A dream come true – a yoga studio in Muizenberg. In summer the morning light pours onto the wooden floor. Tall old world windows shows glimpses of the lovely blue yonder of False Bay. A blessing to work by the seaside, a fantasy for any ocean lover. And especially inspiring for a yoga teacher and musician.
Muizenberg is a happy place to be for one who appreciates a community and a small town feel. Located only about 30 minutes drive from Cape Town city and Cape Point, it feels close enough to the international world, and remote enough to be part of the natural scenic beauty of the Southern Cape of Good Hope peninsula.
But it is surfing, and not yoga, or the history of the town or its stature as gateway-to-Kalkbay and beyond that is the big thing here in Deep South as the area is affectionately known. My short documentary style video below gives a feel of Surfers Corner.
Stream my S.U.R.F. Music (used in video soundtrack):
Surf shops, and coffee shops and restaurants thrive on Surfers Corner’s reputation as premier surf destination in the Cape. Nice weather days and the weekends is just crazy with surfers of all ages and descriptions descending. Locals and Cape Townians bring their own boards, while tourists rent gear and lessons from Gary’s Surf School and Lifestyle Surf Shop. The oldest surf shop in Cape Town, the Corner Surf Shop, bustles alongside the newer arrivals of Roxy Surf School and the SUP store Expression on the Beach.
When conditions are ideal the visitors lend an air of prosperity to Beach Road. Several other factors make this small town with a village feel a fantastic residential and business proposition. City brands like Knead, Primi Piati, Lucky Fish, and new independents like Blonde & Beard, Oraboris, Ta Da, and the much frequented new addition, Tiger’s Milk (December 2014, picture below, from their Facebook Page) is changing the face of Muizenberg with it’s upmarket mix of modern and old design. Fortunately, institutions such as Gaslight and legendary Empire Cafe remains in business.
The long sandy beach of Muizenberg stretches kilometres to the east. My yoga studio is located on the “Golden Mile” part of Beach Road that leads into Muizenburg from Prince George and Baden Powell Drive side. In fact, the sea level drive from this side, from the N2 and Stellenbosch side is spectacular. Our area is somewhat separated from direct access to the beach by the pavilion and recreation area that includes swimming pools and super slides. Below image is from the mountainside, near Boyes Drive, found on Stoked Backpackers Facebook. All other pics by myself. Johann Kotze Music & Yoga Studio is behind the red roofed building and swimming pool in the centre-left.
Sign boards all along the N1, M3 and M5 roads from the city, via Constantia and Tokai, and from the Milnerton side, indicate south bound journeys to Muizenberg. This is as far as one can go from the north western side of the peninsula, crossing the Cape Flats, beyond Grassy Park to the other. With the Lakeside and Marina Da Gama surrounding the vlei (a wetland) on the adjoining side, one may imagine Cape Town might have been like before it grew into the city it now is. Quaint, small, and old town historical Muizenberg is echoed by the narrow belt of houses of St James and Kalk Bay towards Fishoek, set against the low mountains that belongs to the Table Mountain along the Fals Bay coastline.
Walking west towards Fishoek, along the magnificent views from the comfortable footpath along the rocks, one passes the famous St James tidal pools, then Dalebrook pool (photograph below), pretty Danger Beach before reaching Kalk Bay harbour, a scenic, traditional village harbour. At Brass Bell one may have meals and drinks right on the water’s edge. Funky shops , coffee shops and restaurants dot the Main Road of the area. The walk or drive from here to Fishoek, and beyond, past Glenn Cairn to Simon’s Town, is just more of the same oceanic scenic splendour.
Winter often appears suddenly, and the ocean temperature plunges. Rain and rain bearing wind can rip for days on end. Relief comes in the form off crystal clear, sunny days, occasionally with glassy, big-but-pleasant-swell surf. Either way, there are always lovely days gentle drizzles inbetween Cape winter storms. I filmed the video below during the spring of 2012, on a moody, wintry day.
All-in-all a cool place for yoga. I moved to the coast in 2010 because to live the dream… but I had to learn to tolerate the wind. The Wind. Seaside here means more often than not an onshore force of nature from November through January, the infamous South Easter season. February to April days are idyllic, beautifully golden, awesome sunrises, calm, clear blue days, forever endless summer moments.
In my studio, mostly protected from sea wind or breeze I can keep an eye on surfers enjoying long Muizenberg rides. On offshore wind or windstill mornings the windows are open wide, at once oceanic and grounding. Locals walk or cycle to class. Some parents take their kids to a surf lesson and drop for a Saturday morning class. Some travel from far as the city centre, to go for coffee at one of their favourite Beach Road spots after class.
I often manage a swim, or occasional surf right before yoga class. Oceanic energy, liquid prana, the salt sea water; swimming in the sea cleanses the aura, forces one into the present, and the cold water here stimulates release of the inner mechanisms of metabolic warmth generation. An incredible, idescribalbe sense of wholeness and energy fills me when I swim or surf at sunrise.
Many visiting tourists and surfers attend several classes during a stay. It is a pleasure and a privilege to send them, and the local students, near or far, home with an experience of the magnificence of Muizenberg. A dream come true, especially considering that some things are worth more when shared.
Muizenberg, Cape Town,
Update December 2015: African Soul Surfer at six a.m. after a Surf & Yoga photoshoot to promote my yoga classes at Surfer’s Corner.