West Coast National Park and Langebaan Lagoon

West Coast National Park and Langebaan Lagoon

With incredible picturesque landscapes, vast fields of spring flowers and a high level of endemism, the West Coast National Park is a must see destination. As the only non-estuarine tidal lagoon in South Africa, Langebaan Lagoon forms the central core of this 27600-hectare National Park and it protects about 32% of South Africa’s saltmarshes. Hundreds of thousands of Palaearctic migrant waders of numerous species visit its shores during the summer months thus making it one of South Africa’s “Important Bird Areas” and an internationally recognized RAMSAR wetland.

The Lagoon itself is divided into three management zones so as to enhance both the conservation of sensitive habitats and species while also maximizing the opportunities for a positive visitor experience.

A – Controlled Zone where recreational fishing and power boating is allowed.

B – Restricted Zone, where no fishing is allowed and only non-powered vessels such as sailing and canoeing are permitted.

C – The Sanctuary Zone where no access is allowed due to the sensitivity of this section.

No fishing from the shore is allowed along the Sixteen-mile beach nor is it allowed around the shores of any of the islands.

Sixteen-mile Beach, Malgas Island, Langebaan Lagoon, Jutten Island and Marcus Island form part of a well-managed marine protected area and the islands in particular, are critical for the breeding of many threatened and endangered seabirds such as the African Penguin, Cape Gannet and Bank Cormorant.

Spring is by far the best time to visit this reserve when the vast fields of flowers are at their best and driving slowly through the Posberg Flower Reserve (that is only open to visitors during the spring months) provides excellent opportunities for floral, bird and game viewing and photography.


Getting There

The West Coast National Park is situated approximately 90km’s north from Cape Town along the R27


Season and Weather

The climate is Mediterranean with warm summers and mild winters. Wind is present throughout the year with rain falling mainly in the winter months. Always be prepared for sudden changes in the weather. The summers are the dry and dusty months, whilst winter is the time when the fynbos is lush, green and in flower.


Other Activities
  • Water sports
  • Birdwatching
  • Game viewing
  • Hiking
  • Mountain Biking
  • Flower watching


Site Highlights
  • Seeberg Hide
  • Seeberg View Point
  • Geelbek
  • Abrahamskraal
  • Tsaarsbank
  • Posberg


Peter Chadwick

As a dedicated conservationist and wildlife & conservation photographer, Peter Chadwick has over 25 years of experience in terrestrial and marine protected area management. He is the founder of African Conservation Photography and has worked throughout southern Africa in some of its most special wild places, including the Kalagadi Desert, Kruger National Park, Drakensberg Mountains, the sub-antarctic Prince Edward Islands and De Hoop Nature Reserve and Marine Protected Area. This has instilled in him a deep passion for Africa, its wild places and its peoples.

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