10 days spent in Cape Town and I hardly managed to see something in the city. After the Table Mountain Hiking and the Shark Diving Experience I was ready, yet, for another escape from the city. Image how many days you will need during the summer to visit and to enjoy the beaches around Cape Town. During my travels to Cape Town it was late autumn, winter has been just around the corner, and it wasn’t too hot to go surfing.
The good thing about staying at the hostels is the multitude of flayers which are taped on the walls. Tours, discounted tours, parties and even day job offers. I knew about Bazbus before arriving in Cape Town. It was one of the options to get to CT; bus, plane or train. The bus option even if it was a bit more expensive than the other two would have been a more fun one cause you are on the bus mostly with other travelers and there are different stops on the round and then you can take the next day bus again. But I did not have time to do that so in the end, I choose the flight and train option.
Now, back to the tour. Had 2 options and one was the tour with the Bazbus team. I asked the guy from the hostel which one was better and he informed me that the Buzbus tour is the best offer in town. And for the amount of 400 Rands (40$) booked the tour for the next day. The surprise came when I met on the same tour 2 fellows Romanians whom were on a short trip in South Africa.
I was very excited regarding one highlight of the tour: the encounter with the penguins! Not sure why, but I like a lot those small creatures: there are so small and so cute and if would have been possible I might have stolen on and taken back home with me. And now I would have had a penguin pet!
We arrived in Simon’s Town around midday. Simon’s Town is famous for 2 things; one, its an important naval base in South Africa and the harbor. Second, its home to the African penguin. It’s a bit weird to associate the penguins with Africa. And no-one knows why this penguin decided to settle here back in 1982. The area had no fauna (no birds) and it was already populated by humans. So, how knows. Maybe the penguin in charged, after a long journey around the world, found the HOME!
Actually, there were only 2 penguins who decided to start a new life on Boulders Beach. And now there are more than 3000!
Simon’s Town looked to me like a typical Nordic fisherman’s village. Clean, small and with little houses colored in blue and white. But we had only around 45 minutes here so not so much time to stroll the city.
Back to the penguins! As I was saying I was looking forward to the meeting with them. Never to have high hopes; generally in life and always while traveling. Someone was pointing in one direction, saying: look, there they are! I sit and look deep further… where, where? And then saw something very small. Like no more than 35 cm. What? So small? I was expecting them to be bigger! In the pictures they usually look a bit higher. But no, they were smaller than I even imaged.
I was a bit disappointed. But later on the beach, watching them while playing or just coming out of the water they looked again extremely cute.
And they were even smaller one’s: chick penguins! There were brown and so, so fluffy! Is would have had a boat would had taken one and disappeared with it in the world.
45 minutes are enough to take some picture, walk slowly in the reservation and enjoy the view and the penguins. In the end, it’s worth the visit to Boulders Beach. But now I really have to see some big penguins; and the place to see them is either Antarctica or Argentina. So, the bucket list is soon to be updated.
How to get to Boulders Beach
While in Cape Town you have 3 options to see the surroundings of the city. By renting a car (definitely one on the best options), taking a tour (a bit limited) or by train. Since I don’t pose a driving license and renting alone a car would have been expensive, the best option for me was the tour. So to get to see the penguins we either have to take
- A booked tour; and I recommend the Buztour
- By car. There are plenty of renting company and the prices are generally lower than Europe or United States.
- By Metrorail. There are hourly trains from Cape Town to Simon’s Town and a round ticket cost around 30 Rands (which is around 3$). It’s the cheapest option and it’s safe to travel by train from Cape Town to Simon’s Town. And not to mention the amazing views you will encounter.
Price and opening hours:
R40 (adults and children over 12), R15 (children over two and under 12). The entrance fee is included in the Cape Peninsula Tour price.
December – January: 07h00 to 19h30. February – March: 08h00 till 18h30. April – September: 08h00 to 17h00. October – November: 08h00 to 18h30.