Monday morning. The start of the working week. The home of bleary eyes and strong coffee. However, thankfully for us, this particular Monday was a public holiday in South Africa, so this afforded us an extra day to explore Cape Town. We assembled, eager and sprightly, at a comfortable 10am after a delicious hotel breakfast (or a couple of Huel bars depending on who you ask!) and jumped into the minibus to set off on our tour of Cape Peninsula. Yesterday’s hike up Table Mountain didn’t seem to be causing too many issues with the legs – we’re obviously fitter than we thought!
In the morning we drove down the eastern side of the peninsula and stopped off at Boulder’s Beach in False Bay, home of a colony of African Penguins (also known as Jackass penguins due to their distinctive donkey-like bray). We walked above the beach on boardwalks and observed the penguins doing their thing. James, Ewan, Tom, and I went down to the beach to try to swim with the penguins...without wetsuits. The sea was breathtakingly cold and the penguins too shy and smart to want to swim with us unfortunately! On a sad note, the number of wild African penguins is declining due to multiple human-induced factors and the species is currently classed as endangered. It brings home the importance of changing the way we humans interact with the natural world.