In the middle of winter we head off into summer! 🙂 Edelweiss brings us safely with a direct flight from Zurich to Cape Town. And it already starts off really good, because the view of the snowy Alps is awesome.
After 11 hours, we find ourselves landing in Cape Town.
Welcome to The Mother City!
A month in Cape Town lies ahead of us! And thanks to numerous tips from good friends, it will not be boring. For today however, it is enough. We pick up our rental car and driving on the left side of the road, make our way to our accommodation in Bloubergstrand – about 20 km north from the city center. On recommendation we have booked a room at B & B Myoli Accommodation for the entire duration of our stay. Depending on how much Cape Town & the surrounding areas have to offer, we will set off from here on multiple day trips. Even in the middle of the night, the German Owner, Barbara, warmly welcomes us.
The time difference for us is only one hour, and so there is no jet lag. Nevertheless, we take it easy the next day. We shoot a few pictures of tour accommodation and also get a number of hints and tips from Barbara. She does volunteer work for children in the township Khayeltisha and offers us to come along to an event. Excellent! On top of that, she also invites us to a typical South African Braai (BBQ)! 🙂
In our accommodation there is WiFi, but we also like to be online on the go, and thus first things first – as always – we get ourselves prepaid data cards. On foot – yes on foot, because during the day it is safe here – we walk to Bayside Mall. Then we pick up delicious sandwiches and coffee at Carlucci’s and head off to the beach. Once there, we are completely fascinated by the fantastic views of Table Mountain and the city lying below it. Crazy!
Blouberg incidentally literally means Blue Mountain Beach, and Table Mountain can be seen from here in a blue haze.
In addition to the great panorama view, Bloubergstrand also offers good conditions for Kite surfers. Due to the high waves and ice-cold Atlantic, swimming here, however, is only for the Fearless. We sit here for a while and just watch the Kite Surfers. How good we have it: sun, beach and 30 degrees warmer than home! Caution: The cool wind does not let you feel how strong the sun is. Be sure to put sun cream on!
The next day, the first major attraction in Cape Town is on our agenda – the V&A Waterfront. Thanks to a good website finding parking space is not a problem and we can park the entire day for R10 (0.75 Euro). The parking overview and information on prices can be found here under Parking: http://www.waterfront.co.za/maps-and-floorplans
The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront is not only an entertainment boardwalk, but a complete little town. You can spend hours between the Victorian houses and converted warehouses, where restaurants and souvenir shops are located. There is also a large selection of African crafts. From the V&A Waterfront you will also find the tours to the Prison island, Robben Island. The Two Oceans Aquarium and a Ferris wheel ensure lots in passing the time.
A Landmark in the Waterfront is the Clock Tower.
In Nobel Square stand the statues of the four Nobel Peace Prize laureates of the country.
In the Waterfront Food Market food and delicacies from all around the world are offered.
Before the giant Victoria Wharf shopping center is an amphitheater in which currently drumming and dancing on show.
In the Watershed you will find great individual shops and local designers exhibiting here.
Near the Clock Tower there is a jetty for observing sea lions. Here are a few more impressions of the waterfront in a photo gallery:
Saturday is market day at the Old Biscuit Mill. Shops of local artisans in the old factory site in Woodstock neighborhood are also open during the week. However, only on Saturday from 9am to 14pm does the Neighbourgoods Market take place, where you can eat everything from around the globe. Belgian waffles, Indian curry, pizza, magical cupcakes, smoothies, quiche, bread, vegetables, sandwiches and and and! It is jam-packed, yet there is a relaxed atmosphere and the food is delicious! 🙂 Absolutely recommended!
Thereafter we still take a drive to Big Bay, about 30 minutes north of downtown. There the King of the RedBull Air kitesurfing competition is currently taking place. An event you do not just see everyday, right in your backyard. 🙂
Sunday is also market day, specifically in the district of Hout Bay, which lies south en route to the Cape of Good Hope. The Bay Harbour Market is located at the right end of the bay. Similar to the Neighbourgoods Market in the Old Biscuit Mill, there are Mexican, Tunisian, Indian, Asian, German and of course South African delicacies. Beside several souvenir stalls traditional music is also being played on a small stage. Here again, we are infected with the relaxed nature of Capetonians!
Directly next door is “Fish at the Rocks”, which supposedly offers the tastiest fish and chips in Cape Town. Unfortunately, we have already tried so much at the market that we just could not manage to give it a try…
Behind Fish on the Rocks we take a look at Chapman’s Peak Drive on the opposite side of the bay. This in the mountain rocky coast road is known as one of the finest in the world. We want to drive along it on a later trip to the Cape of Good Hope. On the banks a sea lion is sun tanning and the old cannon recalls the former stronghold of the colonial era.
A little way away from the market is the fishing harbour of Hout Bay. There are several stalls and sea lions are attracted in with fish.
In addition to the fishing harbour – at Mariner’s Wharf – you have access to the sandy beach of Hout Bay. There are also restaurants, souvenir shops and in the hills beyond you can recognize the Lichtenstein Castle.
We drive the Victoria Road on the Atlantic coast back towards Cape Town and enjoy the wonderful panorama view. At the many lay-bys, one can for example, take a look at the white sandy beach and the turquoise waters of Llandudno. Dreamlike!
On the right side of Victoria Road you have a view of the 12 Apostles, which forms the back of Table Mountain.
Our next stop is Camps Bay. In this classy town of Cape Town, there is of course a beautiful beach. With great views and numerous cafes and restaurants one can unwind and enjoy the sunset. Camps Bay is under constant video surveillance and is therefore regarded as particularly secure. However, we have not felt unsafe anywhere so far.
For sunset we drive a little further to Sea Point. On the long promenade you can take a wonderful walk. There is also a seawater swimming pool and several food stalls.
And with this beautiful day our first impressions of Cape Town also comes to an end. We are now already locked in by the wonderful scenery and fun-loving nature. Sequel follows! In our second part we drive up Table Mountain, take a city tour and visit Robben Island.
Rental Car & Parking
Rent a car in Cape Town? Absolutely! There are so many beautiful destinations in the vicinity, and of course it’s also fun, to drive along the coastal roads with their super views. Once you have gotten used to driving on the left, you only have to be careful that you do not get caught in rush hour traffic. That means, one should try to avoid driving into Town Centre mornings between 7am and 9am and out in the afternoons 16 to 18 o’clock at. You should also be aware of the minibus taxis, as it is obvious that for them there are no traffic rules. Also riding in one of these minibus taxis is not recommended.
Parking is no problem in Cape Town. In the city center there are several parking lots and parking garages.
In addition, you can actually also park everywhere on the roadside. If these have a charge during the day time, an official parking attendant will come along, collect money and directly print a parking ticket for you.
Then you also meet the unofficial parking attendants in Cape Town. Where parking is actually free, they point out free parking spots, and assist in parking maneuvers in and out of these parking spots. For this they expect a tip from between R2-R5, when you return to your car. Of course, they also try to get more money from tourists; A Capetonian will however not give them more than R5. It is on all accounts always useful to have small change with you.
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