Postcard of the Week: Natural Beauty around Cape Town
Some people complain that seeing photos and videos of incredible places spoils it for them, as they’ve “already seen it” before they truly set eyes on a place. I completely disagree, and even though I can objectively say that Hoberman’s photos above are visually stunning, a photo or postcard cannot replicate the sounds, the scents, the atmosphere, the emotion, the very physical existence of something as incredibly awing as Table Mountain, for example.
Visiting Cape Point and knowing that this spit of land and the lighthouse have been passed by navigators at sea for centuries upon centuries… Looking around the forbidding prison on Robben Island where Nelson Mandela was held for 18 years before apartheid was lifted… Reaching the summit of Table Mountain and envisaging how the view would have looked to the very first person to ever reach the top, before civilisation and its skyscrapers took hold of the bay below… Those moments are priceless, and that is why I believe people will continue to travel, even in this age of mass media and photos of everything imaginable on the internet. Postcards and photos cannot replace the physical sensation of being present, but at least they might inspire you to visit this stunning part of the world.
…I TOTALLY agree with you…To me, it’s not enough that I’ve seen a place in books or movies or what have you–I want to be able to smell the streets, hear the buzz of the people, taste the native cuisine, and you just can’t get that looking at a carbon-copy image…
I definitely agree! There’s something about the act of BEING there that really completes and perfects the experience. You have to feel the road under your feet, smell delicious, local cuisine wafting from the windows, the sounds of the local language filling the air. Seeing a photo of something and seeing it in 3D will never be the same thing. Honestly, seeing a photo or video of some place only makes me want to visit it MORE.
So glad you agree. I really don’t think that the internet/media has done away with the need for travel, I think it will only make everyone want to travel more! Luckily it’s also made it easier for everyone to travel, so good news all round.
Cape Town is such a stunning city – one of the reasons why it’s one of my favourite places in the world. But you’re right, nothing can compare to actually being there and seeing it for yourself 🙂