Oopsie, thought I had written this but it seems to have disappeared from wherever (I thought) it was. So here goes.
Day eight in Cape Town saw the University of Cape Town start lectures again, so off my cousin went. My sister and I had decided that we were going to go to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens for the day, so obviously our first stop had to be for picnic items. We just stopped in at the Pick ‘n Pay and got some pasta salad, chicken strips, chips and biscuits, and then we hopped into the car and off we went (with the help of the trusty GPS).
Luckily it’s not too far, and the parking and stuff wasn’t too busy. There is a student discount, so remember your student card if you’re going to pay the gardens a visit (and I definitely recommend you do!)
We found a spot to set up for the morning, and made ourselves comfortable. It was a super relaxing time spent reading, napping, chatting and enjoying the pretty scenery. Then two families arrived and promptly sat themselves down less than a metre away from us basically. Now, just to put this in perspective, the gardens were pretty quiet. There is loads of space. And these people sat down so close to us and started having very loud conversations. That was our cue to pack up and go find the Boomslang walk, but please people of the world, be considerate towards those around you!
We went to put our picnic basket in the car and then we headed back inside (you can pass out, just make sure you keep your tickets). We took a walk to the “Boomslang” which is a tree canopy walkway they have constructed. It’s really cool, and designed very well. It doesn’t cost anything extra, so definitely add it to your list! It’s cool to see everything from up there. All in all, Kirstenbosch was a lovely day out. It costs basically nothing, and it’s very relaxing. You can obviously walk around quite a lot there, and it’s a must see for anyone who loves nature – the plant varieties are outstanding! There are also concerts in the park on certain days and an outdoor cinema on others. We wanted to go to Jeremy Loops, but it was sold out weeks in advance (PS: if you ever get a chance to see him live, do it! He’s amazing). We just lazed around the flat for the rest of the afternoon, and grabbed some dinner.
Day nine in Cape Town, and our second last full day there, focused around getting to the waterfront. In the morning I went for a run (I’ve been trying to get into it). I must say it was really nice to run in an area that has proper sidewalks everywhere. However, my app didn’t work properly because I didn’t check the signal strength before I clicked “go running” (silly me) and so I have no idea how far I went. I’d been to spinning a couple times at the gym, but it was nice to get out!
I’d made plans to meet up with my friend Robyn, so we headed off to the V&A Waterfront (again with the trusty guidance of the GPS). We found parking (be warned, undercover parking is ridiculously expensive!) and made our way to the Two Oceans Aquarium. Student discount again, yay!
The Aquarium is great, they’ve got everything from Nemo and Dory to Sharks to Bill and Will the Krill and everything in between. It’s definitely worth a visit, and if you time it right you can also watch them feed the penguins and the sharks. Also make sure you stop at the “touch pool” where you can touch the starfish, anenomes and seaweed under supervision.
After the Aquarium we wanted to go get lunch, but finding a nice restaurant by the docks that wasn’t too expensive and catered for all our different tastes was challenging. We eventually ended up at Quay Four in the pub type section, after finally managing to get a seat. I’m not going to speak too much about this because then I’ll probably end up ranting, but I will say this – if you do not have at least two to three hours to spare for lunch, don’t go there. My food was really good (I had a seafood platter) and everyone else was also happy with their food but the service was so slow. We were at lunch for almost three hours. We sat watching the boats and the seals – I’d really like to go out on a sundowner cruise one day.
After lunch and goodbyes, my sister and I headed into the shopping centre to get ingredients to make lasagne for dinner. She also got her boyfriend a personalised mug from one of the stalls there which was cool. We had some ice cream and it was super yummy. Budget for parking if you park across from V&A in a parkade – I think I paid R60 for the time we were there. We got stuck in some traffic on the way home, but at least we could look at the mountain. It was a good day, and we were super tired by the time we got home. Originally we were going to go to the outdoor cinema, but we both decided to stay in and watch movies instead.
On our last full day in Cape Town, we went to the factory stores at Access Park. They’ve got all sorts of shops there – from Cotton On and Typo to baking stores to sports shops and a Converse store. We both got some things, and then headed home. For our last night, we went to the Tennis Party at the UCT tennis club. It was fun and we had a good time – it was a nice way to end off our holiday.
Next morning we were up bright and early to catch our flight back to Johannesburg. It was a really wonderful getaway to Cape Town, and I do enjoy this city although sometimes I feel it’s not really for me. There’s still a lot I would like to do and see in Cape Town though, and we will be back in December as part of our road trip, so I am looking forward to that.
I’d still really like to hike up Lion’s Head, catch the cable car to the top of Table Mountain and visit Robben Island (that’s on my bucket list). Chapman’s Peak Drive is hands down the most beautiful drive I’ve ever been on. I enjoyed the markets we went to, although I have recently found out the paella at our Neighbourgoods is not the same as there, and it’s been decided that ours is better – sorry! I saw a lot of posters and things for shark cage diving, but I don’t think I’m going to be up for that any time soon. In December we’re going to do the City Sightseeing tour (the red bus, like in London) so that will be really interesting. I’d also like to spend a proper night out on Long Street before I’m too old… Haha.
That’s all for now. I’m graduating super soon (exciting!) and then we’re off to PE in a couple of weeks to celebrate my grandmothers 90th birthday, but I won’t be posting about that because it will be a whirlwind. For now, I’m arranging the road trip for myself, my sister and two of my cousins, and (obviously) dreaming about my next international trip too! Fun times.