Back in Cape Town, I didn't realize how green this city was. It was such a contrast between Namibia and South Africa in terms of scenery. Both are really beautiful but have completely different natural features.


Just like what I did in Namibia, I rented a tiny silver VW Polo from AVIS for three days and during the first two days I drove around the Cape peninsula to find some surf spots.


The below are the spots that I went to check out with my VW Polo;

1) Dungeons
2) Inner Kom
3) Crayfish Factory & Witsands
4) Dunes

The first spot "Dungeons" is arguably South Africa's biggest and most notorious spot. I had no intention to surf there but just wanted to see what it was like. However, I got lost on my way and could not find it....

The second and third ones are probably not well-known by international surfers. I didn't get lost on my way, but there was a strong cross-shore/onshore wind at both spots then.

The last one "Dunes" is located in the middle of a long beach - at least 25 to 30 minutes of walk from the nearest parking area.
This was actually where I really wanted to go surfing, but I didn't (or I couldn't).
The photos below show the beach where Dunes is located, and the official name of the beach is "Noordhoek Beach".




Swells appeared to be there, but the wind direction didn't seem right. Thus, waves were breaking all over the place and no guys were seen out there then.


Additionally, it was looking a little sharky even though it was clear blue sky. In the end I didn't have guts to get out there by myself.


I ended up surfing at Long Beach - one of the most popular spots in this area.
I never planned to go there to surf, but I just accidentally found it while driving around the area where Dunes was.


The water was deadly freezing, it was as icy as (or much icier than?) Punta de Lobos in Chile. There was also a lot of kelp everywhere in the water, and it made this spot a bit spooky. The kelp also annoyed me a bit as it often tangled around my leash-code in the water.


Waves at Long Beach were about 3ft on sets. Clean face and breaking both right and left. I caught quite a few waves, but mostly short rides, and thanks to the icy water, I think I caught a cold, too.



The photo below shows the Sushi that I had for lunch at a restaurant called "Takumi" in Cape Town.
This restaurant is owned by a Japanese guy and located on Park Rd near New Church St where there are many hostels.


The last time I had Sushi was when I was in J-Bay, and that was almost unediblly BAD! However, this sushi at Takumi was proper and I enjoyed every single one of them, though the only pity was that they had just run out of Toro.....

Great to see authentic Japanese food at this far end of Africa!
If you happen to be in Cape Town and crave some Sushi, this is where you should definitely go.

It was my third and last day with the VW Polo and, instead of looking for some surf spots, I decided to cruise around with Japanese guy Mikio who I met at the hostel in Cape Town.

I don't know why most tourists just go to the Cape of Good Hope but not to Cape Agulhas. It's so obvious in any maps that Cape Agulhas is the "real southernmost" of the African continent, and the Cape of Good Hope is neither the southernmost nor westernmost of Africa. However, for some reason the Cape of Good Hope is more famous and popular than Cape Agulhas.
So Mikio and I went to Cape Agulhas today to see what it was all about.


I had a navigation in my rented VW Polo this time, and it was easy enough to drive in and around Cape Town.
Mikio was from Nagoya, the town where I was also from. He was sitting next to me while I kept driving the whole way. It took us almost three hours to Cape Agulhas and we arrived there just around midday.
Interestingly enough, nobody was there except us, and as soon as we reached the tip of South Africa, we instantly understood why Cape Agulhas wasn't very popular amongst tourists.


Basically, there was a small stone-monument there and it simply divided the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean. That was it!.
Coming all the way from Cape Town and only that small monument to indicate the "real southernmost of Africa". No wonder we were the only tourists there then!


Mikio and I only spent 10 minutes or so, and we decided to head down to the Cape of Good Hope for comparison.


Mikio was, once again, just sitting seat next to me, having some conversations with me and occasionally taking a nap. Even though I generally love driving, I was getting so tired this time.


It took us almost four hours to get to the Cape of Good Hope.
There were somehow many Indian tourists at the Cape of Good Hope when we arrived there. Mikio was asked to have photos taken with them many times, while I purposely stayed away from them.


Much like Cape Agulhas, I saw nothing special at the Cape of Good Hope, and I never understood why it claimed that it was the southernmost as well as the westernmost of the African continent??? Such a bad misconception!
The southernmost is, without a doubt, Cape Agulhas, and the westernmost is Les Almadies near N'Gor in Senegal.

The photo below shows Mikio standing up on the tip of the Cape of Good Hope.


In the end, neither Cape Agulhas nor the Cape of Good Hope was impressive to me, but I went to both of them as for my own novelty value.


!!!!! Note !!!!!
The Cape of Good Hope is located in a national park. So you have to pay to get in and will be told about the closing time of the gate then. Be careful with this closing time because it's just before the sunset-time of the day.
Mikio and I wanted to see the sunset inside the park, so we unwisely stayed in and got back to the gate about 30 minutes later than the closing time. Security guards stopped us then and told us to pay a big fine, which we didn't have to pay in the end by apologising to them sincerely. It could've been a big trouble, otherwise.

I don't like roller-coasters or skyscrapers or cable-cars or high mountains. Yes, I am acrophobic and I could not fully enjoy Machu Picchu in March 2011 because of that. However, every now and then I do go hiking to mountains and I still genuinely enjoy it.

It was cloudy and rainy for the past few days, but the most iconic mountain in Cape Town called Table Mountain just came out of the grey soup in the sky this morning. It was time for me to get sweaty by hiking up this mountain.


The trail was very clear and easy to navigate by myself, though it was occasionally rough. I was glad to have my proper hiking boots on.
The photos below show the things that I saw along the trail.







Despite the fact that Cape Town was already in winter, it was hot today and I was sweating a lot. The trail became a little steep towards the top, but my acrophobia didn't take over me this time.



It took me just over three hours on foot from my hostel on New Church St. to the top of Table Mountain. The view from the top was magnificent and it was ten times more impressive than Cape Agulhas and the Cape of Good Hope, both of which I visited five days ago.


The photo below shows how it looks on the top floor of Table Mountain, it was quite flat there with some rocks and a little green.


A few small animals called Dassi (aka Rock Hyrax) were seen on top as shown in the photo below (on the bottom left).


Luckily, the weather was perfect all day today and I spent a couple of hours on top, having lunch and taking photos (Please click the photo below to enlarge it).


Just an hour before sunset I started descending, and it quickly became dark. I had to use my flash-light on my way back then, but the whole city of Cape Town gradually began glowing with lights and the view from the halfway on the trail was breath-taking.
Today's hiking was worth my effort and I was happily back in my hostel without any problems.



I had such a great time and great waves in J-Bay in March and April, but statistically speaking, the most consistent ground-swell-season in J-Bay is from June to August. So I went back there and stayed there for 6 weeks.

The below is what I did and what happened to me during my second visit in J-Bay:

@ 2012/05/31(Thu)

There was a Japanese surfer staying at Ubuntu when I checked in. His name was Takuro from Chiba prefecture and it was my very first time to see him then, but he somehow looked quite familiar to me and there was a reason why.
In September 2011, I was in El Salvador and I met Japanese bodyborder Kyoko then (refer to the related article for more details). She was backpacking around the world and her travel blog featured Takuro a lot as they travelled together from El Salvador to Panama, while I went to Guatemala and Mexico afterwards.


Takuro was such a nice easy-going guy who loved surfing as well as playing guitar.
On this night, he made Okonomi-yaki (a Japanese pancake) for every guest and staff member at Ubuntu. I was a little skeptic about how good it could be in the beginning, assuming no proper ingredients here in J-Bay, but it actually turned out to be very very good and everyone in the house enjoyed it.
The photo below shows the one he made for me. Gochiso-sama, Takuro!


@ 2012/06/07 (Thu)

I caught the longest right-hander wave ever in my life today. Here is what happened:
A few bombs appeared out of nowhere after I patiently waited on the busy outside line-up of SuperTubes. I caught one of them, made a deep bottom-turn and saw a big wall of water in front of me. It was a little intimidating to me and made me just want to race it as fast as I could. The wave eventually led me all the way to Tubes.
Later in the afternoon I looked at Google Map to see how long my ride was. It was approximately 800m in total. So Stoked!


@ 2012/06/12 (Tue)

Very luckily, there were only eight guys in the water this afternoon. It was a hassle-free session for me and I got a barrel then.
Funnily enough, it was max 4ft on sets when I paddled out around 3pm, but an hour later it picked up to 6 to 7ft on sets.
J-Bay's conditions seem to constantly change by minutes, hours and days.


@ 2012/06/13 (Wed)

It was quite hectic on the line-up of SuperTubes this morning as set-waves were more than double overhead and breaking widely.
I got the wrong timing to paddle out from the keyhole. As a result, I was ruthlessly pounded by several set-waves. And when I was finally able to take a deep breath in, I realized that I was washed away to Salad Bowl, about 600m down from where I paddled out....
On my way back to SuperTubes from Salad Bowl, another big set came through and I just didn't take it seriously then. I duck-dove the first wave and I didn't push down my board hard enough. Thus, the GoPro mount-kit attached to the upper deck of my blue Al Merrick 6'1 smashed my forehead. The photo below shows what I got then. Nature can be so unforgiving at times.


@ 2012/06/20 (Wed)

I got out to SuperTubes around 9am this morning and came back in around 14:30pm. Without a doubt this is the longest single surf-session I've ever had in my life!
In fact, waves weren't really good when I paddled out. It was very inconsistent then. However, as tides started coming in later on, it suddenly went firing at SuperTubes and it just became better and better with only a handful of guys out there.


I was super exhausted and walking back to Ubuntu like a zombie in the end, but I was over the moon.
The photos below show a segment of my ride today. These were taken by South African surfer Buzz. Shot Buzz!



One more thing to note here: just before I was about to paddle out to SuperTubes this morning, one surfer came and asked me if I were surfing at Gurupuk Inside in Lombok in 2010.
I said to him "Yeahhh, but how did you know?". "I was there too. I remember you!", he said.
His name is David from Cape Town and he told me that he was in Lombok with his wife then. What a small world! And I was actually even more surprised about David's good memory.

@ 2012/06/24 (Sun)

I got out to SuperTubes around 10am this morning. The wind was offshore (as always) and waves were about 4ft on sets. There were about 10 guys on the outside and 10 more guys around the inside section (it was a Sunday crowd). Despite the number of guys in the water, we had no hassle and no drama because most waves this morning were sectioning and the crowd spread out.
After I caught several Okay waves, I sat between the outside and the inside section when a big set suddenly came through. Everyone started paddling frantically towards it.
Two guys on the furthest outside caught one for each and then the next wave appeared to be even much bigger than the previous two. It definitely looked makable to me. So I dashed to the take-off spot and took off, though at one moment I thought that the wave might be too wide and would close out on me. The fact was, it didn't close out. I made a bottom-turn and let myself into the glassy wall of water with a small exit clearly visible in front of me. A few seconds in the barrel and I came out of it with a big grin on my face.
The photo below is the cheese cake at my favourite cafe Nina's after today's session. A treat for myself!


@ 2012/06/29 (Fri)

Another barrel to be had today. This time I got it at Boneyards.
It was sunny this morning and waves were about 4ft on sets with light offshore winds. The barrel formed on the second wave I caught. I did quite a late take-off, yet the wave didn't suck me over and peeled off nicely above my head. As a shining arch of water appeared before my eyes, I felt like I was blessed by this divine wave. Breathtakingly beautiful.


@ 2012/06/30 (Sat)

The worst session ever today! And the worst of the worst was that I ended up staying in the water for almost 5 hours, waiting hopelessly for one more set-waves to come to me. But they never did. Good waves were always taken by greedy locals....
As today's set-waves came every 20 minutes or so, it was super slow and crowded. Completely opposite to what I got yesterday, not always a good thing comes to me :(


@ 2012/07/01 (Sun)

Funny! Nothing like yesterday as I had a good 4-hour session today with my SpitFire. It was about 4ft on sets with occasional bombs and no wind until 11am. Hahaha!
The biggest surprise was that I ran into Whip at SuperTubes this morning. He is a Delta Airlines pilot and I met him last December in N'Gor, Senegal. Such a small world!