Langebaan – my heart’s soft spot


West Coast N.P., Western Cape, South Africa

West Coast N.P., Western Cape, South Africa (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Langebaan is a seaside town, just north of Cape Town, nestled between a hill and a lagoon with water that changes colour from day-to-day.  When the mist rolls in through the mouth of the lagoon, creeping over the hills that separate the lagoon from the roaring ocean, the water is a midnite blue – all moody and somber.  But on a clear, sunny day, it turns anything from a deep azure to an almost see-through aquamarine colour.  The lagoon is the playground for the town’s inhabitants, but also a firm favourite for Capetonians who break away for weekends to soak up the laissez fair attitude of this dorpie (little town).  They arrive in their droves over weekends and holidays and depending on what time of year it is, they either take to the waters in the stiff South-Easterly wind to kite-surf, or fishing on calmer days, and when the water is like glass, you’ll see many a canoeist slowly paddling along from the main beach to Club Mykonos – a resort almost identical to the scenery on the real island of Mykonos.  Here you will find a safe harbour for bigger vessels, with yachts and catamarans of luxury proportions lining the jetties.  On Friday nights you can dance to the bouzoukis as you break plates, and end off trying your hand at the casino and hope Lady Luck smiles on you.

The lagoon water is warmer than the cold Atlantic Ocean that hugs the shoreline, and apart from dodging the odd crab or sand shark, you can float about in peace for hours.  Families enjoy long walks, and often with canine members of the families frolicking about in the shallow waters as well.

After good winter rains any open piece of land become God’s Garden of Eden with an abundance of beautiful, colourful flowers that last until the first South-Easterly winds start blowing in September.  This spectacle draws even more people from far across the globe, and enthusiastic flora and fauna lovers are spotted in their droves amongst the colourful plates of flowers, cameras furiously clicking away.

Restaurants line the beach, with firm favourites being Driftwood and Perly’s in town, and ours being the Dutch Pancake Cafe – I don’t miss the opportunity to have my special treat:  2 thin, perfectly cooked pancakes filled with Nutella, served with soft serve ice cream – YUM!!!

Closer to Mykonos, some newer, but very popular restaurants attract wedding couples who get married on the beach and have the reception there.  Succulent fresh fish, traditional South African food and of course a gastronomical feast of sea food at The Strandloper buffet restaurant, an open-air affair right on the sand, is a regular must-do!

Do click on the photos below to see the fine detail of this unusual restaurant!

I owned a lovely home there, almost on the beach, a few years ago.  My bedroom overlooked the lagoon, and come rain or shine, I slept with my balcony doors wide open to let the sound and smell of the salty lagoon water into my room.  This made for magical peaceful sleeps.  Unfortunately, the credit crunch that hit the world made for tightening belts and this luxury asset was sold.  But at least I will go into the old age home one day and have very fond memories of the days I spent planning every corner of this magnificent home, choosing every piece of furniture, appliances, crockery, paintings, linen and more with utmost care.

On the slopes of the hill separating the town and the West Coast National Park, my sisters and I buried my late brother’s ashes two years ago.  When I visited the area this past weekend, the flowers covering those fields around us, brought such joy and happiness to me, and I know his soul was frolicking about!

If ever in Cape Town, make sure you visit the West Coast – in a previous post I told you about Paternoster, just further afield from Langebaan, so you should easily fit both towns and more into a day’s excursion.  But better still, book a few days in one of the fine establishments and really get to see and enjoy it all.

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About suletta

Fell in love again at age 50! And followed my man to Zanzibar, for him to set up a dairy farm. I managed to travel into Africa a few times in my life, always loving it and experience the "fever" that grips you on African soil - the one that especially the Europeans now and in years gone by, suffer from. Except I am an African by birth - a South African. A Mzungu.So I discovered at this late stage in my life (not that I feel old!) that some people find my babblings about life interesting, and I quote: "live their lives vicariously through me".
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3 Responses to Langebaan – my heart’s soft spot

  1. danniehill says:

    Hi Suletta. Very nice post with great photos. Since I don’t have your email I would like to use this post to ask for a bit of help. I’m looking at a NEBE Boat Works Cape 28 cutter rigged sailboat. Built in SA. I can’t find much info and NEBE boat works. Since you’re a sailor and may have some connections I was wondering if you’ve ever heard of this boat type and what is the opinion of other sailors. From the pictures I’ve seen it appears to be a sturdy full-keel boat. I want to do some long distance, single-handed sailing in a smaller boat. My email is: dhillthai@ gmail. com ( I put the spaces in to avoid having it show up at a email address. Just take the spaces out if you do write.

    All the best to you and Kobus and family. Perhaps one day I’ll get to me you and your great husband. I also used an older post so not to interfere with you great sight.
    Thank you, dear lady.

    • suletta says:

      Hi Dannie, no idea – I think this is a British built boat? All O K with you??

      • danniehill says:

        Thank you, Suletta. It was built in SA but can’t find any info.

        I’m doing well and enjoying Thailand again. Will go back to the ‘rat-race’. in a month or two, but hopefully I’ll find a boat to let me get away at least for a short time.

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