Thursday, July 19, 2018

My first visit to Cape Town, South Africa

After a full week of being deep in the bush with no WiFi or cell service, I am back and able to write blogs again. It was both refreshing and frustrating not having any connectivity. But alas, I am connected again and writing again. And I am heading home too!

In between the Namibia photo tour and the Botswana photo tour we took a break in Cape Town, South Africa for a week. It was my first time visiting South Africa and we had a good time touring the area.

In this blog post, I will share with you some of the cool things we saw during our stay.

I was amazed at the amount of snow on the mountains as we approached Cape Town by air.  Since my camera gear was packed up, I took this shot with my iPhone X.

We arrived at our hotel in the the Sea Point area and I went up to the roof to check out the view. In this photo, you can see Lion's Head (right) and Table Mountain (left) which is covered in this big cloud bank.

I liked the way the clouds were formed over Table Mountain and decided to get a shot of just that.

I then turned and got a shot of just Lion's Head.

As I was taking the photos, I looked up and saw these para-gliders in the air above me.

On our second day, we hired a car and driver and took a tour of the area. I used my Canon 5D Mark IV and Canon 24-105mm lens to capture the beautiful coastline.

We drove along the coast and checked out some of the marinas.

Not only did we see the touristy things, but we also made it a point to check out the living area outside the city. As you can see, there are some people in the area who are still living minimally. Apartheid ended almost 30 years ago, but you can still see some of the remaining separate living conditions throughout the city.

I found it interesting that, even with the sparse conditions, almost everyone had a satellite dish for television.

We drove up to Table Mountain, but did not go all the way up since we showed up after 5pm and the lift to the top was closed. I decided to walk back down the mountain to our hotel, and stopped along the way to get some iPhone shots.

As I mentioned in a previous blog post (which was dedicated to just the penguins), we loved them so much that we visited them twice. If you missed that post, you can find it here.

We toured around and saw some of the great colors of the region.

Since we were staying right on the beach, we had numerous chances to capture the beautiful sunsets.

I was hoping to get more color in the sky after the sun set on this particular evening, but it did not happen. But I took the opportunity to show one of our tour attendees how to motion pan in this low light, following the joggers and bikers as they went by.

On one of our free days we drove down to the Cape of Good Hope (the most South-Western point of Africa).

The Cape Town coastline reminded me a lot of the California coastline.

It was fun to be down at the cape, but not very picturesque. I did see these peaks along the coast and liked the repeating monotone shades that they created.

You can't visit the Cape Town area without visiting the wineries. We spent the afternoon in the Stellenbosch area of the wine country and had a really great lunch at one of the wineries.

On our last day in Cape Town, I walked around the Bo-Kaap area, known for the colorful homes.

I saw this old car in front of the colorful houses and had to take this shot!

It was our last night in Cape Town and I went to see if I could capture a boat directly in front of the setting sun. I got this one, even though the sun was a little higher than I wanted when the boat crossed the path.

A couple of us watched as the sun set and the large waves broke on the shore. I really liked the power of the waves and the amount of mist being pushed into the air, all in front of the orange sky. It was a great way to end our time in Cape Town.

From South Africa, we flew to Botswana to start the second photo tour. I am very excited to show you all those images as well, as we had some epic wildlife encounters! Those are coming...

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