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Cape Town is one of the world's best cities and Table Mountain helps put it there and must visit even if you go by cable car.
There are many routes to get up the mountain but for the strong at heart climbing up Platteklip Gorge, the most popular tourist route, (starts about 1-2km after the cableway) is quite an achievement. It takes about 1,5hours if you are moderately fit. Do not go up in sneakers, flip flops or other form of inadequate footwear. Wear a stronger shoe, giving support - it is a very uneven and stoney pathway and do not forget at least a litre of water or more, even if it is only slightly warm when you are at the bottom. Coming down is almost as harsh as going up due to the steepness and size of rocks you clamber over - there is no water on the way up and the restaurant is not round the corner when you arrive at the top.
Make sure you take some protection. It could well be beautiful, but the weather really can change very quickly and if the mist comes over, it can get cold even if its 30° downtown. From the top of the gorge, it is about 20 mins walk to the restaurant and cable car. You will NEED SUNTAN LOTION 30+ and a HAT. You have been warned. The sun is very harsh up there. It's really very worth while to get an early start in the morning around 7.00 - 8.00 am while the gorge you are climbing up is still in shade. The later the day, the hotter it gets, with the sun beating down into the gorge.
If you are not energetic enough to climb, then take the cable car, it cost R195- return, (R20 cheaper if you book on-line and also check for specials) and make the beautiful, easy going 1.5hrs round trip walk along to McLear's Point . If you go in the pm. take the boardwalk towards the centre of the plateau and walk along to the point, there is beautiful flora and views down to the Cape of Good Hope and towards the Cape Flats and you get a great feeling for the size of the mountain. On the return walk cut over to the the westen path which takes you along the cliffs giving fantastic views of the bay and the sun going down in the sea. It is a beautiful walk, away from the masses and well worth the effort. Be careful on the return route, the path is not secured with barriers. It is not dangerous but one does have to look where one is going and maybe not so pleasant for someone who has fear of heights.