Cape Peninsula

The scenic Cape Peninsula, part of Cape Town's Table Mountain National Park. It begins southwest of Table Mountain und stretches all the way to the Cape of Good Hope, over a distance of 40 kilometres. The mountains are covered with dense Fynbos vegetation. Many bays and coves with beautiful beaches, in the west along the Atlantic and in the East at the Indian Ocean. The journey starts in the pittoresc fishing village of Hout Bay with the busy harbour and lively promenade. Substantial amounts of fish are unloaded here every day. Mostly it is snoek or hake, mainly for export to Spain. Behind the fishing boats: the arts and crafts market with items from all over Africa, including diamonds. Boat rides on the bay are quite popular. As a farewell - and a welcome on return - the colourfully dressed street musicians from the Hangklip quarter play and sing their tunes. Proceeding to the Cape - on the Chapman's Peak Drive - along the Atlantic coast. To the left of the road - wonderful hiking trails into the Table Mountain National Park. The proteas are part of the unique fynbos vegetation. At Chapman's Point the view of Hout Bay is overwhelming. Here starts the most dramatic part of the stretch. Steep rockwalls, narrow curves and gallery tunnels, and to the right the endless blue Atlantic ocean. Behind the last bend a wide view opens. In front lies the wild sandy beach of Noordhoek. One of the most beautiful beaches in South Africa. Close to the Cape: ostriches at the sea. The Cape of Good Hope is often crowded. Everybody wants to be on the photo. A bit further to the south-east lies the second tip: Cape Point. The funicular starts at the restaurant and drives uphill to the old lighthouse. It's more invigorating though to walk up the mountain. Once arrived one is rewarded with magic panoramic views. To the east the Indian Ocean - to the west the Atlantic - and to the south the rugged tip of the African continent. Back along the Indian Ocean. To Simon's Town with its pretty Victorian houses and the harbour. A boardwalk leads along the beach to the town's greatest attraction - the penguin colony at Foxy Beach and Boulders Beach. Once threatened by extinction, 3000 breeding pairs of African Penguins are living here nowadays. The beach is protected by huge round granite boulders. Seamed by Milkwood thicket, providing the penguins with an ideal breeding habitat. Swimming is allowed at Boulders Beach. Sometimes people and penguins can be seen together in the clear shallow water. http://www.southafrica-travel.net/westcape/cape_peninsula.htm