Archive for September, 2012

From Sea to Table Top – via the city

TMBlog1School holidays can be a stressful time for parents. How do you entertain your kids on a daily basis? Play dates, helpful friends and family are one source of respite, and there are numerous activities for them to do if you have the time. Living busy lives we found an afternoon activity that both parents and kids could enjoy. From sea to mountain top and back via the Hop-on, Hop-off City Sightseeing Bus.

With kids travelling free up the cable car we decided to take advantage of the special. Our 5-year old had never been to the top of Table Mountain and we thought now was as good a time as any to take him and his friend up. We also thought the topless bus was a fun way to get there. The bus goes past the cable car station so we could make it a real sight seeing day – starting at sea level in Sea Point and making our way through the city to the top of Table Mountain.

We waited for a clear day and as soon as the clouds parted and blue skies appeared we were good to go and more importantly so were the kids. We caught the bus in the early afternoon and enjoyed a trip through the city with a view quite different to what we normally experienced – despite the fact we are born and bred Capetonians. The kids in particular lapped up the ride – sitting earnestly with their ear phones plugged into the special kids channel and enjoying the sights and sounds of our beautiful city.

We travelled through the V&A Waterfront, passed the Foreshore skyline and a bustling Adderley Street, to the ever-colourful Long Street and the historic District Six, Cape Castle and City Hall.  We passed the evergreen Company Gardens, saw the National Museum, the Planetarium as well as churches, mosques and a synagogue.

Eventually we were winding our way up to the cable car station and before long we were on top of the Table with the city spread out below us.TMBlog7

The kids took one whiff of the very chilly mountain top air and took off like two dassies on a mission. They dashed around from rock to rock and from one view point to the next. I had a tough time pinning them down for a quick photo shoot here and there. We explored the top area before settling down near the top cable station. We set up camp, enjoying a picnic while overlooking Camps Bay as a large cloud bank and menacing cold front moved in from the sea. It was truly spectacular!

Being the middle of winter there was a scattering of tourists, both South African and internationals on top and a few hardly locals like ourselves.

As cold as it can get, visiting the mountain top in winter can often be more spectacular with far less people, allowing us to really enjoy the special place and views without the summer masses. We caught one of the last cable cars down, (last ride is at 6pm in winter) just in time to catch the last bus back to our start in Sea Point. We loved it and more importantly the boys loved it, barely managing to keep their eyes open as we made our way through Camps Bay to Sea Point, the mountain looming above us, reminding us of a memorable trip.

TMBlog12 TMBlog10TMBlog11