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Saturday, 5 March 2016

Holiday in Cape Town - Photo journal Part 1

Cape of Good Hope : The Southern Most tip of Africa

A long overdue post to say the least! The past few months has been manic. New business getting busy, Little T's school curriculum and activities getting busier and of course with the new addition to the family(a pup called Zeus) it's hard to find time to update the blog often. Introducing Zeus, who we adopted when he was a tiny underfed 2 month old from the Woodgreen Rescue Shelter(Cambridge). He is now almost 10 months old, quite large and definitely not underfed. But inside he's still that little monkey.

Zeus at 2 months and 8 months

We went to Cape Town for our Christmas Holidays. My sister in law lives there and we had a great family time with my in laws joining us from Kolkata. 3 weeks went by like a fast spring stream without us even realising when it was time to say goodbye again. But we could capture some beautiful memories, memories that we would cherish in the months and years to come. And then again, we have Face Time! :p

They live on the mountains in a beautiful place called Constantia. You can see the table mountain from their living room. The table mountain was amazing. You can see it from any point of Cape Town as if it's a thing out of a sci-fi movie lurking there, hovering over the city. And just when you think that ok I have had enough of this view you get to see the white fluffy clouds sliding down on the sides of the table mountain giving it a waterfall effect. Locals even call it the "Tablecloth"!

A panoramic vie from top of the Table Mountain

The first week there we were busy celebrating Christmas with family and went for our very first African safari. Cape Town second part will be dedicated to the safari and ostriches. Little T had whale of a time with her cousin brothers, one of them being of her age. They played in garden all day long everyday(it's summer in SA in December remember?), swam everyday, collected bugs and stones and shells and rocks and just had fun. They reminded me of my childhood days when we used to visit and stay at our Mamarbari(maternal uncle's house) with cousins. The day finished with bed time stories from grandpa. She loved every minute of it.

My sister-in-law's housekeeper loves gardening. And the soil of Cape Town is so rich that local produces are in abundance. We got to taste her amazing home grown produces coupled with lots of braai(South African barbeque). I even cooked huge Crayfish heads for our family Christmas meal. You can find the recipe here

Home grown corns
Home grown Squashes and Melons

Crayfish Head Malakari

After the Christmas fever was over we started visiting places. Our first outing was at a local cherry farm. We went cherry picking and got home about 2.5 kilos of dark red, ripe cherries. Ofcourse we had to taste a fruit(or a few) from each tree before picking them so that's another 2.5 kilos in our tummies. :D

Onto my 2nd punnet 
On our way back we stopped at Wimpy's for a quick grub. It goes without saying that this was the kids' favourite meal!

En route to the Cherry farm
Next day we visited the Cape of Good Hope which is the southern most tip of Africa. The photos don't do justice to how beautiful this place is or even all of Cape Town is. The greenery, clear blue sky with white cotton clouds, deep blue oceans against the rocky mountains and abundance of flora and fauna make it one of the most gorgeous places I have ever seen. On our way we stopped a couple of times for some sight seeing and came across this stunning view from top of the mountains of the Silvermine beach.

Being one of the hottest days of summer, the beach attracted thousands. 
We also stopped at the Penguin Island at Boulder's Beach though due to lack of time we didn't buy a ticket to get a closer look. Next time we might go there for a whole day as the beach was much quieter than the other beaches and of course we would make friends with the cute ones!

The black dots are penguins! 

Rocks at the Cape of Good Hope

A customary photos at the Cape Point
The day ended with a late lunch at a popular local roadside eatery called the Mariner's Wharf in Hout Bay. In fact calling it popular is an understatement. We drove almost 50 extra miles for this place and it was totally worth it, mainly because of the stunning views and the food. It was so busy that the wait for food was about 40 minutes, but again totally worth it. It was one of the best fried fish I have ever had. We had a combo of fried Snoek, Calamari and Hake.

On route to Hout Bay
Enroute to Hout Bay

Mariner's Wharf, Hout Bay

 On our second week there we visited a few vineyards. Now South Africa is a country famous for wine, so we did a few wine tours. There is a stretch of road between Cape Town and Franschoek valley that has all the vineyards situated one after another and we saw a few familiar names that we have been buying at supermarkets here like Fairview, Glen Carlou etc. We also had a lunch booking at Glen Carlou and the place is absolutely stunning. Lovely ambience, beautiful decor and good service which could have been better. What sold us was the food. It was just gorgeous. Right portions, texture and colour and all made from local produce. Please book in advance if you are planning to visit as they have a few months' waiting period. 

Someone was very happy with his drink

We were served a selection of freshly baked breads with different flavours of butter.

We had 2 bottles of wine between 10 of us, 3 course meal and the hit was only R2000 which is roughly £100. Not bad eh?

My Starter of a simple garden salad with fried Quail eggs.

The garden salad that I had for started was simply beautiful. It was a plate full of vibrant colours bursting with flavours. The best thing was the fried quail eggs. I could eat them in bucketful! My mains was a medium rare mature steak with polenta fries, apple salad and mustard sauce on the side. I wasn't very sure about the polenta fries as they were too salty for my taste. I did miss the good old potato chips on the side. 

View of the Wine Valley

Wine tasting at Fair View vineyard. We had to buy a few bottles of wine and EVOO, they were that good! 
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