SIMON’S TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

It has been eight days since we landed in Simon’s Town, South Africa and it has been a wonderful place. The boat is resting up at the False Bay Yacht Club. The people there have been wonderful and extremely helpful. Everything we need to prepare the boat for the next leg to Australia is there.

New York to South Africa (46 of 46)

We have spent our days working on the boat or running errands so, regretfully, I have not explored the area as much as I would have liked – an opportunity missed and a reason to come back.

As I write this I am sitting outside of the club looking out seeing the bay surrounded by rocky shrub covered mountains, which when the wind blows are covered by thick blankets of white clouds. Buildings dot the foot of the hills around the bay and rocky outcrops and white beached meet the cool waters of False Bay. The weather is very much like the Mediterranean; cool nights and warm days chilled by a strong breeze.

New York to South Africa (50 of 52)

Most of what I have seen has been only on the rain going to Cape Town from Simon’s Town and back (to check in and out of emigration and customs). All we saw in Cape Town was the touristy waterfront with its malls and restaurants (very nice if you like that sort of thing).

New York to South Africa (47 of 52)

New York to South Africa (49 of 52)

Simon’s Town is a small, and is the location of the South African navy. The main strip is near the water and is mainly tourist shops restaurants. There are no large hotels or resorts here. Above the main street, working up the steep hillside are the houses; small blending beautifully in with the natural surroundings. Looking at a pamphlet on exploring Simon’s town there is lots to see and do, from going on scenic hikes to cage diving to see great white sharks. There are also less adventures thing to do like wine tours and seeing penguins along the shore.

After day of working on the boat and having a couple of cold cheap beers at the club, we would go and eat at one of the many restaurants. The food has always been very good and the service excellent. And the cost? In a word – cheap. With an exchange rate of 1 Rand = 0.1245 Canadian dollars, food, wine, beer and services are surprisingly inexpensive. We normally spent between R100 – R150/person of a multi course meal leaving us stuffed and happy. The cost for boat maintenance at the yacht club has been a surprising pleasure. And it only cost us about R200 to do the laundry of five guys who just spent 69 days at sea.

I wish I could spend more time here and explore, hiking in the hills and along the Cape and swimming in the cool waters. At least I have enjoyed sitting at the club letting the morning sun warm me up while gazing out at the bay and sunlit mountains. The pace of life is relaxed here and has that feel as a place that Earnest Hemmingway would have enjoyed.

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