I went on the trip of a lifetime here with my friend Lina Restrepo during the summer of 2006. We did Cape Town area, Johannesburg and safari at Mala Mala. So special!
Top 5 Days
- Driving through the bush - a day in a jeep on safari is life changing.
- Walk Cape Point
- Apartheid Museum - can't miss this in Johannesburg. One of the best museums in the world. I couldn't soak it all in quick enough. It is so amazing that this struggle happened in our lifetime.
- Cape Town Wine Country - With the mountains in the background, this tops Sonoma, Italy and France.
- Hike up Table Rock Mountain - tough haul, but it only takes and hour or two. The views up top make it so rewarding.
Top 5 High Style, Low Maintenance Hotels
- Mala Mala Game Reserve - if you are going to do safari, save up to do a few nights on a private reserve. You are only sharing the entire reserve with about 60 other people, so you get to see all the animals close up. You are assigned a safari guide who knows EVERYTHING about the animals - I learned so much and it is so magical.
- The Twelve Apostles - I suggest staying outside of downtown Capetown and staying along the water. This one looked like a great location.
- Melrose Arch - a hip hotel in a safe area of Johan
- Singita - this is a high-end game reserve that is always written up
- Mount Nelson - this looked nice in Cape Town
Top 5 Misses
- Exploring the city of Cape Town - there are so many beautiful things to do outside the city, but we did a city tour and it was really boring.
- Tour of the Junk Towns - uugh! they take tourist in just to manipulate them into giving money. I hated this! It was part of an apartheid tour in Johan that I would skip altogether.
- Gamey Meat - I was practically veggie here
- Big Safaris - again, go for the splurge and get off the beaten track
- Cape Town Bus Tour - we spent a day doing this - we should have hit the wineries
Top 5 Tips
- Watch Tsotsi - amazing, disturbing movie about Johan
- Read the Power of One - Bruce Courtney's story of a young white Aafricans boy growing up in the 1940's who overcomes his own history with boxing.
- Read the Bang Bang Club - about some photojournalists capturing the apartheid struggle and civil fighting in the 1990s.
- Read Cry My Beloved Country - by Alan Parsons. Another great book that shows the struggle of apartheid.
- Ask - I felt like even with such a wicked past, that people were so hopeful about the future. And they are all so willing to talk about it.