Western Cape Tourist Attractions Boulders Beach Penguins
This is Cape Town's famous penguin colony. Found just beyond Simon's Town on an idyllic strip of white sand served with enormous boulders, the beach is a paying one.
Where? Seaforth, Simons Town, False Bay Coast, Cape Town
When? Open daily
How? Call +27 (0)21 786-2329
Once through the turnstiles you and the penguins have equal share of the waters, although the penguins tend to steer clear of human activity at Boulders and waddle through to the relative safety of beaches beyond this, even though they are a lot more used to interaction than their offshore island counterparts.
Which is just as well as huge numbers of visitors head down to see the penguins at Boulders on an annual basis.
African Penguins have only been here since 1982 when an original pair arrived to lay. When counted in 1997 there were some 2 350 birds at Boulders, and a colony quickly developed as they were joined by birds from Dyer Island. However, by 2012 the breeding pairs were down to 400.
Table Mountain National Park stepped in once residents began complaining about the noise and the interference from the birds, to build numerous boardwalks and viewing points at Foxy Beach.
The boardwalks make it easy to get up-close and take you within metres of the penguins.
Despite this the Boulders colony is in trouble as they compete with cars, people and battle for space, resulting in their nesting in unsafe places.
Boulders Coastal Park management has recently introduced artificial nesting boxes - just one of the measures the combined efforts of several conservation bodies are implementing to help save them.
Be warned: endangered they might be, but they bite if you get too close!
How to get there: It is easily accessible by car, bus, taxi or train and lies just outside the suburb of Simon's Town. There are two entrances. The first is at the end of Seaforth Road, the second at Bellevue Road.
View a personal account of the penguins at Boulders "The Penguins at Boulders Beach".