February 21 – 24, 2016 – Cape Town, SOUTH AFRICA — Most aptly named as Africa’s “Mother City”, we are the lucky ones to experience this place at its fairest of all … no ‘Cape of Storms’ as it was referred to by the early maritime explorers of Portugal and Spain in the mid-1400s. Well they did not arrive by luxury private jet … from which we had magnificent views of the Cape area and majestic Table Mountain
On arrival with such magnificent sunny and calm weather we made the immediate decision to ascend Table Mountain. It was such a glorious afternoon, so an opportunity not to be missed. We ascended over 3,500ft in under 5 minutes in the rotating gondola and we were atop one of the most magnificent African viewpoints. In the warm afternoon sunshine we were happy to be up there with our guide, Marius, and getting our first orientations of Cape Town and the huge Cape peninsula area.
For the next couple of days we have good adventures to look forward to … and all of this we do based from the waterfront comfort and convenience of renowned Cape Grace Hotel. One of this city’s very best … a story-book luxury boutique hotel set right in the heart of the bustling Victoria and Alfred Waterfront area.
Our time in this area includes a tour of the city with Marius and a visit up to historic Signal Hill, leading to a spectacular helicopter ‘safari’ from the waterfront all the way down the cape peninsula to southerly Cape Point and famed Cape of Good Hope. We were fair weather fliers with a glorious sunny morning. We enjoyed lunch at the point and some climbed to the lighthouse. A scenic drive along the cliffs to Boulders Beach brought us to the visiting Antarctic penguin colonies. We also enjoyed another day of sightseeing ‘in land’ to travel through Dutch settlement history, visiting the historic university town of Stellenbosch and continued on to visit a couple of leading private wine estates (Simonsig and Tokara). We sampled their delights. Among these wide glacial valleys of the dramatic Hottentot Holland Mountains, where the South Africa wine industry continues to boom internationally we experienced an exhilarating tour by WWII sidecar.
Our time in Cape Town also included a home hosted evening for dinner with a fun South African family (Capetonians) and a few of their good friends. It was a wonderful blending of USA joins with South Africa, and amid the beautiful gardens of this private home we were treated to a sunset performance of the colorful Cape Minstrels. They had several of us up and dancing and singing along too. Our dinner together was a feast and fun to mingle with locals for an evening. Thank You, Kobus and Esme … treasured memories!
We enjoy sunny walks through the bustling waterfront area, a combination of international yacht Marina and working fishing harbor. Some dined ‘by choice’ one evening taking advantage of nearby restaurants. All too soon it was time to start heading home. At our farewell reception & dinner together we all shared memorable stories of our African adventures … we have experienced such incredible highlights of this fascinating continent, and we have done it so easily and comfortably (almost effortlessly!) using the wonder of private jet travel. Bravo Lakani! While we are keen to get home to our families and our familiar … it’s true the MAGIC of Africa will be with us forever. Thank You, Africa!
PS. some of us, as a ‘grande finale’ to our trip, experienced one of South Africa’s most famed experiences … a 30 hours luxurious train journey from Cape Town to Pretoria aboard the famed Blue Train. Such a sumptuous ride!
Photos below include departure from Namibia and our Cape Town adventures.
Click on any photo below for the slideshow.