Meet the Boulders Beach Penguins in Simons Town

A view of penguins on boulders beach.

Do something really unique and swim with Penguins - there is only one place in the world where this is possible! Boulders Beach in the Table Mountain National Park, South Africa is the place to go. No visit to Cape Town is complete without a chance to meet this famous colony of African Penguins.


The Boulders is a series of beautiful secluded coves and beaches near the picturesque village of Simonstown. You can include this delightful destination on a Cape Point tour or on a self-drive scenic drive around the Cape Peninsula. Boulders now falls under the protection of Table Mountain National Park in order to manage the wellbeing of the colony, the associated tourism and the environment.

There is a universally accessible wooden boardwalk around the perimeter, but Foxy Beach is where you can closely observe the Penguins nesting and moving about. At the entrance to The Boulders there is an information kiosk and guided tours can be arranged from the main visitor centre. There are forest walks around the inlets and also rest areas so you can enjoy the views of False Bay.

Boulders Beach is a great choice for a day out - it is sheltered from wind, heavy waves and currents by the large rocks that look like giant marbles. The waters of False Bay are warmer than along the Atlantic seaboard. You and your family can find a spot on the sand for a picnic and just relax and enjoy the scenery.

Boulders Penguin Colony Info

If you are planning a beach picnic, please check the tide tables, as some beaches are not accessible at high tide Penguins are untroubled by the presence of humans but they have razor sharp beaks and can inflict serious injury if you get too close or they feel threatened.

  • Jackass Penguins are called this name because of their loud braying call

  • The main nesting season is from February to August

  • The Boulders Penguins are considered Vulnerable and therefore Endangered

  • You can help save the Jackass Penguins by purchasing or sponsoring a nesting box which will assist with their survival

Donít be a Jackass!


  • Avoid Penguin nesting sites

  • Do not harass or chase the Penguins (inform your children about the Penguinís bite)

  • The Boulders is surrounded by residential properties, please respect their privacy and driveways

  • This is a national park and plants and other materials cannot be removed

  • No fires, gas stoves or barbeques (braais) of any kind can be lit in the park

  • Dogs on leads can go on the upper boardwalk only