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Good timing, Good Hope turn travel day around

  • Story Highlights
  • CNN.com's Jarrett Bellini traveled to South Africa
  • Readers chose his destination and shared their travel suggestions
  • A chance meeting provided a spectacular day at the Cape of Good Hope
By Jarrett Bellini
CNN
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Editor's note: We asked readers to weigh in on CNN.com Live producer Jarrett Bellini's vacation destination, and you chose South Africa. Check back for a wrap-up of his trip.

Jarrett Bellini explores South Africa's Cape of Good Hope.

Jarrett Bellini explores South Africa's Cape of Good Hope.

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (CNN) -- The very best travel days often happen when good karma and perfect timing collide. And, somehow, on this morning, it also took a bit of tequila. Of course, normally, the latter ingredient tends to be counterintuitive. But not here.

I arrived at the reception desk-slash-bar of my hostel, Long Street Backpackers, at 8:40 in the morning to be picked up for a full day of shark-diving. Fun. Productive. Presumably safe. However, it was then that I learned that the seas were deemed too rough, and the tour was cancelled. Bugger.

Next thing I know, a glass of tequila is slammed in front of me with a bit of sage bartender advice, "Might as well."

Normally, one would simply decline and go about attempting to have a relatively human-like existence on planet Earth. But at this place, there's really no backing out. In fact, unless you like spontaneous hat parties and have a thing for sleeping under tables, it's best not to hang out in the reception room.

Fortunately, I'm a rather strong-willed individual, free-thinking and confident. So, naturally, I buckled under the pressure. What can I say? I like these people. They wear funny hats.

But as I was sitting there with a few other hostel folks who, apparently, also found it completely fit to begin ruining their day before nine, a Dutch kid came into the room and offhandedly mentioned that he and two Dutch girls had a car and were driving out to the Cape of Good Hope. My ears perked up.

"Can I come?"

And just like that, I was rescued from the gates of hell. I love you, Holland!

The Cape of Good Hope is the southwestern-most point of the African continent, and it's an absolute thing of beauty. Panoramic views paint the sky as waves crash against the rocky shore. Here, the Atlantic and Indian Oceans become one. But not really.

A decorative sign in the gift shop boasts: Where Two Oceans Merge. However, the real currents actually come together a little farther east. It's still amazingly beautiful, so, you know ... whatever.

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And after a full day of hiking and exploring the Cape with my new friends, we arrived back at the hostel to find our other friends right where we left them. Their heads turned as I entered, and one of them yelled out, "Jarrett! Shots!"

Might as well.

All About Travel and TourismSouth AfricaCape of Good Hope

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