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African Safari blog

Top African Destinations Part 3 – Cape Town

Destinations

Cape Town has a number of reasons to be on the list of top African destinations. Referred to as the “mother city”, it has been awarded the world design capital for 2014. It also topped the list of most visited destinations for 2014 by the British Guardian newspaper. As well as having great examples of Cape Dutch architecture, it has some of the most expensive and desirable housing in the world. My guess is that these would be the amazing properties perched like birds’ nest on the sheer cliffs that rise over the pounding Atlantic Ocean in suburbs such as Clifton, Camps Bay and Llandudno!

As well as being very close to the top of my list of top top African destinations, Cape Town also topped the list of most visited destination for 2014 by the British Guardian newspaper as well as being named the best place in the world to visit by the New York Times in 2014.

Botanists would be interested to know that the Cape is reputed to have more species of flora than the Amazon basin and, I have no doubt, is considerably more hospitable! Table Mountain itself has an estimated 2 200 plant species almost twice that of the United Kingdom’s 1 200 species. Many of the protea species found on the Mountain can be found no where else on Earth.

Of course the most notable feature of this beautiful city is its dominated by Table Mountain which can be climbed, hiked or more effortlessly ascended via a cable car! The view is spectacular and summit is populated by cute little creatures called dassies or rock hydrax. They reminded me a bit of the quockas that are found exclusively on Rothnest Island near Perth! Just as there are numerous methods of ascension, there are also numerous ways of descending this famous mountain, including for the more adventurous, abseiling down! We however declined the adrenalin rush and took the more conventional option of the cable car – which proved enough of an adrenalin rush for me!

There are many other attractions within a very short radius of the city, for example, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, where one can enjoy a delicious afternoon (or morning tea) after a meander through the colourful gardens. But talking of afternoon tea, one cannot go past the extraordinary experience that is High Tea at the Mount Nelson Hotel – or the pink lady as the hotel is known. With echoes of a colonial past, enormous tables groaning with both savoury and sweet delights and a lengthy tea menu, it is an experience not to be missed!

If scenery is your forte, then a trip along the spectacular Chapman’s Peak Drive is recommended. Continuing on to Cape Point where the Atlantic and the Southern Ocean’s meet makes for a wonderful day trip with unforgettable scenery.

Only an hour away from a bustling city is the Cape Winelands, nestled in verdant valleys amid the majestic mountain range with quaint little villages like Franschhoek and more wine estates and award winning restaurants than you could possibly visit.

With so much going for it, it strikes me as no wonder Cape Town tops the list of the most popular international tourist destinations in Africa as a whole and therefore more than deserves its place on my list of top African destinations.

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Top African Destinations Part 2 - The Iconic Victoria Falls

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