’s Peak Drive, not only to reach the summit of this magnificent mountain, but to enjoy the spectacular views this drive has to offer.
It is said that the Chapman’s Peak drive is one of the most picturesque in the world. The drive begins in Hout Bay and winds its way to Noordhoek. It was carved into the mountain between the years 1915 to 1922 and is nine kilometers in length, a feat which is still marveled at by engineers today. The mountain itself is located on the Atlantic Seaboard and the base of the mountain consists of Cape Granite, while the top of the mountain is blanketed in sedimentary rocks. On the mountain, and along the road, visitors will also find Cape Granite Fynbos and Peninsula Sandstone Fynbos that can only be found in Cape Town, as it is endemic to the area. The peak of the mountain still bears the scars of an abandoned mine and a jetty that was used to ship the ore from the mine, which can be seen on the northwestern side of Chapman’s Peak.
Chapman’s Peak stands at a height of 593 meters and the road that curves along its edges has no less than a hundred and fourteen curves. There are ideal picnic areas to be found in various locations along Chapman’s Peak Drive which offers a hundred and eighty degree view of the surrounding landscapes. There are also numerous hiking trails that begin through both the Cape Peninsula National Park and the Silvermine Nature Reserve, and some visitors might even be lucky enough to see a few whales. After completing the drive to Noordhoek, visitors will also be able to explore destinations such as Fish Hoek and Kommetjie before embarking on the breathtaking journey back on Chapman’s Peak Drive.