Mahindra XUV 500: Blue Planet

Day 1: Cape Town to Franschhoek

Straight off the plane and into the familiar environs of a Mahindra XUV 500, the plan for the day was to drive to the smaller coastal town of Franschhoek, which is around 80km from Cape Town. But given a choice, we prefer not to take the short route out to anywhere. So instead, we decided to look around the town and get a flavour of South Africa.

On the outskirts is Franschhoek Motor Museum, among the must-sees on the list for this little town, and one of the finest museums in the whole of the African continent. The collection is spread across four halls, the oldest of the lot is a Ford Model A from 1903. The other vintage beauties range from an R-R Phantom I from 1928 to a Ferrari F40 and an Enzo from not-so-ancient times.

Unlike what most of us would think of African countryside roads, South Africa has some amazing tarmac running though mountain passes and sometimes beside rocky beaches. We went through the Franschhoek pass on our way to the hotel. Wait, before you start imagining an off-roadie, narrow mountain pass, hold that thought. This one has a surface as smooth as the autobahns in Germany and is wide enough for two trucks to pass.

Finally, after all that excitement, we called it a day, sipping on chilled Namibian lager and having meat cooked, what else, African-style.