Where to Start a Trip Around the World: Cape Town

As I am writing this, we are two days out from getting on our first flight to Cape Town South Africa. It has been quite a scramble getting ready for this trip, and it feels like we will never be truly ready. From the packing to the planning, it has been a bit brutal at times. All the hard work is about to pay off. With three years in the making, we’ve finally begun our world trip!  And this is where.


Why we chose Cape Town

Namibia was high on our list and Cape Town had cheaper flights. So we decided to spend some time in Cape Town before heading to Namibia. As we looked deeper into what the city was all about, it made us want to go even more. We want to see all sides of Cape Town and not just the tourist attractions. There is a lot of history to learn about, as well as epic landscapes, and various cultures. We look forward most to meeting the people who live there and hearing their stories.

Langa Township; Photo by Graeme Churchard Creative Commons

Where we are staying

We tried hard to get most of our stays with couchsurfers to get to know the locals. About eight days are with couchsurfers and the rest are at an Airbnb. Our first couch stay is in the Claremont suburb, which is really close to Table Mountain. This location will be great for doing the hike up to the top, but only after a long rest from the jet lag. Next we will head towards Bo-Kaap to stay at an Airbnb.  Bo-Kaap has a lot of historical significance and is something we look forward to checking out. Lastly we head to our last couchsurf in Big Bay, Cape Town, which is a northern suburb near the beach. It sounds like a great place to relax for a bit.

Bo-Kaap District (Malay Quarter); Photo by Brian Snelson Creative Commons

What we plan to do

The city has to be one of the most beautiful in the world with its epic surrounding landscape. We definitely plan to hike up some of the nearby mountains such as Lion’s Head and Table Mountain. We also want to see some of the historical places and possibly even visit a township with a guide. We don’t just want to go to the more European part of the city, but we also want to see the lives of native Africans. Travel is about understanding our differences and the underlying issues that affect us all. We want to learn why things are the way they are instead of hopping on a Ferris wheel.

Penguins in Boulders Bay Cape Town; Photo by George Groutas Creative Commons

How we plan to get there

From Portland it is a 38 hour trip to Cape Town via Istanbul, including an eight-hour layover.  It will be grueling, but subsequent flights won’t be nearly as bad.  Even after we finally get there, we will have to drive to our first couch stay with whatever remaining energy we have. I’m getting tired just thinking about this.

What’s next

After two weeks in Cape Town, we head to Namibia for about 4 weeks. There we will do an epic road trip for thousands of kilometers. There is plenty of wildlife, sand dunes, native tribes, and landscapes to keep us busy. At this point in time we are tentatively eyeing Latvia for after Namibia. We chose this based on trying to avoid the super crowds of August in most European countries as well as going to a cheaper destination to recover our finances after Africa. Plus, it is beautiful and a little off the main tourist loop. We generally look at the cheapest flights using Google, and see which one makes the most sense. Latvia and Estonia, here we come!

Etosha National Park in Namibia; Photo by Eric Bauer Creative Commons

At the time of posting, we will have been in Cape town for six days. If you follow us on Facebook, or Instagram you can see some of our quick updates while we are about.  Depending on internet coverage, our posts might become a bit more sporadic.  But rest assured we are having epic adventures, and we’ll share them with you as soon as we can!

Header image by Stephen Koigi Creative Commons

How do you choose your next travel destination?

Where to start a trip around the world: Cape Town | BIG tiny World Travel | We are finally officially traveling! But where does one start? Click to read why we chose Cape Town! | #travelcouple #Africa #travel #aroundtheworld

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