Contributor Review – Camila Pearson
Local Expert. Visited 2023
We recently ventured to Sandy Bay, a well-known nudist beach tucked away near Cape Town, and what an experience it was! Sandy Bay is one of a very few nude beaches in Africa. Known for its stunning views and crystal-clear waters, Sandy Bay is an absolute gem for anyone who cherishes their freedom and the natural beauty of South Africa. The beach is popular among a mix of individuals and couples, creating a relaxed, respectful vibe. On the day we visited it was mostly single middle aged males but there were also a few couples. It’s serene most of the year, though weekends can get a bit busier.
Click to show more
Getting to the beach is a bit of an adventure. It’s about a 1km hike from the parking lot, and on a hot day, it feels much more. We chose the longer path because it isn’t as steep and involved no scrambling. The path is flanked by fynbos (small heath bushes), and the stunning views along the way make the walk worthwhile. Once there, you’re greeted by a stretch of lovely sandy beach, surrounded by mountains on three sides, with the vast Atlantic Ocean in front. The main beach area is spacious, but there are also smaller coves and secluded spots among the dunes or on the rocks, perfect for those seeking a bit of privacy.
For first-timers at a nude beach, Sandy Bay is quite welcoming. People here are generally respectful and keep to themselves. There’s a sense of community among regulars, and everyone seems to share a mutual understanding of the unspoken beach etiquette. It’s important to note, however, that there have been occasional reports of unsavory characters, so it’s wise to stay vigilant, especially if you’re visiting alone. There are also isolated incidents of theft from the beach that we read about elsewhere. I’m not sure I would feel comfortable visiting Sandy Bay alone but I felt safe being here with a friend. We didn’t see anything concerning and had a great relaxing day escaping the heat.
There are a few things to keep in mind for your visit. There are no facilities like showers, bathrooms, or vendors, so come prepared with your essentials. The waters can be icy cold, and the ocean currents are strong, making swimming a bit risky sometimes. Parking can be tricky, and the area is known for petty crime, so ensure your car is securely locked and consider tipping the car guard for extra peace of mind. Despite these minor drawbacks, Sandy Bay stands out as one of the most peaceful and beautiful nude beaches in South Africa.
Questions? Comments? Add your thoughts or photos below!
Sorry, no records were found. Please adjust your search criteria and try again.
Sorry, unable to load the Maps API.
The walk from the parking area is about 1km and can take around 25 minutes. This path, while scenic, is quite strenuous, especially on a hot day. It's advisable to tip the car guard at the parking lot for extra security and to grab your last refreshments from a vendor there, as there are no facilities at the beach itself. There aren't any public transportation options and you'll need to take an Uber if you don't have wheels.
- Hout Bay Car Park - longer walk but flatter terrain: If you're driving head to the northern end of Hout Bay and park there. From this car park, the walk to Sandy Bay is longer but flatter and more manageable. However, be aware that the car parks are relatively small, and spaces fill up quickly, especially on weekends and during peak season. Arriving early or being prepared to walk a bit further from your car is often necessary.
- Llandudno Car Park - shorter walk but much steeper: Alternatively, head south from Cape Town towards Llandudno. There are two main parking options for Sandy Bay. The first is to park at the southern end of Llandudno and then clamber over the rocks to reach the beach. This route is more direct but can be challenging terrain-wise.