Wednesday

Eyewitness Cape Town - Patsy and Pam from Exclusive Getaways


For the last 25 years the Cape Town based Exclusive Getaways created and organised tailor-made wildlife safaris, eco holidays, beach getaways, golfing trips, city stays, luxury-rail-experiences and hot-air balloon-adventures in South Africa. 

Over the last year or so I met Patsy and Pam (sort of) on a weekly base on #travelchatSA, the first twitter chat about South Africa founded by Patrycja from Cape Town. Maybe you too would love to use twitter on your travels? Read what I think about twitter and travelling in How to use twitter as a tourist and make the world your neighbourhood. In summer I was eventually so very lucky to meet Patsy and Pam of Exclusive Getaways for a chat in Cape Town in the Western Cape. I truly felt their passion for their beautiful home, and I have the feeling that to only make their customers happy, they won't let anything between them and their goal.

See what the two tourism professionals with a big heart have to tell us about Cape Town. It is all about caves, drinking tea, pearl-white beach sand, mountain streams, sunbirds, and also a special link that Cape Town has with Berlin in Germany.


The Touristin: Three words that characterize Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: Dazzlingly gorgeous, a little temperamental, and packed with natures best secrets.

The Touristin: How do you get around Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: Much of day-to-day life in Cape Town happens with private transport. But as nature people, we walk a lot – and Cape Town has an endless number of beautiful places to walk.

The Touristin: What is the best kept secret about Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: The mountainsides of Cape Town have some fabulous secrets – intriguing caves make good discoveries, and there are some fascinating sacred sites on Table Mountain. For nouveau-type movie-lovers, skip the chain cinemas and go to The Labia Theatre on Orange Street. It calls itself the oldest art repertory cinema in South Africa and it makes for an interesting, unpretentious and retro outing.

The Touristin: What is your favourite borough/suburb/area in Cape Town and why?

Patsy and Pam: The suburbs that sandwich the city bowl and Table Mountain are most beautiful. They feature a lot of old Victorian homes that have been reincarnated as trendy-chic suburban pads in beautiful old leafy suburbs. The vibe near the city is wonderfully cosmopolitan.

The Touristin: The best place for a hot chocolate or coffee in Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: We have a serious confession to make: we are not coffee drinkers! But: the places to go for magnificent teas are The Mount Nelson Hotel on the edge of the city or The Twelve Apostles Hotel on the Atlantic seaboard.

The Touristin: What is one restaurant we must try out while in Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: For a top-notch experience, eat at The Greenhouse at Cellars-Hohenort Hotel in Constantia. On the casual side, do go to Grand Café & Beach near the waterfront where you can eat outdoors on a private beach with pearl-white beach sand between your toes. When in Cape Town, do as the locals do and grab some fresh-from-the-sea fish and chips at Salty Dog at the Simon’s Town harbour.

The Touristin: Where would we meet you on weekends?

Patsy and Pam: You’d find us up on mountain paths, close to our magnificent fynbos, or beside the stream in Cecilia Forest, or sitting with shiny-jacketed sunbirds in Kirstenbosch, or on the shoreline of one of Cape Town’s exquisite beaches. We love sea-mingling with the penguins at Boulders and Seaforth beaches.

The Touristin: Do you have a favourite museum/gallery we all have to visit when in Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: Historic Simon’s Town is a pretty old maritime village with some lovely museums – The Warrior Toy Museum in St Georges Street exhibits thousands of dolls and teddy bears, dolls houses, model cars, toy soldiers, ships and model railroads.

In the city, the District Six Museum is a poignant depiction of racially based forced removals in what was once one of Cape Town’s most colourful and lively residential areas.

One of our favourite galleries is the Irma Stern Museum in Rosebank – Irma Stern was an artist well-recognized in Cape Town for her accomplishments. She studied in Germany and held her first exhibition in Berlin! That’s just one special link that Cape Town has with Berlin.

The Touristin: What are some of your favourite places to shop for A) groceries and B) clothes?

Patsy and Pam: The Saturday Neighbourgoods Market at The Old Biscuit Mill in Salt River is a great place to buy fresh produce and delicious artisan goods. Big Blue sells some great clothing – made from South African made cotton using local craft techniques. The Kalk Bay Big Blue shop is a lovely one to visit, because it rubs shoulders with all the quaint and artsy stores along Main Street in the cute fishing village town of Kalk Bay.

The Touristin: What souvenir shall we bring back from Cape Town?

Patsy and Pam: Visitors can support local traders and purchase hand-made curios from market- and street-vendors. Local traders are easy to find near Cape Town’s tourist attractions. There are some lovely gifts at the Kirstenbosch curio shops – they have some outstanding books on the fynbos of the Cape which make special take-home items. Our Cape wines make wonderful gifts for special people back home. Artvark in Kalk Bay is a special emporium for souvenirs – local artists are well represented in their prints, paintings, ceramics and sculptures.

The Touristin: Thank you so much for your time. I wish you all the very best Patsy and Pam. Hope to see you soon again in Cape Town.


From Berlin with love

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Greetings stranger. I always try to be myself and to be a tourist as often as I can. I would love to get in contact with lots of hard travelling tourists who love to be out and about as much as I do. I am looking forward to all your comments. Thanks so much in advance.