South Africa

Cape Town

Shortly after arriving in Johannesburg I took a flight over to Cape Town.  My boyfriend and I stayed in Table View, one block back from Blouberg beach.  What a view and what a beach! It’s one of the top 3 kitesurfing beaches in the world and we happened to be visiting at the same as the Red Bull King of the Air competition, so there were hundreds of kitesurfers out on the water and subsequently out in the bars and restaurants – a great atmosphere.  One of my favourite eating places was Jerry’s Burger Bar – definitely check it out if you visit the area.

We were treated to many a gorgeous sunset while we walked along the beach, I attempted to do it justice but did not quite succeed…

Sunset over Blouberg beach, Cape Town

One of the many things to do and see in Cape Town is to visit the African penguins in the Boulders Beach colony in Simons Town.
The penguins arrived in False Bay in 1983 from Dyer Island, near Gansbaai. Back then, there was plenty for them to eat and the colony grew rapidly. Sadly, commercial fishing, marine pollution, and habitat destruction have taken their toll on the colony. In 1910, it was estimated that there were approximately one-and-a-half million African Penguins; a century later, the penguins were classified as an endangered species. By 1982 there were only two breeding pairs remaining. Incredible conservation efforts have grown the Boulders colony to over 3,000 birds in recent years. There are specially constructed walkways to keep tourists off the beach and away from the penguins, but so that you can still watch them amble around their habitat.

African penguins, Boulders Beach, Cape TownBelow are the colourful beach huts of Muizenberg Beach. I was so happy to stumble across these by accident on our road trip down to Cape Point. I knew of them and have in fact painted them before but I had not got round to pinpointing where they were. So when I spotted them from the car I was super happy and of course, had to draw them again. A good excuse to use some of the super bright paints in my box that don’t see much action.muizenberg beach cape town

No visit to Cape Town would be complete (especially for a first-timer such as myself) without visiting the Victoria & Alfred waterfront. This is where you can take a boat to the infamous Robben Island to see Nelson Mandela’s cell, the conditions of the prison in general and the quarries the prisoners were forced to work in.  A very sobering experience and was the most poignant moment of our visit.

Below is the iconic African Trading Post building at the waterfront.Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, Cape TownAn area of Cape Town I was particularly excited to see was the incredibly colourful houses of Bo-Kaap. It’s a former township located on the slopes of Signal Hill. The brightly painted houses are an expression of freedom by the emancipated slaves who once lived there. My whole being lit up walking the streets with the vibrant houses – so beautiful.Bokaap houses Cape Town travel sketch

Arguably the most iconic landmark of Cape Town is Table Mountain, we didn’t hike up, we got the cable car!  I didn’t sketch up there but instead opted for a less obvious scene that captured my imagination.  We decided we would try the hike up Lions Head instead. We arrived ready to hike to the top and unfortunately, it was closed because of the fires that have plagued the area. Instead, we took a walk to Signal Hill. On our way, we discovered this little mosque in the absolute middle of nowhere, with Lions Head looming in the background as well as the ocean on the other side.  It was such a beautiful and unusual scene, I just had to try to capture it.

Lions Head Cape Town Mosque travel sketch