The 19th World Congress of the International Federation of Automatic Control | Cape Town, South
Africa | 24-29 August 2014
Promoting automatic control for the benefit of humankind
It’s not all hard work and no play! A varied selection of day tours in and around Cape Town will be available for IFAC 2014 delegates and partners who find that they have a free moment during the congress week.
These handcrafted day tours will allow participants to truly connect with South African people, customs and life, creating and sustaining an inter-cultural dialogue that benefits all concerned. Through responsible tourism such as this participants can contribute to conservation of the natural environment and economic growth in the local communities that they visit.
Those wishing to book day tours or who would like more information are invited to contact the IFAC 2014 day tour operator, Hylton Ross. Bookings can be made ahead of time and Hylton Ross will have a desk at the conference for information and last-minute bookings. Please see below for the tours that will be available.
Today we will visit the Townships – a tour that offers you an insight and interaction with different cultures, communities and individuals. Witness every day life in a harsh environment which tells of the struggles, hopes and achievements. See why 27 April 1994 was such an important day in South Africa (first democratic elections).
We start with a tour of District Six. See the oldest mosque in S.A. District Six was once home to thousands of people of various cultures.
We visit Langa, the oldest formal black township in Cape Town, and see the local market, an art & crafts centre, and we visit a traditional healer. Experience the warm hospitality of a local B&B. We visit a crèche offering fun, and a safe haven for the local children.
Cape Town has millions of people living in townships, and this tour takes you to visit them and offers an opportunity to find out about their harsh past, to witness the challenges they face everyday, and about the positive hope for the future.
You have the chance to interact with the locals and learn out about their different cultures, and you’ll leave with a greater understanding of how each of these townships contributes in its own unique way to the Rainbow Nation.
We head north to Paarl. Our first stop this morning is at Anura Wine Estate for a cellar tour and a cheese and wine tasting. Learn all about what makes these wines world class!
We make our way to Franschhoek with a photo stop at the Groot Drakenstein Prison where Nelson Mandela was released in Feb 1990.
The village of Franschhoek nestled amongst the mountains, can easily be mistaken as being in Switzerland. Home to some magnificent wine estates, you will have time to walk through the village and soak up the atmosphere of rural sophistication.
After a short tour of the little town, a second wine tasting will take place in Franschhoek, followed by a lunch stop (optional – own account), and maybe a chance to try some of the fresh trout that Franschhoek is known for.
After lunch the tour continues over the Hells Hoogte Mountain Pass to Stellenbosch. It is easy to understand why Simon van der Stel decided to settle a village amongst the mountains. The backdrop of the Hottentots Holland Mountains, the white gabled Cape Dutch homesteads and the oak lined streets and lanes all blend in to give this place a charm that will not be forgotten.
We return to Cape Town with amazing photos and fond memories.
This tour can either be enjoyed during the morning or the afternoon.
Experience a wine tasting, cellar tour and cheese tasting at the magnificent Anura Wine estate (alternative estate used on Sundays and during harvesting).
The tour continues to the historic town of Stellenbosch with its picturesque white gabled Cape Dutch architecture. The pretty streets and quaint lanes are lined with old oak trees. The town boasts a large university with energetic students offering a contrast to the old-world feel of the town.
We don’t stop for lunch on a half day tour.
We drive along Chapman's Peak which offers amazing photo opportunities. The steep cliffs plunging into the icy Atlantic Ocean, and tumultuous waves crashing against the rocks is an amazing sight.
Our tour takes us to spectacular Cape point with its nature reserve where many of the Cape's wild animals can be spotted.
We drive through quaint Simonstown and view the Penguin Colony (own account).
Then we head out to the Winelands and enjoy a cellar tour followed by a cheese and wine tasting at the magnificent Anura Wine Estate.
Our tour continues into the historic town of Stellenbosch with its picturesque white gabled Cape Dutch architecture. The pretty streets and lanes are lined with old oak trees. The town boasts a large university with energetic students offering a contrast to the old-world feel of the town.
Our journey to Cape Point takes us along the scenic Atlantic seaboard coastal road. We pass the pristine beaches of Clifton and Camps Bay with their soft white sand and assure blue water. The formidable 12 Apostles Peaks rise above the road on one side, while sheer cliffs and incredible rock formations drop into the icy Atlantic Ocean on the other side. There is no doubt the coast of the Cape peninsula offers magnificent scenery with its great biodiversity.
We arrive at the quaint fishing village of Hout Bay with its imposing Sentinel. Visit Seal Island (own account) or shop for souvenirs at the craft market at the harbor.
Our tour continues over Chapman’s Peak which offers amazing photo opportunities, and onto the Cape of Good Hope Nature Reserve. This area is home to magnificent ‘fynbos’, many different species of buck and birds, the Cape Mountain Zebra, and mischievous baboons. These creatures entertain guests enjoying lunch at the restaurant which has splendid views of False Bay. Take the funicular (own account) to the lighthouse to see the meeting of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans at the Cape Point.
We visit Boulders Beach to see the Jackass penguins (own account) before arriving at the naval base of Simonstown, and then we venture inland to our last stop of the day at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. With the sun setting over the tall peaks of Table Mountain the last rays sparkle on the trees and flowers, and offer a fitting end to a day filled with all the Cape has to offer.
Depart the hotel and enjoy the scenic views of the Atlantic Ocean en route to Hout Bay.
We follow the coastal route which hugs the dramatic cliff side along the Atlantic Ocean, before being welcomed by the sentinel upon arrival in Hout Bay. Once a fishing community, now a popular residential area, the harbour still has a charm of days gone by.
The tour continues over the famous Chapman’s Peak drive – if open, with a 200 meter drop on one side of the coach and a 200 meter rise on the other, as we make our way south, following the Atlantic Ocean until we reach Cape Point.
At Cape Point we drive through the nature reserve and admire the endemic ‘fynbos’ and we may even spot wild animals like Zebra, ostrich, antelope or even snakes! You can walk up the steep pathway or ride in the Flying Dutchman funicular (own account) to the lighthouse where panoramic views await of the meeting place of the icy Atlantic and warm Indian Oceans.
Said to be the romantic meeting place of the two mighty oceans, the Atlantic and the Indian, Sir Francis Drake the Explorer once called it "the fairest Cape that we saw in the whole circumference of the Globe". And rightly so, it must be the highlight of any visit to the Mother City, if not South Africa.
We pass the naval base of Simonstown as we continue along the Indian Ocean, en route to see the Jackass penguin colony which has become well established at Boulders Beach (for own account) before ending the tour back at your hotel.
No visit to Cape Town is complete without a half day tour of the mother city itself.
After departing the hotel we head for Table Mountain, one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. Enjoy the crisp air and clear visibility as you reach the summit (weather permitting and optional cable car for own account) or Signal Hill. Our guide will point out the highlights of one of the world’s most famous views.
After the decent we enjoy a scenic coastal drive through Clifton to see how the steep cliffs plunge into the Atlantic. Magnificent mansion homes hang from the cliff-side! We drive through Sea Point to the city centre where we visit Green Market Square. We stretch our legs with a walk through the Company Gardens under the shade of 160 year old trees.
The tour continues with a drive past the Houses of Parliament, the City Hall, The Castle and Slave Lodge, before entering the "Bo Kaap", also known as the Malay quarter. The architecture in this area is typical of what Cape Town was like 200 years ago.
You will be dazzled by the diamond tour where we learn about the history of these sparkling gems before returning you back to your Hotel
There is no guarantee that Whales will be sighted although our guides make every effort to find the best viewing point.
Our tour sets off along the scenic coastal road, Clarens Drive, which offers spectacular views of False Bay.
We arrive at the quaint holiday town of Hermanus and search the Walker Bay coastline for whales. There may be an opportunity to join boat-based whale watching (for own account and subject to availability and weather).
Next stop is a wine tasting at the Bouchard Finlayson Wine Estate in the beautiful Hemel en Aarde (Heaven and Earth) Valley . The wine estate is closed on Sundays so we will stop at a cheetah sanctuary (time permitting) to spend time with these beautiful animals.
Relax with a cup of tea (own account and time permitting) at a farm stall where you can find natural preserves, jams with a difference, and delicious pastries.
We return over Sir Lowry’s Mountain Pass which offers amazing views of False Bay with its long stretches of white sandy beaches. On a clear day it is possible to see Cape Point in the distance across the water.
Handy tip: Sun protection, protective clothing and preventative treatment against seas sickness are advisable when going on the boat trip.
Complete your cultural experience by extending the morning Township Visit Tour to include a visit to Robben Island in the afternoon.
Board the Robben Island ferry and enjoy spectacular views of Cape Town and Table Mountain as you sail across the bay to this island which is so full of history.
Once you reach the island you will be given a guided tour and see the prison cell that held Nelson Mandela captive for so many years.
Handy tip: Sun protection, protective clothing and preventative treatment against seas sickness are advisable.
Subject to weather, ferry schedule and seat availability.