South Africa 2018 - Cape Town
Welcome to Cape Town! It will be a pleasure to experience the cricket with you at Newlands, especially if it's your first time in the world's most beautiful cricket venue. So you will best enjoy this stunning city (location) please read this important Cape Town relevant information, including where and when we are dining, and how best to reach the cricket. I will not be talking at the dinner so you need to understand everything written here.
I want you to be safe and sound in Cape Town, South Africa's hot spot for tourism crime. Do not be misguided by the beauty of the location so please read Safety & Security to recap some important detail.
SAFETY - Cape Town Specific:
Make no mistake, Cape Town city centre is a dangerous place to wander indiscriminately after dark. In fact just don't do it at all other than checking out the architecture of Long Street, by day! We live at the Park Inn for the convenience of reaching the cricket, the Waterfront, Long Street and Bree Street but please do not go walk to any of these places alone at night, take a cab.
The area around our hotel is lifeless after dusk aside vagrants and undesirables. If you book an Uber, wait inside the lobby until the car arrives, even if the bar is just 100 yards around the corner, take an Uber for R21 (minimum fare). Please.
When going anywhere, please take the bare minimum of cash, with cards widely if not always accepted. Don't flash your phone or cameras around for long periods as you sight see. When sitting at a table always keep your hand on your phone, or tucked behind the candle, or in your pocket or bag, If you place your bag on the floor, place the leg of the chair through a strap to secure it.
You are only responsible for yourself but I ask you to please look out for others that may be considering wandering off under the influence. Long Street and Bree Street are generally OK with hundreds bar hopping though the night but a casual meander down a darkened alley may see you falling prey.
I don't want to scare you, but I would sooner scare you into greater protective caution than casual ignorance because I just don't want anything to happen to you, and neither do you!
South Africa Mobile: +27.83.3538547
WhatsApp / Viber: +44.7962.557999
When/if you get a local number message my SA number, otherwise Whatsapp / Viber me on the above UK number. If you do not have Whatsapp or Viber, text message my South Africa number so I have a contact number for you (and please tell me who it is writing, I can't guess!).
Communication and your safety is paramount. We are not kids, but just let others know where you are going, if you are going alone, with discretion assured.
Cape Town: Park Inn By Radisson, Foreshore
Download Uber if you haven't already.
This is not the only way around but it is the most effective, secure, and efficient. In South Africa you can pay cash or home registered credit or debit card. If you book an Uber to collect you at Cape Town International (& domestic) Airport, the Uber pick up is in Parkade 1, lower level. It is approx. R200 (A$20) to the hotel. It takes 5 mins for a car arrive so don't book it until you are in the pick up area.
If you are not Uber savvy, and don't have it or don't want it on your phone, plenty of guys with us already have it, or will have, and well prepared to have you share a ride with you. You can ask me to book an Uber when you arrive at the airport and repay me on arrival. Text message my SA number or Whatsapp / Viber.
With the nature of cash payment, hotel receptions, restaurants, and others can book a car for you and you simply pay cash to the driver.
If we go out as a group, try not to leave an empty seat in your car when heading home. Cars seat 4 - 6 passengers so ask around for others to join you, especially those that don't have Uber. Thank you!
Meet at Harald's on the 11th floor or the Park Inn by Radisson at 6.00pm, when you will receive your match tickets, unless you are meeting us at the restaurant.
With the nature of transport having changed markedly since our last visit, please Uber your own way to and from the restaurant. It is approx R50 ($5) for a 6 seat car depending on demand, which can be pre-booked.
Dinner will be from 7pm at Belthazar. You will be dropped on the far side of the V&A Waterfront and you need to walk through the Mall to the restaurant. Drinks are included, with wines already selected. You are welcome to order any basic spirits & mixer, and draught beers. Dinner is a-la-carte, so order what you like, starters, mains, desserts, or more! The bill is closed at 11pm!
You will make your own way back to the hotel at your convenience.
GETTING TO THE CRICKET
Gates Open at 0830am. Toss is at 1000am. First ball is at: 1031am (or later)
I will be taking the train from across the road which is quicker than being stuck in traffic but the choice is yours.
Daily MetroPlus (1st class!) fares are R21 return. A weekly ticket is R80 but only valid Mon-Sun. Rather than line up each day you may want to get the weekly ticket and be done with it, albeit for only 4 days use. If you intend on taking the train, buy your weekly ticket the day before.
Though a safe and well used means please do not take the train alone if you can help it (the train home from the game will be packed) and hang onto your bags at all times. 'Snatch and Run' has occurred in the past!
All trains departing Platform 1 - 6 stop at Newlands, heading to Simonstown or Fish Hoek. To make the first ball you need to take the following trains, allowing 15 mins to walk to the station and buy a ticket. When looking at the incomprehensible departures board, focus on the platform number and time.
Monday - Friday: Departure - Arrival
Train # 137: 0755 - 0813 (I take this train)
Train # 143: 0840 - 0858
Train # 147: 0911 - 0929
Train # 149: 0932 - 0950
Saturday: Departure - Arrival
Train # 119: 0755 - 0813 (I take this train)
Train # 123: 0847 - 0905
Train # 127: 0938 - 0956
Sunday: Departure - Arrival
Train # 107: 0805 - 0823 (I take this train)
Train # 109: 0830 - 0848
Train # 111: 0923 - 0941
Train # 113: 1000 - 1018
UBER is approx R100 each way, though demand after play may push that to R200 and a much longer wait. Again, fill your car if you can and pre-book to guarantee the 6 seater UberXL!
AT THE MATCH
We have a grassy knoll, reserved entirely for us. It's a small triangular patch which 'you can't miss'. If you use the Newlands station entrance, turn left and walk clockwise around the ground. If you enter from Campground Road, turn to the right and walk the other way around the ground. Enter staircase ZZ, B, A.
If you are joining us in Cape Town, your embankment chair will be set up and waiting for you. If you are bringing your chair from Port Elizabeth, please bring this on day 1. The chairs will be left at the venue at the end of each day's play so there is no need to carry them to the hotel.
After the test match, you can take your chair home, donate it to someone less fortunate, or leave them with me in Cape Town for next time!
HAT & SUNSCREEN
You will need both as our grassy embankment is bathed in sunshine all day though by 1pm it is dropping already behind your right shoulder.
If you want to visit Robben Island before the test book your trip here.
If you want to take the Cableway up Table Mountain, book your car here.
Cableway tickets are unreserved, but cheaper online than at the ticket window. Many take the first car up at 8am, take photos, and come down and taxi to the first ball, but operation is dependent on weather. Regardless of how beautiful the day, it can get very cold on top and the weather changes dramatically and swiftly so be aware and prepared.
If you want to walk up allow 2 hours if you are a fit bastard and 3-4 hours if you are not, and take minimum 5 litres of water! Take a cab a few hundred metres past the cableway entrance, where the walk start is signposted.
On Day 6 we'll visit a winery for lunch, fully payable by you at the time (approx $60 including travel and winery tour, plus drinks). This is a casual Braai (BBQ) lunch on the lawn, with plenty of sample as you wish, returning at 5pm if not earlier dependent on departing flights. If the match ends early this may come forward to Day 5 or even 4 to allow more of us to enjoy it.
If we wine and dine on Day 6, and you need to reach the airport later that day, it is approx R300 ($30) from the vineyard to the airport in an Uber.
Your awesome Bent Banani shirts will be given to you on Day 1 at the game, as these will be at the venue with the chairs, waiting for you. As many already know, I have a sack full of outstanding 'discontinued' floral shirts available in all sizes except XL. These are R150 ($15) each and all must go, including extra tour shirts. If I take any back to the UK you can buy them later for A$70. You may not want any more or even want any, but you may have friends or foe that would love one or more so please, the floral emporium will be open all test match, but just get the shopping done on day one and be done with it!
YOUR POST-TEST DINNERS:
Dinner on Day 5 will be confirmed through the match, but starting at 7pm at Harald's on the 11th floor of Park Inn by Radisson.
YOUR CONSULAR SERVICE:
Australia High Commission, Pretoria. Representing Australia in Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland.
Please be aware what the Australia government can and cannot help you with. South Africa laws govern you and Australia is unlikely to assist in the advent of your misdemeanours with local authorities. Please report any lost or stolen passports immediately with the High Commission. It’s an idea to scan your passport page and email it to yourself and a relative for backup.
YOUR SAFETY AND SECURITY TOTAL RECAP: