The Best Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Cape Town

The Best Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Cape Town

Because a walk without Rover is, well, not quite the same…

Image credit: Janet Louise Martin

Whether you’re after a coastal meander, forest ramble or a blood-pumping mountainous hike, it’s no fun without your pooch, right? Which is why we’ve rounded up the best dog-friendly walks in Cape Town.

Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails:

1. Blackburn Ravine

blackburn ravine
Image credit: namibsands.wordpress.com

Where Hout Bay
What Starting at the old cannon fort on Chapman’s Peak Drive, the trail leads through forested mountainside and up towards the lookout deck at the top of the ravine, offering spectacular ocean views along the way. It’s mostly easy-going except for a somewhat steep climb towards the end; just make sure your pup doesn’t go chasing after any lizards.
Good to know Areas that form part of the Table Mountain National Park require dog-walkers to have a Level 1 My Activity Permit, which can be purchased for R225 from the Tokai Plantation Office, or at the specified Cape Town Tourism branches, and is valid for 12 months from the day of purchase. A maximum of two dogs are allowed.
Cost Free (with My Activity Permit)
Contact 021 712 0527, tablem@sanparks.org (Table Mountain National Park)
021 712 7471 (Information on My Activity Permits)
021 791 8222 (Chapman’s Peak Drive Customer Service)
Location East Fort, Chapman’s Peak Drive

2. Gifkloof Trail

Gifkloof trail
Where Greyton
What From the junction of lower Regent and Vlei Streets, head through a gate in the fence, across the Gobos river (there’s a nice picnic spot by the riverside if you feel so inclined) and up the hillside, where the trail winds its way through the hills surrounding Greyton before eventually ending back where it started. Dogs and horses are welcome, provided they don’t interfere with each other.
Good to know The trail passes through a shooting range. Watch out for a red flag that will warn you if the range is in use (usually only the last Saturday of the month), or inquire with Greyton Tourism beforehand.
Cost Free
Contact k.wehrlin@tiscali.co.za (Greyton Conservation Society)
028 254 9564, 028 254 9414, info@greytontourism.com  (Greyton Tourism)
Location Greyton, Western Cape

3. Silwerfontein Trail

silwerfontein trail
Image credit: Accommodations South Africa

Where Tulbagh
What This circular trail passes through pine forests, fynbos fields and ravines on its way around the Ontongskop Peak, and can be hiked in a day or overnight if you choose. Silwerfontein’s famous guide dog Kasper, who unfortunately passed away some time ago, used to greet hikers in the morning and shepherd them along the trail, and would even lead them to safe watering spots.
Cost R50 (adults)
R25 (pet)
R150 (overnight)
Bookings must be made ahead of time
Contact 079 500 1906, info@silwerfontein.co.za
Location Silwerfontein Guest Farm, Gouda, Tulbagh

4. Beaverlac Camp Site

beaverlac
Image credit: PopcornCandi

Where Cederberg
What If you’re after more than another stroll through the forest, Beaverlac is a dog-friendly campsite with access to the Olifants River and some great hiking and swimming spots. Campers love bringing their kids and pets along, so it’s probably not the right place to go for peace and quiet, but for pooches it’s a five-star getaway.
Good to know A maximum of two dogs per car are allowed. Day visits are no longer possible, but if you don’t fancy a camping trip, there are self-catering cottages available for rent.
Cost R55 (adults)
R35 (children 4 – 17)
Free (children under 4)
R50 per dog
R20 per car
Contact 022 931 2945, beaverlac.kantoor@gmail.com
Location Beaverlac, 6810 Porterville, Western Cape

Dog-Friendly Walks:

1. Alphen Trail

alphen trail
Image credit: mapio.net

Where Constantia
What This ever-popular dog-walking spot is one of several in the Alphen Greenbelt, and it’s as green as they come. The path starts at Alphen Drive off the M3, running through grassy meadows and along peaceful river banks – the epitome of a leisurely stroll.
Cost Free
Location Alphen Drive, Constantia

2. Noordhoek Beach

noordhoek beach
Image credit: blogs.agu.org

Where Noordhoek
What A seemingly endless stretch of sand where your pooch can chase frisbees up and down (or whatever kids are using these days). It helps that the nearby Farm Village and Foodbarn are also pet-friendly, making Noordhoek a great destination for a doggie day out.
Good to know Areas that form part of the Table Mountain National Park require dog-walkers to have a Level 1 My Activity Permit, which can be purchased for R225 from the Tokai Plantation Office, or at the specified Cape Town Tourism branches, and is valid for 12 months from the day of purchase. A maximum of two dogs are allowed.
Cost Free (with My Activity Permit)
Contact noordhoekbeach.co.za/contact-us
021 712 0527, tablem@sanparks.org (Table Mountain National Park)
021 712 7471 (Information on My Activity Permits)
Location Beach Road, Noordhoek, Cape Town

3. Scarborough Beach

scarborough beach
Image credit: travelfootprints.ca

Where Scarborough
What A secluded beach, clear of crowds and visited only by the occasional surfer (or star chefs looking for a place to pick mussels). Dogs are welcome, but the locals would appreciate it if you helped keep their sandy hideaway a secret.
Good to know Areas that form part of the Table Mountain National Park require dog-walkers to have a Level 1 My Activity Permit, which can be purchased for R225 from the Tokai Plantation Office, or at the specified Cape Town Tourism branches, and is valid for 12 months from the day of purchase. A maximum of two dogs are allowed.
Cost Free (with My Activity Permit)
Contact 021 712 0527, tablem@sanparks.org (Table Mountain National Park)
021 712 7471 (Information on My Activity Permits)
Location Camel Rock Road, Scarborough, Cape Town

4. Tokai Plantation

lower tokai plantation
Image credit: City of Sunshine and Storms

Where Tokai
What A scenic forested area with the occasional stream running through it, and the popular Elephant’s Eye hiking trail. Dogs are allowed in the lower section of the plantation.
Good to know Areas that form part of the Table Mountain National Park require dog-walkers to have a Level 1 My Activity Permit, which can be purchased for R225 from the Tokai Plantation Office, or at the specified Cape Town Tourism branches, and is valid for 12 months from the day of purchase. A maximum of two dogs are allowed.
Cost Free (with My Activity Permit)
Contact 021 712 7471 (Tokai Plantation Office)
021 712 0527, tablem@sanparks.org (Table Mountain National Park)
021 712 7471 (Information on My Activity Permits)
Location Tokai Forest, Tokai, Cape Town

5. Liesbeek River Trail

liesbeek river trail
Image credit: Friends of the Liesbeek

Where Observatory
What This trail starts at Kirstenbosch and leads you along the banks of the Liesbeek River, through a secret garden in the midst of the ’burbs. Residents of Bishopscourt have undertaken the care and conservation of this area, and from all appearances, they’re doing a damn fine job.
Cost Free
Location Liesbeek Parkway Green Corridor, Newlands, Cape Town

6. Newlands Forest

newlands forest
Image credit: Natalie Exposed

Where Newlands
What Of course, there’s always good old Newlands Forest, with its lush greenery and pristine picnic spots. Dog-walking is just one of many attractions that make the popular nature spot fun for the whole family.
Good to know Areas that form part of the Table Mountain National Park require dog-walkers to have a Level 1 My Activity Permit, which can be purchased for R225 from the Tokai Plantation Office, or at the specified Cape Town Tourism branches, and is valid for 12 months from the day of purchase. A maximum of two dogs are allowed.
Cost Free (with My Activity Permit)
Contact 021 712 0527, tablem@sanparks.org (Table Mountain National Park)
021 712 7471 (Information on My Activity Permits)
Location M3 Newlands Forest, Newlands, Cape Town

Check out our guide to the best dog-friendly restaurants in Cape Town

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Featured

Liesbeek River Trail
Liesbeek Parkway Green Corridor Newlands Cape Town

Scarborough Beach
Camel Rock Road Scarborough Cape Town

Silwerfontein Guest Farm
Silwerfontein Guest Farm, Gouda Tulbagh Western Cape 6831

Alphen Trail
Alphen Drive Constantia Cape Town

Beaverlac Camp Site
Beaverlac Porterville Western Cape 6810

Greyton
Route 406 Overberg Western Cape

Chapman’s Peak Drive
1 Chapman’s Peak Drive Hout Bay Harbour Cape Town 7806

Tokai Forest
Tokai Road Tokai Cape Town

Table Mountain National Park
Tokai Tourism Sales Office, Tokai Road Tokai Cape Town

Newlands Forest
M3 Newlands Forest Newlands Cape Town

Noordhoek Beach
Beach Road Noordhoek Cape Town

Disclaimer:

The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

Time of publication: 23 June 2016

4 Responses to “The Best Dog-Friendly Hiking Trails in Cape Town”

  1. TRACY MCWILLIAMS

    And Silvermine , Long Beach Kommetjie , Milnerton Beach, The Glen in Camps Bay, Lionshead,

    Reply
  2. Benjamin

    What about Keurboom Park and Rondebosch Common?

    Reply
  3. James Rawlings

    What about the Spaanschemat River trail all the way from Silverhurst, past ‘Peddlars’, and onwards into Keysers to join up with Tokai Forest?

    Reply

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