Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Wine, Vistas and Capes

We are truly enjoying South Africa –firstly the landscape and stunning vistas from farmlands and vineyards to semi-deserts and rugged mountains, the way of life, food, wine  and down home hospitality -bunny chow (curry in hollowed out bread) bobotie, biltong, boerewors, droewors and braai and not forgetting pinotage!. However many amenities are somewhat old fashioned eg slow internet, slow service and exhorbitant prices for non essential and luxury items. And heavily protected luxury exists side by side with poverty.

Left Durban Thurs May 10 after a big Cockerell family send off! Travelled through farmlands with Drakensberg Ranges as a stunning backdrop. Through hills to the dry  rocky plateau with cacti then down to the coast to Jeffreys Bay surf spot. Next day via highway 62 through Natures Valley-pine forests and pristine rocky beaches. Then on to Knysna –spent the night at Tree Tops house overlooking the bay at Knysna- delicious oysters at the pretentious restaurant at the heads. Next stop Barrydale-no room at hotels or B&B’s due to film crew overrunning town-so stayed at Christine’s farm house- simple cosy home owned by delightful old fashioned Africaans family.

Next morning went up through the windy, misty mountain roads then back down to farmlands near the coast-finally reached our real starting point after 2000kms! Cape Agulhas where the Atlantic and Indian oceans meet! Rugged, rocky wild coastline and the famous lighthouse.

Continued to Hermanus- a small town on the coast near  Walker Bay famous for winter whale watching. No whales insight however amazing rugged, rocky coast. 

Headed  to wine country  and stayed at the 19thcentury Cecil John Rhodes farmhouse at Boschendal - absolutely stunning in a vineyard .  Such picturesque scenery with vines of yellow/brown hues of Autumn- amazing-  two days of tasting most delicious wines - can’t remember which ones at end of each day- also  fantastic food and company with Chris and Kim.

Then on to beautiful Cape Town protected by the Table Mountain. Went up there for an amazing 360 view. Thanks to Chris's aunt  Marlene we ended up staying in a waterfront condo to make up for the suffering on the road!

Best ride yet to Cape point with a view to Cape of Good Hope and stunning vistas followed. Some 300 ship wrecks are down  there and Flying Dutchman all about.

Heading North to Namibia now and trying to catch the rhythm of long distance overland travel.

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