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20 May 2013
The “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World” have largely vanished, but today’s tourists can still see the “Seven Wonders of Nature.” The preliminary list of candidates for this coveted honour includes Table Mountain, a World Heritage Site near Cape Town in South Africa. Rising more than 1,000 metres above the city, this ancient geological formation provides visitors with a panoramic view of land and ocean. A great selling point is the fact that it only takes a few minutes to ascend to the top in one of the cable cars.
Table Mountain, however, is but one of the many possibilities for day trips out of Cape Town. Parents and children alike will enjoy these other varied activities during their South Africa holidays.
Day trips to Robben Island begin and end with a ferry ride across the harbour. In between, families can tour both the island itself and its prison, made world famous because of Nelson Mandela’s long captivity here. The tour guides are prior inmates of the facility who can relate first-hand accounts of life during the days when apartheid was the law of the land.
Before returning to their hotels in South Africa, tourists may want to spend a while enjoying the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town, where cafés, restaurants, markets, and boutiques will vie for their attention.
Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden
Often hailed as the “most beautiful gardens in Africa” if not the entire world, the Kirstenbosch Garden was established almost 100 years ago to preserve the extraordinary plant life of southern Africa. There are currently more than 7,000 separate species represented in a site occupying 36 hectares. Many of them are endangered species in need of conservation.
Intended and designed for enjoyment by the whole family, the Kirstenbosch Gardens will admit children up to five years of age free of charge, while those aged 6 – 17 years can take advantage of discount tickets that are 75% cheaper than the adult price.
Seal Colony at Duiker Island
Another popular attraction for children of all ages is Duiker Island, where there lives a colony of Cape Fur Seals. Though it takes only about 40 minutes to complete the seal-viewing trip, families can select more extensive cruises, including an hour-long voyage that also includes a tour of Maori Bay. The waters here contain the remains of numerous shipwrecks; on shore tourists can see the remnants of the Boss 400, a fairly recent victim of the winter storms that pound this part of the coast each year.
Penguin Colony at Boulders Beach
What child could fail to enjoy a trip to a colony of Jackass Penguins, called that because of their peculiar donkey-like call? This day trip is a favourite for many of the visitors that arrive in Cape Town on South Africa flights.
Cape Town has much to offer visitors whether they stay a single week in the city or for a longer holiday. Boredom will never be a problem.
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