Attractive, casual and vivacious – these are three words that many will use to describe their unforgettable Cape Town experience. It is called the Mother City of South Africa and nothing can describe it better. It has a sprawling landscape, fine beaches, lush vineyards and, as if that is not enough, Mother Nature graciously placed a gorgeous mountain right in her center – other cities in South Africa will not stand a chance.
The rugged, untamed beauty of Table Mountain is the star in Cape Town. The Khoisan people, the natives of Cape Town, believe that the mountain holds a spiritual power over the peninsula and provides life-giving water to the settlers. Today it is protected, like the gem that it is, in a national park that extensively covers most of the peninsula. Anyone who has ever been to Cape Town regards Table Mountain as the city’s great outdoor playground. If you are keen on that kind of challenging adventure, there are now world-class hiking trails that allow visitors from all over to camp and sleep right on top of the mountain.
Beauty is everywhere in Cape Town. The first thing that hits you is her natural vigor which seems to flow right into the brightly colored facades of Bo Kaap and the glorious Victorian-style bathing chattels in Muizenberg. Everyone, rich or poor, appreciates art in all forms. There are plenty of galleries displaying artworks from different local artists and you will find many gift shops offering unique, artisanal crafts at affordable prices.
It is fair to note, however, that there is no way to turn a blind eye to the damage Cape Town suffered from South Africa’s violent past. It is definitely a city that was not spared from grief. The scars of the apartheid still run deep and the luxury that one may find in places like Constantia is met with the poverty of the smaller townships. Still, locals find room in their community to welcome tourists. To them, it is all about ubuntu, sincere African hospitality and care for other people, local or foreign. All around Cape Town you will see people of all colors, respecting each other and working together to create a city they can be proud of. It makes you think that perhaps the greatest gift that Mother Nature brought to this city is not the rich topography but the diversity of its people.
Being hospitable, of course, means that Cape Town will show you a good time. Forget the guided tours! Take your pick from a wide selection of wildlife-spotting day trips: penguins, game reserve, or safari? How about a wine tour of South Africa’s finest vineyards? Aquila Game Reserve Wildlife Safari is Cape Town’s wildlife tour de rigueur while the Buitenverwachting and the Groot Constantia are two of the most majestic wineries in the region.
In Cape Town, you will definitely not run out of things to do, only time to do them. But that doesn’t matter – you will be back for sure.