Students viewing Table Mountain

Evie Copeland, a junior at Appalachian State University, is our very first LEAD Cape Town blogger! Check out her first impressions of this incredible place!


When entering Cape Town, South Africa, for the first time, many culture changes, traditions and observations were seen. This city already had my heart with its breath-taking views, food and different experiences. Some of the first impressions include:

1. Don’t even think fast food

Can the food get any better? The food is not anything close to your typical double cheese hamburger or American microwaveable pasta dish that can feed 4, but it was food that was filled with such spices and flavor that’s not in your original meal. Some foods included chicken, rice, mixed vegetables, spicy hummus, pita, and bread muffins for dessert.

2. “65 isn’t warm”

The dress code here isn’t your typical “I’ll wear cut off jean shorts and a tank!” Everyone wears conservative and covered clothes even when it’s 60 and 70 degrees. It’s not appropriate to show a lot of skin when it’s 60 degrees, and guess what? Everyone will know you’re American if you do.

3. Get off your phone

No one here is as close to being on their phones, laptops, etc. as much as Americans, so don’t be on it. It’s rude. People want to talk to you; they want to get to know you. Be disconnected from it and learn the culture more.

4. “Class being fun?”

Yep, you heard me right. Class is actually fun? Never knew that could be true. Class here isn’t your typical take notes and sit for 6 hours in a desk. It’s about exploring the city, discussing in groups, playing games to learn about different countries, and much more.

5. Genuine

Nothing describes the people here better than this. They are eager to reach out, hold doors, and answer any questions you have about their culture.

6. Eating in restaurants? No there is more!

Not do you just eat in restaurants, but the staff comes around painting your faces, and plays loud instruments, like drums as you enter the restaurant, and during the meals. Can you be any more welcoming? I don’t think so.

Delicious South African food

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