Guest post by Christopher Clark.
I left my native Britain for South Africa’s Mother City back in 2009 thinking I might hang around for a few months and play a bit of cricket.
Suddenly it’s 2014, I’m still here and I haven’t picked up my cricket bat once (apart from the time I thought someone was breaking into my flat). I don’t really know how it all happened, but I’ve certainly got the Cape Town bug alright.
Here are a few of my recommendations on how to fall in love with my adopted city:
1.) Party in a township
Many of the tourists that come to Cape Town leave with a pretty limited view of what the city really is. They see the plush restaurants and hotels at the V&A Waterfront and Camps Bay, take the cable car to the top of Table Mountain, hit a few nice beaches, then head home with a suitcase full of overpriced carved wooden elephants and tell everyone that the road surfaces were surprisingly good.
However, the overwhelming majority of Cape Town’s residents inhabit a pretty different world. That world is broadly referred to as the Cape Flats, and constitutes the range of largely-impoverished informal settlements and townships that sprawl beyond the city proper. For me, the best and easiest way to experience a fun slice of this other side of Cape Town life is to head to Mzoli’s Place in the township of Gugulethu.
Mzoli’s is essentially a (not very) glorified butchery. You buy your raw meat over the counter, take it out to a dark cavern full of wood fires at the back, then go find a seat under the canopy outside until it’s done. While you wait you can go and buy drinks from across the road, where a number of local residents’ houses serve as makeshift bars and bottle shops. Read More »