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Caves on the Beach - Virtual Rewards 2.0 Virtual Cache

Hidden : 06/23/2019
2 out of 5
3 out of 5

Size: Size:   virtual (virtual)

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Geocache Description:

A stunningly beautiful location!

This little patch of beach is nestled against the steep Kogelberg mountains, with intriguing caves tucked in between.

It features rocky cliffs with small caves that protect you from wind and too much sun. The water can be warm with lots of fun waves to play and surf in.

Check out the images in the gallery to see what you can look forward to.

You should bring a torch if you want to explore the caves. 

Besides being an obvious natural attraction, this location also has an interesting history. 

The spot is called “Dappat se gat” (Translated to English as “Dappat’s Hole” or rather “Dappat’s Cave”). Dappat was a livestock thief that used to lead the cattle to the large cave on the beach, slaughter them and then sell the meat to passing ships. The area adjoining the beach was used by cattle farmers from Gordon's bay to graze their cattle. When Dappat, who lived in the cave, took the cattle to his cave, the farmers were confused as their tracks dissapeared at the high water mark.

Only after smoke was spotted coming out of the cave's opening by a passing fishing boat, were the police asked to investigate. They found Dappat in the cave - complete with some stolen cattle and other remains.

This beach is also very popular with surfers, known to them as The Caves. 

A tragedy happened at this very spot on 19 April 2012, just 70m off the beach in the waves, when a 20-year-old bodyboarder, David Lilienfeld, died after a huge great white shark severed his right leg while he was in the water with his brother and friends.

Mr Lilienfeld was a member of the South African Bodyboarding Team.

Lucille Bester, an eye-witness from the Strand, recalled: “We’re very new to the area. It was a beautiful day and we were having lunch, watching the waves and the lovely scenery, checking out the surfers.

“We finished lunch… when I spotted the shark. I called my husband from the car and he confirmed it was a shark. At that point, the shark was maybe 20-30m from the surfers. There were maybe five or six surfers in the water.

“We started screaming from the top that there was a shark. Being from Joburg, we didn’t know how to get down the mountain. But they could not hear us.

“The shark disappeared, but the next thing we saw the shark come from under one of the guys and grab him. The shark shook him and then let him go. The surfer was screaming – it was terrible!

“Then it took him again. And that was it. It took him under. The first time it took him, there wasn’t any blood. But the second time there was.

”I stopped a car on the road. They phoned the cops and everybody ran down. It was something I thought I would never experience in my life. It’s been a traumatic day.”

In 2006, the City and the Shark Spotting Programme had initiated a trial of shark spotting at "Caves". This was unsuccessful as the logistics of deploying shark spotters to an area without public transport access, or within reasonable cycling or walking distance of a major centre, resulted in the trial being suspended.

Subsequent to the incident, a permanent Shark Spotter hut was installed above the caves next to the road to keep a watch over surfers and avoid another incident in the future. 


You can park at the coordinates listed and walk down to the beach - there is usually a car guard.


WARNING 1: Do NOT try and access the large cave near to high tide as you could get stranded, or pulled out to sea by a rip current. In case of emergency the NSRI (National Sea Rescue Institute) number is  072 448 8482 or 112. 

WARNING 2: Do NOT go swimming when the Shark Spotter hut is flying a white flag with a black shark on it. And remember, NO FLAG = NO SPOTTER ON DUTY.

The Shark Spotter hut is operational from 8:00-18:00 in Summer and 8:00-17:00 in Winter, 365 days a year. 

You would be wise to check the tides before coming here to ensure that you  rather visit during low tide, and miss high tide. There are a number of sites available for this, including this one:


It is interesting to note that a Traditional cache (GC223R8) was placed here in 2009, but it was eventually archived in 2016 due to ongoing maintenance issues. A Virtual cache is therefore the perfect type for this spectacular location, as it avoids the frustration for the CO of a Traditional cache, and also allows Finders the freedom to ignore the watching eyes of muggles, and soak in the location. 


How to log this find:

In order to log this virtual cache, you need to complete the following tasks:

  1. Take a photo of yourself, or of a personal item, at the entrance to any of the caves. (Faces not required)
  2. Take a photo from the beach of the Shark Spotter hut above. 
  3. Describe what colour flag is flying and explain what it means. (Information available at Shark Spotter hut, that you can drive to and park next to).
  4. Take a photo of the sign at the Shark Spotter hut that shows the date of last shark sighting and size of shark.
  5. Post your above answer and photos with your Found log. 

PLEASE NOTE: If the above requirements are not met, I will unfortunately be required to delete your log. 


This Virtual Cache is part of a limited release of Virtuals created between June 4, 2019 and June 4, 2020. Only 4,000 cache owners were given the opportunity to hide a Virtual Cache. Learn more about Virtual Rewards 2.0 on the Geocaching Blog.



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