After ten glorious days in downtown Cape Town, Muzzamil and I ventured to the eastern part of Cape Town to be close the the Indian Ocean. The eastern Cape has sleepy fishing towns, gorgeous beaches, and a very relaxed vibe. The drive there took about an hour and a half since we left on the day the President of South Africa was delivering his State of the Nation address to the opening of parliament. But we found no need to complain, because the views were unforgettable.
We were staying in a tiny town called Fishoek, which borders Kalk Bay. Our second home away from home was a lovely garden cottage where we could hear the roar of the ocean. Muzzamil and I have been walking a lot since we came to South Africa. We are averaging around 3 miles (5 km) per day and on our really adventurous days we are walking up to 7 miles (11 km). These towns were wonderful because we could walk all the way from one end of Kalk Bay along the coast through Fishoek and into the suburbs where we were staying.
Our Every Day: The best part about traveling and not having a fixed 9-5 schedule is that every single day is truly ours. To me- this is beautiful. We are able to wake up in the morning and make purposeful decisions about how we will spend our time. I am currently working to some degree and so is Muzzamil, but we joke that our 9-5 is ours to enjoy and then 5-8 is typically given to our work. We love our new normal.
Favorite Restaurant: Our first night in Fishoek we went to a local favorite called Cape to Cuba for dinner. The restaurant is loudly decorated, lined with vintage chandeliers of all colors and sizes. There are references to Che Guevara and Ernest Hemingway. Next to our table dangled a swing in the middle of the restaurant. I was SO tempted to take a little swing… I ate a lamb stew with sweet potatoes and Muzzamil had the classic fish and chips. Everything was vibrant and delectable.
Favorite Experience: Walking in Simons Town, we happened upon a small workshop filled with vibrant fabrics turned into bags, scarves, shirts and journals. In this shop, we met a lady named Blessing who ran this workshop under the name Designs by Tari. My favorite part of her designs were these small cutouts of animals she attached in different colored fabrics to her designs. The first time in, I asked Blessing to make me a floor length maxi in a gray fabric with cutouts of lions and elephants on the bottom. The next day, we came back to find that Blessing had spent the whole evening working on my dress. She blew my expectations out of the water. I then asked her to make me a second dress in blue. Muzzamil then asked her to make him a zip-up hoodie. The most wonderful thing about meeting Blessing was interacting with someone who was so passionate about their craft. She didn’t even hesitate to take on the challenge of making something she never had before. The next day, we came back for the third time to get our last two items. Her craft and her kindness will never be forgotten.
Hardest Workout: Definitely the 7 mile (11 km) walk we did from the end of Kalk Bay back to our place on a very sunny day.
Encounters with Nature: Boulders beach! We went our third day in Fishoek past Simons Town to Boulders Beach in order to see the famous South African penguins. We got up close in personal with these incredible birds. I even swam next to one. Check out our week two gallery for some photos.
Travel Realizations: We are now in Durban at the end of our third week in South Africa and our fifth week traveling since we left Toronto for London. The thing that we both have realized is that while vacationing every day is appealing, it can also be exhausting. That’s why right now we are taking the time to rest and rejuvenate. Stay tuned for our week 3 post on Durban and our magic treehouse.