Penguins - Boulders Beach, Cape Town
You'll find an interesting wildlife relationship in action, here it's the penguins who rule and the people who make way for their lovely neighbours.
Drive carefull at nights, penguins are crossing the streets!
Entrance fee of R15 for adults
Stopped at this beach during a Cape Point tour, and it is quite a shock to see the number of penguins roaming the beach. If the only place you've seen penguins is in a zoo exhibit, it is an eye opener to actually see them on the beach and rocks. There was quite a long walk from where the bus parked, to the beach, but a couple good cafe's in route to stop for a beer refresher. It is well worth a visit to this beach, whether part of tour or on your own.
The scenery is beautiful the penguins are so loving and very protective of their young. Very romantic scene. Be careful when walking near those who are protecting the nest because they will attack you if you get too close.
Because they're so cute! :)
Nestled in a sheltered cove between Simon's Town and Cape Point, Boulders has become world famous for its thriving colony of African Penguins and magnificent wind sheltered, safe beaches.
Although set in the midst of a residential area, it is one of the few sites where this vulnerable bird (Spheniscus demersus) can be observed at close range, wandering freely in a protected natural environment.
From just 2 breeding pairs in 1982, the penguin colony has grown to about 3,000 in recent years.
Boulders is part of Table Mountain National Park.
Watching the penguins was definately one of the highlights of our trip. We got there early (definately recommend this) and watched them from the boardwalk until too many tourists arrived that it got distracting (especially the Chinese tourists on their mobiles). We checked out both areas (Seaforth and Boulders Beach) and found the closest to Muizenburg to be better viewing. We were amazed how close we could get to the penguins. They were just as interested in checking us out as we were they. There is a penguin guard who makes sure that no human gets too close to them. It was so interesting to see how they paired up and took turns watching the nest. I loved watching them find buddies to go in for a swim and then get pushed back by a big wave. One bad thing we saw is a seagull steal one of the eggs (while 2 penguins were fighting) and eat it for breakfast.
The penguins we watched are African or Jackass penguins - so called for the donkey-like braying sounds they make when on land. There are only 16 penguin species worldwide. Jackass Penguins are endemic to mainly offshore islands and only three mainland sites on South Africa’s coast, Simon’s Town is one of the total of 28 world sites where they occur.
I have seen penguins at various aquariums around the world, but here you get to see them in the wild...the admission is R25 per person, and we spent about 45 minutes here and it was enough time to take plenty of pictures and to observe them closely. If you have kids this is a must do....even if you don't have kids we had a great time here...HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT !!!!
I am not a big beach person, but was very sorry that I had assumed we would just stop here to look at the penguins, and had come unprepared to go in the water. The water is very appealing because of rock formations create a calm, clear, shallow, swimming pool environment; with stray penguins just swimming past, ignoring the fact that a lot of people are present.
The admission covers 2 parts: an entrance to the beach, at the south end, and an entrance to a fenced off observing deck at a separate beach just to the north, where the majority of the penguins in the colony hang out.
I thought this was a unique experience, and for anybody with children, this would be a "must-see", full day highlight of a South African vacation.
I was so excited about visiting Boulders Beach in Simonstown, just outside of Cape Town.
In fact, considering what it is, it's touristy - but not too touristy.
There are boardwalks down to the beach, on the way you can see lots of penguins inland seeking shelter. When we got to the beach I was amazed at the sight in front of my eyes!
The African penguin is a beautiful animal, I was suprised at how small they were actually - but thats just me!
You pay a small fee to get onto Boulders Beach, but it is well worth the money, I marvelled at the penguins for ages - I was so in awe of them.
The Boulders Colony:-
In 1983 a pair of African penguins were spotted on Foxy Beach at Boulders and in 1985 they began to lay. Since then the colony has grown rapidly, increasing initially at about 60% a year. By 1997 there were 2350 adult birds. Although Simon's Town is very proud of its penguins, nearby residents suffered badly as the birds invaded their gardens, destroyed the undergrowth and were generally very noisy and messy. The great increase in tourists has also been a problem. As a result, the area has now been taken over by Cape Peninsula National Park, the birds have been restrained from wandering inland by a fence, board walks and an information room have all been established. Boulders still remains the only place in the world where one can actually swim amongst the penguins as they have continued to invade more beaches. They are remarkably untroubled by people but one should avoid harassing them by getting too close or chasing them. Beware!! They have a vicious bite
Penguins are flightless, aquatic birds, which live in the southern oceans in climates as varied as Antarctica and the Galapagos Islands on the equator. There are seventeen species in all but the African Penguin is the only one to inhabit the African continent and its inshore islands. It used to be known as the Jackass Penguin
Scientific Name: Spheniscus Demersus
Average Statistics: Weight - 2,1 To 3,7 kilograms (4.63 To 8.16 pounds)
Height - 50 cm (19.7 inches)
Just a few hundred yards down the coast from Simons Town, heading towards Cape Point, Boulders is a small, sheltered beach that offers safe swimming for kids. It also happens to be home to one of the largest land-based colonies of African (or Jackass) Penguins in the world.
This is the best place to get up close to these comical and endearing creatures, take photos and even swim in the same waters as them! You do have to pay to access the beach (25 Rand each on our last visit) but this charge also includes entry to the visitor centre where you can find out more about the Penguins and access the main part of the colony via decked viewing areas.
This is Just one of many beaches which you will pass on your way to Cape Point. Its situated in Simons Town.
Well if you wanna get a real view of Penguins well this is the perfect place to go. Its Perfect for the whole family. The penguins does`nt seem to be bothered with the poeple so its perfect as you can get really close to them.
It cost R25 per person that allows you to go see the penguin colony and give you acceess to the beach whereby you can swim side by side with the penguins.
Formerly called the Jackass penguin because of their braying call the African Penguin is classed as a vulnerable species, here at Boulders Beach they are well protected however, from just two breeding pairs in the early 1980s there are now in excess of 3,000 penguins and they are a delightful sight. you walk along boardwalks [which are wheelchair friendly] to see the penguins among the huge boulders that give the beach its name.
The beach is in the middle of a residential area and there is a reasonably short walk from the car park, you would probably also see penguins on the public beaches near the car park for free but not in the the numbers you see in the protected areas. Penguins can give a nasty nip so do not approach or harass them
Boulders Beach is a protected area and part of the Table Mountain National Park
The Penguins at Boulders Beach near Simonstown are very amusing and the setting is beautiful. Take a walk along the beach and you should be able to get quite close to the little guys. They often walk among the swimnmers and sun bathers and apparently Boulders is the only place in the world where you can swim with penguins. This colony of African Penguins contains approximately 2500 birds. The colony came into being in 1983 when a pair of birds first arrived, they began laying eggs in 1985 and the colony has grown rapidly since then. While they are generally untrouble by the presence of people don't try and touch them as they do have a nasty bite.
What you didn't know about penguins now you can!!
The jackass penguin is named after their donkey-like braying call
They can swin at an average speed of 7km/h & stay submerged for up to 2 minutes
Their black & white dj camouflage is white for underwater predators looking upwards & black for predators looking down onto the water
Penguins have very sharp beaks & can cause serious injury if they lunge & bite (bite first - ask questions later)
This beach is fairly sheltered & you can swim amongst the penguins, as mentioned they are not petting animals & could give you a nasty nip. They like to nest in holes & cracks in the rocks.
This is a beach which you pay to visit in 2005 Adults R20 & children R6
Watch out for high tide as it could trap you on the beach
In high season this beach is fairly packed with picnicing families
There are many stunning beaches around Cape Town and offer diverse and often spectaculour coastlines. Cape Town is situated on the Atlantic Ocean and while in South African terms swimming conditions are far colder than the warmer Indian Ocean in KwaZulu Natal swimming and surfing are popular activities. The beach crowds also vary depending on which beaches you visit but generally one of the most beautiful and popular beaches is Clifton beach (Clifton 1,2 &3). This is where the rich, famous (wannabe famous) and beautiful people go to see and be seen