Your home for the next four nights, the Southern Sun Waterfront Cape Town Hotel, is situated in City Bowl, the center of Cape Town, just a short walk from the V&A Waterfront, Castle of Good Hope, Heart of Cape Town Museum and historical Greenmarket Square. Stylish and inviting, the hotel provides comfortable and convenient accommodation. Recently refurbished, it offers 537 beautifully-appointed rooms, with a host of amenities and services on offer, including free Wi-Fi, air conditioning, a full-service spa, fitness center, and an outdoor pool. Dining options include South African inspired dishes at the hotel’s Yizani Restaurant and relaxed cocktails at the Southern Sun Waterfront Bar. Visitors are surrounded by world famous attractions including Cape Town’s Green Point Stadium, Table Mountain and the Two Oceans Aquarium. Overnight at the SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT CAPE TOWN.
Afterwards depart on a Cape Town city tour where time permitting you visit The Castle of Good Hope, South’s Africa oldest surviving colonial building, which elicits two contrary impressions – the hardship of the early days, setting up a life in the unknown, and later years of grace and elegance. The first stone was laid on January 2, 1666 and it was completed by April 1679. The materials used to build the Castle were local and included rock cut from the granite outcrop on Signal Hill, and blue slate and shells transported from Robben Island. The Castle was built by soldiers, volunteers, slaves and Khoi undergoing punishment. Yellow paint was originally chosen for the walls because it reduced the effects of the hot African sun. The building housed everything from a church, bakery and living quarters, to various workshops, shops and prison cells, among other facilities. In 1936 the Castle of Good Hope was declared a national monument.
From here continue to the South African Museum; it houses more than one and a half million specimens of scientific importance. The collections now range from fossils almost 700-million years old to insects and fish caught last week. There are also stone tools made by people 120,000 years ago, traditional clothes from the last century, and T-shirts printed yesterday. Other notable stops include the Malay Quarter, city centre, Company Gardens and more!
Your afternoon is at leisure to enjoy Cape Town on your own. Overnight at the SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT CAPE TOWN.
Look for the distinctive orange found in leucospermums, one of the rarest types of proteas – the mimites, marvel at the helicrysums and pelarganium calcullums, and enjoy the ericas, phenacomas and fine bush which the Dutch called “fynbos.” There are 250 species of birds in the reserve, ranging from ostriches to minuscule sunbirds. Caracal, chacma baboon, a wide variety of buck and various other mammal species may be seen, including Cape Mountain zebra and the bontebok which is endemic to this part of the world. The baboons feed occasionally on marine foods which they garner at low tide. At Olifants Bay, look for Oystercatchers, and enjoy some superb birding.
Continue to Boulders Beach where the African (Jackass) Penguins can be seen – also known as the Black-footed Penguins. These flightless seabirds are found only on the coast of Southern Africa and the only penguins found on this continent. Enjoy a delightful walk on a specially-built platform onto the little sheltered beach where they nest among the rocks, and “waddle” up and down into and out of the sea. Since the penguins are accustomed to human presence you can safely get within a few feet of them as you stand on the platform, and it is sometimes possible to view them nesting behind rocks and bushes.
Next, take a tour of Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, arguably one of the most beautiful gardens in the world. Founded in 1913, Kirstenbosch lies on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain and consists of landscaped gardens of indigenous plants and trees, watered by the Liesbeek River, as well as natural forest that extends up to the lower slopes. Kirstenbosch covers an area of 1,383 acres, 148 of which are cultivated; the remainder is a natural flora reserve. It is a living display featuring 9,000 of the estimated 20,000 species of indigenous South African flora, and close to 50% of the peninsula’s floral wealth. In the cultivated area, related plants are grouped together and radiate from the central lawns like the spokes of a wheel. Among the interesting sections here are the Cycad Amphitheatre, which hosts most species of these “living fossils” found in southern Africa; the famed Protea Garden on the higher slopes, with its profuse growth of silver trees (Leucadendron argenteum); the JV Mathews Rock Garden (named after the first curator) containing succulents of the genera Crassula, Aloe, Lampranthus and Euphorbia; the Erica Garden and the Pelargonium Koppie. Two streams cut through Kirstenbosch, both laced with besembos, red alder and hard fern. Of historical interest is an avenue of camphor trees and fig trees planted by Cecil Rhodes in 1898, and a small section of wild almond (Brabejum stellatifolium) hedge planted by Dutch settler Jan van Riebeeck in 1660. Birds of all sorts can be seen here as well – Dusky and Paradise Flycatchers, sunbirds, Klaas’s Cuckoos, bulbuls, pigeons, brilliant green and red Cape Sugarbirds (which pollinate the flowers), guinea fowls, and the Cape Batis.
Return to your hotel in the late afternoon, where the rest of your day is at leisure. Tonight, you might want to discover one of Cape Town’s excellent restaurants. Overnight at the SOUTHERN SUN WATERFRONT CAPE TOWN.
Mjejane River Lodge is perched on the banks of one of the Kruger National Park’s greatest rivers – the Crocodile River – and is surrounded by tens of thousands of acres of raw African wilderness. This particular area of the Kruger National Park is renowned for its great game viewing, but the select area of the Lodge has been a best-kept secret in honor of its remarkable beauty. This Lodge features a total of ten rooms, consisting of twin beds, double beds, and one suite. It is here that the paths of predators and prey cross. It is here that life and death are close companions. It is here that you are assured of a breathtaking wildlife experience. Overnights at MJEJANE RIVER LODGE.
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