Kirstenbosch and Claremont South Africa

Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden is one of the most beautiful places on earth, and it touches me every time I visit. Mysterious Cape fog is back draping itself over Table Mountain, so yesterday was a great day to re-explore the peaceful, calming gardens.

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

It’s hard to say which Kirstenbosch delight is best – forested areas, fynbos gardens, hiking trails, dramatic mountain views, exotic birds, gourmet restaurants, Mambo Shona stone sculptures, or the gallery of talented South African artists. It’s a big dose of beautiful!!

Kirstenbosch Tree Canopy Walkway –
James Yates – Namaqualand in Bloom
Strelitzia Reginae
Kirstenbosch Art Gallery

I visited the art gallery and especially liked the landscape paintings of James Yates. The exhibition – Professional Cape Artists – features sculpture, paintings, and ceramics of local masters. The exhibition is on display between 16th February and 11th March.

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
Cape Dutch Manor House
Dutch Colonial House
Southey Cottage Claremont
Cape Dutch Manor House
Cape Dutch Manor House

A few other artists include Bill McGill, Lionel Smit, and Tony Butler. It was too much trying to sort names with each piece. I took the curator’s card.

Springtime Darlington – James Yates
Kirstenbosch and Claremont South Africa – James Yates

I hiked a close-in trail, had a lingering lunch, and enjoyed the stone sculptures perfectly placed throughout the grounds. Families were relaxing and picnicking on a lush carpet of grass.

Bill McGill Cape Town Architecture
Table Mountain Aquifer

Kirstenbosch’s water shortage isn’t as dire as Cape Town’s. Its irrigation flows from a different source – surface runoff and streams in Table Mountain’s Nursery Ravine, Window Gorge, a roped rock climb.

Nelson Mandela by Tony Butler
Kirstenbosch – South African Biodiversity Institute

Chemicals aren’t used in Kirstenbosch’s drinking water. The water is “extracted from boreholes that tap deep into the Table Mountain Aquifer 200 ft. below ground level”. Drinking water from the aquifer is of “such high quality it could be bottled”!

Bo-Kaap Malay Quarter

Capetonians take the drought very seriously. It was nice drinking fresh spring water, washing my hands, and flushing the toilet without feeling guilty. Most public toilets in Cape Town have hand sanitizer dispensers. Sink water is turned off.

James Yates
James Yates
James Yates

This trip I’m exploring Claremont – a leafy suburban neighborhood six miles south of Cape Town. Although nothing beats the energy and excitement of Cape Town, I wanted to experience a new area.

Lionel Smit
Lionel Smit
Lionel Smit

My B&B is between Claremont and Rondebosch, both growing suburban areas surrounded by spectacular natural beauty and Cape Dutch architecture. The University of Cape Town is nearby. It’s a major change from the city chaos in Maputo!

Sculptures by Lionel Smit –
James Yates


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