Travel Guide

India Venster hike – the hardest Desk Mountain path

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The India Venster hike is probably the most difficult path to the highest of Desk Mountain. It’s one of the crucial technical climbing trails in Cape City. As a reward, you get breathtaking views of the town and the encircling space together with the gorgeous shoreline and the spectacular mountain vary. Climbing India Venster is the last word adventurous factor to do in Cape City.

Spectacular scenery on the India Venster hike
Lion’s Head and Cape City from the India Venster path

India Venster route overview

  • Distance – 3,7 km, a method
  • Required time – 3-Four hours on common, a method
  • Complete ascent – 722 m
  • Complete descent – 34 m
  • Place to begin – Decrease Cable Automobile Station
  • Ending level – the highest of Desk Mountain, 700 m away from the Higher Cable Automobile station.
  • Problem – 5 out of 5, probably the most troublesome path to hike up Desk Mountain
  • Terrain – gravel, rocks, boulders, chains, and ladders
  • Lowest level – 340 m
  • Highest level – 1026 m

Recommended excursions and actions

How lengthy is the India Venster hike?

India Venster is a linear route. The overall distance of the hike from the Decrease Cable Automobile Station to the Higher Cable Automobile station on the highest of Desk Mountain is 4,Three km (a method). It’s 3,7 km to the highest of Desk Mountain and one other 700 m to the Higher Cable Automobile station. Relying in your health stage it will probably take something between 2 and 5 hours to finish the path. On common I’d rely on 3-Four hours. 

The place does the path begin?

The India Venster hike begins on the right-hand facet (going through Desk Mountain) of the Decrease Cable Automobile Station, Tafelberg Highway. First, the path goes up until it crosses the Contour Path path (the route that goes round Desk Mountain), there you’ll see a signpost indicating the India Venster hike. The path goes underneath the Cable Automobile you should utilize it as an indicator to get an thought. 

The footpath at the beginning of the India Venter hike
The start of the India Venster hike from the Decrease Cable Automobile Station

The place does it end?

The India Venster hike finishes on the highest of Desk Mountain, 700 m away from the Higher Cable Automobile Station.

Learn how to get to the trailhead?

Driving is the simplest method of attending to Desk Mountain from Cape City. You’ll be able to hire a automobile on the airport on arrival and drop it off on departure. Cape City hop-on-hop-off metropolis bus connects the town heart and the Waterfront with Desk Mountain. It stops proper in entrance of the Decrease Cable Automobile Station (the India Venster trailhead). The bus works nice in the event you don’t wish to hire a automobile. It goes to all must-visit locations in Cape City.

A view of the Upper Cable Car Station from the India Venster trail
The Higher Cable Automobile from the India Venster path

How troublesome is the India Venster hike?

India Venster is the most troublesome and harmful Desk Mountain climbing path. It’s not appropriate for younger kids or folks affected by vertigo. This hike can’t be walked with a canine both. It’s a steep climb up with a complete elevation achieve of over 700 m. The path requires some bouldering and climbing. In some components, it’s important to go up utilizing steel chains and ladders. A bit just like the final a part of the Lion’s Head hike however increased and steeper. When you like difficult hikes with breathtaking views the India Venster path is a must-include in your Cape City itinerary.

India Venster trail elevation profile
The elevation profile of the India Venster hike

When you’re not in the perfect bodily form it’s higher to decide on a unique route up Desk Mountain. The Platteklip Gorge hike and the Kasteelspoort on the town facet or the Skeleton Gorge on the Kirstenbosch facet of the mountain. All trails are bodily demanding however not as technical because the India Venster.

Alya enjoying the view of the city from the India Venster trail on Table Mounrain
Alya having fun with the gorgeous view of Cape City from the India Venster hike

Is the path well-marked?

Sure, the India Venster hike is marked with yellow footprints painted on rocks. The route marking begins on the intersection with the Contour Path path. The path is sort of simple to comply with we didn’t use or want GPS to search out the route.

What’s the price of the hike?

The hike is free you don’t pay any entrance payment or purchase permits. When you resolve to go down utilizing the cable automobile you pay ZAR 220/US$13 per particular person. A guided India Venster hike prices from US$60 per particular person.

Are you able to descend Desk Mountain on the India Venster route?

Technically it’s potential however I wouldn’t suggest it. The descent on the India Venster path is much extra difficult than the ascent. Most hikers stroll up the India Venster and go down with the cable automobile or comply with a unique route. The Platteklip Gorge path shall be a great one to take to get down. It’s about 1,5 km away from the India Ventster path and it’s a lot simpler for taking place.

Tafelberg Road and the mountain rang from the trail
Tafelberg Highway and Satan’s Peak from the India Venster hike

When is the perfect time for climbing?

The dry season between November and April is the perfect time for climbing India Venster. It’s harmful to do the path if it’s moist so earlier than doing the hike test the climate forecast. Within the peak summer time months, between December and February, beginning early is crucial. The path is uncovered to the solar within the afternoon it will get scorching sizzling. We walked the India Venster hike in November and began at eight am it was simply early sufficient.

I wouldn’t suggest beginning climbing within the late hours it’s extraordinarily unsafe to stroll this path within the scarce mild. Doing the hike on a really windy day is unsafe plus you gained’t be capable to use the cable automobile as a result of it doesn’t function if the wind is just too sturdy.

The path is open 24 hours, there is no such thing as a gate or fence limiting entry. If you wish to use the cable automobile to get down it operates from eight am to 7 pm (the final automobile down). Through the peak season from 16th December to 31st January the final automobile down leaves at 9 pm.

India Venster route map

A route map of the trail to the top of Table Mountain
A map of the India Venster climbing path

What are you able to see from the path?

The surroundings from India Venster is spectacular. I’d say for the views alongside the route, it’s one among our favourite climbing trails in Cape City. You’ll be able to see just about your complete metropolis. The Metropolis Bowl, Lion’s Head, V&A Waterfront, Camps Bay, Robben Island, Twelve Apostles Mountain Vary, and Satan’s Peak are simply a number of the highlights. 

Do I want a information for climbing?

A information or a allow shouldn’t be required for the India Venster hike. It’s a self-guided hike. You are able to do a guided hike if you need. Doing a guided India Venster hike is a superb choice in the event you don’t have a climbing companion or usually are not a really skilled hiker. Security is one more reason to do a guided hike. It’s not beneficial to hike alone in Cape City.

Cape Town city center and the bay from the India Venster hiking trail
A view of the Metropolis Bowl from one of many lookout factors on the India Venster hike

India Venster hike description

I might divide the India Venster into Four components based on the terrain and issue stage. 

Half 1. From the Decrease Cable Automobile station to The Contour Path path, 500 m.

It’s a simple and gradual ascent on a footpath. It provides you a false concept that the hike may be not that difficult in the long run. 

Half 2. From the Contour Path to 1,7 km.

It’s a steeper climb over rocks and boulders. An introduction to what’s coming subsequent. There are a few breathtaking lookout factors on this half. The route marking (yellow footprints) begins on the intersection with the Contour Path. 

Lion's Head mountain with the blue sea on the background
A view of Lion’s Head within the second a part of the India Venster hike

Half 3. From 1,7 km to 2,7 km

It’s the hardest a part of the India Venster hike with steel chains and ladders and a few difficult climbing. On this half, you’re so centered on the path itself that generally neglect to look again and benefit from the surroundings. Take your time right here.

Half 4. From 2,7 km to three,7 km (the highest of Desk Mountain).

It’s a rocky footpath on the sting of the slender cliff with a few climbs. The path goes round Desk Mountain away from the Cable Automobile in direction of Camps Bay. Right here you get some shade. 

Half 5. From 3,7 km to the Higher Cable Automobile Station.

It’s the simplest a part of the hike. A stroll on the highest of Desk Mountain with gorgeous views. On the Higher Cable Automobile station, you could find bogs, eating places, and a store. 

Camps Bay and the coast from Table Mountain
The spectacular view of Cape Bay on the final a part of the India Venster hike

What to pack for the hike?

  • Carrying sufficient water is crucial. There may be nowhere to get water on the path. I might suggest 2l of water per particular person. 
  • Snug sneakers with good grip. India Venster shouldn’t be a hike for doing in your flip-flops. 
  • A cap is a must have to guard your head. Heatstroke is the very last thing you wish to get there.
  • Snug sports activities garments. I choose carrying lengthy sleeve tops and lengthy pants for climbing in Cape City for additional solar safety as an alternative of placing on sunscreen each couple of hours.
  • Make sure that your cellphone works and it is possible for you to to make a name in an emergency case. You should purchase an eSIM card for South Africa to remain related in your journey.

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Hey! A bit about us - we’re John & Maria and we're a couple that loves to travel the world and document our adventures! We enjoy writing, blogging, exploring and sharing our adventures. We’re always embarking on new journeys and here you’ll find articles covering many travel destinations, and topics, such as culture, history, art and cuisine. Our goal and mission is to present compelling stories, photography and personal opinions, as well as serve as an online resource for anyone who wishes to plan their own trips and visit the destinations we've been to. We genuinely love meeting new people, mingling with locals, listening to their amazing stories and trying new travel experiences.

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