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For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni
For other destinations and types of holiday, visit Kuoni 

Things to do in South Africa

The sunset Cape Town cruise

Enjoy a sunset cruise on a classic sailboat, the Spirit of Victoria, for stunning views over Cape Town …

By Peter Statham
Technical Operations Manager at Waterfront Adventures, Alfred&'s partner in South Africa

Watch the sunset over Cape Town on a classic sailboat, the Spirit of Victoria. She’s known as the grand old lady of charter boats and has brick-red sails that make her the most photographed boat on the V&A waterfront – she’s even been featured in movie shoots. Unlike modern boats, we use ropes and pulleys to manually lift the sails so it’s a very exciting, authentic experience. You feel the boat tilt and suddenly you’re looking at the ocean below you with the spray in your face – people love it.

Our sunset cruise lasts an hour and a half. As we exit the port, we’ll pass seals lounging on red buoys, bickering over who gets the best spot in the sun. There’s also a pod of dusky dolphins that live in the bay, we see them almost every day surfing our bow wave. Sometimes we’ll spot penguins too, as well as huge bony sun fish in the water. Once, we even had a group of southern right whales pop up within arm’s reach of our boat, we were so close we could smell them.

As we sail towards the sunset you’ll enjoy some sparkling wine and soft music. The route takes us between Cape Town and Robben Island. One of our crew members actually lives on the island while another’s father is an ex-prisoner, so they’ll often share their experiences with guests. Eventually, we slow the boat down and take the pressure out of the sails, so we can bob on the waves while watching the sunset. It’s usually this beautiful red colour and, if there are clouds, you get a spectrum of bright yellow through to ember painting the sky.

When we pass the Mouille Point lighthouse we turn back towards Cape Town. That’s when we start to see lights come on in the city while the last rays of sun shine on Table Mountain in the background, which is often draped in a tablecloth of cloud. You get the twinkling lights of the city set against this dark mountain, which I always think of as the caretaker of Cape Town. It makes for a perfect photo of our iconic skyline.

Guests often comment on how great our guides are. We hire local guys and train them up, as we’re passionate about empowering the local community. Our skipper Lucky, for instance, comes from one of the townships outside of Cape Town. Guests say how nice it is to chat with South Africans and we really encourage that interaction. We also try and inspire a love of sailing in young people by partnering with organisations like The World Needs a Father and Scouting in South Africa.


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Alfred & Peter Statham

Born and raised in Cape Town, Peter Statham has always been passionate about nature, sailing and travel. He describes himself as the eternal summit chaser and spent four years travelling the world. His adventures include living in London, youth work in the USA and sailing with the Portuguese national team. Peter has now returned to Cape Town and works for Wild Horizons Waterfront Adventures.
Peter Statham, Cape Town sunset cruise

Plan your holiday withAlfred&

Your journey will start with one of our UK team – someone like Laura, who's travelled extensively in South Africa. They’ll shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember - ex banker who can show you the hottest foodie spots in Cape Town, the award-winning young sommelier who can introduce you to Stellenbosch's finest wines and the walking safari ranger who can guide you to the best game.

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