Simon’s Town

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Simon’s Town is wonderfully anachronistic. Its history as a British naval base is evident not just in the deepwater harbour still used by the vessels of the South African navy, but also in its architecture. The main street is lined by Edwardian arcades, delicate pastel coloured buildings with fine ironwork balconies and supports, that have been combined with the curved gables of traditional Cape Dutch architecture. The effect is like a Sussex seaside town that has been uprooted and moved to the Cape Peninsula. Much of the appeal of Simon’s Town is admiring this architecture, as well as learning about the naval history of the town typified by the quirky story of Just Nuisance, a dog who was a companion to Navy sailors and was eventually enlisted in the Royal Navy, and whose statue now stands on the shoreline. There are also a number of good seafood restaurants in Simon’s Town, suitable for a lunch stop and it’s also the place to park to get down to Boulders Beach to see the penguins.

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