Thursday, our group toured the surrounding part of the western cape outside of Cape Town. I can honestly say that this is the most beautiful country I have ever been to. Our first stop was False Bay. A beautiful town on the bay that was initially thought to be Cape Town when first discovered many years ago. Our stop was brief, but its culture and beauty was obvious.
Our next stop took us to Boulders Beach which is the home to beach penguins! We were able to observe the penguins in their natural habitat on the beach and of course take a million pictures. It was the first time I have seen penguins in front of my eyes. The town actually had “penguin crossing” signs by the roads. America’s version of deer x-ing.
After we spotted the penguins, we hopped back on our adventure bus to the Cape of Good Hope, the most south western tip of South Africa. We took a short hike to Cape Point where a light house is on the water signaling your arrival to the point. And that short hike was actually quite exhausting!
If you have every watched shark week, I am sure you have seen or heard of the place we went next-Hout Bay. At Hout Bay we boarded a ship to Seal Island-the prime feeding area for great white sharks off the coast of Cape Town! The seals were an awesome sight swimming through the icy cold water. If I could ship a couple of those penguins and seals back to the US with me I would!
On our final academic day, Friday, we were able to hear from half a dozen entrepreneurs who have been able to dream big and act on it. Our early morning session had a sustainable tourism speaker teach us about ways we can use the environment without using up our wonderful resources-the perfect way for places like South Africa to capitalize on its beauty. An inspiring man named Luvoyo from a large and impoverished township called Kyletshya spoke with us about his venture into entrepreneurship. Luvoyo saw the need for public wifi in his township and opened a business offering Internet for a small fee. His business grew quickly and the demand for business services, computer training, and IT training were all implemented to meet his consumers needs. Now his business consists of about 30 locations around South Africa and they are looking to expand. His story as unbelievable! Next, we took some taxis into a part of the western cape called Woodstock. In Woodstock we were able to see a building that is the home for several entrepreneurs in all stages of their businesses. The location provides a hub for like-minds to grow together in the perfect environment. Nothing can make you feel like you are doing nothing with your life more than to hear all these people tell you about their dreams and what so many of them have already achieved in such a short amount of time. If I can not learned anything else from this trip, I have learned that South Africa is a country with potential and unfathomable opportunity.
Our trip has FLOWN by. I look forward to the upcoming rugby match and the safari that we are going on in the next few days! Until then!