Updated: Jan 18
If you missed “Off to Cape Town, South Africa - Pt 3” please click on the link below
These 10 days flew by. Not wanting to waste a minute of the time left before our flight, we hired an Uber and went to Long Street. We saw beautiful buildings.
Long Street has a beautiful array of Victorian buildings. The blue and white one below, with its broekie lace balconies and turrets cantilevering out from the fourth floor, was one of my favorites.
Continuing our walk on Long Street we approached the very colorful 210 Long.
I suppose there is no such thing as too many Irish Pubs/Taverns. We soon came upon the Dubliner.
Soon the multi-colored buildings of the BoKaap neighborhood caught our eye, so camera in hand we headed towards them.
We also got to observe an elaborate con game in this area, while walking about trying to gather some of these photos. A fellow passed us by and casually mentioned that a security guard was attempting to get our attention. Looking back behind us, there was a gentleman in a green blazer with a gold nameplate waving his radio making gestures suggesting he needed to speak with us. Curious, we complied. “Did you pick up your walking permit?” he inquired. Naturally, we followed up with: “Walking permit? What’s that?” Cheerfully he continued, “Oh, this is a protected historic area. Tourists are required to obtain a permit to keep track of the number of visitors. If the police stop and ask you to show it, you can be fined for not having one.” To which my husband replied with a raised eyebrow: “And how much does that cost?” “Ha,ha” laughed the man. “No, it is free. You can have it printed by any of the stores in this area. Here, I’ll show you.”
We walked with him to a nearby market. Upon entering, my husband was facing the counter when the “security guard” directed him to look back to where the “permit” would be printed. That device was one of those sketchy ATM machines one might find outside a gas station. It was even sketchier as a cardboard sign was taped to its side that read: “Under no circumstance should you allow anyone to help you with this machine.” Nonetheless, the kindly fellow indicated we should “use any of these” pointing to the various credit card logos along the top of the machine, “for it to print”. Deciding at this point to play along, my husband “pushed” one of the painted icons. The man helpfully corrected him: “No you put your card in here and then it will print”. My husband looked at him and said “If you think I’m putting a credit card in that machine, I’m afraid you’ve misjudged me”. At that point, a well dressed gentleman, who appeared to be purchasing a newspaper at the counter, turned and asked: “Were you trying to get the walking permit? Don’t worry. Your card doesn’t get charged. It’s just to print your name on the permit.” We were having none of that. “Thank you but no”, and we walked out. The two strangers continued to insist, “no, don’t worry, it’s free.” Whereupon a third individual on the sidewalk chimed in: “Are you talking about the walking permit? You need to have one. If you get stopped by the police and you don’t have it, there is a big fine”. Needless to say, we kept walking. It’s crazy that at least five “innocent looking” people were involved in the set-up. That leads us to believe that this scam must work often enough to make it worth their while.
Running out of time, we walked towards some colorful murals that we spotted from the Hop-On-Hop-Off bus.
Some of the world’s most famous Street Artist/Muralists come from South Africa. In Cape Town, the downtown Long Street Area is where we saw some magnificent pieces. The piece below was painted by three Cape Town artists, Aweh Migo, Kwai, and Smudge.
On Bree Street we saw a multi-story mural on a building that has three floors of art exhibitions - The Young Blood Foundation Building.
To see my collection of South African Street Art please go to:
We continued our walk until the time came for us to get back to our hotel, and be shuttled to the airport where we saw a relief sculpture of an elephant.
We hope you enjoyed hearing about our trip to South Africa. It was a lot of fun, a truly memorable experience. While we generally self-tour we loved traveling with Exotica as it was a perfect mix of organized time and free time. We also didn’t have to deal with rental cars and with driving on the opposite side of the road from what we were accustomed to.
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