Sunday, September 29, 2002

Sept. 29, 2002 - Betty's Bay, South Africa

We have so much to tell and so little time to write about it.  We have had an absolutely fabulous few days touring around the southern Cape.  We got our car on Friday and decided that we would visit the west coast, north of Capetown.  Few people actually visit that area, as it is not as scenic as the Garden Route along the south side.  We took off and ended up in the West Cape Nature reserve.  It is the end of wildflower season so there are piles of purple, pink and yellow flowers everywhere.  As we got in the reserve, we stopped at the Tea Room and had a great Earl Grey and watched a slew of yellow birds in their hanging tree nests.  As we continued into the reserve,  we came upon a turtle crossing the road, springboks (sort of like a big antelope), a wildebeest

 and a herd of zebra, how exciting!  But our best animal of the day was a Puff Adder snake we saw at the side of the road.  We stopped and took some photos (not too close!), but didn't realize at the time how venomous this snake really is.  We'll stay far away from African snakes in the future, don't want to risk a bite.   So a great trip and our first experience with the African flora and fauna. 

We said good bye on Saturday to our friends at the Big Blue Hostel in Capetown and began the next leg of our trip which will take us through the Cape peninsula, then over to the Garden Route, where we will meet with Kris' friend Trudy and her partner Philippe this coming weekend.  We spent much of the first day on the most beautiful mountain roads ever!!  The view of lush green mountains with wild flowers on one side and the blue and white sea crashing on the cliffs on the other, was just spectacular.  We drove all the way to the bottom of Africa to another reserve called the Cape of Good Hope Reserve.  In the reserve we came across a little pack of baboons.  They were really cute!!  On the way there, were were also fortunate enough to see a whale in one of the bays.  So we made our way to Betty's Bay and stayed the night.  In the morning we planned to get on the road and make our way to the great white shark diving capital of the world, Hermanus, but we met a fantastic couple in the coffee shop.  Michael and Cheryl are South African and offered to show us a little of the coast.  They are from Capetown, but have a beautiful summer home in Betty's Bay.  We spent a great afternoon with them seeing a little more of Betty's old whaling town.  We love South Africans!!!  So we have now arrived in Hermanus.  Our $15.00 USD per night room at the local hostel is nicer than most hotels we've been in and they have a pool, a TV rooms and a bar about 7 steps from our bedroom,  Kris is in heaven!!  To top off an already fantastic day we spend the last 2 hours watching 6 whales frolicking in the bay.  It doesn't get much better than this.  So we are off now to finish the day with a $0.60 beer and a $3.00 steak.  More soon....


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