Table Mountain

landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town in South Africa

One of the New 7 Wonders of Nature

Table Mountain

Western Cape & City of Cape Town, South Africa

Table Mountain (Khoikhoi: Hoerikwaggo, Afrikaans: Tafelberg) is a flat-topped mountain forming a prominent landmark overlooking the city of Cape Town in South Africa, and is featured in the Flag of Cape Town and other local government insignia. It is a significant tourist attraction, with many visitors using the cableway or hiking to the top. The mountain forms part of the Table Mountain National Park.

The main feature of Table Mountain is the level plateau approximately 3 kilometres (2 mi) from side to side, edged by impressive cliffs. The plateau, flanked by Devil’s Peak to the east and by Lion’s Head to the west, forms a dramatic backdrop to Cape Town. This broad sweep of mountainous heights, together with Signal Hill, forms the natural amphitheatre of the City Bowl and Table Bay harbour. The highest point on Table Mountain is towards the eastern end of the plateau and is marked by Maclear’s Beacon, a stone cairn built in 1865 by Sir Thomas Maclear for trigonometrical survey. It is 1,086 metres (3,563 ft) above sea level, about 19 metres (62 ft) higher than the cable station at the western end of the plateau.

The cliffs of the main plateau are split by Platteklip Gorge (“Flat Stone Gorge”), which provides an easy and direct ascent to the summit and was the route taken by António de Saldanha on the first recorded ascent of the mountain in 1503.

The flat top of the mountain is often covered by orographic clouds, formed when a south-easterly wind is directed up the mountain’s slopes into colder air, where the moisture condenses to form the so-called “table cloth” of cloud. Legend attributes this phenomenon to a smoking contest between the Devil and a local pirate called Van Hunks. When the table cloth is seen, it symbolizes the contest.

Table Mountain is at the northern end of a sandstone mountain range that forms the spine of the Cape Peninsula. To the south of the main plateau is a lower part of the range called the Back Table. On the Atlantic coast of the peninsula, the range is known as the Twelve Apostles. The range continues southwards to Cape Point.

 

South Africa

Interesting Facts

Table Mountain


Elevation above sea level

1087 metre

Continent

Africa

Instance of

mountain

The Official

New 7 Wonders of Nature

Iguazu Falls

waterfalls in Brazil and Argentina

Amazon

longest river in South America

Komodo

island

Ha Long Bay

limestone bay, Vietnam

Jeju Island

island belonging to South Korea

PP Underground River

national park, Philippines

Worldmap

The 28 Finalists

Wonderful Content loading...

Hello! Contact New 7 Wonders Close

Do you have any questions about the New7Wonders campaigns?
Are you writing an article, do you have a project in mind?
Maybe you have an idea using the New7Wonders concept?
Whatever it is, just say "Hello!" to us, and we will reply as soon as we can.

If you are from the press or a media organisation, or a social media reporter, please use this form to contact our Communications Department.

If you have an idea involving the New7Wonders concept, or maybe you want to associate New7Wonders with your product or brand, or any other commercial or business or new creative idea, please use this form to contact Jean-Paul de la Fuente, New7Wonders Head of Value Development.>