So we're back in good ol' US of A! All I've got to say, is that South Africa was AMAZING, Chris and I have decided that it's been our favorite vacation yet, and thats saying a lot as we've done a lot of traveling and had some pretty amazing vacations. So I need to do our vaca recap in two different posts because honestly there's just too much to talk about! Just cutting down the photos to a manageable amount was tough. So I'm breaking it up into Cape Town, and Safari. So today, let's talk about Cape Town, South Africa! P.S. this is going to be a lengthy post because I want to recommend all the awesome things we did and give kudos to all the different companies we used.
Before I go into details about what we did, I just want to mention a couple things. So when we were planning this trip, we decided on the end of August because that's the end of winter in South Africa and therefore the bush is pretty thin which makes seeing animals during Safari a little easier. So the weather when we were there was a little cool, mornings and nights were chilly, between 40 and 60 degrees, but it would really warm up during the day which was great, so most of the time it was high 60s to mid 80s. The other thing I wanted to mention was the cost of the trip. We used miles to get there, so not having to pay for our flight was a huge help as thats can be a pricy portion of the trip. The hotels we very nice, not cheap, but not exorbitant either. Once we were there, we spent VERY little money on food and everything else which was unexpected after spending more that we expected on the lodging. That being said, we did meet lots of people who were doing the trip on a tight budget and seemed to be loving it. So I do think it's a trip you can do within most budgets. OK, now onto the fun stuff!
First, the flight blows and it's long, It took us about 30 hours or so door to door, but thats the price you pay for going to new and interesting places! We stayed at Cape Codegan, a little boutique hotel in the down town area. Everyone there was seriously amazing and super helpful and our room was really nice as was the rest of the hotel. We came knowing what we wanted to do, but hadn't had time to research and book tours, and they took care of all of that for us and made really FABULOUS choices!
So, above and below are some of the photos from when we did a ton of stuff in one day. We did a Shark tour SUPER early in the morning, and then a little driving tour of Boulders Beach (PENGUINS!) and Cape of Good Hope. We used Shark Explorers for the boat tour that took us to seal island (if you watch shark week, you know what I'm talking about) and saw some seals get munched on. That photo of the shark in full breach (jumping all the way out of the water) was the actual photo from our trip taken by the tour company. It was pretty insane and totally worth it, we saw lots of great white sharks very close up. It was nuts. Then Boulders Beach was a short stop, that photo of the two penguins on top of the rock is very Penguin from Batman and cracks me up, little evil villain penguins, plotting their next nefarious scheme. Seeing wild penguins was just pretty cool. Next was Cape of Good Hope, which was just beautiful. We hiked up to the lighthouse and then down along the coast where we saw some ostriches and got some really amazing photos. One of the things about this trip that made it so amazing was seeing animals you usually see in zoos out in the wild, If you're an animal lover, you really can't ask for anything more. The next day we did a tour of Wine Country, if you've ever been to Napa or Sonoma and done a wine tour there, the wineries are very similar. We used Wine Flies for this tour and they were great. They kept the whole thing super upbeat and interesting, it's definitely aimed towards a younger crowd, but still making sure to give you lots of great information. Ok, only a little bit more in this section...
Last but not least were some of the Architectural sites we saw in Cape Town. We headed to Bo Kapp, because I'm a designer, so of course I need to see the pretty colorful neighborhood and take lots of photos. It was pretty, but not as impactful as I was expecting it to be. I'm not sure why, but I was just expecting it to be a larger area, you really had to position yourself well to get a good photo, also, i wanted to swap out all the cars with colorful vespas or something to make it more picturesque. Oh the need to take perry pictures, it's silly sometimes. We just had a cab take us there as a little detour on our way to the Warf, and just had him wait while we took some photos, which really worked out perfectly as there aren't any shops or other sites up there. Then we headed down to the wharf, which is fun and touristy in all the very best ways possible. There's lots of good shopping and restaurants as well as live music and pretty views. I highly recommend taking an afternoon and evening in that area! So that's all I've got for this post, I'm trying to keep it brief as I could go on forever! Long story short, go to Cape Town! Check in next week to hear about our Safari!