Latitude: 33° 54.2614′ S
Longitude: 18° 24.9283′ E
Checking passengers on to a ship is not the same as checking into a hotel. You can’t just have people check-in willy nilly over the course of a day. There are issues with security, immigration, and the port authority, so the first day is usually at a hotel so everyone can then board the boat at the same time in an organized fashion.
It also gives an opportunity for everyone to explore Cape Town and meet the other travelers before we board the ship. Exploring the endpoints of cruise are usually up to the individual, so this actually a great opportunity for people who haven’t been to Cape Town before.
Today, the ship boarding procedure began by having our luggage outside our room at 6:30am. It was collected and delivered to the M/S Expedition while most of the tour went out to explore Cape Town. Several of us, including myself, chose to stay at the hotel as we had been in Cape Town for several days (or in my case, several weeks) before our arrival day. I had already visited and photographed all of the stops and I’d rather spend my last day on dry land in a downloading frenzy.
Most people will be visiting Table Mountain, Boulder Beach and Cape Point. I don’t know how successful they were at Table Mountain as it is very overcast today and the weather up there is very fickle.
The hotel group will board the ship at 3:30pm and the group going into Cape Town will board around 5:30pm. Once we are all on board there is a mandatory safety session where everyone is instructed on the use of life vests, life boats and emergency procedure. After that we can have our first dinner on the Expedition!
During our days at sea I’ll be providing more details about the ship, crew and the passengers who I am traveling with. There are some aspects about the ship and ship life that I find truly fascinating. As you might guess, this is also an extremely well-traveled group of passengers as well.
As for now, I’ll leave you with some of the photos I’ve taken in the Cape Town area and that are being visited by most of the passengers today.
Next stop: Luderitz, Namibia.