Cape Town Pt 1
Cape Town, South Africa is one of the most beautiful cities in the world without question in my eyes. It has almost everything. The Town has beautiful beaches and the cost at one end and surrounded by Table Mountain on the over. The city has a dramatic backdrop. It has beautiful scenery, wildlife including penguins.
Good weather, restaurants and some really nice architecture.
Its history is not so positive but adds to the importance and charm o the city.
On the downside is it has a reputation for crime but I have to say Cape Town (at least in the tourist areas) is generally safe.
You would have to be unlucky or venturing into the no-go cape-flats townships to be at high risk.
Cape Town is safe for tourists. The hardest decision may be where to stay. There are many good points to choose from although accommodation is not the bargain it once was. My guidebook to Cape Town was many years old and at that time the accommodation could be called cheap. Not anymore.
I would suggest not staying in the city centre, as at weekends it is surprisingly deserted, and some guidebooks urge caution although again I walked parts of the city centre (admittedly just through it) without problem.
In the end Jinhee and I stayed in Green point for the first part of our trip but near to the waterfront and near to the city centre.
Kind of between the two.
The waterfront is a great place for a stroll. It is perhaps a little touristy but better than San Francisco’s waterfront in my opinion and I did enjoy San Francisco’s one.
Cape Town’s one is even nicer.
There are buskers, shops, places to eat and a nice atmosphere and it is safe at night because of a police presence.
You can take helicopter ride over Cape Town which considered but didn’t ultimately do/. Maybe next time.
On another day we visited District Six on a guided tour with a trip to the museum.
Father Forgive Us…
A plague at District Six reads
“ALL WHO PASS BY”
REMEMBER WITH SHAME THE MANY THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WHO LIVED FOR GENERATIONS
IN DISTRICT SIX AND OTEHR PARTS OF THIS CITY, AND WERE FORCED BY LAW TO LEAVE THEIR HOMES BECAUSE OF THE
COLOUR OF THEIR SKINS
FATHER, FORGIVE US…”
District Six is an infamous district known for the forced relocation of over 60,000 of its inhabitants during the apartheid area.
District Six was a cosmopolitan area but the apartheid government declared it to be a whites only area (despite them being a minority) and forcibly removed the non-white inhabitants to the cape flats.
Township areas which are overcrowded and with not for purpose houses (the situation is slowly improving) and the high crime ridden areas of today.
The old buildings were all demolished only churches and mosques were left which can still be seen.
Under pressure from the international community meant the apartheid government never managed to rebuild the area, and although much land now belongs to a technical college comparing the landscape with old photos and the district looks desolate.
The District Six museum is about the memories of those affected -
It is an excellent place to go.
As well as District Six we visited some near townships. Seeing a typical home in one of them. Albeit a renovated one as apparently many would fall foul of safety standards. We saw a shebeen (a drinking den) and tried a little of the traditional alcohol. Usually only drunk by men and
Probably an acquired test.
While driving through the townships we saw a monument to seven activists (Gugulethu Seven) murdered by police as well as a small cross which marks where Amy Biehl, a white American woman who worked to improve the situation in the townships tragically murdered during a period of great tension during the apartheid area during anti white resentment- http://www.amybiehl.org/
Charity work in her name is still carried out to this day.
The trip finished to a school. The children were really wonderful, friendly and energetic.