Thursday, July 11, 2013

Cape Town: Cape Peninsula Tour

As many of you know, I recently took a vacation to South Africa with my mother to celebrate my recent graduation. Our first stop was Cape Town. Our first tour, was the Cape tour.

On the Cape tour we traveled along the southern cape of South Africa in a small minivan with one other couple. Yes that was it, no bus tours in the off-peak season. Woop woop! During the tour, we visited the Cape of Good Hope, boulder, and made several other quick stops to view marinas and local dairies for a quick cup of liquid caffeine.

To start off the day, we were picked up at our hotel by the V and A Marina in Capetown. When we stepped outside, there was torrential rain that was immediately making the streets flood. The only thought that was running through my head.."This is going to be a long day." I was very wrong. It was an eventful day full of surprises.

The tour took up along the Western portion of the cape and then back up the Eastern side before returning to our hotel. The views along the way were magnificent and not at all what I was expecting from South Africa. The grass was green, the hills were full of rocks and green trees and flowers. For the start of winter, everything was very pretty and lush.

First big stop was the Cape of Good Hope. The most South Western location of South Africa. There are wild ostrich and baboons by the sides of the roads and parking lots. Coming from the Pacific Northwest, the wild baboons, were a welcome sight. The beach at the Cape of Good Hope is rocky and majestic. This was a great place to step out and enjoy the South African coast line. It was a little windy and cold outside, but well worth the visit to take in the scenic view of the cape.

Once at Cape Point, With the help of a funicular, we went to the top of the lookout and had a spectacular view of the blue ocean crashing against the beach full of rocks. Only to descend back down on the funicular to have a wonderful lunch at the bottom.

The last stop was a small area in town called Boulder. Boulder is known for a small section of beach that houses African penguins. Yup, I said penguins. There is a small park at the edge of the town along a beach that has been fitted with wooden walkways for visitors to see the penguins nesting on the beach.  While we were there, there was over 100 penguins running around and nesting in the sand with their young chicks. This is the place to go if you want to get up close to a penguin. Do not expect to touch or interact with the penguins, but know that they will walk right past you, or even under you on the walkways. This is the place to go if you love the little guys in tuxedos and want a great photo opportunity.

When the day was over, I was ready to head back. I felt that the tour covered more territory than expected and I went back to my hotel very gratified with my first days excursion.

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