Monday, May 1

travel diary: the garden route & cape town

started off our next era South African coast roadtrip with red rhoibos lattes at 1Fox in Johannesburg. Now mentally connecting that largely industrial, deserted streets city with hipster food courts. That's what you were thinking also, when I mentioned it, right? Then soaking some sun in the Pretoria botanical gardens, while preparing for the flight south to Port Elizabeth the next day.

arriving in Port Elizabeth tiny airport, stocking up on snacks and on to a meal of fried squid and tacos at surfer meeting point, Saint Francis Brewing Company, in beach town Saint Francis Bay.

almost on that stretch of the southern coast that they call 'The Garden Route' but not yet, the scenery is already blowing our minds. The simple freedom of having two full weeks ahead of us just as sparklingly joy inducing.

next day, on our way to Knysna, we stop at touristy Plettenberg Bay and I splurge on entirely fresh and payable langoustines with a selection of butters (!) at The Fat Fish.

driving into Knysna, we catch what we at that point thought would be the best sunset of the entire trip. Wrong. Fantastic. But wrong. They kept throwing sunsets at us!

we cut our stay in Knysna short with one day to get to visit Wilderness solely for the name. This is where The Garden Route just overwhelms us and you run out of words... So, we stay gorgeously/embarassingly at Sea la vie beach house and swim at unmissable Victoria Beach, ending the day (and starting the next) at the beautifully delicious Timberlake Organic Village. By the way, there is a hike starting close to the Wilderness beach that you can take by following the abandoned train tracks along the side of the mountain. You will meet the man who lives in the cave, you will be stopped by a sign that asks you not to cross the falling apart bridge across the river bed and you probably will not want to do any of this alone. It's all incredibly pretty and adventurous, though.

one very warm drought night in Oudtshoorn. A nervously needed tank fill at a gas station operated only by women opposite a wall of flowers. A deeply appreciated oasis on the 62 highway near Montagu offering shade, cooling winds and so much fresh stuff on the menu we could hardly choose.

finally following the sunset into Cape Town. The Mother City.

ate a lot at Plant (they were laughing at us in the end). Visited the Old Bisquit Mill hipster market in Woodstock. Hiked up Table Mountain (10.00 is not early morning for other people, it turns out. Panicky warm direct sunlight). Fell hard in love with golden milk at yet again unmissable Scheckter's Raw in Sea Point. Aaaand tried to drive to Cape Point until we met a closed national park gate and ended up watching what was in fact the best sunset along unbelievable Chapman's Peak Drive