It’s Tuesday morning and I am sitting in the office, staring at the computer screen, trying to get some work done. But who am I kidding, my eyes keep shifting back to the clock, watching the hours tick by till 5pm. You see, today we had decided to go on an impromptu mid-week micro adventure! Our destination – one of Cape Town’s best kept secrets – Chapman’s Peak campsite in Noordhoek. Located about 35km from the city centre, the campsite is far away enough away to escape the bustle of the city, yet close enough to pedal to before dark!
I grab my go bag, load up my bike and head off to meet the rest of the gang. Soon we are pedalling out of the city, heading south along the Atlantic seaboard cycle route. This route forms a key section of the Cape Town Cycle Tour, a road cycling event held every year in March and is a popular training route for local cyclists, some of whom did a double take when they saw us powering up the notorious climbs fully loaded! After a quick stop in Hout Bay to pick up some beers and supplies, we cycled up to Champman’s Peak view point for roadside sundowners. Taking in the magnificent views of the surrounding ocean and mountains, I couldn’t help but think how lucky we are to live in a city that is so immersed in nature.
Freewheeling at top speeds down the pass into the little village of Noordhoek, we reached the campsite before dark. Set amidst trees with lush lawns and menagerie of farm animals, birds, dogs and cats, Chapman’s Peak Caravan Park and Campsite has a lovely rustic farm-feel. There are braai areas and firewood for sale on site (which is a huge saver for bicycle campers). For those who want to skip cooking and/or stock up on supplies there are plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby in the village.
After picking out our perfect camp spot, we set about pitching tents and tarps. The great thing about an overnight campout, especially in summer, is that you do not need loads of gear. As Sarah expertly demonstrates with her minimal tarp tent setup. The campsite also has loads of trees, which makes it perfect for hammocks too. After a night of campfire stories, gourmet camp food (thanx to our visiting ‘chef’ Clayton, from OZ), it was off to bed and bicycle dreams.
The next morning we woke up literally at the cock’s crow, and after a mandatory camp coffee were packed and on the road early enough to grab a quick breakfast in Hout Bay at Dario’s bike friendly cafe, before peddling back to the city.
Sitting behind my computer again, I can’t help but smile – the last 12 hours have been so much fun and absolutely rejuvenating. Bicycle micro-adventures enable you to break your routine. The only caveat is that they also fuel your wanderlust and soon you’ll find yourself planning longer adventures, further afield.
Join our Bicycle MicroAdventure group on Facebook and come along on our next adventure.
HIGHLIGHTS & NOTES
- Scenic tarred roads and challenging climbs
- Secluded treed, rustic campsite.
- Swimming pool for the summer months.
- Must Stop Spot: Noordhoek farm village (coffee/lunch), Dario’s Cafe (breakfast/lunch).
- Best time to go: September – April for warmer, drier weather. If you prefer your camping quieter, go during the week and Avoid the December holiday season rush.
- Bookings: Contact Chapman’s Peak campsite.
- Bike shops: The closest bike shop is Cranx in Noordhoek or Complete Cyclist, Hout Bay
- Supplies and food: There are plenty of shops along the way and within a km of the campsite.
Our definitive guide to Cape Town’s favourite bike friendly cafes along the official Cape Town Cycle tour route.
Breaking the routine… An impromptu, mid-week bike camping adventure to a secluded campsite nestled at the foot of the famous Chapman’s Peak in Cape Town.
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