Oh Capetown… Singing in my head

LA LA LA LA… Singing in my head. When I am happy.. well, I sing,  my musical sense awakens ( much to the dismay of everyone around me ..la la..)

If it’s possible, it’s just enough to describe Cape Town as the magnum opus of South Africa.

Me at the lighthouse, Cape of good hope

I don’t know where to start, the 7 days I spent in Capetown were just perfect,  a perfect blend of high life,  good food,  thrill, adventure and shopping,  but wait that’s not all, the great thing about Capetown is that with the big city life there is nature too,  this is one of the rare places you see both coexist and… happily.

From st George’s mall to the waterfront… And from robben island to the cape of good hope, it’s a panorama for all senses. Multiracial,  multicultural and truly cosmopolitan, cape Town is the paradise for a seasoned traveller as well as a bohemian wanderer.

The table mountain is the crowning glory but the cape of good hope lends it character, to be at the very tip of a continent, where the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic meet is truly a humbling experience and so is coming face to face with an African penguin on the boulders beach and the wild ostriches at the cape of good hope.

I can sum it all up by sharing a few magnificent pictures I clicked on my way..

The magnificent cape of good hope
The mama and baby penguin at the boulders beach

All I can say is Capetown is a place to be if you want to experience the delectable and the modest….

The majestic ostriches along the cape coast

with that I am off to stellenbauch… Wine country, South Africa, just about an hour’s drive from Capetown.

Will be back soon.

– The Gypsy Gurl.

Have you ever been to Cape Town? If yes, how was your experience ? If no, would you like to go there sometime? Do share with me in the comments. I would love to hear all about it. 

Lost in transit Β #JohannesburgΒ 

The colourful Johannesburg

Every one told me that one day in Johannesburg is not enough at all. All reviews and suggestions suggested at least 3 days there. But, let me tell you it’s all about whether your adventure finds you or not and mine embraced me the moment we landed.

High adrenaline, high intensity and positively gripping, let’s just say I lived at least 10 folds in one day ! It’s a feat, I tell you, by any standard.

To give you a gist, I lived through getting my documents held at the airport for the most insane reason, going through the toughest security checks… Twice!  ( within 30 mins ) getting lost  ( well,  that’s my staple,  I somehow manage that everywhere and this time it was in record time…oops! ) and finally going through an episode of lost passports while trying to catch a flight to Capetown..and all this within a span of a day !

…and to top it all I still managed to be everywhere on time,  catch all flights, got found ( had Mexican dinner afterward… He he) and even enjoy.

While all this drama was unfolding I managed to catch a glimpse of a magnificent city. My takeaway from Johannesburg is.. colour, it’s so colourful, the streets, the shops, the houses and even people.

As I board kalula airlines for a flight to Capetown another story is itching to be told,  but hang on let me experience it first.

Take Care

– The Gypsy Gurl.

What is your most cherished travel adventure? Do share in the comments, I would love to hear all about it. 

Finding AfricaΒ 

Inspiration is a funny thing, it can find you through almost anything, the most exquisite or the most mundane.

My inspiration the mundane (understatement) view from my seat.

My inspiration came from the sheer length of my flight (9 hours and it’s just the first leg of the journey…aaargh! ).

It’s really interesting how craziness hits people, out of boredom and a combination of sleep deprivation, travelling over time zones etc etc. So just to save my sanity I decided to escape into an alternate world populated by words and phrases and ruled by imagination, feelings and experiences.

So then, here I am at 40,000 feet in the sky somewhere over the African continent escaping into my own world, bringing to life the wonder of my first footsteps on the African soil.

Let me share the feelings of my first contact with the majestic African breeze laden with the perfect and intoxicating aroma of spices, musk, freshness and something totally indescribable,the zing that reverberates through everything here.

As I stepped outside the aircraft in Kigali, Rwanda  after a long long ( I really mean it) flight. The pleasant African breeze lifted my spirits and the unmistakable scent of the continent just took over. The beautiful hill country had already announced  its presence through my aircraft window.

Having travelled all the way from India, I think I am bound to get awestruck, it’s a whole new world out here, raw, untainted and somehow extremely thrilling.  The Kigali airport is right on top of a hill and the view it presented was superb. The early morning haze that greeted me at the runway was well worth the long flight. The 4 hour halt at Kigali was a welcome step because that led me to witness my first African sunrise over the African hills, the first in the long list of firsts. It was totally spectacular.

After such a wonderful little break I am back on the road or rather in the sky for the second leg of my journey to Johannesburg, North America of Africa (I read something about it somewhere, at some point of time and it generally stuck with me).

As the seatbelts are being fastened and the aircraft is getting ready to land at the Johannesburg airport, I am ready with the huge bucket of expectations from my bucket list, to soak in the beautiful multicultural, dynamic city of Africa, or so I have heard. It’s about time to find out.

I will be back with the story of Johannesburg and thereafter. As for now, I need to get in a queue to get out of this aircraft and that …couldn’t be sooner.

Till later.

– The Gypsy gurl

Have you ever been to Africa?  How was your experience?  If not, does it feature in your bucket list?  Do share your thoughts on Africa in the comments, I would love to hear all about it. 

Flashback to December 2016 Episode # 3.. and so the story goes

7th December 2016

Mount titles Switzerland

…and so finally I got drifted into the jungle of sights and aromas lost touch with the virtual me, what with all the excitement keeping me on tenterhooks.

But now that I am finally back home and life has usually begun, I am ready to come to terms with my inner gypsy gurl once again, so well… here I am  typing away into the unknown, gathering all my memories and weaving them into the little story called life.

So, without much ado I will dive straight into the blue or rather yellow of the bright sunshine of Switzerland, the day we arrived there.

..Armed with lots of excitement that the beautiful road journey through the French countryside had generated.

As the journey became longer our excitement turned to.. well, for the lack of a more suitable word, dread.. as we learned much to our horror that the time difference between our next transport aka.swiss rail and this one was probably not sufficient. Bing…..!

Just what in the lords name were we thinking, booking a one way non refundable ticket of swiss rail.

So tip number #1 when travelling through Europe steer clear of non refundable tickets … they are a lucrative trap, meant to swindle the unsuspecting, good looking (okay that’s a lie… mmmm … not really) innocent (that’s not) travellers, but when luck is on your side no swindler can swindle you.

Well who would have thought that, our knight in shining armour was sitting pretty close to us, and revealed himself through the mist of our misery by asking if we needed any help, in highly accented and broken English.

From there to the train station it was a cakewalk.

…well, not really ..it was a very fast walk with all the luggage and a feisty five year old through the secret shortcuts of the swiss passage ways that lead us straight to our platform in flat 2 minutes!!!

…with one whole minute till the arrival of our train from Zurich to Lucerne. The good Samaritan did not stop there he made sure we boarded the train and got settled and also told us the tricks of the trade like if you are travelling with young children look for the family coach on swiss trains as they are equipped with play areas and child friendly interiors.phew … beat that?

So tip number #2 … when travelling with little ones in Switzerland, look out for family coaches on swiss trains, believe me it’s totally worth it and oh Yes …while in Switzerland hold on to those window seats, believe me (for the lack of a better phrase ) its totally worth it.

So coming back to the story…we finally reached Lucerne, a little lost but mostly overwhelmed. My first thought was how are we going to find our host in this incredible city, little did I know that he, would find us.

And that too with an extra umbrella for light drizzle that was waiting for us. So tip number  #3 always carry an umbrella or raincape when travelling in Switzerland.

So well… from there, our really charming host took us to his beautiful apartment, which was to be our home for the next few days.

Our host in Switzerland he was like a magecian with maps

The chapel bridge Lucerne
The Water Tower

That was how we reached the beginning of our tryst with Switzerland.

And that is a whole new story.

Till later.

-The gypsy gurl

Flashback to July 2016 – Episode # 1 Emirates Experience

20th June 2016

As cheesy as it may sound but it does deserve a mention here, simply because out of the last 24 hrs we spent close to 14 hrs with Emirates airlines, on and off the flight. So emirates was definitely the theme if not the highlight of our Delhi – London journey.

We started at the crack of Delhi dawn with oversized and overstuffed baggage, full of as much a slice of india as the baggage limit would permit and as much as we could carry. Early morning at 6 we were in our cab for the T3 Indra Gandhi International Airport. We boarded our flight to Dubai after a very amazing breakfast at the GMR lounge in T3, a must try for anyone who dares to be called a foodie.

Going back to the point of our journey, the first leg of Delhi to Dubai was over in a blink and soon we were on the legendary Arabian soil. But wait ! Rewind a bit …there is something I missed, Β the aerial view of Dubai. It’s definitely not to be missed. Dubai skyline is a treat to watch. The view from up above is simply splendid… chunks of barren desert with the most wonderful network of roads crisscrossing the entire panorama.

Now coming the airport, it is really a super airport in terms of … well everything. The Dubai Duty free is Β heaven for shopoholics and non shoppers alike. We were super charged to see all that it had to offer and with that done soon we were on the second leg of our journey from Dubai to London.

The 7 hour flight was a jumble of movies for me… well lets see Β ‘The Dressmaker’ and ‘Alex and Eve’ …and by end of the second movie we were already landing in London.

London, 8:30 pm local time, it was a bright day outside and 18 degrees as per the flight announcement. The first thing that struck me as we got out was the clear blue skies and the brush stroke clouds. Well ..now I know what inspired the Victorian landscapes.

The second thing that struck me was the sheer number of people coming into England and the diversity of so many different nationalities was striking at best. Then, there in the midst of all this was family waving and rushing to us with big smiles and outstretched arms. The warmth was both inviting and uplifting.

Day one of our journey is over and I am getting ready for the onslaught of sights and experiences to sharpen my bohemian aura.

So that’s all for now, because London.. is waiting….

– The gypsy gurlimageproxy (1)

var vglnk = { key: ‘caed5d69092adeadccf58bf2039f6991’ };

(function(d, t) {
var s = d.createElement(t); s.type = ‘text/javascript’; s.async = true;
s.src = ‘//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js’;
var r = d.getElementsByTagName(t)[0]; r.parentNode.insertBefore(s, r);
}(document, ‘script’));

It’s time for Africa!

I do believe, very sincerely, that people don’t take trips, Β trips take people. Once again I have been chosen by one such trip, this time to the wildest continent in the world..Africa.

So like shakira says.. It’s time for Africa, well, South Africa to be precise.

As I am typing away from the sanctuary of my cocoon right now, Β I can’t help but wonder at the time left at hand.. 5 measly days. Stuff is being stuffed in travel bags, things are being bought with much gusto, work is being completed or procastinated till after I come back (..meh).

Well, I guess you get the picture, preparations are in full swing. A few days from now I will be basking in the South African winter chilling away the accumulated heat of a solid Indian summer. One month of idling and exploring the African life, from lively Capetown, exciting stellenbauch, scenic garden route, southern city of Durban and finally to the African Bush.. The iconic Kruger national park for a true blue African Safari.

The wait.. is on.

– The Gypsy girl.