Africa….several amazing sites, September 2022

Old Sep 25th, 2022, 06:15 PM
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Africa….several amazing sites, September 2022

Finally our African trip booked 2-1/2 yrs. was realized.
Chicago to Amsterdam then to Johannesburg, it was a long flying day not getting tour hotel until 10pm.

The next day we had a tour of the city seeing all the Nelson Mandela sights. Lunch was in Soweto at Sakhumzi. Fun place with good food.

Next morning off we went on Safari. Flew Airlink to Hoedspruit
and Kruger National Park.

Shiduli Lodge was absolutely fantastic. Gorgeous setting, beautiful public rooms, and such friendly people everywhere.
When we were shown to our room we were at a loss for words.
The gardens were set with formal tables for lunch, didn’t expect that. Actually all ur meals except the last night were outside.



Ready for lunch

Inviting setting for meals

Welcome

We could tell from the first minute at Shiduli that this was going to be memorable.



Very inviting

Balcony to watch some animals pass by


After lunch and settling in we already felt like we had been there a while.
4pm tea was followed by our 5pm evening game drive.



Simon and Gabriel were our guides for all 3 days of our game drives

8 people in our group fit just fine in the truck

First animal we saw was. Kudo right in our backyard

Next up some lions. We were able to get close to the females because the male lion wasn’t around



Never thought we’d get this close

Just laying around

Lots of impalas everywhere




Zebras and giraffes



Love giraffes

Looks like he is posing for the photo

At about 7:30 we stopped on the trail for a wine and snack break…..now that was unexpected!

More animals then back to the lodge for dinner outside.



Buffet dinner of many African dishes with beautiful table settings

I could get used to this


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Old Sep 29th, 2022, 08:25 AM
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Day 2 at Shiduli……up at 4am, a little coffee And I do mean a little, no rest rooms out there, just a bush to go behind.
5am and we are off


Lovely sunrise

Hornbeak bird

Wow!

More Wow!

We were able to get out of the truck and walk quite close to the cheetahs. The guide said that cheetahs are not fighters, if they are threatened they will run away FAST.



Water Bull

More Zebras

A hidden elephant

Midway stop for coffee and muffins and it was back to the Lodge for breakfast outside in the garden.
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Old Sep 29th, 2022, 08:31 AM
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Rested a bit and it was time for lunch. You spend a lot of time eating at Shiduli.
Bought a few things in the shop and took photos of the public rooms.



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Old Sep 29th, 2022, 08:51 AM
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4pm Tea Time and 5pm off on our evening game drive.


More giraffes



Termite Mound

Hippos

Midway it’s wine and snacks time.




My silver chalice on white wine

Back to the Loge for another fantastic dinner outside by the fire




BBQ tonight with many different meats served






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Old Sep 29th, 2022, 05:21 PM
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It looks like you had a FANTASTIC trip. Great pix!
I'm just back from Kenya and it seems like we had similar wildlife sightings.

Thanks for posting.
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Old Sep 30th, 2022, 06:12 AM
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Songdoc….I’ve been following your TR also. Amazing photos.
My favorite is of the cheetahs on the termite mound.
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Old Sep 30th, 2022, 06:34 AM
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Day 3 at Shiduli…..Up again at 4am, getting used to this, haha.

One of the last photos I marked as hippos. Duh! Those aren’t hippos, they are rhinos.


On this mornings drive we saw wart hogs, lots of impalas and Cape buffalo. Our guides tracked the lion’s footprints for quite a while but it was not to be. We did see several female lions but never came across the male lion with the gorgeous mane.
The preserve is over 7,000 acres so the animals have a lot of space to roam.


Cape Buffalo


The elusive leopard
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Old Sep 30th, 2022, 06:39 AM
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Tracking the lions s it was getting dark. No luck so time for a wine stop.
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Old Sep 30th, 2022, 06:47 AM
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After the evening game drive, wine stop, and another another
tasty dinner at the lodge it was off to bed early.
We will be up again at 4am to go to the airport and 2 short flights to Victoria Falls.
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Old Oct 1st, 2022, 12:46 PM
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A couple of short flights later we landed in Zambia.

Our guide picked us up at the airport and helped us get the $50US visa we needed for Zambia/Zimbabwe.

The border crossing was cumbersome. Get passports and visa checked at Zambia small building. Drive about 20ft. over the border and do the same at Zimbabwe building. Then shift all our luggage to a different van with a different Zimbabwe driver.

Finally arrived at our resort,”The Kingdom” for 2 nights.


Kingdom Resort dining room

Our balcony at The Kingdom

Tonight was a drum/dinner show at Gold.
Every person got their own drum and then the lessons began, followed by a very entertaining show.
Very touristy, but quite fun. A 14 course dinner was served with dishes from all over Africa.



Drum lessons and show

Every person got their own drum

The restaurant

14 course dinner served


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Old Oct 1st, 2022, 01:10 PM
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We’ll, that was a mistake. We did have a drum show in Livingston (Victoria Falls) but it was a different one.
The show at Gold that I described above was in Cape Town.

The drum show in Livingston was a buffet dinner. So many grilled meats to choose from. It happened to be my birthday so
some singing and a cake appeared at our table. We also had a chance to buy many African souvenirs from vendors outside of the restaurant.

Huge, tasty buffet of African foods

Grilled meats

Happy Birthday
And what a birthday this was! A total of 3 birthday cakes appeared at different times.
Thanks to our travel agent BarbSchumacher at ElJo Travel in Milwaukee for arranging this fabulous trip and all my birthday surprises.



Birthday cake at Shiduli Lodge

Birthday cake delivered to my room at The Kingdom

This will definitely go down in my history book as a birthday that will be hard to beat.


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Old Oct 1st, 2022, 01:26 PM
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Every day was a new delight on schedule.
Today was a long, long walk along Victoria Falls stopping at many lookout points to take photos.


Dr. Livingston I presume



Breathtaking

So many lookout points

Got very wet at times
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Old Oct 1st, 2022, 01:36 PM
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Later in the afternoon we headed over to the Zambezi River for a sunset cruise.
What a stunning boat! Open bar, servers passing hot appetizers, gorgeous views, and a hippo, this was a real treat at the end of a long day.



Welcome aboard

First class all the way

Cheers!






Crew saying goodbye

Sunset on the Zambezi



And the hippo
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Old Oct 1st, 2022, 05:52 PM
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Thanks so much for sharing. It looks like an AMAZING trip.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2022, 11:06 AM
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After a long day at Victoria Falls and the river cruise we decided to have room service at The Kingdom for dinner.
Good idea, some sandwiches, salad, and fries fed us we’ll.
The next day would be a long one with 3 short flights to go from Zambia to Cape Town.

What a surprise on the way to the airport….ELEPHANTS!
Lots and lots of elephants. Probably about 20 of them crossing the road.
Our guide said that they put their trunk on the road to feel car vibrations to see if it’s safe to cross. He also said late at night they roam the town eating off the mango trees. Apparently elephants love mangos.






Our small van didn’t seem to bother them at all

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Old Oct 2nd, 2022, 11:20 AM
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The first 2 flights were again with Airlink and less than an hour each. Seemed like we were flying on a private small plane.
The first flight had only 14 people on it. Food, wine, wonderful, friendly service.
The 3rd flight was with Safeair and one of the worst we have encountered anywhere. 200 people boarding at will with no organization of any kind. Cramped, uncomfortable seats.
We were offered nothing….you even had to pay for water!
It was 2 hrs. I would never want to repeat again. Thankfully it was only 2 hrs.
This was the only ow point of our whole trip.
We didn’t arrive at our hotel until 10pm s off to bed
Sunsquare Cape Town Garden hotel for 3 nights.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2022, 11:26 AM
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I love the elephants!
Our flights were very different. Mine were 12-seaters--and water was free!
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Old Oct 2nd, 2022, 12:05 PM
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Comfortable hotel in a good location, a very nice restaurant, and an inviting garden.

Cape Town Sunscape Garden Hotel

We had some free time so took an Uber to Victoria Wharf for some serious shopping. Of course 8 women on vacation would
want to shop.


Time to put a dent in the charge cards!

So many stores seen in every place in the world but also lots of
“Made in Africa” stores. We filled our bags with souvenirs for family and friends but also found plenty of things with our name on them.

The wharf itself was quite lively with entertainment and had lovely views of the bay.





Time for a glass of wine and a gourmet lunch. Harbor House was calling our names.





Excellent choice! Our waiter was talkative, funny, and knowledgeable of the menu choices.
Fish was the order of the day (of course, we are next to the ocean) and we all chose something different.


Beautiful view, excellent wine, food and service

My fresh Kingklip fish



Time for an Uber back to the hotel
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Old Oct 3rd, 2022, 11:04 AM
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Tonight was the drum and dinner show at Gold Restaurant in
Cape Town that I mistakenly listed earlier in this TR.

Tomorrow we go up in a cable car to Table Mountain.
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Old Oct 3rd, 2022, 11:10 AM
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Watching the weather closely our guide chose early morning to make the ascent. By afternoon the clouds arrived and high winds would have canceled the trip. The car rotated around as it was going up so everyone got a good view.

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