There’s something about this penguin that just makes me think it seems to really be enjoying having the sun on its face. It was stood atop a mound, alone in the brush, frozen in this position.
I thought this little baby penguin with a pink heart painted on his chest was fitting for today. He lives on Boulder’s Bay, in Simonstown, South Africa, along with a colony of African Penguins. They used to be called Jackass Penguins because of the noise they make.
No other penguins were marked like this, so I really have no idea why he’s got this little heart painted on him.
This is the second and third penguin we found. If you look in the background you can see the reason for this penguins terrifying, aggressive stance. He’s got his lady sat in the back of the nest. I’ve included a second picture to include Cameron’s National Geographic-esque attempt to get a better view. My 300mm lens prevented the need for me to get quite so close.
We arrived in Cape Town after two back to back overnight flights. But, it was important that we kept moving. We could have sat around our hostel all day and been bored, then fallen asleep far too early to kick our jet-lag. So, we had a plan. We left the hostel immediately for Simons Town (via KFC for the two heathens in our entourage).
We were going to Simons Town to visit Boulders Bay. This is the location of the Western Capes penguin population. The trip was worth it for the train ride there. The tracks hug the coast and you feel like the waves could break into the trains window. Along the way we saw cormorants, seals, and surfers frolicking in the surf. It was incredible.
We arrived in Simons Town without a clue how to get to Boulders Bay. It was Sunday and the tourist information centre was closed but we kept walking. Eventually, after we’d split up to seek out sources of local information we found that it was a 15 minute walk away. We’d already twenty minutes on our weary jet-lagged legs and had little confidence in our sources time estimate. But, we persevered and it was worth it.
Upon arriving at Boulder Bay we were initially disappointed. It felt like a real tourist trap. We hit a fork in the path. To the left is where all the tour bus crowd were headed. We went right. We discovered penguins huddled under the bushes, but this was not the image I was in pursuit of. Looking down we could see the beach, with a few people sunbathing, with no penguins. However, it looked like the boulders weren’t fenced off, so we decided to do some rock hopping.
Once we got there our suspicions were confirmed and we went in search of penguins. I think we saw four in total, but it was great getting to be so close to them. Climbing over and under the rocks was good fun too. I got a lot of help from my friends in getting my gear through some pretty tight spaces. The below photo is the first penguin we saw on our exploration.