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Cape Town and Garden route trip report part 1 CT

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I want to preface this report with a disclaimer. I was born and raised in Cape Town but left in 1977 and last visited in 88. Much of my evenings in Cape Town were taken up by visiting friends and relatives, so I was not able to do as much as I wanted. Also trying to accommodate a 16 yr old son and 75 yr old mother can be a challenge. I’ve tried to separate my feelings as an ex South African returning after almost 20 years.

Basic Itinerary.
8 nights Cape Town , then 1 night Mossel Bay, 1 night Storms River Mouth, 2 nights Addo, 1 night Oudtshoorn, 2 nights Cape Town.

Cape Town
We stayed on London Road in a self catering in the Pall Mall building.
http://www.safarinow.com/go/CapeTownSeaPointBeachRd/. Very nice apartment, clean with everything you could need supplied. I was a bit nervous being so close to the main road, but I got over it soon enough. Early evenings can be a bit noisy but it quiets down later.
I highly recommend it.
Ate at the “Lions Head Inn” on Main Rd at the top of London Rd, Great food, cheap prices. It is next to Aardvark Backpackers and is owned by the same people.
Also ate at “Café Paradiso”?? in Tamboers Kloof, very overrated, so- so food, very slow service. Also had lunch at "New York Bagel Deli"? in Sea point, a fun place for a light meal.
Generally service at restaurants seemed very slow, always give yourself at least an extra hour if you have something planned after your meal, or you might have to skip it and dash!

If Robben Island is in your plans go on your first morning and book, don’t rely on e-mail.
Then if you’re lucky the Ferry will run on the day you booked. (Ours did not the first time). If you need to re-book don’t believe anything anyone tells you until you talk to the lady at the booking desk!

Table Mountain. It took us 3 tries before we finally made it. Make your plans flexible, the rule in CT is, go up the mountain on your first opportunity, as it may not be possible for the rest of your stay. Tip, if you have a disabled person with you, ask the attendants for help, you can park right at the station and take an elevator (lift) to the cable car.

Curio Shopping, the guys along the roads, especially near Hout Bay are probably the Cheapest, not sure how legal though? On Main Rd Sea Point (near St Johns Rd) the “Funky Monkey” is a curio store with very good prices. The Sunday market at the Green Point Stadium is great, get there at 8:00 to 8:30 and bargain hard, many of the sellers believe that if the 1st customer of the day buys they will have a good day!

Driving, once I got used to driving on the “wrong “ side, CT is very easy to drive in, All attractions and roads are very well signposted.

Day trip to Cape Point via Boulders to see the Penguins. Ate lunch at “Berthas” in Simonstown, on the waterfront, very good food, a bit pricy by SA standards and again, very slow service. Also stopped at the “Scratch Patch, good fun for kids or even adults interested in semi precious stones.

Afternoon trip to Stellenbosch. Tasted wine at Boschendal, drove around a bit then to dinner at Moyo at Spier. This was probably the most memorable evening of the whole trip. If you can get there do not hesitate. The only way I can think of describing it , is that what “Cirque Du Solleil” did to circuses, Moyo did to restaurants! Book a tree house if available.

Last 2 nights in CT stayed in Bantry Bay at the “Bantry Bay guest House”
http://www.bootsnall.com/hostels/d/9242/Bantry+Bay+Guesthouse.php
Ed , the owner is a very friendly and accommodating guy. With 2 rooms booked we basically had the place to ourselves. Very quiet street with easy access to everything, again – highly recommended.

I will post the Garden Route part next

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