Africa Adventures, Day 7: Cape Agulhas

Tuesday, February 22, 2011
After a lovely breakfast (thanks to Jackie) we were off for the final leg of this round of driving: Cape Town! However we decided to make a slight detour (thanks to the recommendation of Jackie) and see the very southern tip of Africa. We drove through endless fields and a handful of tiny towns before arriving to a cold and rainy strip of rocky land called Cape Agulhas. It was a hike of a couple hundred meters before reaching the place where the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean meet, and we arrived cold and soaking wet but pleased!

Yours truly at the southernmost point in Africa. To the left is the Indian Ocean, to the right is the Atlantic Ocean.

There were lots of rolling hills in the Western Cape. It seemed a lot like parts of the midwest United States.

From there we drove up the west coast to Cape Town, which is a busy tourist and beach city. Very popular for vacationers, especially the Germans, English and to a lesser extent the Dutch. We had a three stay booked at a B&B, however due to some poor communications we were double-booked. We ended up at another place run by an retired soccer football player named Ferdinand Keller. He played for the German national team and had retired to Cape Town, running this B&B with his wife and daughter. It proved to be extremely popular with Germans - I was the only non-German speaking person in the whole place! Luckily we were going to be out-and-about the whole time.

Since this was New Years Eve we wanted to see what excitement was going on. We had heard about a fireworks show at the beach, so we wandered down to check it out. Around midnight some semi-impressive fireworks (think of the best fireworks you can get from Wyoming) started going off. It was obviously an amateur show but still enjoyable. Then ... the police showed up! Apparently not only was it an amateur show, but an illegal one too! The cops started chasing down everyone who looked like they had fireworks in their possession. We watched several people running down the beach with pyrotechnics in hand. We got out of there quickly before things escalated.

Some more photos from the drive can be found here.

Africa Adventures, Day 6: Garden Route

Monday, February 14, 2011
Well we've arrived to what we've been wanting to see - the Garden Route. A scenic route that runs along the southern coast of South Africa, it's supposed to be quite beautiful. And you know what - it was, but it was vastly overrated. The sights were nice, but there weren't any "must see" scenes, and there were all sorts of tourist trap places all along the route. Admittedly we left kind of disappointed.

It was still quite a ways to Cape Town, so we spent the night in a town called Heidelberg. We picked it on purpose because of the town in Germany with the same name. The town was tiny - maybe a couple hundred people at most, and the lone hotel in town had closed up shop. However we found the most charming little bed-and-breakfast joint, and their staff person Jackie was absolutely wonderful and adorable. Perhaps I will steal her from her boyfriend and kidnap her to the U.S.

This is the view from the back deck of the bed and breakfast. A nice river and empty fields as far as you could see.

This is the mosquito repellent of DOOM!!!