It sure lived up to its status as “Africa’s most desirable destination”; we stayed in a lovely house in Hout Bay, which is surrounded by mountains (including the back of Table Mountain) on three sides, and the gorgeous bay on the other. Our Christmas was a little less than traditional in that we visited the adorable African Penguins on Boulders beach, sunbathed and had a picnic rather than the usual roast dinner.
Similarly, New Years Eve was spent watching Hugh Masekela, South Africa’s most eminent Jazz musician, perform live in Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, nestled in the foothills of the mountains with 5000 people! Regardless of age or nationality, everyone was dancing on the hill under the gloriously bright moon and stars, with a great view over the lights of Cape Town at night. Hugh himself is 73, but definitely had the coolest dance moves there.
Other highlights included a boat trip to seal island (which has over 6000 seals), haggling in the Christmas markets, visiting the SA National Gallery, and having a meal at Addis in Cape. It is a fabulous Ethiopian restaurant where everyone sits round a tiny woven stool covered in a large, round piece of doughy bread which your dishes and sides are served onto. You eat by picking up the food with strips of the bread rather than cutlery, and the following ‘coffee ceremony’ is pretty spectacular in itself; bitter coffee served with popcorn and burning frankincense! An amazing experience which everyone should have, there is also an Addis in Dar which will be a priority for when we reach Dar Es Salaam!