Revel in the beauty of Chappies

BBC Travel has praised Chapmans Peak.

One of the world’s most popular travel websites, BBC Travel, has described Chapman’s Peak as the “world’s most beautiful road”.

Journalist Denby Weller this week described driving Chappies on a recent trip to Cape Town.

“The road took a few gentle twists as it rose on Chapman’s Peak’s western flank, and Noordhoek Bay spread out behind us. It wasn’t until we took a swooping right-hand bend that we realised we were in for something truly awesome,” she wrote on Tuesday November 7.

She also detailed the history of Chapman’s Peak, explaining how Sir Nicolas Frederick de Waal, the first administrator of the Cape Province, was determined to see the road materialise despite engineers saying it couldn’t be done.

“As we swooped around another of Chappies’ purported 114 bends, I was slightly alarmed to come face-to-face with one of these engineering marvels, a 6m-high ‘catch fence’ – a huge steel net that leaned menacingly out over the road; 1.6km of catch fence protect the road from smaller slides at various locations along its 9km length.

“But Chappies had even bigger wonders in store. We were briefly distracted from the hulking cliffs as the road took another leftward bend and we were again pointed at the South Atlantic and sparkling Hout Bay. Clouds were forming over the Sentinel, the same weird reverse-waterfalls of vapour that locals dubbed ‘the tablecloth’ when they appeared over Table Mountain. The verticality of the landscape never got old; despite the obvious risks of the route, the plunging coastline beckoned me to stop at every lookout, to linger and drink in the view.”

Nearing Hout Bay, she was taken by the “breathtaking view of the coast”, going on to explain that Chappies features in the world’s largest timed bike race.

“I glanced over at my fiancé, who has been known to compete in the odd cycling race. A broad smile was spreading across his face. ‘Maybe for the honey-
moon?’ I suggested, only half joking.”

Entilini director Enzo Menegaldo welcomed the article.

“I think an article like this will benefit South African tourism as a whole. It’s one of the good stories being told. In Cape Town we’ve got the winelands, Robben Island and Cape Point, basically the big five. Chappies isn’t really a part of that, so it’s nice to hear,” he 
said.