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Published: September 17th 2019
Our plan for today was to head for the Hop On Hop Off bus (red route) which goes to Table Mountain, and go to the top of the mountain in the gondola - however, there were even more clouds covering it than yesterday! Change of plans - swap the red route for the blue route (and the purple route).
So after a lovely breakfast at the hotel, walked back to the Hop On Hop Off bus office (that we had found yesterday) and set off on the blue route. This goes through the centre of Cape Town, including Long St (the main street?) and then heads around behind Table Mountain. We got off at the Kirstenbosch gardens, a botanical garden on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain. Wandered around through various parts of the garden (it's over 5 hectares), many flowers out. Decided we should find the proteas, but even with the map (which I am sure was wrong!) we got a little lost, walked up many hills and think we eventually found one of the spots, but a little early - they aren't really flowering yet. Did see "pincushions" which were quite pretty. Eventually found our way back to
the gate, and after a long wait, back on the bus, and off at the next stop - Constantia Nek - which is the link with the purple route! This is the wine route, a 30 minute loop that stops at 3 wine farms in the Constantia valley, the oldest wine growing region in the southern hemisphere! We "hopped off" at Groot Constantia, the oldest wine farm, for a wine tasting. They also have 2 restaurants, so lucky it was lunch time. After a close encounter with a baboon (apparently the live in the Table Mountain National Park, and come down to visit) who had been naughty - stolen food off one of the restaurant tables, we had a lovely lunch at Simon's Deli (chose a table inside away from the baboons!!) and a glass (or two) of the local Sauvignon Blanc - very nice. Then off to the wine tasting room, got to taste 5 wines for the equivalent of about $9. Two whites, one rose, and 2 reds, although they gave us an extra red to taste. One of the whites, and the rose were very nice, so bought a bottle of each for the next few nights
at the hotel. Then heading back towards the bus stop, we could see a bus, so had to run (!!) for the bus (luckily Trina spotted a man also running, and his lady was behind us, so he held the bus). Switched back over to the blue route which goes along the Atlantic coast and many beach towns back to Cape Town, past mountains called the Twelve Apostles (except there are apparently 17), and the "back" of Table Mountain - which we could finally see as the clouds had gone!! Quite a long day, but some lovely scenery, and finally saw Tablle Mountain without the cloud! Headed back out to the waterfront for dinner.
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