Another day, another South African adventure! After our fantastic day ziplining, taste testing South African wine and petting cheetahs, my dad and I decided to do another day tour with Rashid and Trips and Tracks SA to the Cape Peninsula.
We were up bright and early to be picked up around 8am. Our first stop was Hout Bay, a small fishing town that serves as an entrance to the Cape Peninsula. Although it’s quite touristy at the marina (souvenir shops, etc.), this town has a local feel to it as well. Everyone seems to know each other and is very friendly to visitors! There are souvenir stands all over and fish restaurants at every corner. You can’t come here without checking both out.
While in Hout Bay, my dad and I hopped on a glass bottomed boat that took us to Seal Island. It’s a quick ride over, only about 20 minutes, but the dramatic sites of the South African coast were incredible. It truly looked like something out of Jurassic Park. And the seals at the island were spectacular! They played in the waves that came due to the approaching storm and were so cute.
Our next stop was Chapman’s Peak, which is the name of a road that connects Hout Bay to Noordhoek, another town in the Cape Peninsula. Chapman’s Peak is regarded as one of the most stunning drives in the world, with the mountains jutting into the ocean and the turquoise water battering the cliffs below. Although there’s a toll to enter the road, it’s worth it. Near the end of the scenic drive, there is a stopping point, where you can take photos views.
Down further into the Cape Peninsula is the Cape Point Ostrich Farm, where you can learn about ostriches, how they are bred and how they’re kept. And (best part), you get to feed them. Definitely take the tour of the facility. It’s only about a half hour and you get to learn about how ostriches reproduce and even get to meet some baby ostriches. The process of how the eggs are incubated, hatched and how the baby ostriches are cared for pre-adolescence is very complicated and precise, which was really unexpected. I didn’t realize caring for ostriches took so much effort and science!
After the tour, you’re free to tour the facility grounds on your own, check out the gift shop, or buy some ostrich feed for a few rand and feed the adult ostriches outside! Be warned though, they bite! You have to feed it like a horse, with your palm flat but even then, you might get a few nips from the ostriches (I know I did). It’s an awesome experience to feed such a beautiful bird!
Nearly across the street from the ostrich farm is the entrance to the Cape Point National Park. Here, there are miles of hiking trails, remote beaches, plenty of wildlife (baboons and ostriches!) and the most Southwestern point of the African continent. This isn’t to be confused with the actual Southern most point, and where the Atlantic and Indian Oceans meet, which is Cape Agulhas. It’s just a few hour drive east of Cape Town.
The classic points to hit in the park are the Cape of Good Hope, the Cape Lighthouse and viewing point (you can walk or take the funicular), and Diaz Beach (remote hike-in beach). My dad and I checked out the first two. Although all of these stops are pretty busy, the views at both are well worth it.
Last but definitely not least, we drove to Boulder Beach, where you can meet a wild colony of penguins living on the beach. Typically, people stop at the viewing point, where you watch the penguins from a platform. You can visibly see hundreds from this location. However, we stopped just short of this viewing point and entered the actual beach, where penguins run wild right next to you. Obviously, these animals are wild and you need to keep your distance to keep both them and yourself safe, but it’s much better than observing the animals from a faraway platform. Just be wary of the penguin poop everywhere!
This incredibly day ended with a drive through Simonstown, a stunning town with colorful buildings lining the streets and a rich African history. And be sure to say hi to Just Nuisance while you’re there!