Cape of Good Hope

Today, our last day in Cape Town, started with a beautiful sunrise reflected in the clouds and the marina outside our hotel room.

Sunrise at Harborside, August

Our plan for the day was a was a drive down south from the city along the Cape Peninsula, which is largely covered by the Table Mountain National Park. There are a number of upscale suburban communities just south of Cape Town, with expensive high-rise apartments lining the Atlantic Coast. It reminded me of the south Florida shoreline.

There are a number of other communities scattered along the peninsula, ranging from off-the-grid towns to slums to former fishing villages.

The Cape of Good Hope is not the southern most point in Africa (as many believe), nor is it the point at which the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet (as many others believe). The former is a fixed point about 100 miles southeast of Good Hope, while the latter drifts with the currents and gets as far west at Cape Point, just half a mile around the bend from Good Hope. But Good Hope is the most southwestern point of Africa.

Cape of Good Hope from the lighthouse (Sally in purple jacket), August 2017

Nonetheless, the Cape of Good Hope is a well known landmark and quite impressive. There is a lighthouse on the hill above both Good Hope and Cape Point, which is cute but actually no longer used.

Unused light at Cape Point, August 2017

We took the cable-driven funicular from the parking lot and I walked the remaining way to the lighthouse itself.

Penguins in Simon’s Town, August 2017

On the way back north, we made three stops. The first was a penguin colony at Boulders Beach in Simon’s Town. They are cute. The most interesting fact about this colony is that it’s only existed here for 30 years, and no one seems to know why they came or where they came from.

We had lunch nearby, and then stopped at the Kirstenbosch Gardens, a large arboretum in the CapeTown suburbs. While the Gardens were nice, it’s still winter here and nothing will be in bloom for a month or more.

Now we’re packing for our trip to Botswana tomorrow. First stop: Jack’s Camp.

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