Blogs from KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, Africa


Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal August 27th 2021

Here we are, a cute little week of staycation in our own province of KZN. The province being pretty huge, the drive to Thanda Tented Camp is a 400kms North. International tourists have for most deserted South Africa. So all the top attractions have had to over super discounts to the locals to simply keep going. So this week, we are experiencing a top safari camp, at a 60% discount...topped with a complimentary upgrade to the "honeymoon tent". Not sure those discounts will continue for many more months, so we are packing what we can of those for as long as we can...and more is to come soon! Thanda is a private reserve north of Hluhluwe National Park. We have self-drived on numerous occasions into Hluhluwe. But this is the first time we'll experience together a ... read more
Brotheres cuddling...
The 15th at Prince's Grant golf course...
Bubbles in bath in our tent in Thanda! Special too!

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Saint Lucia March 8th 2021 8th March - A safari & Estuary walk - iSimangaliso Wetland Park - South Africa iSimangaliso Wetland Park (previously known as the Greater St. Lucia Wetland Park) is situated on the east coast of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, It is South Africa's third-largest protected area with no fewer than 328 000 hectares of pristine natural ecosystems. A considerable part of the park centres on the huge estuary, Lake St Lucia – part of the largest estuarine system in Africa that runs parallel to the coast line with the world’s highest forested sand dunes sandwiched between the estuary and the sea. Today we took a walk with our virtual guide Ash, it was his first tour with Virtualtrips and I’m sure it won’t be the last he gave so much information on what we were seeing, This ... read more

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Shelly Beach January 5th 2021

Here we are, a little long overdue blog about our daily life at home in South Africa. Point to note, we do not live close to Cape Town, as this place is way too cold in the winter. Shelly Beach, our little village is 130km south of Durban...and yes, we live right on the beach! Even with our bedroom windows closed, we ear the waves 24/7! I have lived from 1996 to 2017 in Metropolis around the world, I name Saigon, Hong Hong, Shanghai, Bangkok and Buenos Aires. All of those were fun...full of life...with some great qualities...and way less nice points at some stage in our stay. Since early's out of the crowds for us. So put 2020 in the Covid perspective...suddenly I'm happy to live away from the crowds! We all have our ... read more
That's my garden....sorry, the golf course where I'm a member!
On the left, 1200 bottles produced per year...on the right...more than a solid Pinot Noir!
Dolphins time...each sighting is a great moment!

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal December 14th 2020

Happy New Year to you and all your love ones! Let's hope 2021 will bring you all your wishes...and for 2021 and the travelers that we are...may the roads to discovery be open again! Here it is, last blog of this impressive year. I know it has been tough on most of them, but for us...2020 was a slower year, a beautiful year as we got married over 6 months ago! No idea what is in the bag for 2021 and where we will be for most of the year...let say we trust our little path and our good star...and try to stay as safe as we can in those challenging times! I need to write a little blog about home in South Africa. We have been back home for nearly 3 months....3 beautiful months. Beaches ... read more
On the big day, we start with bubbles at Oyster Box...
Hluhluwe-Umfolozi! Here, i's all about the rhinos...white and black...
First round of my 47th year, Durban Country Club, ranked 4th in SA, and in the top 100 World beside USA by Golf Digest...

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Underberg December 11th 2020

We woke up as the sun shone through the verandah door into our room. After the 400 km North to South drive along the Drakensberg mountain range, we were quite happy to have a day off driving. We also woke up hearing a strange for us unusual noise. Walking out of the room we got a big surprise. A male peacock was courting a female with all his beauty, showing off his wonderful colorful tail and making the sounds only a guy in love can make. This pre breakfast spectacle happened on the lawn in front of our bedroom. No comments please...... The poor guy was not successful. The lady peacock left him standing and walked off after his show has ended. And we walked to our breakfast table, where freshly brewed coffee with all thinkable ... read more
Good morning Peacock
I love youuuuuuuu

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Underberg December 10th 2020

Today's drive is unbelievable scenic. We had to cross the Golden Gate National Park again, which we did not mind. You never get tired observing these majestic rock formations and the colored rock faces shining in the sun. We followed the Drakensberg mountain range in its southernly direction, passing the Sterkfontein Dam, Bergville and Winterton. The road was unfortunately a bit far inland away from the actual Drakensberg mountains. So we only could observe from a distance the beautifully shaped peaks and drops. The Afrikaans name Drakensberge comes from the name the earliest Dutch settlers gave to the escarpment, translated it means Dragons' Mountains. To the Zulu it is known as uKhahlamba and to the Sotho as Maluti, translated from both languages as "Barrier of up-pointed spears", reference to the steep rocky cliffs. Zulus and Sotho ... read more
along the Dranensberg Mountains
and wide plains
good eateries

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Dundee December 8th 2020

The safari outings are very much like in Krueger, early morning and late afternoon. After a 5:30 AM wake up we set out for our animal sightseeing and photo sessions. And yes during the time here we saw all the animals we missed out in the Krueger Park; among many other species a Rhino mom with her baby, and a lonely Cheetah gracefully walking the savannah road. Also, a male lion and hippos yawning, we sighted, something which eluded us so far. Nenad far more liked the Krueger atmosphere of the Hoyo Hoyo huts out in the wild nature and the safaris with more unpredictability. Nambiti’s savannah and canyon landscapes were very attractive and completely different to the flat bush of Krueger. Nambiti lies on a high plateau of about 1’500m, whereby the part of Krueger ... read more
male giraffe
exited observer

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Dundee December 7th 2020

Next on our route was another safari. This time not in a National Park, but a private game reserve with the name Nambiti, barely 100km away the battlefields. Nui by now accustomed to African style driving steered our Nissan safely over dirt and potholed tared roads to the reserve. African driving suited her much better than what she experienced in Switzerland, Austria or Croatia. Road conditions and driving style were more like Thailand. Already the check in procedure showed us what the difference is of the two concepts (Krueger vs private game reserve). In Krueger you still can feel a pioneer spirit of unpredictability. When going out on safaris you never know what you will run into. Krueger is a big piece of territory where all animals roam freely and hunt freely. Even the most experienced ... read more
African vs Thai driving style
approaching Nambiti
Welcome to Nambiti

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Dundee December 6th 2020

The heavy storm still did not pass over night. It rained buckets in the morning, making it impossible to stroll around the area, before our scheduled departure. St Lucia was deserted. It was the off season, but what as more detrimental was the Covid related impact, which completely devastated the tourism business here. Many restaurants and shops were closed, some even shut down permanently. Also, in South Africa the economic impact of the pandemic on the tourism is running deep. We still were remembering yesterday's moment when the territorial and aggressive nature of a hippo surfaced, because our skipper of the river boat approached a male too closely. The big animal looked at us with his fiery eyes, puffed loudly and started chasing us. Hippos can overturn smaller vessels or seriously damage bigger ones easily. Lucky ... read more
On the way to Rorke's Drift
dry river beds
erosion from heavy rain

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Saint Lucia December 5th 2020

St Lucia is a tourist town famous for its wetland park declared a UNESCO world heritage site for biodiversity in 1999. iSimangaliso Wetland Park, as it is called today, is the largest estuary system in the world. Its waters are in average only 1.5m deep and they are home to 115 species of fish and 530 types of birds, including migrating birds from Europe, some of them flying over 18’000km to reach this summer camp. And of course, they house over one thousand hippopotamus (hippos) and several thousand crocodiles from the Nile Crocodile species. Swimming there is not a good idea we guessed. We will be heading for a wetland boat cruise in the afternoon, hoping the rains will take a break then. We decided to ignore the weather and once more head to the beach ... read more
and dunes
welcome to the wetlands
proud fish eagle

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