Last Updated on January 16, 2024

There are many opportunities to experience sand surfing near Cape Town in Western Cape.

The best and nearest spot to Cape Town is the Atlantis Sand Dunes only 40km north of the city, while Hout Bay and Betty’s Bay are the two biggest commercial sandboarding locations near the coast.

The Atlantis Sand Dunes within the Witzands Aquifer Nature Reserve are one of the trendiest sandboarding spots in the South Africa, whereas the two seaside villages of Betty’s Bay and Hout Bay both have plenty of coastal dune fun to offer.

Sandboarding Atlantis Sand Dunes near Cape Town
Sandboarding at Atlantis Sand Dunes. Photo courtesy of Bongani2.

Atlantis Sand Dunes

The Atlantis Sand Dunes offer what is possibly the best sandboarding in South Africa, just a few km north of Cape Town, in the so called “Lost City” within the Atlantis Nature Reserve.

The white sand dunes stretch for around 32 km² and are a hotspot for sandsports including off-road tours, quad biking and sand duning on jeeps and 4×4 vehicles.

There are different dune slopes and steepness levels that are not too overwhelming and ideal for beginners.

Enjoy breathtaking views of Cape Town and Table Mountain from the tallest peaks!

Getting there

To get to Atlantis Sand Dunes from Cape Town, you can follow these directions:

  1. Drive from Cape Town to Atlantis, which is approximately a 45-minute drive.
  2. Take the R27 highway towards the West Coast.
  3. Turn off at the Atlantis off-ramp and follow the signs to the dunes.

A more convenient option could be to simply book a tour that includes transportation from Cape Town to the sand dunes. There is no direct public transportation to the Atlantis Sand Dunes from Cape Town.

Recommended tours

Sandboarding in Cape Town: Betty's Bay
Betty’s Bay near Cape Town. Photo courtesy of Winstonza.

Betty’s Bay Sand Dunes

Betty’s Bay is a small holiday town situated on the Overberg coast of South Africa’s Western Cape province.

Approximately a one hour drive up the East Coast from Cape Town, you can grab your sandboard and have some fun on the dunes of the little seaside village of Betty’s Bay, in a site called Silver Sands.

Some of the dunes here are incredibly tall (as high as 250m!). Betty’s Bay is popular with free-riders who sled down Blesberg Dune to perform tricks overlooking Walker Bay. Make sure to also pay a visit to the penguin colony at Stony Point while you are there!

Getting there

To get from Cape Town to Betty’s Bay, you can follow these directions:

  1. Take the N2 highway out of Cape Town in the direction of Somerset West.
  2. Continue on the N2 for approximately 70 kilometers until you reach the turnoff for R44.
  3. Turn right onto the R44 and continue for approximately 45 kilometers until you reach Betty’s Bay.

The total driving time from Cape Town to Betty’s Bay is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes, depending on traffic conditions.

Sandboarding in Cape Town: Hout Bay
Hout Bay. Photo courtesy of PZFUN.

Hout Bay Sand Dunes

Hout Bay is a suburb of Cape Town situated in a valley on the Atlantic seaboard of the Cape Peninsula.

The dunes at Hout Bay are less touristy and mostly cater to locals who go there to sandboard bringing their own equipment, but they also are some of Africa’s tallest beach dunes with over 250m high slopes.

Getting there

To get to Hout Bay and the Hout Bay Sand Dunes from Cape Town:

  • Drive to Hout Bay from Cape Town. The drive takes around 30 minutes.
  • Take the M6, also known as Victoria Road, and head towards Hout Bay.
  • Continue on Victoria Road until you reach Hout Bay.

Once there, to reach the dunes:

  • From Hout Bay, drive towards the Hout Bay Beach.
  • Turn left onto Hout Bay Beach Road and continue until you reach the sand dunes.

Best time to go

Sandboarding in Cape Town can be practiced year round. The hottest month is February with an average temperature of 23°C (73°F), while the coldest is June with an average temp of 13°C (55°F).

December has the most sunshine hours per day whereas the wettest month is July with an average of 100mm of precipitation.

The best time to visit the dunes is during the summer months, from November to March, when the weather is warm and dry.

What to bring

Keep in mind that the coastal dunes can be quite windy year-round, so be sure to dress appropriately and bring plenty of water.

You’ll want to protect yourself from the sun, so make sure to bring a hat, sunglasses, and a high-SPF sunscreen. It’s also a good idea to wear light, breathable clothing like cotton and linen, and comfortable sandals or sneakers for hiking the dunes.

Sandboarding gear is usually provided if you join a tour, or can be rented at Atlantis Sand Dunes directly. If you are hitting the dunes of Betty’s Bay or Hout Bay independently, then you may need to buy or rent a sandboard in Cape Town before you head there.

Read also: Sandboarding near Johannesburg

Sandboarding in Africa

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