South Africa

Somewhere in KwaZulu-Natal

South Africa

I don’t know if I can call my experience of travel in South Africa divinely inspired but I can absolutely say it was magical. South Africa was one of the best trips I have ever taken, and that is saying a lot. However, it wasn’t the obvious parts. Sure, the lions and the giraffes on safari blew my mind. Visiting Robben Island – the converted prison Nelson Mandela lived for far too many years – was an education. Cape Town is a fantastic city with wonderful views from Table Mountain. For me, it was the Drankensberg Boys Choir, which expertly bridged gaps between African and Afrikaans tradition, the brief but unforgettable moment I shared with 250 elementary school students visiting the Mandela Capture Site Museum. It was my realization of how far South Africa has come socially, and how far we (the U.S.) still need to go. My visit was about possibilities. South Africa is far from perfect but a wonderfully eye-opening one.

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South Africa travel stories

Slave Lodge, Cape Town

The Slave Lodge in Cape Town is an unprepossessing building on Wale Street close to the Cathedral, the Company Gardens and the Houses of Parliament. Don’t be fooled by its lightly coloured exterior, as the exhibitions inside reveal dark secrets about its past. The...

The District 6 Museum, Cape Town

The most poignant symbol of the apartheid regime is the District 6 Museum. District 6 was a vibrant community of Cape Malays, Indians, Blacks and a few Whites. On 11 February 1966, the apartheid regime declared District Six a whites-only area under the Group Areas Act...

Robben Island, Cape Town

Book well in advance for your trip to Robben Island, especially in the summer holidays when there can be a wait of two weeks before there’s a free spot. Try and get to the Nelson Mandela Gateway early to board the boat as the best seats are on the top deck with the...

Gold Museum of Africa, Cape Town

The Gold of Africa Museum is found at 96 Strand Street in Cape Town. The museum is located in the Martin Melck House. The exhibition dedicated to the history and artistry of African gold begins on the first floor.   First comes the history via an astounding timeline...

The Bo Kaap, Cape Town

Located on the slopes of Signal Hill, close to the City Centre, and with Table Mountain looming nearby, the Bo Kaap district of Cape Town is one of the most interesting neighbourhoods in any major city. The residents of this inner city area, with its brightly painted...

Dancing in Capetown

The Tweede Nuwe Jaar, or second New Year holiday, on January 2nd dates back to the time of slavery – their owners had New Year’s celebrations, which required the slaves to cook, serve food, and attend to the guest's needs. These owners allowed the slaves to have the...

India Venster Up Table Mountain

The most exciting route up Table Mountain in Cape Town is the India Venster, which should be attempted in good weather, with a guide, and wearing footwear with a good grip.  It can take between two and four hours to make the climb and the vertical gain is around 687...

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