On a clear day up at the old, decommissioned Cape Point Lighthouse, it feels like you can see all the way down to Antarctica.
The lighthouse at Cape Point is the most powerful on the South African coast. It has a range of 63 kilometres, and beams out a group of three flashes of 10 million candlepower each, every 30 seconds.
In the late 1850s the first lighthouse was completed; it still stands at 249 metres above sea-level on the highest section of the peak and is now used as the centralised monitoring point for all the lighthouses on the coast of South Africa. You would have thought it perfectly positioned on top of the cliffs overlooking the sea. But it was too high up, and its beam was often obscured by mist and foul weather.
Access to this historical building is by an exhilarating 3 minute ride in the wheelchair accessible Flying Dutchman funicular that transfers visitors from the lower station at 127 metres above sea level, to the upper station at 286 metres above sea level. Hop aboard the funicular and you’ll be whisked away on a scenic trip to the view site near the old Cape Point lighthouse. The means of transport to the view sit changed over time – there once was a diesel bus named after the “Flying Dutchman” ghost ship. Now, you’ll find an environmentally friendly funicular, the only one of its kind in the world! The entire funicular has been produced from South African resources.
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