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South Africa

Penguins, Cape of Good Hope and Cape Point

semi-overcast 60 °F

Today was our day to adventure see the African Penguins, the Cape of Storms - renamed the Cape of Good Hope - the half way point around the African continent and Cape Point - a much more spectacular point a few km's from the Cape of Good Hope. The Cape is the southern most point in South Western Africa, but not the southern most point on the continent. The continent actually penetrates south a few more 100 km's about 100 km's away.

Our first stop was to board a boat to see the seals at 'Seal Island'. There were big swells and a stiff breeze, but that didn't seem to bother the seals!

We then drove to Simon's Town for a visit to the African Penguin Colony and lunch. This is also home to the South African Navy in the south of the country.

It was then off to the Cape of Good Hope - surrounded by heavy seas and heavy winds. It must have been an extreme challenge for ships of sail.

Of interest is that this is the only place in the world where ostrich's live by the sea and seem to thrive.

It was then time to head to the far more spectacular Cape Point, where you take a funicular to the top of the point. The views are spectacular as you seem to sit on top of the world!

Posted by rpickett 09:04 Archived in South Africa Tagged and of good point cape hope Comments (0)

South Africa

Cape Town Day One

sunny 65 °F

We started our first day's adventures in Cape Town at the reasonable hour of 9:00am. Our first stop was Table Mountain, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the world. It's a truly spectacular mountain that splits the city. Our day was perfect, and we took the cable car (Swiss made) to the top, where it was windy and chilly but with spectacular views.

We then headed back in to town for lunch at the Victoria and Albert Waterfront area

After lunch we boarded a boat to head to Robben Island, the maximum security prison that held Nelson Mandela and many other political prisoners for decades. Interestingly enough, the murderers and hardened criminals were held in a medium security prison. As you can imagine it was a moving experience, where you can visit Mandela's cell. Our guide was himself a former political prisoner for more than 5 years. The prison also has several warders (wardens) who serve as guides. This was one of several prisons where Mandela was housed, but the one where he spent most of his sentence. Most of the prisoners were forced to work in the limestone mine six days per week, where they had a daily quota, which if missed meant they got reduced rations for the day. The limestone was used for cement for prison buildings that they erected that would become their cells.

We then went to dinner and finally got back to the hotel at about 9:00pm. A long day, but memorable.

Posted by rpickett 08:34 Archived in South Africa Tagged town cape Comments (0)

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