Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Have Fun Travelling the South African Cape in a Car!

Visitors travelling by air to South Africa often find that one of the best ways to travel around South
Africa
is by cheap car hire. 
You can pre-plan your trip from the luxury of your own home before you start your holiday; booking in advance for a hire car from the company of your choice to be waiting for you upon arrival. The friendly agent is there to meet you and hand over the keys, - making the start of your trip hassle-free and immediatelty establishing a reliable first contact at the beginning of your trip.
Cape Town is one of the leading travel destinations in the world . In order to sight-see, a vehicle is a must. Distances between venues are often surprisingly large, thus making the money spent on a rental car more cost effestive than using taxi, or a travel guide’s services.
Make sure to earmark visiting Cape Agulhas, the southern most tip of Africa in your travel itenarary. This can be done as a day trip from Cape Town, or if you have the time make it a more lesurely trip over three or four days along the Atlantic scenic costal route.
From
Cape Town travel through Somerset West along route N2, turning off at R44 via Gordon’s Bay following the twisting and turning Clarence Drive overlooking False Bay.
Passing through the sea-side villages set in the rugged coves of Pringle Bay, Betty’s Bay and Kleinmond which were once hide outs for smugglers in the 1800’s, then later in the 1900’s Cook’s Whaling Company at Stony Point, where whaling ships coveted the oil of Southern Right whales and now all that’s left is a colony of African Jack-Ass Penguins, the large whaling factory and ships ghosts of the past.
Drive on to the popular holiday town Hermanus, world reknown for whale sighting and its annual September Whale Festival.
Make this an overnight stop off point, as the choice of accommodation covers budget to luxury and the places to eat range from side walk cafĂ©’s to five star restaurants. For the golf enthusiast, Hermanus boasts a 27-hole golf course, so don’t forget your golf clubs!
From Hermanus, take the R43 to Stanford which is well worth a stop off, as it boasts art galleries, antique shops, coffe shops and restaurants. From Stanford take the R326 and travel inland along Akkedisberg Pass to Van Brakel Junction, turning right onto the R316 through vast farming fields of oats, canola and barley to Napier and then on to the agricultural town Bredasdorp, established in 1838 and named after a wealthy land-owner, Michael van Breda, who was the first Mayor of Cape Town and a member of the Cape Legislative Assembly.
Visit the Shipwreck Museum which features some of the numerous old ships wrecked along the Cape Agulhas coast.
Drive through Bredasdorp and turn right onto R319, which will take you to the villages of Struisbaai and L’Agulhas, the last village surrounded by beautiful Nature reserves, leading you to the Southern Most Tip of Africa, which was first called “Cabo das Agulhas”, – Cape of Needles - in 1502 by Portuguese sailors, previously named “Ponta de Sint Brandao” by the Portuguese Explorer Bartholomeu Dias, after the patron saint, when he first rounded the Tip of Africa in January 1488.
Cape Agulhas was also known by seafarers as the “Graveyard of Ships” due to the vicious winds and stormy seas that claimed many an ancient ship and drowned sailors, whose ghosts are said to still walk the rocky coastal shores.
Take time to visit the historic L’Agulhas lighthouse, (4500-candlepower light from a four-wick Argand burner),  which is built in the fashion of the lighthouse that stood on the island of Pharos in Alexandria, Egypt for 1500 years until the 15th Century was put into full operation in 1848.
Overnight at one of the well appointed bed and breakfast’s in L’Agulhas or Struisbaai, and make sure you photograph yourself standing at the cairn marking the Southern Most Tip of Africa, which is the official meeting point of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans.
No matter where you decide to travel to next, make sure you go by car, which can be collected and dropped off at CapeTown International Airport, making your holiday unique, as you can stop off where ever and when ever you
choose!
Things to do in Agulhas National Park:
·       Visit the Lighthouse, with its unique lighthouse museum.
·       Visit the Southern Most Tip of Africa, the official position being 34-49-58 south and 20-00-12 east, where the Indian and Atlantic Ocaeans oficially meet!
·       View the Shipwereck and San Fish traps – se the Meisho Maru 38 and visit the Shipwreck Museum in
Bredasdorp. Enquire about the fish traps at raperspunt.
·       Explore the Fynbos; - Hike the Agulhas Plain with its great diversity of indigenous
flora and unique vegitation of lymestone fynbos.
·       Bird Watching, - the Nature Reserve has exceptional bird life.
·       Follow trails; - experience beautiful views, intereesting bird life and flora unique
to the area.