Sunday, September 21, 2014

Back on the bus. Greyhound Luxury bus service back to Johannesburg

After sharing a "crazy" running , jumping and standing still
 30th Birthday weekend with my daughter,
it was time to get back on the bus and head back to Johannesburg
A sad and tearful moment for us both...
"Parting is such sweet sorrow".

The bus terminus in Cape Town is in stark contrast to its counterpart at Park Station.
This is a new facility (open about four years),
 is out in the open and spotlessly clean!
Park Station could (and should learn from this)
Especially if tourism by bus is going to be promoted.

The check-in area was clean and well controlled.
Plenty of seating, but NOT enough rubbish bins. business class seat homeward.
There are 12 seats available in this class,
which is situated downstairs
These seats are more comfortable than airplane seating,
AND they have a plug point underneath that will recharge your phones.
Perhaps the next addition might be (free) Wi-Fi?

Considering the size of the Volvo B450R,
the "business end" seems uncomplicated.
There is a comfortable sleeping area behind the driver's seat.
It has a proper full size mattress, so that drivers can get a proper nap between shifts.

The mirrors have always fascinated me.

Upstairs is "coach" class.
This can accommodate 48 passengers.

After a couple of overcast and rainy days, the weather finally cleared.
As we left...

On my trip to Cape Town, I had not thought to carefully about food.
I did not make the same mistake on this leg.
Tea, coffee and biscuits are supplied.
Snacks (crisps and chocolate) are on sale.
A question though.
A packet of crisps on the Johannesburg-Cape Town leg =R5.00
Cape Town - Johannesburg, the same packet costs R6.00.
Just asking.

The mountains that surround Paarl

Leaving the Paarl Valley and heading towards Ceres

Snow on the mountains,
and wild flowers on the side of the road.
THIS is why I love Africa.
And, seeing that I am normally the driver,
being a passenger allows me to appreciate the beauty that our country offers

More snow and flowers...
as the sun heads towards the horizon

I am so glad that these are still found along the highway,
and they are in good repair.

A small graveyard, seemingly in the middle of nowhere.

The iconic symbol of the Karoo.

Prince Albert Road.
When I was here five years ago, the then hotel owner was rebuilding after a fire.
He told me that they were going to be building the largest truck park in SA.
All sorts of amenities were going to be offered to long distance drivers.
But, to date, nothing has come to fruition.
This siding is now in a sad state of disrepair


A midnight diesel stop, smoke break and snack shopping all rolled into one.
These breaks are kept to a very tight schedule, usually 10 minutes.
How much did the bus take?
On this fill up, 197,88L at a cost of R2768.35!

Mining head gear is to Gauteng what windmills are to the Karoo

The cold and miserable that greeted me in Cape Town,
was waiting for me in Johannesburg.
Many thanks to all the Greyhound staff that I interacted with.
I might not have agreed with your choice of on board DVD's,
but yo were all a pleasure to deal with.
Especially Thasnine in reservations...for putting up with my seat change requests.

I was hosted at these two hotels:
The recently refurbished Cape Milner Hotel.

And, the eclectic Pepper Club in Loop Street.

Many thanks to Lance,the owner of this company,
for not only fetching me from the bus terminus,
but also giving me two days of car hire...
Here are their details, please support when you are next in Cape Town:
Carmania Car Hire
337B Main Road Observatory 7925
Cape Town South Africa
(Opposite the Groote Schuur Hospital
on the M4 (top main road)
Tel: +27 21 4473001
Fax: +27 21 4473009
Mobile: 083 261 9834 / 082 437 5842

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