Hermanus Kidney and Dialysis Centre
The Western Cape – beaches, mountains, gardens, winelands and views
Awesome. Impressive. Worthy of a bucket list. The area around Cape Town presents a stunning mix of sights to see and things to do. If that is not reason enough to spend a holiday there, the prospect of a spectacular landscape, magnificent flora and fauna including whales off the coast and incredible beaches will surely convince those who still hesitate.
Do you favour a holiday full of physical activity or sight-seeing? Are you a city tripper or rather a fan of beaches, scenery and the outdoors? The Western Cape holds all these possibilities in store for you. Eight NephroCare clinics are widely scattered in the area, allowing you to choose the clinic nearest to the destination from where you want to plan your holiday.
Activities & Sights
The fascination of Cape Town
Part of the historic city and Cape Town’s oldest street is 300 years-old Long Street. The Victorian houses have been mostly restored, presenting beautiful facades and housing antique and rag shops, antiquarian bookshops, pubs and different lodgings. There is an opulent splendour to the buildings, lending the street a unique charm.
Located in the oldest working harbour in the Southern Hemisphere is the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. The site presents a mix of bars, restaurants and squares and also houses a shopping centre and the Two Oceans Aquarium. The area has become a popular tourist attraction due to the lively harbour it is embedded in.
The Gardens of Kirstenbosch is a 1,300 acres area presenting the regional biodiversity with over 7,000 plant species. The botanical garden, said to be amongst the most beautiful in the world, is also one of the few places in the city to sit back, relax and soak up some sunshine. Following the Tree Canopy Walkway gets you to an elevated spot perfect for bird-watching.
Out and about
Table Mountain is Cape Town’s landmark, of course. It offers great views from the city, although a thick blanket of clouds often covers the top which has earned it the name ‘Devil’s Tablecloth’. You can either hike to the top to thoroughly enjoy the unique beauty of the landscape and its native flora and fauna. Besides being a decent workout it is also a fabulous experience. Or you can take the Table Mountain aerial cableway with its 360° rotating floor. Lean back and let yourself be suffused with awe looking around.
Cape Town got its name from the Cape of Good Hope. One of the great capes of the South Atlantic Ocean, it was feared among sailors for its rugged cliffs in former times. At this breathtaking and prominent place the wild Atlantic Ocean crashes onto the rocky, mountainous headland, creating a dramatic effect against the backdrop of a gorgeous landscape with unique flora and fauna. There is a beautiful hike up to the old lighthouse at Cape Point. Standing here looking out on the endless ocean gives you the impression that you've reached the end of the world. At any rate, it is the most southwestern point of Africa.
Other wonderful hike leads from the city to the top of the Lion’s Head mountain that is particularly known for its spectacular panoramic views. Another of Cape Town's well-known lookout spots is Signal Hill right next to the Lion’s Head. Hiking to the top is great, yet it is also very popular among tourists and locals because you can drive there. The mountain got the name from its being used historically as a signal hill for passing ships. For those of you who are adventurous enough and keen to experience even more spectacular views, you can actually tandem paraglide from the top of Signal Hill.
Exploring the province
Outside of Cape Town the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve is ideal for walking, hiking and mountain biking. It is home to a variety of wildlife, including leopard, honey badger, baboon, klipspringer and mongoose as well as rare birds such as kingfishers, black eagles, fish eagles and many more. The reserve is within easy reach from Somerset West and Stellenbosch.
South Africa’s second-oldest town has a lot more to offer than wine. Stellenbosch presents an attractive mixture of history, culture, natural beauty and sport that equally convinces those seeking relaxation and those seeking physical activity. A walk along Market Street to the Braak, the former parade ground and market square, makes a leisurely pastime.
If you are looking for a whale-watching experience, Hermanus is the place to go. The city is at the heart of the whale route and is a great place to watch these incredible creatures against a backdrop of soaring mountains and the turquoise waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Nearby, Walker Bay sees the Southern Wright Whale mating and breeding from June to November. Hermanus is situated on the famous Garden Route. The fact that the area was formerly named after the Garden Eden speaks for the beauty of the itinerary.
Cape Town and the Cape Province offer a broad variety of accommodations from hotels and bed and breakfast rooms to some rare country-specific lodge-style housing. You will find offers at any standard level of your liking. Especially for the smaller, exclusive guest houses, you are well-advised to make reservations in advance even outside the peak season, though. Holiday apartments in the area are mostly private flats or houses that file under “self-catering”.
The eight NephroCare clinics for you to choose from are scattered about the whole area. Depending on your itinerary, you find five clinics in Cape Town and its outskirts, two in Somerset West and one in Stellenbosch.
Culinary & Culture
The people in South Africa find something to celebrate throughout the year, welcoming visitors to enjoy the festivities together with the locals. For example, the Cape Town Festival brings together all the diverse cultural groups in the city around the Human Rights Day in March. During the third week in September, the Hermanus Whale Festival attracts with arts and crafts and theatre shows on land and the attending whales off the coast.
There are a lot of sports events, too, like the LifeCycle Week and the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Momentum Cycle tour in March. At Easter, participants run 56 kilometres around the Cape Peninsula in the Two Oceans Marathon. The annual Cape Town International Kite Festival takes place in November.
South-African cuisine is not an entity and is viewed differently by its ethnic groups. Meat is one of the key ingredients in the region around the Cape, featuring lamb and beef. Venison and poultry are also very popular, while pork and fish play a tangential role. A typical South African specialty is dried meat, called Biltong.
Among the favoured traditional South African dishes you will find “sosaties” (skewers of mutton or beef), “bootie” (a casserole of minced lamb meat with curry) and different variations of “bredie” (hotpots with meat and vegetables). With that much meat on the menu, barbecues are very common. Called “braai” in South Africa, it is an important event and strictly “man’s business”.
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