Cape Town - South Africa 2001

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Gay Cape Town

On the southern most tip of South Africa is the beautiful city of Cape Town with its white sand beaches and a spectacular mountain backdrop. The flight is some 11 hours from England but as its near-enough the same time-zone so you don't get the jet lag as with most other international destinations. Try and book a night flight, you then eat your evening meal on the plane, get some sleep and wake up to breakfast in Cape Town.

Because its in the southern atmosphere its seasons are the opposite to our English ones and so Christmas and New Year are one of the most popular times to visit. The boys over there get their Summer and Christmas holidays all rolled into one. So the beaches get very busy with the local talent too.

The beach life is of course one of the most important aspects of Cape Town when it comes to booking a holiday there. The weather gets very hot and the beaches packed with boys. Its like you're a kid loose in a sweet shop and compared to some European destinations the average age seems younger.

Clifton Beach is where it all happens, just a 20-minute drive from the city. It's split into 4 sections by large boulders. Beaches 1 and 2 are quieter for couples and families, Beach 3 is the gay beach and the 4th is most popular with the young straight crowd. It's also home to the lifeguard station with many pumped muscle boys hanging out there. On a hot sunny day the beaches get saturated with horny sights you usually only dream about. Gay or straight the boys are simply gorgeous and it's nice to see the straight boys looking after their bodies too (unlike a lot of the lads here in England), although it's very easy to tell a gay boy from a straight one, simply by what he's wearing. On the gay beach it seems compulsory to wear tight lycra Speedo's and show off a nice bulge for others to admire. Where as on the straight beach next door it seems compulsory to wear baggy shorts, keeping themselves tucked away for only there privileged girlfriends to explore. Everyone is chilled and friendly and I think that's what makes the place so special, the friendliness and acceptance of everyone. If I were to describe them I'd guess it would be a cross between Australians and Miami boys, all having smooth, fit, defined bodies.

If you drive another 20-minutes down the coast and then take a 20-minute hike you'll be able to visit the nudist beach at Sandy Bay, Llandudno. This not surprisingly is also a favourite gay "hangout". It's quite a large beach yet doesn't ever get very busy. Those that do go don't anyway near match the sexiness of the Clifton Beach boys but it makes a change of scenery to your holiday. There are also some cruisy bushes to explore too. Drive further along the coastline and you'll hit Cape Point the home of wild Penguins. It's a special place where the warm Indian Ocean meets the cold Atlantic Ocean and let me warn you the Atlantic Ocean is very cold!

There are many other forms of entertainment other than beach life for example a wine tour, a visit to Robin Island (were Nelson Mandela was kept imprisoned), Visit the Waterfront Leisure complex (the aquarium there is a must see) or a trip to the top of Table Mountain. The magnificent mountain towers up behind the city with a large distinctive flat top to it. There's a cable car to get you up there, and the view from the top is spectacular. If you go up on a clear day you're so high you can almost see the curve of the earth. On top of the mountain you'll also meet these cheeky little animals scooting around, they're quite tame and look like a cross between a gerbil and rabbit (yet it nearest relative is the elephant!).

The price of things are really cheap and so those of us that like shopping may need to buy an extra suitcase to bring everything back! Eating out is very cheap too with many gay and straight venues to choose from. Gay owned Cafe Manhattans (74 Upper Waterkant St) was a favourite of mine, a 3-course meal with wine would cost just £7 each. You could also pick up a full English breakfast for about £1 in most of the local cafes. Straight restaurants I'd recommend include Quay Four (Waterfront), The Africa Cafe (213 Lower Main Rd) and Blues (Camps Bay).

Before I visited Cape Town I'd heard many stories good and bad. People that have been there praise it, saying how much of a beautiful city it is. Some others warned me about the violence and crime out there. If you've been thinking about going but have put it off due to this, don't. Like anywhere in the world you have to be careful and yes there is still a lot of poverty and crime out there but by taking simple precautions you'll be fine. Try not to walk the streets after dark even if there are two of you and it's a short distance. Instead take a cab, they're so cheap anyway. If you hire a car (recommended) don't go for a flashy convertible or Jeep, even if it is irresistible for your image! There have been several reports of holiday makes getting attacked and mugged when stopping at traffic lights. Instead get a car with air-con and keep the doors locked. The Police are getting better and crime has fallen considerably over the last few years but be aware as it is still about.

Unfortunately there is also still some differences amongst the white and black communities, although it too is getting better with time. I was surprised how white dominated the beaches and clubs were. When you first arrive and drive out of the airport you'll see large shack towns, they really make you think, we're so lucky to live the lifestyle that we do. You'll be asked for tips what ever you do and where ever you go, its the way of life out there, a couple of pennies are worth so much more out there, make sure you've always got some loose change with you. Putting a smile on their face when you do makes such a difference.

Accommodation is plentiful with a wide choice of venues. I stayed in the Holiday Inn (Waterfront) that worked out to be about £40 per person per night (room only) and found it an excellent choice.

If you want to get out there for Christmas then you'll need to book your flight early as they sell out fast.