Africa Day Eleven: A Morning Walk In Capetown And A Ride Along The Coast To The Cape Of Good Hope.
I awoke the next day early for the second time in South Africa. This time, however, I had time to head outside and do some sightseeing before we began our tours. . I left the charming Underberg House in the morning twilight.
Not having a map, I decided to head in the direction where we had a late dinner the night before at this nice little place the Beleza, great Portuguese and Italian food and a lovely waitress. .
I walked through the upscale neighborhood, with many businesses and nice restaurants, including this one the Millers Thumb, which we heard was one of the best seafood restaurants in Capetown, but which had no tables available for us the previous evening.
As I walked upward Table Mountain was to my left and north and, to my left and south was this famous peak, Lion’s Head, now lit by the rising sun , We would see more of this peak later during our travels.
There were still views of the mountains and I watched the different shades caused by the rising sun. It was a pleasant walk, a little cool, as it was early Spring here in the Southern Hemisphere. I always love exploring the neighborhoods of the cities I visit. We had a wonderful breakfast and soon were off for a tour of a place I had first heard of in grade school, the famous and historic Cape of Good Hope. Here is a link to some photographs from my morning walk. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/africa-october-2016/nggallery/africa-october-2016/South-Africa-Capetown-Morning-walk-October-19-2016-
We continued along the coast, learning so much about the history, culture and natural environment from our excellent guide Peter as we enjoyed the spectacular views, many with Lion’s Head peak in the distance.
We continued our journey South and into Cape point National park where we saw some of the local wildlife. . Here is a link to some more photographs from our drive to the Cape. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/africa-october-2016/nggallery/africa-october-2016/South-Africa-drive-to-Cape-point-October-19-2016
We now were at a place I first heard about so many years ago, in history class in elementary school , when I first learned of Henry the Navigator and his sponsorship of exploration of the west African coast, how it later led discovery of this place, the Cape of Good Hope by Bartolomeu Diaz and eventually to Vasco da Gama circumnavigating this point on his first voyage to India. I so often wondered about those first great explorers and the adventures they took into distant and unknown lands.
We had two options to reach the summit, and the lighthouse, a long walk from the parking lot or a tram, the Flying Dutchman. Short on time, we took the ride on the Flying Dutchman and we were soon treated to the spectacular views from the observation deck.
I thought of the many sailors who looked forward, for weeks and moths, to this place since it meant they have crossed from one great ocean, the Indian, into another, the Atlantic. I have now been on all three great capes of the Southern Hemisphere, here, the Tasmanian Cape which separates the Indian and Pacific Ocean and Cape Horn which separates the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. There is no exact point were this separation occurs but I sure was close enough,
And looking south from any of these Capes, there is only the cold waters of the great Southern Ocean separating you from distant ice covered continent of Antarctica at the bottom, or top, depending how you look at it, of our planet.
We spent some time taking in the panoramic views from the lighthouse, learning that this is not in fact the southernmost point in Africa, that is at Cape Agulhas a few miles to the east. After having enough of the awesome views, and strong winds, we made our way back down to the Flying Dutchman and then to the Two Oceans restaurant for a delicious meal with a spectacular view. Here is a link to some more photographs fro our visit to the Cape of Good hope and Cape Point. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/africa-october-2016/nggallery/africa-october-2016/South-Africa-Cape-of-Good-hope-October-10-2016-
- A sailor’s geography is not always that of the cartographer, for whom a cape is a cape, with a latitude and longitude. For the sailor, a great cape is both a very simple and an extremely complicated whole of rocks, currents, breaking seas and huge waves, fair winds and gales, joys and fears, fatigue, dreams, painful hands, empty stomachs, wonderful moments, and suffering at times.A great cape, for us, can’t be expressed in longitude and latitude alone. A great cape has a soul, with very soft, very violent shadows and colours. A soul as smooth as a child’s, as hard as a criminal’s. And that is why we go Bernard Moitesseir