A Fortnight in South Africa

Reply

Jun 4th, 2009, 05:51 AM
  #21
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,590
Five very different places I recommend for anyone going to SA...Mandela House & Hector Pietersen museum in Soweto, Sterkfontein Cave in Gauteng, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens in Cape, Aparteid Museum in Jo'burg, plus a meal at Moyo Restaurant in Zoo Park. Redmember, SA has a history and a people as well as scenery.
Ozarksbill is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 5th, 2009, 09:19 AM
  #22
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
The more I learned about the history of the people, the more fascinated I became. I also became more aware of the similarities with the social history of the United States.
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 5th, 2009, 12:55 PM
  #23
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,590
Femi, yes some similarities in history regarding racial oppression but aparteid was much worse...and blacks much more numerous so it was inevitable that it would end. A miracle that the change came without civil war, violence yes but nevertheless a complete turning over of government to the black majority. But in the post-Mandela day things are uncertain at best. Crime and poverty and unemployment are up.
Ozarksbill
Ozarksbill is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 25th, 2009, 12:35 PM
  #24
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 591
South Africa is on my list of places to visit, and it has just moved way up! What a fantastic report--and your photos--stunning. I loved them all, but especially the Grootbos Beach Walk photos--felt I was right there on the beach, and the great white shark.

When we go, we also want to ride the Shongololo Express, so will be interested in hearing of your experience when you return.

Very useful information both in your trip report and in the replies.
evecolorado is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 25th, 2009, 04:09 PM
  #25
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
Thanks Eve!
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 26th, 2009, 02:18 AM
  #26
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 4,215
Lovely pics Femi!
I particularly love the cheetah - the light was somewhat perfect and especially the eyes! Authentic colour!
Very interesting report on Grootbos! I have been thinking of visiting for quite some time but always postponed it to later.........
I share your resentments regarding Spier.

SV
spassvogel is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 26th, 2009, 04:36 PM
  #27
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
Thanks
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 11th, 2012, 12:14 AM
  #28
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 166
Thanks so much, great trip report. Making my first trip to SA in June and will be going to Kwandwe as well, and Cape Town. Was interested to hear about Baboon Matters, was not aware of it. Looked it up and unfortunately, they are not doing the Baboon Walks now - or so it says on their website - it says this:

"Due to various issues related to baboon management in the Western Cape, we have had to suspend all baboon walks for the foreseeable future, and all existing walks have been cancelled."

I was sad to hear it as that sounded like a very cool part of your trip.
Jane62 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Apr 11th, 2012, 05:06 AM
  #29
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
I was also sad to see they were no longer in operation. I went on another outing with them in 2010, and some trouble was already evident with people in the neighborhood and local authorities. They were quite unique and I hope they can resolve their issues and resume walks because I would love to go again.
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 7th, 2012, 01:11 AM
  #30
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 9
Lovely write up!
We are planning on a15 - 18 days holiday of S. Africa by about the mid of June '12. May I clarify a few points;

1. Is this time enough to do Kruger, Sun City, Cape Town, Wine country, and Garden route? If not, then which sector can be skipped ( Wine Country ? )

2. Which are the places for staying and number of days that you'll recommend for Kruger, wild life being the first preference? Would prefer economical accommodation.

3. Would like to do Garden route in a linear manner, where do you advise should our night halts be ? Can you recommend some places to stay? Don't mind doing our own cooking, if it saves on the wallet.

4. We'll be arriving from New Delhi, India, and landing at Johanessburg. Will Cape town be preferable?

5. Probably this will be our first and last visit to S. Africa, so would you recommend some not to be missed destinations, even if we have to extend our trip?

Please do let me know if you ever happen to visit India, and need any assistance / information. We have a number of parks and Tiger reserves worth visiting. Gir Lion reserve has the biggest pride ( 32 members ) of lions in the world!

Thanking you,
Regards,

Sudhir Kochhar
sudhirkochhar is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 7th, 2012, 03:04 AM
  #31
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 51,719
sudhirkochar - please don't miss Cape Town. we spent 4 nights there at the beginning of our trip a few years ago [at about the same time of year] and it wasn't a moment too long. we spent one day on Table Mountain and the Kirstenbosch Gardens, another exploring the town, and a third going down to the Cape itself.

then we drove along the garden route via the winelands - which unless you want fine dining and/or have a huge interest in wone might be the bit I'd miss out. finally we did a safari near Port Eliziabeth - but that would not interest you as you are going to Kruger.

I would allow at least 4 nights for Cape Town, and 6 for the Garden Route, [we only had 5 which was not long enough]. I can't help you with SunCity and Kruger, though as you have your own safari options at home, you may not want to spend too much time there.

BTW the weather in SA at that time of year isn't necessarily what you will be used to coming from India. on safari we needed coats, gloves and scarves, and CT was wet and chilly at times. also in CT you need to watch for when Table Mountain is not covered by the "tablecloth" of cloud that tends to collect on the top of it. if you see that it's clear, THAT's the time to go.
annhig is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 7th, 2012, 05:15 AM
  #32
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
Hi Sudhir,
Glad to see you started a new topic as this will likely get you more answers from the experts. We (Fodorites) all have different preferences for travel which is great because it will give you lots to think about including options you might never have considered.

To answer your questions briefly here, I would highly recommend you land in Cape Town as annhig mentions above. It's one of my all time favorite cities. I end up in Joburg a lot, but only for connections to other destinations.

The 'skip'able part of the Western Cape is entirely up to you, as you have to choose which activities appeal to you most. I'm not much of a wine drinker, but the seting for wine country is gorgeous. Then again the garden route is also very scenic (I spent 6 days just outside of Plettenberg during my most recent visit).

Why do you want to go to Sun City?

On second thoughts, I'll move these responses over to the new post you started (hope that's ok with you annhig).
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 7th, 2012, 05:16 AM
  #33
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 9
Thank you, Ann, useful information! On the garden route what are the places we should night halt at, and, since there are so many of them, which one's do we really concentrate on? Ours won't be a shoestring budget travel, but neither will it be a splurge, so any good accommodations? Also, any Travel Agent ( TA ) you'll recommend? And yes, you are right, since we have similar wildlife and safari's here in India ( at much cheaper rates ) we'll limit ourselves to Kruger. Right decision?
sudhirkochhar is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 10th, 2012, 11:24 AM
  #34
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,590
Yes, most would want Cape Town in their plans...and we traveled East along Garden Route to a place in Plettinburg Bay. Kruger Park is of course away north and we did enjoy it...some might opt for another such game preserve closer to Cape. But we did see other sights north of Jo'burg such as a pres-historic cave/museum. Did spend time in the city such as Apartheid Museum, Soweto. I doubt that Sun City is worth it at all.
Ozarksbill is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 11th, 2012, 05:50 PM
  #35
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 5
Thank you for the great post and all of the details. It brought back so many great memories from when I studied abroad in South Africa (University of KwaZulu-Natal) from June-August in 2007. At 19 years old we were able to see and do things that I would never think to attempt now including road tripping from Durban to the Drakensberg Mountains to about half way down the coast to Cape Town and staying in many hostels or with locals we met along the way.
We too did a shark cage diving trip in Cape Town and also had about 15 foot swells on the way back in and only saw about 4 sharks. We also did some skydiving in Pretoria and a wetland boat tour in St. Lucia which included lots of hippos. We were lucky enough to take a class learning to speak some Zulu and spent time volunteering at orphanages and local schools.
I would love to dig up my journal from all of our travels to share some more specific places we stayed (hostels to luxury resorts)and some of the great restaurants we fell in love with. It seems like the more we opened up to meeting the locals the more the entire country opened up to us and we were able to do and see that many more things off the beaten path.
Sjbrandt2 is offline  
Reply With Quote
May 12th, 2012, 05:17 PM
  #36
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 2,138
I would love to take a wetland boat tour in St. Lucia!
Femi is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:01 PM.