Wow! What an incredible summer holiday it turned out to be. Way back when I booked the holiday I thought this trip was going to be fun but Cape Town was everything I imagined and so much more! Not only is it one of the most stunning cities I have ever visited, but it just has so much to offer. In fact, I would need another week there to see everything that I set out to at the beginning of my stay.
And don’t get me started on the food…
The mother city
As the first city established at the tip of Africa, Cape Town is affectionately known as the mother city. The inner city itself is filled with historic buildings all nestled under the epic beauty of Table Mountain. Although it is only 1000 metres high, I really don’t think I have ever seen anything like it before. I even took a cable car ride to the top for the most stunning views of the city and the Atlantic Ocean out in Table Bay.
But it’s the little gems you find in the city itself that actually threw my itinerary into a tizz! So many small shops selling the most incredible curios of all sorts. I particularly liked the handmade jewellery. I found so many incredible pieces, including a brooch that I brought back home for my mother. Not only is it made using local sea shells, but it must have taken days to complete, it really is so intricate. Turns out that the owner also exports them to an online store that supports her as well. My mother loves it of course (she has an enormous collection of brooches) and wants more, a great reason to return to Cape Town.
There is so much to see outside the city itself, from the stunning valleys of the wine regions in Paarl and Stellenbosch to the slower, more idyllic way of life found up the West Coast, where tranquil fishing villages are in abundance. Fresh fish, shellfish and the delights of the sea abound, and I found myself eating seafood morning, noon and night.
A crying child leads to an unexpected discovery
It was while I was in the town of Paternoster that I came upon another great gift, this time for my sister. I was walking through this small fishing village and kept on hearing the sound of a crying child. I decided to investigate and found a boy on the side of a fishing hut. He had a massive thorn in his foot which I helped remove. I asked him where lived and he pointed to a small home at the end of the street. Naturally I took him there.
There I found his granny knitting the most amazing baby blanket I had ever seen. It was a multitude of colours and so tightly woven that you could almost feel the warmth it would provide. She explained to me in broken English that she made her living this way. It was such a weird coincidence as I had already picked out a similar blanket that I had been planning to buy for my sister who is expecting a baby. I bought one immediately – no worries of any credit card fraud here, everything is paid for in cash. In the rest of Cape Town, however, it pays to be vigilant at ATM’s and whenever you swipe your cards, but this is true in most cities isn’t it.
My sister loves the baby blanket, but none more so than her little newborn Emma who sleeps under it every night.
I wonder if in her dreams she sees Cape Town. I know I do, and I want to go back!.