For my new series – ‘Friendly Footprints’, Tolu Familoni answers some questions from me about her time in Southern Africa; from eating plum and wild carrot flavored gelato to paragliding over signal hill’s stunning landscape.

How did you decide on SA as a travel destination and which cities did you visit? So I actually ended up in South Africa because my best friend was studying abroad at the University of Capetown and I decided to visit her! I thought it would be a fun time and also the perfect opportunity to visit the motherland. I stayed with her in Capetown for about 5 days.

Table Mountain

Did you have any preconceived notions about SA before visiting and how did they change when you visited? Honestly, I didn’t know as much as I probably should have about South African history before my friend started studying there. I knew about the apartheid that existed there before but didn’t register that it was something that would still have effects on the South African society today. It was in the weeks leading up to my visit, as she was starting class and getting used to living there, that she filled me in on what I could expect when I arrived and how it was probably different from what I originally imagined.

Bo Kaap Township, Capetown

What did you do for the first time in South Africa? My best friend had an itinerary for us to follow most of the days and while quite a few activities got canceled due to weather or load-shedding (electricity shutoff), we were still able to do a good amount of things. I went paragliding for the first time off of Signal Hill and it was one of the best things I’ve ever done. Aside from that, we explored outdoor markets and watched street performances and enjoyed the beautiful South African Beaches. I was actually able to go to class with her one day too and listen in on a class for South African Marketing which was really interesting. Overall it was a great experience.

Clifton 4th Beach

I went paragliding for the first time off of Signal Hill

What were your favorite things to eat, see, and do? I don’t know if there are any traditional South African meals but if so, I wasn’t able to taste them. However, there is a wide selection of food you can find in Capetown, from Thai to Ethiopian. The food we did eat was delicious. One dessert that stood out was from a gelato stand that used native South African produce as the flavor base for the ice cream. One flavor was a plum sorbet while another was wild carrot. Very interesting and very tasty.

If you had to convince someone to travel with you to South Africa, what would you tell them? South Africa is truly beautiful. You can tell how much detail God put into forming the coastlines there. It is a little bit of a bummer when you realize how much injustice still exists there against black South Africans in their own country but I think it’s a place that everyone should experience.

If I had to make a list of things to do for the first time, paragliding would certainly be up there, and I love trying out new food too. Tolu’s sorbet story reminded me of Mexico City, and all of the new things I tried and learned could be done with food and drink; from activated charcoal in yogurt to deactivated spider venom in a shot of alcohol.

Thank you so much for sharing, Tolu.

I loved Tolu’s presentation of her travels so much, I interviewed her twice. The next iteration of ‘Friendly Footprints’ will feature Tolu and her travels in Greece.

You can find Tolu on Instagram & YouTube for more of her photographs and travels. 

As always, 

Thank you for reading!

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Same footprints, Different sands

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