Monday, May 21, 2012

Agulhas - charmed by a lighthouse

Agulhas - the  most southern tip of Africa. The link is pretty informative so do visit there.  Map to get there.

Also called the  'Cape of Storms' which wrecked many ships en route to the east via Cape Agulhas. This windswept, ruggedly beautiful coastal plain at the southern-most tip of Africa, with its rich cultural and natural heritage, has recently been proclaimed as the Agulhas National Park.  

I have visited numerous times and each time am captivated by the mood of the lighthouse.  Day one was perfect for capturing a morning reflection in the tidal pool.

An optimistic fisherman - this tranquil picture is a strong contrast to the stormy seas that settled by  late afternoon.

A visit to Kassiesbaai at Arniston (also known as Waenhuiskrans) was a perfect way to spend the winter sunny day. Situated 20km van Agulhas, Kassiesbaai is the last remaining living example of a largely self-sufficient South African coastal fishing community. This little town now enjoys historical status and the  fishermans' houses were originally built from the 'kassies' (wooden crates) that washed up from the many shipwrecks along the coast - hence the  name Kassiesbaai. The town was named after the Arniston, an English East India ship in government service, wrecked on the coast nearby in 1815, and the graves of its victims (soldiers and passengers, including children) as well as archaeological sites of the Later Stone Age period are present on the property of Dollas Downs.  372 People died.   The local hotel (where we had wicked cheesecake) boast pics and  memorabelia of the wrecks and according to them the only time there was a greater loss of life at sea was when the Titanic sank. More detail on Waenhuiskranz Cultural link about the area. 

I never ever knew how many shipwrecks litter our coast.  If that interests you -  have a look here  and here and also here and you too will be fascinated I am sure.  Anyway, back to Kassiesbaai ...the houses are no longer made of kassies but I understsand to be built from local stone and then whitewashed.  Probably from the stone in front of this 'huisie'.

Spotlessly clean, well-swept and even some container plating in this coastal town where gardening will probably be challenging considering the extreme climate conditions.  See WindfinderThe unpredictable weather conditions here must be a huge challenge for the locals of this little town who mostly make a living from fishing.

A few pictures depicting Kassiesbaai ...

Crafts by local inhabitants are sold by the little craft shop in the village

You can  book a meal with one of the local ladies in quaint surroundings.  Very friendly, this 'tannie' (aunty) told us that she lived in Plumstead for a while, but came back home 'toe hul iemand voor my dikgemoer het' (beat up someone) - it was just too much for this country lass to bear and she's been back since - content living a simple life.

Whoops - how did this get here?  Oh well - its worth mentioning that the cheesecake at the local hotel is dee-vine!  The facilities at Arniston Hotel looks great and it must be the perfect viewpoint when the fisherman take to the seas for their daily catch.


Back to Agulhas for a walk at sunset and to take a few last pics of the lighthouse - standing solid since 1848.

I was not disappointed and she - I presume its a she because she looked splendid as the sun set behind her.

Charmed under the spell of a lighthouse ...

A quick scuttle back to the tidal pool and I was again rewarded with tranquil waters in the tidal pool

and this!  we watched as the lighthouse came on as the sun set and initially it gleams a green light - it was the first time I saw that.  


The sky was so beautiful from another angle in the pool.  This one's especially for you Wendy.

 Stormy seas the  next day and waves breaking over where I walked the previous day taking tranquil pictures.  On the horizon?  Another surprise - the SA Agulhas on its way to Cape Town.  We watched it through a telescope until it disappeared.  Quite something.

Oh, and the lady from close up before I sign off.

Au revoir Madame - keep your bright light shining and your charm glowing.  


  1. Die pragtigste fotos Sissi! Geniet hierdie kykies na al die mooi plekke wat jy besoek.

  2. Lovely Places,I Really Like that places,awesome snapshots,really like it...


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