WORDS: KIT HEATHCOCK IMAGES: NATASH LASSEN, HEATHER DURAND & SHUTTERSTOCK
The coastline and long beaches stretching north from the harbour and city centre are a kite-surfing mecca, hosting international competitions, and coming alive with colourful kites every windy afternoon. The sun sets dramatically into the ocean with Robben Island part of the panorama, and the kilometres of sandy beach all enjoy the picture-postcard view of Table Mountain that is such a feature of the Western Seaboard.
Asked what she loves best about living in Milnerton, resident Chantal Hurley says, “It’s got to be the mountain, wherever you are this side, at home or out shopping you can see it. It also stays lighter longer here than in the Southern Suburbs, and I love being close enough to walk my dog on the beach every day.”
It’s a great area for families too. Moving to Cape Town from Joburg 20 years ago, Barbara Howe did extensive research on where to live and the Western Seaboard came out tops. “It had a good choice of private and public schools, the housing was (just) within our budget, and the lifestyle available was good for a young family.” Table View was their home for many years before moving to Melkbos. “There’s a large variety of people and a wonderful mix of humanity. The outdoors lifestyle is a common thread among most West Coast families, and the nearby beautiful beaches are a blessing.”
Newer suburbs Sunningdale and Parklands have extended the city limits to the edge of the protected Blaauwberg Nature Reserve. This fynbos and strandveld buffer zone keeps the city in check and allows the last outpost of the Western Seaboard, Melkbosstrand, to retain its identity as a small seaside dorpie with a strong sense of community.
Covering older established suburbs such as Milnerton and Table View, the seaside villages of Bloubergstrand and Melkbosstrand, the newer Garden City development of Sunningdale, Blouberg beach front, all the way to the new gated developments on the dunes around Big Bay, there really is a huge variety of property along the Western Seaboard.
Beachfront properties are as you’d expect highest in demand and price point, but first-time buyers can still get a foot on the property ladder just inland in Parklands and Sunningdale, and older family homes in Milnerton and Table View provide excellent value on spacious plots.
The wide choice of schools is another of the Western Seaboard’s attractions for families. Milnerton High School continues to have an excellent reputation for both academics and sport, other popular public schools are Table View High School and Melkbosstrand High along with their feeder primary schools.
In the private sector there’s a plethora of choice – Elkanah House, Parklands College, CBC St Johns, Blouberg International and Melkbosstrand Private School. There are also Generations School, Rallim Preparatory, Shelanti and a new Curro, so prospective parents have their work cut out on the decision-making front.
One decision that isn’t hard, is making the beach the focus of family downtime. “We enjoy going to Small Bay with the kids,” says resident Jolanda Donnoli. “Or to Eden on the Bay at Big Bay where the kids play soccer on the big patch of grass across from all the restaurants, ride their bikes, or we picnic on the grass.” They also enjoy taking a drive to Melkbos for an ice cream followed by shell hunting and building sandcastles with the kids.
Life-saving clubs, surfing, SUP, as well as the high profile kite-surfing are a way of life here. Then there’s flat-water wind-surfing, kayaking and water-skiing at Rietvlei. With golf at either Milnerton Golf Club or Atlantic Beach, plenty of sports clubs, including the Sunningdale Sports complex, and the local parkrun along the beach every Saturday morning in Melkbos, an active outdoor lifestyle is easy.
The MyCiTi bus service is a boon for residents commuting into the CBD, bypassing peak traffic congestion along the R27 and Marine Drive, although with Milnerton lagoon, Rietvlei wetlands, flamingos and the everpresent Table Mountain view to look at, even slow traffic has its compensations on the Western Seaboard.
As a family we love being close to the beach and we enjoy the quietness of this area compared to the city. We’re also quite central to all the wine farms for outings. JOLANDA DONNOLI, RESIDENT
RE/MAX Property Associates | 021 521 3100
Live the spectacular life with the amazing views of Table Mountain in the background. Milnerton, Blouberg, Table View, Parklands and Sunningdale are central to most areas and are expanding and upgrading continuously. Many international visitors come here in the summer to partake in kitesurfing. Schools in the area are affordable in comparison to other areas, making the cost of living a lot lower than elsewhere in Cape Town. Public transport to the CBD and airport is easily accessible and reliable to use. Beachfront apartments are always a good investment as holidaymakers fill this up over the holiday season. BnBs, self-catering accommodation, backpackers or hostels have also seen some growth in recent years and have become highly competitive.
Caron Leslie, broker/owner 082 416 6395 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Complete Coast Properties | 021 553 2235
Property sales have started gaining momentum on the Western Seaboard. We’ve seen interest from foreign buyers, who’ve been relatively quiet for some time. This is encouraging as it shows confidence that the property market will strengthen. This might be the last chance to snap up properties at 2017 prices before the market turns. Local investors are looking to smaller, affordable apartments to grow rental portfolios and local families continue the trend towards gated estates and security villages. After a very hesitant buyer pool in 2019, we expect to see great confidence in the market from early next year.
Hayley Bird, principal 082 561 7116 | email@example.com
- Homespun: affordable fine dining
- Indian Chapter: authentic Indian food
- Cowboys and Cooks: next-level steaks
- Blowfish Restaurant: elegant seafood and sushi with views of mountain and ocean
- All in the Kitchen: tasty lunches and baked treats
- On the Rocks: elegant dining right on the ocean
- Ons Huisie: family-friendly restaurant in historic fisherman’s cottage
- Black Bull: steak and sushi with kids play area
- Café Orca: excellent seafood with views over Melkbos beach
- Die Damhuis: varied menu, kids play area and beach views
- Paddocks: small neighbourhood centre with Woolies Food and Spar
- Bayside: movies, all the high-street stores and independent boutiques
- Table Bay: brand new mall, lots of clothing brands, furniture and decor
- West Coast Village: small shopping centre with Pick n Pay, Woolies Food, Sportsman Warehouse
- Sandown Road: Builders Warehouse, PNA, Food Lovers Market and Sandown Crossing with Checkers Hyper
- Eden on the Bay: Pick n Pay and a variety of beach boutiques and a surf shop
- Canal Walk: serious retail therapy and entertainment hub
- Kite-surf, surf and SUP along Blouberg beach and at Big Bay
- Wind-surf, paddle and waterski on Rietvlei
- Bird-watching in Table Bay Nature Reserve around Rietvlei wetlands and Milnerton Lagoon
- Milnerton Playhouse for amateur productions, musicals and shows
- Tour SANCCOB seabird rehabilitation centre to meet the penguins, or volunteer
- Visit the 23 Jump Street trampoline park in Table Bay mall