Foreigners have the perception that if you live in South Africa that you must have seen Table Mountain in Cape Town.
While many of us are fortunate enough to have seen this iconic New7Wonders of Nature, others have not.
I only got to see it during my Cape Town vacation in December last year- and even that brought a few hiccups.One of the first things I wanted to see during my holiday was Table Mountain, but the unpredictable weather saw me wait for days.
When the sun finally decided to make an appearance, I knew it was no better time than that day to go up the mountain. I contemplated walking up, but what’s Table Mountain without its cable car? As expected, there were hundreds of people waiting in line to go up when I arrived. As we waited, and waited, for what seemed hours, but was only an hour, it was time to get on the cable car on the way up the mountain. The stunning revolving feature on the cable car made it easier to watch the different views of Western Cape.
Once up, it's like a whole new world. People from all over the world are on top, watching the beauty of the stunning city come to life. Being a solo traveller on this expedition, I found it calming going through the mountain taking in the scenic views. Along the way I meet many people, some locals and some international visitors. Equally excited as I was, they gushed about Table Mountain as if they had been here before. The two women I met from Kenya praised Cape Town.
“It was always been a dream to come up Table Mountain. In Kenya, everyone talks so highly about this iconic site,”the daughter says. She then poses for a selfie, behind the backdrop of a clear blue sky and the vast mountains that stretch kilometres.
As I walked further in, I encountered dassie, a type of rat that is the closest living relative of the African elephant. These cute creatures appear and then disappear without given notice. Other creatures one could spot are snakes, some which are venomous, eland, porcupine, tahr(goat like animal with shaggy mane) and lynx.
With all the walking one has to do, it is great that there are restaurants on top the mountain where people can grab a bite to eat or a place to rest their legs. I settled for a glass of red as I watched the sun disappear among the mountains.
I spot Lion Head from afar, hoping to conquer the hike up on my next visit. While enjoying the views, I met an expat who has a business in Cape Town. Originally from Bangladesh, he came here to pursue a life. He told me he loves coming up the mountain to appreciate its beauty.
It was soon time to go back down. Amid the snapping cameras, tourists laughter and the clicking of glasses in celebration, Table Mountain, for me, brought solace, tranquility and self reflection.