A very warm welcome to the ExpatCapeTown Newsletter in September.
Finally Spring has arrived in Cape Town.
The blue sky and the warm sunshine make it easy to enjoy life in Cape Town. The beautiful multicolor springflowers which adorn the fields and greens in and around Cape Town are lifting everybody’s mood.
In this Newsletter you will find many Cape Town Insights for making your life in beautiful Cape Town more colourful.
This is what you will find in this issue:
1. Hot Tips for Travelers and Expats: South Africa Health Care Tips
2. Event of the Month: Disco Nights in Cape Town
3. Inside Cape Town: Suburb of the Month: Durbanville
4. Typical South African: Bobotie and Kokis
5. Cape Town Insider Tips: Know where to get…?
Hot Tips for Expats and Travellers: South Africa Health Tips
Many of you asked: What do I need to know about health care in South Africa? So here are my top health tips for South Africa:
• Insurance: Take out a private health insurance, either a travel insurance or good private health cover, as private health insurance is really advisable to have when falling ill in South Africa. Remember to take your insurance documents from overseas with you in copy so you can hand in your private medical bills which you will have to pay by cash or credit card straight away after you have seen a doctor in Cape Town. Hospitals charges have to be paid immediately when you are admitted.
• Find a good doctor: The
private Hospitals in Cape Town
as well as the many private medical care centres have got excellent medical staff to attend to you. Check out the recommended doctors lists from your embassies as well.
• X-rays: For your residency permit or study permit (if over 18 years) you need to get a recent chest x-ray included in your medical certificate. You can get the x-rays at the private hospitals. Please give the radiology department a call to find out if you need an appointment and to find out which time is usually the least busy, so you will not have to wait long to get this little check done. The cost for x-rays is much less here than overseas too.
• Vaccinations: Remember to freshen up your vaccinations record and get your tetanus, polio and diphtheria jabs done every ten years. Make sure you have got hepatitis vaccinations and some doctors overseas might recommend a vaccination for rabies as a prophylactic measure, however many local doctors would not suggest to go that far.
• Malaria: If you visit certain parts of South Africa like Kwa-Zulu Natal or the Kruger Park you should take Malaria prophylaxis as precaution.
Read the FAQs here.
• Swine Flu: The H1N1 virus is circulating in Cape Town too. Updated information can be found here. http://www.nicd.ac.za
• ICE stands for In Case of Emergency: Do save on your cellphone the Emerency numbers as well as an emergency contact in case you are in an accident and others have to find somebody to contact. ICE Numbers stand for a close familiy members or friends who can be contacted and react accordingly. Never nice to think about, but very useful indeed.
Event of the Month: Disco Nights with great South African Disco Divas
Relive the disco era with the stunning performance of the fabulous South African Disco Divas.
The Cape Town disco nights celebrate the music of the grand disco divas Donna Summer, Diana Ross, Gloria Gaynor and other stars of the disco era. So make sure you get your tickets for this great event.
More about Disco Nights.
What else is on in Cape Town in Septembert?
September is Spring Flower Festival Month. There are many spring flower festivals across the Western Cape.
Read about the great places for wildflower spotting here.
Then as the whales are back in the bays around Cape Town, the Hermanus Whale Festival attracts people from around the world and is one of the top events of this beautiful little town only a two hours drive east of Cape Town.
Maybe combine a whale watching tour with a wildflower tour to Fernkloof near Hermanus?
Anyway, enjoy the warmer Spring days in Cape Town!
More great events and shows in September 2009.
Suburb of the Month: Durbanville
In this section you will find every month insiders tips and advice about one of the many suburbs of Cape Town. So you know where to stay and where to go.
Why Durbanville? This leafy green suburb lies roughly 20 km to the Northeast of Cape Town. The area has got a laid-back atmosphere but also excellent shopping facilities and amenities.
The lovely Rust and Vrede Estate, the green Durbanville Hills with all its boutique wine estates, the monthly Durbanville Craft Market and the Rose Garden are popular not only with locals and tourists as well.
Good safe housing is widely available either in the new Tyger Falls Apartments which cater mainly for the young executives with many vibey restaurants and bistros nearby or in the leafy neighborhoods with house of all sizes from huge mansions to cozy family homes. There are excellent state schools and private schools in Durbanville.
Where to stay? Accommodation in Durbanville consists of smaller B&B accommodation as well as superior lodges and guesthouses and a lot of excellent self-catering accommodation exists in many quiet neighborhoods. Restaurants abound in the area. You will find everything from little local coffee shops and specialty restaurant to the prestigious wine estate restaurants.
Where to go? Enjoy the gorgeous view over Cape Town from Tygerberg. Take a picnic or go walking or biking in the Tiger Hills. Or take in the splendid views from the Durbanville Hills Wine Estate Restaurants. If you love to do your shopping, there are numerous boutiques and chainstores in TygerValley Center, the second biggest shopping complex in Cape Town.
Where to find great food in Durbanville? Head to the weekly Slow Food Market at Willowbridge Shopping Centre. Saturday is Market Day and you will find a lot of treats from Spanish style cured meat to local organic olives and olive oil and freshly baked yeast free breads and homemade muffins. Sooo yummy!
More info on Durbanville and the Northern Suburbs.
Typical South African terms
What is a bobotie? This Cape Malay is one of the most popular traditional South African dishes. It combines the curry taste of the Asian dishes with some more mellow sweet taste of ginger and chutney. Already reading the list of ingredients which contains chutney, banana, custard, ginger will make you crave for this lovely local dish. Try out my favorite bobotie recipe, which is really easy to prepare and will be enjoyed by the whole family.
Find my favorite Bobotie recipe here.
What are kokis? This is a question manly parents ask, when they get the list of stationary the kids have to get for school. This South African term stands for felt tip pens. You can get them at your local supermarkets as well as the big stationary shops like Waltons and CNA.
Cape Town Insider Tips
What else? Have you tried these…?
Where to see the beautiful spring flowers in and around Cape Town? Drive up the West Coast and see the colorful carpets of wildflowers. Beautiful flower fields can be seen in Postberg Nature Reserve, one hour from Cape Town.
Where to get a makaraba? The popular headgear which is worn by soccer supporters in South Africa, can be ordered through Makoya Makaraba in Meadowridge. The colorful artisan hats made by local artists in an empowerment project started by local artist Michael Souter will be a sure hot tip for next years Soccer Worldcup in Cape Town.
Where to see whales near Cape Town? You do not have to drive out to Hermanus. Try the False Bay Coast near Simonstown instead. If you are lucky you can spot the giant mammals right from Boulders Beach. So penguins and whales on one day, what can you wish for more?
What’s coming in the Next Newsletter?
As ExpatCapeTown wants to bring you the most up to date stories and insights, please be patient and let me surprise you with more great news about the Mother City.
Just be assured, there will be lots of more great tips and advice, so be sure to subscribe my newsletter and take a look at my website which is ever expanding.
And please come back with more great tips from your site, all kinds of comments very welcome!
Contact me here.
Have a great time in Cape Town or wherever you are!