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Where: South AfricaWhat to do: A visit to Cape Town must include a hike to the top of the iconic Table Mountain. Discover the history of Cape Town by visiting Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was locked up during the days of Apartheid in the country. The Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens are a massive expanse of 52,800 sq km, offering some of the most beautiful collections of flora and fauna. Don't forget to get a pint of crafted beer at Woodstock, which is now home to Cape Town's best micro-breweries.
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Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden
Whether you are a botany enthusiast or not, this place is a must visit to understand the diverse species of flora that grow here. The Botanical gardens mostly exhibit the species of plants that are peculiar to Africa and won't be found on other continents. The conservatory houses species from different regions. A bit of learning and a bit of fun.
Loved an afternoon hike up Table Mountain to arrive just in time for a perfect sunset. I finished the day with a dinner in the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront Area. The next day I went to see the Robben Island Museum (the most visited monument in S.A.) where Nelson Mandela was held captive for 18 years. A visit to Camps Bay Beach and Clifton Beach on the last day wrapped up my stay in Cape Town. Next stop: Cairo!
One of the most fascinating destinations for archeologygeeks is the Cradle of Humankind. This UNESCO World Heritage Site opens you up to the fossil remains of early man (Hominids) and stone tools made by them in the sites of Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai, and Environs. From the laps of science, move into the arms of history as you trace the fight against one of the greatest battles of our time with a trip to Robben island. This is where political leader Nelson Mandela spent 18 years in prison. Next, follow the footsteps of Mahatma Gandhi with a visit to landmarks such as the Pietermaritzburg Station, the Phoenix Settlement, the Satyagraha House and Museum, and the Hamidia Mosque.
Chapman's Peak Drive
Chapman’s Peak Drive, South AfricaTouted as a major engineering feat back in 1915 and 1922 when it was built, Chapman’s Peak Drive is a 9 kilometer-long beautiful, winding road will amaze you! It offers some of the most breathtaking vantage points that you will ever see, and it won’t be surprising if you manage to spot dolphins or even whales in the ocean below! But don’t get too caught up in the scenery! The road has 114 curves which make it necessary for drivers to be slow and cautious. Don’t worry though; the views will most definitely be worth your while!
After taking funicular up to lighthouse and taking the usual touristy pictures, consider taking the walk to the Cape of Good Hope. It is an easy descending path passing through many different areas of flora and terrain. BEWARE OF THE BABOONS , they will snatch anything and everything from your hand.... The tip of South Africa where Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet is a treat to the eye.. the climb and 1 hr walk towards the cape of good hope is worth the natures beauty...
St James St
Day 1: On our road trip from Johannesburg, we finally reach St James Bay located on the Simon's Town train line and the Main Road that runs down the False Bay coast of the Cape Peninsula..This place is well known for for its colorful Victorian bathing boxes. We paid a quick visit to this place for some interesting photos. The colorful bathing boxes are charm of this shore...
Cape Town City Centre
Our first trip and also the best way to explore Cape Town, was to take a city sightseeing hop on and hop off double decker bus, where you have 2 busses available , the Red bus stops at 17 attractions including Table Mountain, The Castle, District Six, Camps Bay and V&A Waterfront, Busses come by at stops every 20 minutes and the Blue bus stops at 13 attractions including Kirstenbosch Gardens, Imizamo Yethu Township, Hout Bay and V&A Waterfront, busses come by at stops every 45 minutes – we took the Red bus, be sure to stop at Mariner’s Wharf, Hout Bay to have lunch, it was the most amazing fish We have ever eaten in South Africa and off course accompanied by one of South Africa’s best wines.
Camps Bay Beach
After all the mornings excitement, we packed our bathing suites and set off to spent the day at Camps Bay’s beach. On the beach front there are many great restaurants, but there was one in particular that stood out, a blue fisher village look alike, with a big sign outside, stating OYSTERS for R8 ($0.8) each!! Wow these where the BEST oysters we have eaten through out the World!!!! Their food is pretty spectacular as well and very affordable for this particular area, well to be honest most probably through out the whole of South Africa.
Table Mountain Aerial Cableway
Next stop is Table mountain cable way, we are all set with our sports shoes and full enthusiasm to hike the table mountain, (due to lack of time we decided to hike only table mountain, for a breathtaking view you can also hike “Lions head” & “devils peak”) we took cable car to the top and decide to hike on our way down. We line up for our turn to get into the cable car, it’s a beautiful view of the mountain from the cable way..I'm here in Cape Town the most beautiful end of the world.Cape Town lies at the foot of the impressive table mountain who steep slopes encroach on the whole area and the long sprawling bay. It is 2 miles long and 3,500ft above sea level. Named table mountain by Antonio de Saldana, first European to sail into the bay in 1503. More often than not the mountain top is covered by a white (TABLE CLOTH) when clouds are formed by a warm south easterly wind rising up the mountainside and meeting colder air at the top. Giving us a spectacular view From top Lions head.** Other recommended places: (which I couldn’t visit due to lack of time )
Tucked away in the southern suburbs of Cape Town, Constantia is where the first vineyards were planted in South Africa. There are just five estates here, namely, Klein Constantia, Groot Constantia, Buitenverwachting, Constantia Uitsig, and Steenberg. Located on the slopes of Constantia Mountain, these are worth visiting, especially if you’re not keen on heading further out. The Cape Winelands, however, are some of the most breathtakingly beautiful in the world. Several of the wine routes are within an hour or less easy driving distance from Cape Town along the N1 from Cape Town to Stellenbosch. Home to over 200 wine producers in the valley, this is the country’s leading wine area. The Franschhoek and Paarl wine routes are also worth exploring.
Lined with clubs, restaurants and boutiques, Long Street is where the action is. MeMeMe (mememe.co.za) stock labels from local designers like Doreen Southwood Jinn and Silver Spoon. Aspiring Lady Gagas will love the avant-garde finds at Traffic (Trafficshop.co.za). For artsy, locally scoured home decor, head to Cape Quarter, where Africa Nova (Africanova.co.za) sells contemporary regional ceramics, textiles and fine art that blend in African references.
Every Saturday morning, chic Capertonians descend on the Old Biscuit Mill for Neighbourgoods Market (neighbourgoodsmarket.co.za) where over 100 local farmers, bakers and artisans purvey their freshest wares in a gargantuan former warehouse. The colorful Bo-Kaap district has sweet homes in shades of watermelon lime, strawberry and tangerine which pepper the slopes of Signal Hill. Pose here for a photo op - it's the perfect souvenir.
Bella Donna / Posh Nosh
While there are only a handful of restaurants to choose from in Pringle Bay, the small town is a haven for foodies from the surrounding area. The Italian restaurant Bella Donna (+27 28 273 8413), on Hangklip Road, offers huge portions: the bruscetta, mussels and any of the pizzas come highly recommended. They willl even fix you up a doggy bag if you order more than you can eat (just make sure you hide it away from the sight of baboons when you get back to your room)
Hangklip Hotel (+27 28 273 8310) is the best watering hole in the area. Three bars – a central one, Plankies pub and the bush pub, which has a barbecue area – offer more than enough choice. Don't worry about driving back on the dirt road after sinking a few cold ones, as you can stay the night at this legendary spot for just over $20. Be sure to book ahead at weekends.
Harold Porter National Botanical Garden
The Harold Porter National Botanical Garden located between mountain and sea, in the heart of the Cape Fynbos region within the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve. With about 1600 plant species, the area contains a floral diversity per unit area that is greater than anywhere else in the world! The Garden consists of 10 hectares of cultivated gardens and 190.5 hectares of pristine natural fynbos. Its an awesome place to go for a walk.