Jay & Nicole's Adventures 
Trip from Pretoria to Cape Town - Dec 2001 

(click any picture to get enlargement)

Jay and Nicole left Pretoria and headed towards Cape Town for Nicole's three-month assignment.  Since she didn't need to report for work until 1/7, they decided to take a leisurely route in getting there.

Map (click for bigger)

Nice driving weather

During the first day on the road, the weather turned bad (very quickly) and we got caught in a terrible hail storm.  The front window got smashed and the entire car was dented.  No one was hurt, even though it was like a war.

Dents on hood (roof too)

We then passed Durban and went on to a place called Shelley Beach.
The weather was nasty and it rained all night; the next morning it was nice enough to walk on the beach before leaving.


We then drove into the Transkei area and saw the former homeland of the very poor Xhosa tribe.  Their language includes three sounds made by various mouth clicks (I haven't heard it yet, but I hope to).

Xhosa Hut (circular)

Xhosa hilltop village 

Weather is still nasty and scared us a few times

Hillside village (the homes are brightly painted)

Overloaded bus (seeing thru window is tough)

The second night found us in the coastal town of East London, which neither of us were too fond of.   
We visited Jefferies Bay, which has the best surfing conditions in the world; it is home to the "perfect" waves.  We didn't see much action, so no pictures.

The weather still was getting better as we ventured south.  We then drove to a little country hotel called Lily Pond, where we spent the better part of a week.   

Sunny Sand Dunes 

Lily Pond detached rooms

... with 5 secluded ponds. 

Kahla Lily (indigenous) 

We will be making this trip once per year, so we are taking lots of notes for next time.  The lodging was tough to find as this period is the main summer holiday for South Africans (it was weird to celebrate Xmas during summer). 

We had hoped to get a place on the beach, or close to one, but because of our delay in making bookings during peak season we had to take what we could get.  Luckily this hotel was fantastic and the service was great.

Multi-colored Lily Pond 

Pretty Blue Lily 

Hotel Registration Desk and their Christmas Tree (made from lily flowers)  

Christmas Dinner (room service came in handy; all other places were closed)

Nicole & her xmas gifts 
(I hid them for her to find)

Beach at Nature's Valley, (about 10 mins. away) 

Jay's beach set-up (all umbrellas were sold out) 

View from Otter Trail, which goes along the coast for 150kms.

We took a boat tour of the Storm River's mouth.  The river is dark brown from the tanins found in the local plants (the guide told me it was due to a Coca Cola plant).  The terrain is quite dramatic because of past geological shifts, and sandstone which was easily washed away..

Interesting breakwater geology (sideways)

Indian Ocean swimmers
(water wasn't too cold)

Sun-goddess, who ended up with a bad sunburn

Dusk and a full moon

Plettenberg Bay sunset thunderstorm; we are on the east coast and don't see the actual sun setting

Up into a big Yellowood

Setting up a closeup shot 

.... got the pretty flower

Lone Yellowood tree

After a nice five day break at Lily Pond we packed up and headed further south to Mossel Bay.  Nicole's favorite town, Knysna was along the way and we stopped there for a break.  It is set up much like San Francisco, having a large bay with a tiny outlet to the open ocean (places are also highly priced).


Upon arriving in Mossel Bay, we were greeted by a double-ended rainbow. We stayed at the Old Post Office Tree Manor, which overlooked Mossel Bay.

Hotel patio dining; we ate outdoors many times

View from patio bar; our room also had a nice view

Beach camp; N.Y. eve bandstand in background  

Barnyard Concert Hall 

Concert Seating 

Another beach camp; with borrowed umbrella

We visited Brenton Beach 

... and boogie boarded 

Nice beach castle hotel 

We visited "Monkeyland" which is a reserve for about 120 rescued monkeys (it was actually more like a resort).

We had an enjoyable tour and were able to walk amongst the different kinds of monkeys.

Swiss monkey on a swinging bridge

Shy Monkey? 

This show-off would reach out for passing feet 

All that play made him hungry; food is provided

Blonde (actually albino)

A little yellow guy runs by 

and jumps up for a view 

Another lunch guy 

After 4 days in Mossel Bay we packed up for the final leg of the trip to Cape Town.  This part of South Africa is much drier than the places we have been.  This area is actually a different Flora/fauna area and has dry summers and wet winters (like California).  The rest of South Africa has wet summers and dry winters.  

It is nice for us to leave the Pretoria area as the rainy season started, and to head towards Cape Town where the dry season is starting.  The desert area would be too dry, but thankfully Cape Town is on the coast.

Hermanus Beach (resort area and great whale-watching in Oct-Nov) 

Hermanus Bay 

Gordon's Bay and the Cape Pennisula; we are close! 

Gordon Bay beach 

View of Cape Town

We Made It!!! 

 Now we can begin to explore the Cape area and to begin new adventures ...

Click here to see our rental apartment in Cape Town

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