South Africa: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

So I’ve lauded and applauded my experience in South Africa, and for the most part, it was amazing. But like every place, it’s not all good, all the time. Here’s some of the good, bad, and the ugly.

tired

GOOD: The view from my hotel was AMAZING.

The view from my hotel was...

The view from my hotel was…

AMAZING!

AMAZING!

frustrated

 BAD: The beaches are beautiful, but the water is freezing.

Surrounded by beautiful beaches!

Surrounded by beautiful beaches!

mad

UGLY: Shanty Towns are still where many of the black residents of South Africa live.

These huge lots are filled with shabby homes made of tin, plastic, cardboard, or plywood. Most don't have electricity or running water.

These huge lots are filled with shabby homes made of tin, plastic, cardboard, or plywood. Most don’t have electricity or running water.

These "towns" pop up over night in empty lots, filling with people who move to the cities looking for work.

These “towns” pop up over night in empty lots, filling with people who move to the cities looking for work.

tired

GOOD: The nightlife is HOT!

I've already written an entire post on the excitement and nightlife at the Waterfront. Well Camps Bay is another area of Cape Town with a lively restaurant and bar scene at night.

I’ve already written an entire post on the excitement and nightlife at the Waterfront. Well Camps Bay is another area of Cape Town with a lively restaurant and bar scene at night.

And the view is amazing from the beaches at Camps Bay!

And the view is amazing from the beaches at Camps Bay!

frustrated  BAD: But it’s not always safe at night.

My tour guide  advised us not to venture into some places at night, including Long Street in Cape Town, where he said drugs and night clubs are on every corner. In truth, it's a lot like New York City--be smart, be aware, be safe.

My tour guide advised us not to venture into some places at night, including Long Street in Cape Town, where he said drugs and night clubs are on every corner. In truth, it’s a lot like New York City–be smart, be aware, be safe.

tired

GOOD: The landscape is truly beautiful.

Vast open land

Vast open land

The mountain meet the sea

The mountain meets the crystal blue sea

UGLY: The environment is being raped to death.

Coal power plants are a common sight all over the countryside. It's also common to see deep holes in the ground where coal has been dredged up. Add to that diamonds and other resources that are being mined--very visibly--from every where.

Coal power plants are a common sight all over the countryside. It’s also common to see deep holes in the ground where coal has been dredged up. Add to that diamonds and other resources that are being mined–very visibly–from everywhere.

Hunting of the animals--many of which are shrinking in number--is also common. Rhinos, lions, zebra, and more are fighting for their lives from poachers and rich hunters.

Hunting of the animals–many of which are shrinking in number–is also common. Rhinos, lions, zebra, and more are fighting for their lives from poachers and rich hunters.

tired

GOOD: The architecture is culturally interesting.

The architecture ranges from Gothic...

The architecture ranges from Gothic…

With classic stained glass

With classic stained glass

Cape Dutch architecture

Cape Dutch architecture

Bo-Kaap was whitewashed rental properties for low-wage laborers during apartheid. When apartheid ended the inhabitants painted the homes in bright hues to celebrate.

Bo-Kaap was whitewashed rental properties for low-wage laborers during apartheid. When apartheid ended the inhabitants painted the homes in bright hues to celebrate.

tired

GREAT! The people love, love, love Nelson Mandela.

Even before the country erupted into celebration and mourning after Nelson Mandela's death, his presence was EVERYWHERE. I don't believe that will change anytime soon.

Even before the country erupted into celebration and mourning after Nelson Mandela’s death, his presence was EVERYWHERE. I don’t believe that will change anytime soon.

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