South Africa beginnings and endings

I've taken a lot of vacations but there have only been a few which have made me truly forget about work and the day to day.  I forget those details because I'm far to busy thinking, planning, moving about and exploring the unknown.  I think these are the best kinds of vacations and this year I got a bit lost in South Africa.

After months of planning, we settled on Cape Town and the Garden Route.  This is just a fraction of South Africa and after spending 2 weeks there, I realize that I could spend months there and the rest of the continent. 

Arriving in Cape Town, first thing I noticed from the plane was how beautiful the landscape looked from above.  I noticed the mountains even more while in the cab from the airport and suddenly felt incredibly excited for the next two weeks.  After a 24 hour journey with two layovers, obviously the least ideal situation is we are there far too early in the morning and cannot get into our room.  We eventually started day 1 with a tour of Robben Island for a dose of depression.
Nelson Mandela's former cell
We also took a trip to Table Island, where I learned two things:
1. the cable car to people ratio is not sufficient... at all
2. it's really friggin cold on top of a mountain
attempting not to fall
One of our first meals was at Masala Dosa and I was re-united with Savannah Dry... a cider I originally
discovered in Brighton (of all places)!  Though our server did assumingly give me the "light" version.  Was he trying to hint that I can't handle the alcohol or the calories? Either way, he's wrong.

At the end of our trip we returned to Cape Town and treated ourselves to a nicer place to stay at the much talked about Daddy Longlegs boutique hotel.  We were given the all white karaoke room equipped with our own karaoke system, all of which was more than a decade old.  Of course, this did not stop me from serenading Matt with my inspirational rendition of Independent Woman.  
seriously, this happened
We also took a day tour of Cape Peninsula which was probably one of our better decisions of the trip.  We used our Baz Bus tickets to get a really sweet discount for an all day tour with lunch and a pretty amusing guide.  First stop was Hout Bay, and let's talk about this biscuit that Matt decided to get with both cheese and jam.... separately
This picture might imply that I enjoyed the biscuit more than Hout Bay
After a nice drive along Chapman's peak, we visited the african penguins at Boulders Beach.  
 Do penguins have knees?
After biking through Cape Point Nature Reserve we visited the Cape of Good Hope to see the southern-western tip of Africa.  At the time I thought it was the most southern tip of Africa, only to realize later that was FALSE.

The last meal we had of the trip was well worth it at Mama Africa on Long Street.  Despite being a bit touristy, the food was very good and there was live music... we wanted to buy a CD but holy crap they were 100 rand! 

All in all, it was a great way to spend the last day of the trip.  I was exhausted, happy to have seen and done everything we did, and a bit sad to go... (partially due to a 30 hour journey home).  Speaking of, another thing we learned on the trip: DUBAI SUCKS
View on the way back from Cape Point


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