So I just got back from Cape Town. Okay not just. It has been a couple of weeks now and I am still basking in my post holiday zen state. I am not a huge fan of Jo’burg (sorry, Jozi) but Cape Town, I absolutely adore. Of course, apart from the event that I went for, I made sure to do a few touristy things around the V&A Waterfront, where my hotel was. I posted some pictures on Instagram while I was there, but here are a few more. In case you are wondering, the featured picture is of the Springbok Steak I tried for the first time. A springbok is a kind of native deer or antelope, native to SA.
First of all, let me share the view from my hotel room. Yup. Every morning, I woke up to this – views of Table Mountain, clouds, tumbling over the summit, boats in the bay, and seals playing around in the water. It was glorious. Sadly I didn’t get to climb the mountain because it was closed on account of being too windy on the days I was free to go. I could not get over the view. It gave me so much life.
The Cobb Salad – this was my favourite thing on the room service menu. This picture doesn’t do it justice. Under those crunchy leaves was a velvety dressing, and then blue cheese, bacon, eggs and avocado gave it a salty, creamy finish. I also liked the fish and chips. Cape Town is a great place for fresh fish.
Breakfast was glorious as well. My two staples were the greek yoghurt with various seeds and fruit, the South African breakfast fry up, a cup of coffee, a cup of freshly squeezed orange juice, and a glass of champagne – in that order.
There was of course a visit to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent the majority of his 27 years of jail time. It was deeply, deeply moving. The tours on the island are given by ex-political prisoners and ex-inmates. I can’t begin to imagine how much courage it takes to return to the scene of your unjust incarceration for a good cause. This is me and Jala who was our guide for the day. God bless him. Can you imagine returning to the site of your unjust incarceration, and working there every day? He explained to us how he deals with it by focusing on the greater good that his custodianship and curation of the history serves.
Nelson Mandela’s cell. There was no place to hide, so he hid the manuscript of his book in one of the gardens outside, and got a friend (also incarcerated) to smuggle it out on his release from prison. Look at the barricade on those windows. Ain’t no way you’re getting out. I mean, can you imagine?!
One of the most fascinating things about prison life, was the food. There was one menu for Coloureds, and one for Blacks. The White political prisoners were kept in a different prison altogether. Even political prisoners who were fighting to end aparteid outside the prison walls, were subject to the same divisive treatment on the inside.
To get the the island, you had to go on a big ferry, and we saw whales and dolphins. My camera trigger finger wasn’t quick enough to catch the whale, but I did catch the dolphins swimming along with us. How amazing. Did you know that although South Africa occupies only 1% of the fact of this earth, they are number 3 in the world for biodiversity? I didn’t before this trip. I just couldn’t believe there was such beauty and such real dolphins on the other side of my lens. Not what they show you on the news about Africa, but real nonetheless. Watch my mini dolphin video: Dolphin watching in Cape Town
I met up with some cool people, and we ended up at a modern day speakeasie called the Gin Bar, which is on Wale Street. It is hidden away behind a gourmet chocolate shop, and so you won’t know it’s there, unless you know it’s there. And then guess what happened, the picture I posted on Instagram got picked up by this SA blog and they used it on their site in their own list of hip things to do in SA. It makes a blogger so happy to be right on the money in a new city, heeheehee.
Went to a wedding in Franschoek, which is a stunningly beautiful, mountainous part of the winelands. I felt like having a Sound of Music sing-a-long. As per, ‘the hills are aliiiiiiiiive, with the sound of muuuuusic….’ But I was wearing make up and back-breaking heels and it was a smart event, and bloody hot, so somehow, the thought of that tomfoolery died almost as soon as it appeared.
A lovely walkabout the V&A Waterfront Food Market where I bought a number of things, and I have filmed a haul video to share it all with you guys. Stay tuned for that post coming soon!
And then finally, I had one of the best experiences of my life, at The Test Kitchen in Cape Town, which is rated number 28 in the whole world. It was SO GREAT that it had to have its own separate post, and you can read all about it here, as soon as I post it.
Altogether a wonderful trip. This was only my second time in Cape Town. I can’t wait to visit it again, and experience even more of the wonderful food. I got so many good recommendations, but sadly didn’t have enough time.