SarTravel: My Trip To Cape Town


Like many others, I find London in early January to be an exceedingly dreary place. The sparkle and jingle of the Christmas season vanishes, smart shops turn into filthy discount warehouses, the rain pours constantly and the cold wind blows relentlessly: seeing London at this time of year is like glimpsing an aging star without make-up and I prefer to look away.

I was offered the opportunity of an escape by a close friend who was travelling to South Africa for a sweltering sojourn; New Year’s in Cape Town followed by a relaxing week on a game reserve north west of Pretoria. Thrilled by the prospect of warmth in January, the spectacle of magnificent animals in their habitat and the bonhomie of a group of young travellers, I agreed instantly.

Aside from vast supplies of sun cream and Jungle Formula, I hadn’t the foggiest idea what I needed to take with me. I had heard that temperatures could reach the mid-thirties in this period (the height of summer) and so planned accordingly. After a small amount of research, I devised a travelling wardrobe:

Cape Town

Arriving on New Year’s Eve, the attire for that evening was set to be black tie. No one was ever going to convince me to wear Barathea wool, even in the fresh breeze of the Cape, when such temperatures were threatened. Instead, I opted to take a pair of black silk trousers and a seersucker jacket; both are a nod to a more casual and cooler look. The ensemble was finished off with a pair of black espadrilles.

The wardrobe for the remaining evenings in Cape Town, a place where they feel it necessary to warn against flip-flops and shorts in luxurious restaurants, was linen based and, while generally avoiding neckties, made full use of pocket square decoration. Footwear consisted of driving shoes and espadrilles.

Game reserve

After being informed not to wear garish Hawaiian-style shirts but clothing ‘appropriate for the colours of the bush’ I immediately envisioned the uniform of an early 20th century British Baedeker tourist. An inexpensive linen safari jacket was the central piece. Other items included khaki cotton shorts, white and khaki linen shirts, a Panama, sturdy boots and a cream desert scarf.


  1. Winston,

    I hope you had an enjoyable, delightful and insightful time.

    Sounds like you were well prepared, sartorially, as well.

    January 5, 2011
  2. Ryan said:

    For goodness sakes man who makes the bag????

    January 7, 2011
  3. FG said:

    Winston I have been following this site as well as your commentary for some time now. You are well read, written and entertaining in a way sadly lacking in most others IMHO (except the other writers of course on this site).

    I have a strong interest in clothes for men and enjoy a website dedicated as such.

    keep it up and I for one look for forward to your next article with much anticipation.


    January 9, 2011
  4. Ryan,

    The bag is made by Mulholland.


    I had a wonderful time!


    Thanks for the encouragement and your appreciation.


    January 17, 2011

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