When is the best time of year to see the Penguins in Simon’s Town?
I have a huge soft spot for these very dapper and elegant looking aquatic birds. Think in lines of the movies Happy Feet, Madagascar, Good Luck Chuck, and Mr Popper’s Penguins, bringing out their impressive and quirky qualities.
Here in Cape Town, we are lucky enough to have a whole penguin colony on our doorstep who braved lockdown level 1 and roamed the empty streets of Simon’s Town looking for adventure.
Best time of the year to visit
The great thing about Boulders Beach is that you can see the penguins throughout the year. Saying this, the best time to visit would be during their mating season (December to February) where you can see the birds and their natural behaviour.
Early mornings and late afternoons when they shuffle off to the beach or return from feeding are the best for photos.
Do remember to respect them in their natural environment and don’t touch or feed the penguins.
Day trip to Boulders Beach
This pristine family-friendly beach is top-rated for day trips and leisurely picnics.
Spread your blanket and have a relaxing day next to the ocean while the kids explore the rock pools and boulders. False Bay’s clear waters are also perfect for a quick dip in the sea to cool off on a hot summer’s day. The water is cold, but you’ll welcome the icy waters if you’re visiting between December and March!
Places to stay
If you’re from out of town, rent a car and spend a night or two in the historical Simons Town.
Mariner Guesthouse is situated in a quiet street about 1km from Boulders Beach and offers spectacular views of Simon’s Town from every room. With its tranquil setting, luxury rooms, and friendly hospitality, you’ll feel right at home from the moment you arrive.
Fun Penguin Facts
Their natural tuxedoes are not just a fashion statement; this also helps camouflage them while swimming and keeps them safe from predators.
Penguins’ eyes work better underwater than they do in the air.
Penguins don’t have teeth, but rather fleshy spines inside their mouths to help guide their food down.
Penguins are carnivores.
Once a year penguins experience a catastrophic moult where they lose all their feathers at once. They generally fatten up before this to survive the few weeks it takes for their feathers to grow back.
When visiting Boulders Beach, do yourselves a favour and hop over to the Visitor Centre where you can learn more about these darling penguins and their behaviour. Also, keep in mind that a small conservation fee is charged to enter the area, so I recommend making the most of your time there.