My good friend Jason offered me two complimentary days on a Harley. There are so many things to tell.. from township tours, supper with the locals, weddings on a Harley, Cape Peninsula tours, corporate tours, Jason does it all. The ride, was absolutely stunning. Great roads, sunsets and breath-taking views.
About my Harley experience on the coast we’re definitely going to talk on a later post..
My drive on the coast:
Well I had the guts to do it on my own. Rented a car and followed the road.. no navigation.. no touristic attitude .. hats or maps.. just drove confident as a local would do.
Driving towards Llandudno Beach and Hout Bay… you bump into Muizenberg Beach – a flat white beach with calm water in general, warmer them Llandudno and Clifton. If you wish to drive further than Hout Bay and Muizenberg beach, you must know that there is a R40/ one way road tax for vehicles. There is literally the border where Cape Point Nature Reserve begins.
I could drive for ages on the South African coast… sunset, sunrise, wildlife, the nature colors, nature reserve of The Peninsula, ostriches, baboons … they’re all part of an unique scenery which can’t be forgotten easily. As they say… South Africa is the land of the brave.
Driving along the coast I actually dared to get on the Noordhoek Beach for the first time. It was my very special moment of the trip… the beach have miles length… very white sand… wild life… and the Atlantic is simply breathtaking. Always giving me a powerful feeling, the energy and confidence that I need for the concrete jungle that I live in.
More than 75 000 of Fur Seals live on Seal Island, which probably explains the presence of so many great white sharks in the area. Mainly in Winter (April-September) when the Island becomes a significant part of their diet. Located approximately 16 kilometers off the coast of the famous Simon’s Town is a great way of spending few hours on a boat trip if you’re around Cape Peninsula. Bare in mind, booking via e-mail never works in SA, you always have to go at the desk and book it yourself, almost as Greece.
How do you get there?
BY TRAIN: Metrorail operates a regular train service to Simon’s Town from Cape Town and the suburbs. When you arrive in Simon’s Town it’s a ten minute walk or you can use the local taxi service (Rikkis) to take you directly to the Town Pier. It is fairly safe, but keep vigilant.
or BY CAR: Due to roadworks the best route from Cape Town is via the M3, M64, M6 route (Ou Kaapse Weg), DO NOT go via Muizenberg and Fish Hoek on the coast road.
Take the M3 motorway, (also called The Blue Route), to its end and turn right. About 2km further on at the second traffic light turn left up the mountain on Ou Kaapse Weg. This 12km long mountain pass road has wonderful views through Silvermine and winds down to Sun Valley. Keep straight at the traffic lights and over another hill you will reach another set of traffic lights at the sea in Glencairn. Turn right and Simon’s Town is 5km away. It’s a 45 to 60 minute drive from Cape Town City Center.
When you arrive in Simon’s Town, the railway station should be on your left.
Continue another 1 Km and turn left into Wharf Street, the town pier will be ahead of you. A parking attendant is always on duty.
About Simon’s Town, always a pleasure to go back there, a fascinating historic town with plenty places of interest. While in Simon’s Town, don’t miss out Boulders Beach, where main residents are the african penguins in their natural habitat. Drive up the mountain and you will probably bump in to the shark spotter on duty; he’s got some interesting stories to tell I guarantee you.
Being in the area, you could also try the shark-cage dive. Always had the curiosity but never been brave enough, especially when I’ve tested the cage on shore. If you do really decide to try it, prices starts from RAN 1700 equivalent of around £75.
Always make your homework, as there are plenty boats offering it(especially at V&A Waterfront), but not all of them have the best cages. If you dont have to courage to dive but you still want to see the whole scenary, you can get on the boat, however the price will stay the same or sometimes 200 ZAR can be deducted from the full price. As we all heard, sharks attacks are happening quite often in Western Cape (especially when some boats – bait them with blood buckets prior the dive). Take extra care on the beaches as well, as great white sharks are fully protected in South Africa and cannot be hunted, killed or harmed, therefore there are no nets around The Cape. Always pay attention to shark signage on beaches and obey beach officials if they tell you to leave the water. OK, got to rectify that specialized boats uses different bait methods and also the activity can be deployed in a secure environment. For shark-diving personally I would go for Gansbaai area which is 2,5 h from the city( private transfers -helicopters, limousines or corporate- can be organised on request for the price of 10 times less then London).
By the way, did you knew that South African Atlantic is the host of over 100 species of sharks?
So, if you have enough days and you are a certified diver I encourage you to follow the sardine run. The most beautiful 7 days under water experience on the South African Coast.
This is the greatest show of the ocean, so do not miss it! Of course there are many things to be done down there, I agree, and also requires time, but everything is possible with a well planned schedule. Agree?!
For those who haven’t seen by now the South African Rand, I’ve got one thing to tell you…even the notes looks like a safari 🙂
Absolutely love it!
It’s been a full day for me, lots of memories and of course overwhelm !
Too many places and too many people… around me… just filled me up with energy!
Next stop: Cape Point Nature Reserve,