The Cape Province is special for many reasons, not least due to the fact that we have our very own floral kingdom. Dubbed the Cape Floristic Kingdom, this unique range of bio systems comprises the famous fynbos species. While this all sounds rather technical, the result of our rare biodiversity is a simply breath-taking change in the landscapes as spring begins. Wildflowers of just about every colour clash in a fiesta of vivid shades of pink, purple, orange and yellow, bringing locals and visitors alike to the countryside in search of nature’s very own exhibition of scenery.
Cape Town Flower Season Overview
The Cape Town Flower Season begins in August, running through the spring months until October or even later. Technically, 21 September marks the start of the spring equinox in the southern hemisphere, although most South Africans celebrate the first of September as Spring Day. But even from August, the countryside begins to come alive in a riot of colour as the winter rains bring nourishment to the fields, woodlands, forests, mountains and other natural habitats.
You will be able to enjoy the beauty of the Flower Season from just about anywhere in Cape Town, as flowers pop up along roads such as Dewaal Drive, the M5 and even the N1 and N2, but if you really want to take in the full experience, the best option is to take a drive out into the countryside where you can stop to admire endless carpets of flowers set against blue skies, white clouds and mountains in the distance.
Cape Floral Route Highlights
Some of the best places to visit along the Cape Floral Route include the following:
- Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens – situated in Constantia, Kirstenbosch is a great place to enjoy the start of the Flower Season, through a myriad ecosystems that reflect the Cape’s natural diversity of flora. There is a small entrance fee, which gives you access for the entire day, along with restaurants, coffee shops, lawns, picnic spots and pathways for easy exploration.
- The Overberg – situated a few hours outside of Cape Town, the towns of Hermanus, Pringle Bay, Bettys Bay and Kleinmond have become popular with nature enthusiasts seeking the first blooms of wild flowers each spring. There are also many reserves found within this area, where you can stop to have a picnic, take a stroll and take advantage of the outstanding photographic opportunities that abound.
- The West Coast – the West Coast however is a true gem as spring gets underway. Wildflowers here create one of the most breath-taking scenic displays of colour across the farmlands, reserves, fields, meadows and mountains. Take a drive along the N7 and you will soon enter a wonderland of sights and scents as flowers of all shades appear on either side of the road.
There are a number of ways to enjoy the Flower Season. You could take an organised tour to the coastal parts of the Overberg or along the West Coast with experienced guides on hand to offer more insight into the Cape’s unique biodiversity. You could hire a car and do a self-guided trip at your own pace. You could even hire a scooter, motorcycle or a bicycle to take a slower trip once you arrive at your chosen route. However you decide to experience the wonder of Flower Season, be sure to get out into the country to take in some of the best scenery Cape Town has to offer!