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From: Nagib Georges Araman
Date: 02-06-2015 13:16:39 pm
Subject: Scenic Signal Hill of Capetown South Africa
Scenic Signal Hill of Capetown South Africa
By Nagib Georges Araman
If you have not heard of Signal Hill, then you will be delighted to know that it is one of the reasons by Cape Town is such a remarkable city to visit.
This prominent landmark in the South African City is just adjacent to the Lion's Head mountaintop. It was previously called the Lion's Rump as it looks attached to the "head" by hills resembling the spine. Even during earlier times, this 350-meter hill was already used as a lookout point, albeit not for recreational purposes. Because of its altitude, it was used to spot ships sailing to the land. When a ship is spotted, flags are hoisted from this hill to allow residents to prepare products they intend to sell.
Situated in between the City Bowl and the Sea Point, Signal Hill is considered as part of the Table Mountain Nation Park. It is widely known as the home of the historic noon gun. As the name suggests, this canon is traditionally fired during noontime, from Monday to Saturday. Locals are used to the booming sound it creates, while unknowing tourists are quite startled by the boom! Aside from the Noon Gun, you can will encounter a couple of sacred shrines called kramats on the hill area. You are also likely see paragliders and model aeroplane enthusiasts doing what they love.
When ready to discover what Signal Hill has to offer, you have two choices. The first option is to take a car and drive to the summit via the Buitengracht road and Kloof Nek Road. You need to turn off to the right to reach Signal Hill road. Along this road are other minor yet scenic lookout points. You may choose to stop by these spots, but save most of your energy and time for the main hill summit lookout. When you drive, you will pass through Lions Head first and then you will need to drive about 10 minutes further to reach the hill top.
The second way to Signal Hill, and arguably the more fulfilling one, is to hike. However, take note that it is a stiff walk that begins at Bo-Kaap and takes you through Longmarket Street. Going to the top of the hill rewards you with amazing panoramic views of the city center, Table Bay harbor and the shimmering Atlantic Ocean. And if you want to stay longer on top of Signal Hill, why not make it a half-day picnic event?
The area has picnic spots that are perfect for visiting families and group travellers. If you would like to challenge yourself physically, don't end your hiking journey on Signal Hill. You can even go further and walk all the way to the iconic Lion's Head. If you need a break, stop by the Noon Gun Tearoom & Restaurant. The entrance gate behind the restaurant is about a minute from where the Noon Gun is.
Hiking up the hill in time for the sunset is a popular activity among locals and tourists. Because of its dramatic scenery, Signal Hill is also a favorite among couples, who love to stay until the early evening to see the Table Mountain light up against a dark backdrop. However, if you are hiking alone, it is best to leave the hill just after sunset as there is no police presence in the area late at night.
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Africa - Tigger 01-16-2015 13:16:39 pm
South Africa - Tigger 01-16-2015 13:16:39 pm
Scenic Signal Hill of Capetown South Africa - Nagib Georges Araman 02-06-2015 13:16:39 pm