Updated: Mar 18
Crossing the equator, summer instead of winter, exploring another continent, being near an ocean again, visiting barging friends at their home in Cape Town were some of the compelling reasons that brought us to South Africa this winter.
We packed light because summer clothes don't take up much room, and we wanted to leave room for shopping in South Africa because of the excellent dollar/rand exchange rate.
After 24 hours of travel on trains and planes, our friends picked us up at the Cape Town airport, and our South African adventure began.
In Cape Town, we were much closer to the South Pole than our hometown of San Francisco.
South African beaches were beautiful, and this one on False Bay was colorful too.
At a beach outside of Cape Town, we stopped to watch some kite-surfers with Table Mountain in the background. The "tablecloth" of fog was lying on top of the "table."
At Simon's Town, we walked along the beach with the penguins.
After two weeks in Cape Town, we set out along the Garden Route on the Indian Ocean. Here at Cape Agulhas, we were standing on the southernmost tip of Africa's continent, between the Indian and Atlantic Oceans.
The Cape Agulhas lighthouse watches over the tip of Africa known as the "Graveyard of Ships."
At a reserve along the Garden Route, we fell in love with the elephants.
After we toured the Indian Ocean Coast, we traveled up the Atlantic Coast, where we stayed in the peaceful fishing village of Paternoster.
Paternoster reminded us of Greece in its simple beauty and peaceful atmosphere.
We stayed a few days at the Oystercatcher's Haven and we could have stayed forever.
South African wines were a fine finish to a good day in a beautiful place.
After a month in South Africa, we returned to winter in France for a week while we repacked our suitcases for a trip to San Francisco and Hawaii.
We stayed in San Francisco for a week before and a week after our Hawaiian vacation. The weather was beautiful, and we enjoyed being in "The City" again.
We flew to Kauai to attend a family wedding.
Our niece Judy and her fiance Ron said their vows in a beautiful Hawaiian ceremony.
We were so happy to be able to be with Judy and Ron on their wedding day.
Their reception dinner was on the terrace of an old plantation with hula dancers performing on the grass below.
It was wonderful to celebrate a happy family occasion.
After a week on Kauai visiting family, we flew to Kona to visit friends and enjoy another week of beautiful Hawaiian sunsets...
...and Mai Tai's
As always, our vacation went by too quickly. It was time for us to say "Aloha" to our friends and to head off into the sunset, back to our real life in France.