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Published: August 21st 2019
Lions and tigers and bears, Oh my!
We all grew up and that sentence and who knew, as kids, that you will never actually find lions, tigers and bears all living together in the same area unless you visit a zoo.
South Africa is known for the big 5; Lions, Elephants, Cape Buffalo, Rhinos and Leopards.
There are no tigers or bears.
We started our day at 6:30 in an open Jeep freezing our kechatchkas off. Jan, our guide, gave us blankets but even so, it was windy and cold, but we were excited. We were going to see animals! The Strauss dream.
Let me acquaint you with the sweet and gentle animal, the impala. The impala is a medium sized antelope. There are approximately 150,000 of them in Kruger. We were lucky to see about half of them (an exaggeration but you get my drift). Every few meters there are more impalas. They are pretty and graceful and so beautiful to watch leap but יש גבול (there is a limit), especially when you really really want to see a big scary cat and there are none to be found.
We did catch a glimpse of a lioness and of a
lion. Two of each, actually. But from afar. The lionesses created a huge traffic jam (see pic below- of the jam, I wasn’t lucky enough to get a pic of the Queen).
The elephants and giraffes were magnificent but for some reason it didn’t feel as up close and personal as when we were in Chobe, even though they did get quite close at times.
The hyena is as ugly as it’s usually portrayed to be and when I saw the one hyena we ran into today all I could think of was Whoopi Goldberg.
There were many beautiful birds to be found, and the handsome Cape Buffalos, a pile of hippos and some crocs.
At our coffee break at 8:00 I found it interesting that out of the five different groups that stopped at the picnic spot for breakfast/coffee, three were religious Jews (including us). One Israeli family from Raanana and one group of young men (who davened right there) from JoTown.
We spent 9 hours (besides an hour break for lunch, so 8 hours) in the open Jeep scanning the savannah for animals.
At 3:30 we returned to camp and I, for one, was happy to move my
legs a bit. Dinner and laundry had to be done. Some of our group went back out for a short self-guided Safari drive hoping to see a cheetah or leopard, without any luck.
Now it’s sleep time since we are rising at 4am for a sunrise Safari drive. Perhaps we’ll find a cat then? Personally, I can’t wait for Capetown to see the Penguins!
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