Cape Town was the final point to fine tune a few things before heading north. I was also fortunate enough to meet up with a few friends, and go and see the show Chicago with Siân, Kobus and Lorraine, and Trevor went above and beyond offering us a place to stay for a few days and taking us to Signal Hill and running other errands – Trev, you are a star! The front tyre pressure sensor on the bike died rather suddenly on me so that had to be replaced at Donford; fortunately it didn’t wait until I was in the depths of Africa.
A group of us left Cape Town and headed up the west coast, taking in all the small bays at Bloubergstrand, Yzerfontein, Paternoster and Lambert’s Bay, where we stayed over for two nights. Trevor and Adrian headed off after one night to go see the stunning rock formations east of Clanwilliam, and I popped back to Cape Town via the N7 to pick up the Helinox cot legs (see my previous blog) and finalise my camping equipment bag, in time to get back to Lambert’s Bay for lunch. We went to see the bird sanctuary and watch the fishing boats come in with their catch, which was cleaned and sold on the dockside. You could even get some freshly cooked fish to eat from one of the informal stalls.
The next day Kobus, Lorraine and I carried on up to Port Nolloth. Riding up that region of the west coast takes you through the fruit farms along the Cederberg mountains, which are spectacular to say the least. Hugging the side of the hill just below the N7 is a water canal and viaduct that provides gravity fed water to the fields.
The plan was always to go up to the farthest north west point of South Africa at Alexander Bay, but we were also aware there isn’t any accommodation there, it’s just a closed mining town. When we got to Port Nolloth we rode down to the beach front, and found a very nice restaurant with a Vespa on its sign, called Vespetti’s. To our pleasant surprise there was also a nice hotel next door, very well appointed and only R550 B&B, so we checked in. We met up with one of Kobus’ old friends, a retired regimental sergeant major from Oudtshoorn, and joined him for a braai and drinks at his house the next evening. Somewhere along the line I picked up a small cold so stayed there for the Easter weekend, and because my cross border insurance letter was only dated for the 22nd– Easter Monday. I went back to Vespetti’s on the Sunday and got one of the most delicious pizza’s I ever had for lunch. Chatting to the owner, she said the name is a portmanteau of Vespa and Spaghetti. Nice one.
Easter Monday came and I headed up and in to Namibia, via Alexander Bay, Oranjemund in Namibia, and Aus.