We tailored this trip (our 9th visit) in a way, to be a mixture of refreshing good memories, experience typical features of SA (game, whale watching….), meeting friends, enjoying food and wine, visit place of interest and golfing on some of the best courses in SA.
A word about safety: If you act with a good common sense, I am sure that you will not face any difficulty, at least we, throughout all our visits, they were all self drive, never encountered the slightest problem.
We met again wonderful, warm, welcoming and friendly people of all races in SA.
We spent almost the whole month of November in SA and had times of quite mixed, partly unpleasant weather conditions, cool, rainy and storm but the last 2 weeks be really beautiful.
We saw and ventured so much that I can’t reflect everything in detail but have rather selected our “BEST OF” from what we did, saw, ate, drunk, played…..etc. . It’s a very personal list and other visitors will surely have their own taste and opinion.
This was our 2009 itinerary:
We flew in via Jo’bg to PE and drove to a lodge close to Addo. From there to Plet, then via route 62 to Montagu which took us through George, Oudtshorn and to “Ronnies Sex Shop”. From Montagu through the “Breede River Valley” to Kleinmond/Hermanus and then via R44 and the Franschhoek Pass into Franschhoek,and continued to CT (Hout Bay this time)
Here our very personal “TOP List” (the sequence does not represent a ranking.)
Hitgeheim Country Lodg (near Addo – very nice lodge, a bit expensive but it is worth it)
Akademie Street Guest House (Franschhoek – that is a classic for us in the meantime.)
Platinum Guesthouse (Hout Bay – what a guesthouse, what a location high above Hout Bay)
Whale Safari (by Ivanhoe’s from Gansbaai -incredible to be so close to these giants of the sea)
Game Safari (Addo and Scotia Game Reserve- saw all big 4, no leopard)
Best Scenic Drives
Chapmans Peak (finally open again after a long closure)
Route 62 ( it was the first time , it’s a beautiful drive, a very diversified scenery)
Breede River Valley ( a lovely valley full of blooming Jacarandas)
Life entertainment in Hout Bay’s “Lookout”, on a Saturday night. We danced, had fun and chatted a lot with the locals.
On one of the Golf course we played with a South African couple which we had never met before and at the end of the day we had a wonderful dinner with them.
Bred and Wine (Moreson Wine Est, Franschhoek – wonderful home made charcuterie platter)
Marianas in Stanford (on our way back from Gansbaai)
OyO at the Waterfront (the crayfish special at 185.- Rd and free views to the Table Mountain)
La Colombe (Constantia, very good food, but the dining area really looks a bit dated)
Bouillabaise (Franschhoek – nice bistro ,extremely good fusion cuisine,)
La Grande Provence ( good food and what an ambiance under the old, old oak trees)
The worse: (by far)
Reubens (Franschhoek) not only compared to what they pretend to be, and a quite snooty receptionist.
Wine (we are white wine drinkers, thus we tried to sample as many Sauvignon Blancs 2009 as possible:
Springfield Estate: Life from Stone 2009
La Motte 2009
Wine Tastings (not only the wines but also the tasting facilities)
Delaire (wow, the most stunning views of the wine lands, super modern tasting facilities)
La Motte ( the newly built tasting facilities are out of this world….)
Solms Delta (more the cosy type of place)
Simola (Knysna – what a course…..)
Pear Valley (this is where the SA Open will take place in December)
Arabella Golf (Kleinmond, a beautiful resort course)
I would also like to thank all DE’s for their input as I have mostly followed the different forums silently and collected some great ideas.
This again was a wonderful holiday. On our next visit (either in 2010 or 2011) we will have our 10th trip anniversary and have to plan for something really special and outstanding to celebrate it.