Monthly Archives: December 2014

The green grass of Maiden’s Cove

The green grass of Maiden's Cove
I don't think I've ever wandered down to Maiden's Cove... I never even realised that they have this green lawn and beautiful view of the Twelve Apostles and Camps Bay. Isn't it spectacular? Unfortunately, I have an idea that this grassy lawn is overrun with picnic-goers during the summer months - so it's probably not quite idyllic before 18h45 (when I took this photo).

Cloudy Lion from Maiden’s Cove

Cloudy Lion from Maiden's Cove
Yep, that's my shadow at the bottom, and that's Lion's Head to the left. :-P The clouds look really low from this angle don't you think? Or, perhaps it's just that Lion's Head is higher above sea level than we realise. ;)

Fluffy ‘n white

Fluffy 'n white
Believe it or not, but this cat was spotted watching the sun set (like, really watching the sun set) from high up above Glen Beach. It sat there for absolute ages just overlooking the ocean. I eventually left it there, still watching as the sun sank over the horizon.

Just one more Lego piece

Just one more Lego piece
This piece in Nathan Sawaya's collection was pretty much life-size. The lighting in the Waterfront venue was pretty amazing (although, I could have kicked myself for not bringing my off-camera flash along).

OMG, deep fried oreos!

OMG, deep fried oreos!
Who thinks up this stuff?! Oh, the Americans. Right. I should have guessed. :) Hudsons sells these for R25 (for all four oreos), which is pretty much a bargain for any dessert. They were pretty damn good and the only recommendation I have is to order it with a small bowl of vanilla ice cream.

A busy smelly Clifton 4th

A busy smelly Clifton 4th
I felt a little bad for first-time visitors to Clifton 4th. It's normally such a pristine beach, but ocean tides were unkind to us and an unusually-large mass of smelly kelp had washed up onto shore.

Even though many were, there was no freegin' way I was getting into that water. I only managed to stay around for half an hour before I decided that it really wasn't fun on that overly-hot, massively-crowded, somewhat-smelly beach. :(

I shall return another day. When the kelp has left our shores. :)

Clifton at peak tourist season

Clifton at peak tourist season
Phew - lots of people hey?! We really love tourists visiting Cape Town. It's fantastic for our economy and, well, the divergent cultures and beautiful people that descend on our little city over this time is spectacularly interesting. It's a pleasure having you!

It is however sad that most tourists never get to see the calm, relaxed, and quiet beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay. I often wonder to myself if crowded and busy beaches are as all they know. It's a shame, because these beaches are spectacular from late February through to April and even May. Next time you visit Cape Town - consider coming a little later in the new year - I pretty much guarantee you'll enjoy it more than the Christmas/New Year period. :)

Never hide

Never hide
I spotted this advert from the corner of my eye and immediately did a double-take. For a moment it looked like Cape Town had overnight become extra-liberal and allowed posting topless woman on billboards. Alas, it's not the case. Haha. :)

A chill pool and stage at SBC

A chill pool and stage
Shimmy Beach Club (in the harbour precinct) has this chill pool surrounded with beach-like sand, where guests can take a shaded break from the hot day. Behind the pool is a stage (check out their calendar to see what's happening), and in front of the stage is bar area, with the formal restaurant to the left.

I only visited once, at 11am when they open, so it wasn't very busy, and as can be expected, there really wasn't much happening. But, I can imagine that it gets quite packed with 20/30 somethings as the day and evening wears on.

I haven't read any positive reviews of their dinner menu (in fact, I read one or two negative ones), and I have to confess that the coffee that I ordered was slightly less palatable then airline coffee. However, I suspect they're more geared towards what comes out of a bottle than what comes from the bean. :)

Shimmy Beach Club is an interesting concept - quite different to any other venue we have in Cape Town, and for that reason you should probably pay them a visit. I'll certainly visit in the evening sometime - I'm keen to see if they manage to pull it off with style, or if it ends up being pretentious with no real class.

My first stand up paddling excursion

My first stand up paddling excursion
I've been meaning to look into SUP (Stand Up Paddling) for a while now. I figured that I'd first hire a board to check if it's something I'd actually do over the long-term - before buying a board, paddle, roof racks, waterproof camera housing, and all the other bits and pieces one ends up needing to get properly into a sport.

I arrived at SUP Cape Town at 9am and handed over my R200 for the hour of fun that lay ahead.

One of the staff gave Riaan (a friend and long-time colleague) and I a quick overview of how to stand on a board, paddling technique, and safety on the canal. We hopped down from the side of the canal onto the huge boards and within about 15 seconds felt fairly comfortable and confident enough to paddle along towards the One and Only hotel.

Paddling against the light headwind was a little strenuous, but not too significantly so. It did however cause me to congratulate myself on postponing the trip I'd planned to take on Sunday afternoon when the wind was somewhat more angry.

We paddled along the canals watching schools of fish as they swam beneath us. We kept to the right of the canal, dodging the occasional City Sightseeing boats that puttered past (their wake providing a few moments of excitement as our boards bobbed and weaved beneath our feet).

The paddle up to the One and Only, and back to the launch site took about half an hour, and the paddle to the CTICC and Westin Hotel and back took about another 30 minutes.

I'd recommend you don't take your phone (or camera) on the board. While it's fairly easy to stay above water, I horsed around a little too much and managed to lose balance momentarily, causing me to topple into the canal (much to the amusement of a small group of tourists). :)

Visit SUP Cape Town at the V&A Waterfront canals, over the road from the Caltex petrol station at the V&A's primary entrance. They also have a gazebo on Clifton 4th where they hire boards out at the slightly-reduced rate of R150 per hour.

The Labia, our first time

The Labia, our first time
Yeah, I took liberties with this post's title. The Labia is in fact a small independent cinema - and a member of the European Cinema Network.

We'd never visited The Labia before, so we decided to give her a try. While it's decor is looking a little on the tattered side, and the amenities are a little better than the delightful French public amenities, the actual theaters are clean, intimate, and the sound/video quality is just fine. I don't think they have the full Dolby surround sound with mega bass that you get at the regular cinemas, but then, that's not what one goes to The Labia for - one goes for the quaint, out of the ordinary experience, and to see movies that are slightly off the beaten track.

In this case we saw My Old Lady (which was a great movie), and we'll certainly be back to watch a few more!

(Oh, the cost is R40 per person, they give R5 discount for Fanatics Club members, and I don't think you need to book in advance - it's really not that busy. I however called to put my name on a reserved list, but I doubt I'd do that next time.)