Tag Archives: Garden Route

New love

10 Nov


When I was a teenager I tend to fall in love with a different boy every week. One day my neighbour, the other day my classmate, a week later my sportsinstructor and ofcourse all big brothers of my friends were making me daydream. Nowadays that madness seems to have taken place for another obsession. Every week it is another country or city that takes my breath away. And just like 15 years ago, I try to convince you all that this time it is really love. This time it is ‘The One’ – no really the most amazing place I have ever visited…. But then a week later we cross the next border and a new place steals my heart.

But this time I can tell you guys it is REAL. I have found ‘The One and Only’ – the city of ‘my dreams’; Cape Town. And although all warnings and horror stories made me anxious and very suspicious, when driving into this thrilling city I would like to call it ‘love on first side’. As soon as the impressive Table Mountain cought my eye, when I saw the stunning and rough sea and their stunning beaches surrounding this metropolitain city, I knew…. One day I am going to live here. This city, being a kind of mixture of Miami, Sydney and San Fransisco got it all and does not feel dangerous at all…

It doesn’t matter who you are or what you like, there is a place for you in Cape Town. There is so much to do and see, getting bored is just impossible. For example drive the Chapmans Peak and spot the beautiful beaches and views, drive up to Cape Point National Park to spot stunning nature, ostriches and pinguins or get lost in the most beautiful botanical gardens in the world. Like your food and wine? Only a twenty minute drive away takes you into the wineries of Stellenbosh and Franshoek all hosting their own amazing restaurants that stand for quality, amazing service and VERY reasonable prices! Want to work on your bucketlist? Jump onto a catamaran from the exciting V&A Harbour and within 5 minutes you can take: 1) spotting dolphins 2) breaching whales 3) flapping seals 4) another incredible sunset off your list. If you like to move that body, Cape Town is the place. Go horseback riding on the white sand of Noordhoek, do one of the many hiking trails on the Table Mountain, surf the Indian or Atlantic Ocean while jumping over the ‘Great White’ or run another marathon every week. Capetonians love their sports, everywhere you look you see people running, surfing, biking and in every park a bootcamp is going on. What an energy! For some more adreanaline jump into a cage and watch a Great White Shark ripping a tuna apart right in front of your eyes or if it is fashion that makes your heart go faster, no worries either! After your (shopping) workout it is time to show that body and trendy style of yours at Campsbay… Miami right on the beach! Like to take it a bit easier? In long Street there are plenty of relaxing bars with good draught beer and live music. More of the romantic type? Take your honey up to Signal Hill and watch the billion lights of this city of my dreams…. ( When we were up there having a take away coffee and staring into the lights, Manengu made the comment: “Beautiful isn’t babe? Can you imagine that someone is being killed out there every half an hour…?” “Pffff, thank you Manengu, perfect timing for these romantic statistics”.)

Not only Cape Town made our trip through South Africa unforgetable. The South African hospitality was one of the most important ingredients. When I emailed my ex colleague Frank that I was visiting CT, the first thing he mentioned was: “Great, you guys can stay at mine and please stay a month as there is so much to do…..” Stay a month!? I think my best friends would not even have me a whole month! But that is South Africa for you. Everyone will make sure your long trip was worthwile the effort. When I was having a migraine, the hostel would not let me stay in my tent in the pouring rain, but checked me in an ensuite double room, no charge!! And after not having seen my old friend from London in 10 years, Thomas let us stay in his flat, took the day off from work and showed us around in Joburg for days!

Although South Africa is absolutely stunning and amazing, I did start to miss the rough Africa along the way. It did seem to be the weird one out in our itinerary. After all the places we visited, I would like to say that South Africa is not really Africa…. The perfect country for an amazing and complete holiday, but to get to know the real Africa? Everything was so well organised. The good roads, the nice car we were driving, the famous Route 62, The Wine and Garden Route that takes you too all the perfectly preserved National Parks with their perfectly kept camping spots. Everywhere along the road hostels and B&B’s, so never to worry where to sleep that night. Like I said, Cape Town is amazing, but has nothing to do with Africa. The fact that the country is so well organised and easy to travel also makes that the average traveler staying in the backpackers hostel is quite young. Which means happy hours, dreads, beer games, mini skirts and stoned surf dudes, apple sour shots and ‘Sex On The Beach cocktails, lots of shagging in the dorms and ‘who ever takes his shirt off gets a free drink’ behaviour. And although I like to deny the fact that I am almost thirty, I have to admit that dreads and beergames just do not do the trick for me anymore. Luckily Manengu totally disagrees with me on this subject and enjoyed miniskirts and apple sour all nights long….

Dear Frank, thank you again for your enormous generousity and for showing me my future city. Martijn, thank you, the wine tasting was devine, wish you were there though! Marije en Hein, It was so kind to have us at your amazing place in Herolds Bay; we have not often seen such a stunning place, enjoy! Dear Thomas, after all those years… Wow! Thank you again! In Joburg we could definitly ‘use somebody…someone like yououou….. !!!’ x










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