Cape Town, South Africa

In the End: the Cape

Former Municipality
The corner
Bo Kaap
Africa Background Lights
On Stop
Castle of Good Hope
The center
The Central Business District
Clifton Beach
Shipyard below Table Mountain
Mama Africa
Rhythm of Xylophones
Dark Talk
mere figures
Central Methodist Church
PanAfrican Market
Victoria & Alfred Waterfront
The crossing of Cabo das Tormentas, led by Bartolomeu Dias, transformed this almost southern tip of Africa into an unavoidable scale. And, over time, in Cape Town, one of the meeting points of civilizations and monumental cities on the face of the Earth.

As we see and experience it, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront is a kind of modernized legacy of its colonial history.

A yellow frame that identifies the table mountain covered in fog and a few buildings in the CBD (Central Business District), it also includes a dock, shipyard and marina extended along an inland stretch of sea, where the Atlantic comes closest to Table Mountain, in the area of ​​the oldest port in South Africa. South.

A few workers deal with the repair and maintenance of vessels that have been beaten and worn out by the rough waters offshore.

This coastal area is dotted with restaurants, bars, hotels, cinemas, souvenir and knick-knack stores, and others that provide different types of entertainment.

We are two of more than twenty million outsiders who, in normal tourist years, travel the V&A Waterfront.

On a daily basis, they explore its corners and have fun while countless fishing boats and cargo ships enter and set sail, part of the nautical frenzy that makes Cape Town the third economic center of the vast continent. African.

With the afternoon surrendering and the sun almost disappearing in the western distance, the atmospheric pressure on the foot of the mountain decreases. Little by little, the fog slides off the plateau.

It is also made for that seaside colored by the twilight and artificial lighting with a predominance of gold. One ferris wheels giant swirls above the houses, against the sky, soon, starry.

Gradually, visitors, guests and night diners settled in their favorite establishments.

The Victoria & Alfred Waterfront was named in honor of Prince Alfred, who visited it in 1860, and, of course, his mother Victoria, queen of the already vast British Empire.

The fame of scale, of oceanic warehouse, of Taverna dos Mares almost obligatory, had it for a long time.

After the passages of Bartolomeu Dias and Vasco da Gama through Cape of Storms, the Portuguese sought to establish a presence and position that they knew had great strategic value. However, they faced resistance from the natives.

In 1510, Francisco de Almeida and his 64 men suffered the hardships of the first confrontation between Europeans and indigenous people in present-day South Africa. All perished in what became known as the Battle of Rio Salgado.

Despite the tragedy, in the years that followed, ships from Portugal, and later from rival colonial nations, continued to anchor at the base of Table Mountain.

In a first phase, they repaired the damaged ships there and stocked up on water and supplies which, as soon as contacts with the natives were pacified, they exchanged for tobacco, silver, iron and others.

The Portuguese eventually settled and maintained fortifications in other parts of southern and southeastern Africa. Similar to what happened in different colonial contexts, the Dutch, who almost always followed in their footsteps, set up camp on the Cape.

Served by the Dutch East India Company, they ensured, in their Kaapcolonie, a warehouse for ships heading to the Dutch East Indies, islands in present-day Indonesia.

Castle of Good Hope and Cape Town's Dutch Origins

There, between 1666 and 1679, they built the first military structure in what is now Cape Town, the Fort of Good Hope, later replaced by the Castle of Good Hope.

This last fortification constitutes the civilizational core of the colony and the city.

The oldest colonial building in South Africa remains beautifully preserved and grand. It's another one of the places in the Mother City that we're in a hurry to discover.

The castle preserves its pentagonal configuration.

The stone and mortar walls contrast with the lightness and yellow beauty of the buildings inside, separated by a lawn that, based on a historical reenactment, soldiers in secular uniforms and in formation, cross with a rifle with a bayonet on their shoulder.

At one of the still grassy ends of the pentagon, we find the South African flag waving in the wind.

We admire it, almost from the base, standing out above the sharp peak of Lion Mountain, a hill to the west of Table Mountain that sailors used as a complementary nautical reference.

The Castelo da Boa Esperança proved to be so central that it is accompanied by an imposing ex-City Hall, set amongst palm trees, built by the British in 1905, in honey-coloured limestone imported from Bath.

The CBD, above Old Town Historic Center by the City Bowl

Cape Town's financial and business center and downtown area spread across the flat, flat lands that surround it.

Over there, a recent colony of steel and glass corporate buildings, headquarters of the most powerful South African banks and the like, rises above the Castle of Good Hope, challenging the quartz supremacy of the Table Mountain cliffs.

In obvious temporal and architectural disparity, they form the other section of the Downtown from Cape Town, streets like Long Street and Kloof Street.

There are many buildings with adapted Dutch architecture, extended, with simplified pediments and arcades at the base.

They are supplanted by others, more modern, in inhabited times, today, due to an almost inevitable dynamic of gentrification, occupied by an assortment of lucrative businesses.

On these sides of the so-called City Bowl, dusk generates a play of shadows, shapes and colors that, along with the people and figures that roam the streets, make it above all enigmatic.

Among the buildings with a Dutch origin and influence, there are others, secular and religious, in the Edwardian and Victorian styles that the flow of history imposed on the city.

From Dutch and British Colonies to an Intricate Independence

Cape Town was Dutch and Boer from 1652 to 1795.

In this year, with Holland aligned with Napoleonic France that the British and allies subdued, the British took the opportunity to capture most of the boer territory in south africa.

After a period of comings and goings, Cape Town became, in 1814, British for good.

The colony's capital, meanwhile, renamed Cape Colony, was expanded along the vacant space between the foothills of Table Mountain and the shores of the even more immense Table Bay.

The discovery of diamonds and gold, at the end of the XNUMXth century, generated a migratory flow to South Africa that greatly increased the number of inhabitants and the ethnic diversity of the city.

The Multicolor Neighborhood of Bo-Kaap and the Multi-Ethnicity of Cape Town

As we wander around Cape Town, we find ourselves in the multicolored Bo-Kaap, the Malay neighborhood of Cape Town.

It was generated by descendants of slaves brought by the Dutch from Malaysia, Indonesia and parts of Africa, almost entirely Muslim.

For several centuries, long before the institutionalization of Apartheid, the Bo-Kaap neighborhood was segregated.

Upon their social liberation, the owners of the houses painted them in happy colors.

Cape Town's multiculturalism never ceased to become more complex.

Bo-Kaap and other less garish neighborhoods welcomed Indian, Filipino, Italian immigrants from the most different parts of Africa and, as is known, Portuguese, especially Madeiran.

We admire a mural that shows a smiling face of the Madiba Nelson Rolihlala Mandela, father of the modern South African nation, which triumphed over the despised segregationist regime Apartheid imposed, from 1948 to 1994, by governments Afrikaners of the National Party.

South Africans of different ethnicities and skin tones who pass between the mural and our lenses either don't react or smile a little.

This is how their postures succeed until a woman with very dark skin and short hair curled in braids raises her right fist, tightly clenched.

We prove, at that moment, how, despite their complexity, four centuries later, South Africa and Cape Town are, by history and by right, theirs.


TAAG – Linhas Aéreas de Angola: rbook your flight Lisbon – Cape Town in TAAG: per from €750.

Cape of Good Hope - Cape of Good Hope NP, South Africa

On the edge of the Old End of the World

We arrived where great Africa yielded to the domains of the “Mostrengo” Adamastor and the Portuguese navigators trembled like sticks. There, where Earth was, after all, far from ending, the sailors' hope of rounding the tenebrous Cape was challenged by the same storms that continue to ravage there.
Saint Lucia, South Africa

An Africa as Wild as Zulu

On the eminence of the coast of Mozambique, the province of KwaZulu-Natal is home to an unexpected South Africa. Deserted beaches full of dunes, vast estuarine swamps and hills covered with fog fill this wild land also bathed by the Indian Ocean. It is shared by the subjects of the always proud Zulu nation and one of the most prolific and diverse fauna on the African continent.
Graaf-Reinet, South Africa

A Boer Spear in South Africa

In early colonial times, Dutch explorers and settlers were terrified of the Karoo, a region of great heat, great cold, great floods and severe droughts. Until the Dutch East India Company founded Graaf-Reinet there. Since then, the fourth oldest city in the rainbow nation it thrived at a fascinating crossroads in its history.
Table Mountain, South Africa

At the Adamastor Monster Table

From the earliest times of the Discoveries to the present, Table Mountain has always stood out above the South African immensity South African and the surrounding ocean. The centuries passed and Cape Town expanded at his feet. The Capetonians and the visiting outsiders got used to contemplating, ascending and venerating this imposing and mythical plateau.
Robben Island, South Africa

The Island off the Apartheid

Bartolomeu Dias was the first European to glimpse Robben Island, when crossing the Cape of Storms. Over the centuries, the colonists turned it into an asylum and prison. Nelson Mandela left in 1982 after eighteen years in prison. Twelve years later, he became South Africa's first black president.
Big Zimbabwe

Great Zimbabwe, Endless Mystery

Between the 1500th and XNUMXth centuries, Bantu peoples built what became the largest medieval city in sub-Saharan Africa. From XNUMX onwards, with the passage of the first Portuguese explorers arriving from Mozambique, the city was already in decline. Its ruins, which inspired the name of the present-day Zimbabwean nation, have many unanswered questions.  
savuti, botswana, elephant-eating lions
Savuti, Botswana

Savuti's Elephant-Eating Lions

A patch of the Kalahari Desert dries up or is irrigated depending on the region's tectonic whims. In Savuti, lions have become used to depending on themselves and prey on the largest animals in the savannah.
Yak Kharka to Thorong Phedi, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal, Yaks
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit 11th: yak karkha a Thorong Phedi, Nepal

Arrival to the Foot of the Canyon

In just over 6km, we climbed from 4018m to 4450m, at the base of Thorong La canyon. Along the way, we questioned if what we felt were the first problems of Altitude Evil. It was never more than a false alarm.
Traditional houses, Bergen, Norway.
Architecture & Design
Bergen, Norway

The Great Hanseatic Port of Norway

Already populated in the early 1830th century, Bergen became the capital, monopolized northern Norwegian commerce and, until XNUMX, remained one of the largest cities in Scandinavia. Today, Oslo leads the nation. Bergen continues to stand out for its architectural, urban and historical exuberance.
lagoons and fumaroles, volcanoes, PN tongariro, new zealand
Tongariro, New Zealand

The Volcanoes of All Discords

In the late XNUMXth century, an indigenous chief ceded the PN Tongariro volcanoes to the British crown. Today, a significant part of the Maori people claim their mountains of fire from European settlers.
Indigenous Crowned
Ceremonies and Festivities
Pueblos del Sur, Venezuela

Behind the Venezuela Andes. Fiesta Time.

In 1619, the authorities of Mérida dictated the settlement of the surrounding territory. The order resulted in 19 remote villages that we found dedicated to commemorations with caretos and local pauliteiros.
Museum of Petroleum, Stavanger, Norway
Stavanger, Norway

The Motor City of Norway

The abundance of offshore oil and natural gas and the headquarters of the companies in charge of exploiting them have promoted Stavanger from the Norwegian energy capital preserve. Even so, this city didn't conform. With a prolific historical legacy, at the gates of a majestic fjord, cosmopolitan Stavanger has long propelled the Land of the Midnight Sun.
Obese resident of Tupola Tapaau, a small island in Western Samoa.
Tonga, Western Samoa, Polynesia

XXL Pacific

For centuries, the natives of the Polynesian islands subsisted on land and sea. Until the intrusion of colonial powers and the subsequent introduction of fatty pieces of meat, fast food and sugary drinks have spawned a plague of diabetes and obesity. Today, while much of Tonga's national GDP, Western Samoa and neighbors is wasted on these “western poisons”, fishermen barely manage to sell their fish.
Nahuatl celebration

Mexico City, Mexico

mexican soul

With more than 20 million inhabitants in a vast metropolitan area, this megalopolis marks, from its heart of zócalo, the spiritual pulse of a nation that has always been vulnerable and dramatic.

Bungee jumping, Queenstown, New Zealand
Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown, the Queen of Extreme Sports

In the century. XVIII, the Kiwi government proclaimed a mining village on the South Island "fit for a queen".Today's extreme scenery and activities reinforce the majestic status of ever-challenging Queenstown.
Streymoy island, Faroe Islands, Tjornuvik, Giant and Witch
streymoy, Faroe Islands

Up Streymoy, drawn to the Island of Currents

We leave the capital Torshavn heading north. We crossed from Vestmanna to the east coast of Streymoy. Until we reach the northern end of Tjornuvík, we are dazzled again and again by the verdant eccentricity of the largest Faroese island.
Navala, Viti Levu, Fiji
Navala, Fiji

Fiji's Tribal Urbanism

Fiji has adapted to the invasion of travelers with westernized hotels and resorts. But in the highlands of Viti Levu, Navala keeps its huts carefully aligned.
Rainbow in the Grand Canyon, an example of prodigious photographic light
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Natural Light (Part 1)

And Light was made on Earth. Know how to use it.

The theme of light in photography is inexhaustible. In this article, we give you some basic notions about your behavior, to start with, just and only in terms of geolocation, the time of day and the time of year.
Cobá, trip to the Mayan Ruins, Pac Chen, Mayans of now
Cobá to Pac Chen, Mexico

From the Ruins to the Mayan Homes

On the Yucatan Peninsula, the history of the second largest indigenous Mexican people is intertwined with their daily lives and merges with modernity. In Cobá, we went from the top of one of its ancient pyramids to the heart of a village of our times.
Alcatraz Island, California, United States
Alcatraz, San Francisco, USA

Back to the Rock

Forty years after his sentence ended, the former Alcatraz prison receives more visitors than ever. A few minutes of his seclusion explain why The Rock's imagination made the worst criminals shiver.
Geothermal, Iceland Heat, Ice Land, Geothermal, Blue Lagoon
Winter White

The Geothermal Coziness of the Ice Island

Most visitors value Iceland's volcanic scenery for its beauty. Icelanders also draw from them heat and energy crucial to the life they lead to the Arctic gates.
José Saramago in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain, Glorieta de Saramago
Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain (España)

José Saramago's Basalt Raft

In 1993, frustrated by the Portuguese government's disregard for his work “The Gospel According to Jesus Christ”, Saramago moved with his wife Pilar del Río to Lanzarote. Back on this somewhat extraterrestrial Canary Island, we visited his home. And the refuge from the portuguese censorship that haunted the writer.
unmissable roads

Great Routes, Great Trips

With pompous names or mere road codes, certain roads run through really sublime scenarios. From Road 66 to the Great Ocean Road, they are all unmissable adventures behind the wheel.
Mother Armenia Statue, Yerevan, Armenia
Yerevan, Armenia

A Capital between East and West

Heiress of the Soviet civilization, aligned with the great Russia, Armenia allows itself to be seduced by the most democratic and sophisticated ways of Western Europe. In recent times, the two worlds have collided in the streets of your capital. From popular and political dispute, Yerevan will dictate the new course of the nation.
Prayer flags in Ghyaru, Nepal
Natural Parks
Annapurna Circuit: 4th – Upper Banana to Ngawal, Nepal

From Nightmare to Dazzle

Unbeknownst to us, we are faced with an ascent that leads us to despair. We pulled our strength as far as possible and reached Ghyaru where we felt closer than ever to the Annapurnas. The rest of the way to Ngawal felt like a kind of extension of the reward.
Lonely Walk, Namib Desert, Sossusvlei, Namibia, dune base acacia
UNESCO World Heritage
Sossusvlei, Namíbia

The Namibe Dead End of Sossusvlei

When it flows, the ephemeral Tsauchab river meanders 150km from the mountains of Naukluft. Arriving in Sossusvlei, you get lost in a sea of ​​sand mountains that compete for the sky. The natives and settlers called it a swamp of no return. Anyone who discovers these far-fetched parts of Namibia always thinks of returning.
Correspondence verification
Rovaniemi, Finland

From the Finnish Lapland to the Arctic. A Visit to the Land of Santa

Fed up with waiting for the bearded old man to descend down the chimney, we reverse the story. We took advantage of a trip to Finnish Lapland and passed through its furtive home.
Vietnamese queue

Nha Trang-Doc Let, Vietnam

The Salt of the Vietnamese Land

In search of attractive coastlines in old Indochina, we become disillusioned with the roughness of Nha Trang's bathing area. And it is in the feminine and exotic work of the Hon Khoi salt flats that we find a more pleasant Vietnam.

Cambodia, Angkor, Ta Phrom
Ho Chi Minh a of Angkor, Cambodia

The Crooked Path to Angkor

From Vietnam onwards, Cambodia's crumbling roads and minefields take us back to the years of Khmer Rouge terror. We survive and are rewarded with the vision of the greatest religious temple
Serra do Mar train, Paraná, airy view
On Rails
Curitiba a Morretes, Paraná, Brazil

Down Paraná, on Board the Train Serra do Mar

For more than two centuries, only a winding and narrow road connected Curitiba to the coast. Until, in 1885, a French company opened a 110 km railway. We walked along it to Morretes, the final station for passengers today. 40km from the original coastal terminus of Paranaguá.
Ijen Volcano, Slaves of Sulfur, Java, Indonesia
Ijen volcano, Indonesia

The Ijen Volcano Sulphur Slaves

Hundreds of Javanese surrender to the Ijen volcano where they are consumed by poisonous gases and loads that deform their shoulders. Each turn earns them less than €30 but everyone is grateful for their martyrdom.
Coin return
Daily life
Dawki, India

Dawki, Dawki, Bangladesh on sight

We descended from the high and mountainous lands of Meghalaya to the flats to the south and below. There, the translucent and green stream of the Dawki forms the border between India and Bangladesh. In a damp heat that we haven't felt for a long time, the river also attracts hundreds of Indians and Bangladeshis in a picturesque escape.
female and cub, grizzly footsteps, katmai national park, alaska
PN Katmai, Alaska

In the Footsteps of the Grizzly Man

Timothy Treadwell spent summers on end with the bears of Katmai. Traveling through Alaska, we followed some of its trails, but unlike the species' crazy protector, we never went too far.
Napali Coast and Waimea Canyon, Kauai, Hawaii Wrinkles
Scenic Flights
napali coast, Hawaii

Hawaii's Dazzling Wrinkles

Kauai is the greenest and rainiest island in the Hawaiian archipelago. It is also the oldest. As we explore its Napalo Coast by land, sea and air, we are amazed to see how the passage of millennia has only favored it.