In July and August
took a long vacation to South Africa to see the family and the sights.
some of our pictures and descriptions from the trip.
Our trip over this time involved
a day in Zurich
and seeing the sights of the city Instead of flying to South
as we have done for all the previous trips, we flew through Europe to
advantage of the day in a city with two overnight flights namely Miami
Zurich and Zurich to Johannesburg.
The weekend after
we arrived was a wonderful opportunity to see family and Octavious to
get reacquainted with his cousins and Aunts and Uncle. We went to
a wonderful lunch and then back to the house for family pictures.
The first place we went that
animals was Sondela,
a private game park just outside the town of Bela Bela (Warmbaths). We
were able to walk around and relax. The Nyala would
walk right in the patio and visit, wanting to be fed. Up near the check
a children’s area where Granny took Octavious to learn to milk a
cow and go on
After a few days at Sondela, Octavious stayed with Grandpa and Granny
for a couple of days while we headed to Tzaneen
for two days at the Tzaneen Country Lodge and Spa - two days of
rest. This was the longest we have been away from
Octavious and we enjoyed our time while he had alone time with his
Granny. During this time, Octavious was taught to play Chess and Rummy
enjoyed learning. We ,on the other hand, had body massages, facial and
After the two days of relaxation, it was time to head into the largest
park in South Africa, Kruger
National Park. This time we spent all our time at a small
called Talamati. It really is a very restful camp (except for the
and baboons that roam around the camp as they can hop the fence!) .
were very lucky in all the animals we saw in Kruger - from the breeding
of masses of elephants to the leopard we saw on the night drive to the
we saw who had just crossed the road to the Sable Antelope that are
rare sights (Dad and I have never seen them in Kruger in all our
Carol negotiated a night drive for us that
brought many surprises in a 3 hour time.
After leaving Kruger, we went to a very restful place called Ekuthuleni.
This is a timeshare camp resting on the banks of the Oliphants
It is located right next to large pools that are inhabited by
hippo. We got to see the hippos on the first two days we were
then it seemed that the level of the river got lower and so the hippos
have gone a little downstream to some deeper pools. There was one
tiny baby in the herd which was special to see. A couple of
were also spotted on the sand bank that was in the river.
While staying at Ekuthuleni, we took a couple of trips to some local
rehabilitation and research centers. The first was Moholoholo.
This is a rehabilitation center for animals that have been
captured on farms in the area. The animals have either roamed out
parks or had been pets and then released by their owners. As an
while we were visiting Moholoholo, the owner was called out to go and
a leopard that had been caught in a trap on a farm and had been there
days. A really interesting place to visit and see all the animals
The research center we visited was Hoedspruit
Endangered Species Center. This is a cheetah research center
with other research centers around the world, the cheetah are studied
in a way that their gene pools do not cross lines. It really was
interesting place to visit and hear about all the research that is done
One of the highlights was seeing the King Cheetah - there are
known animals living in the world.
The final stop of the trip was in Cape
Town. We got to spend time at Cape Point and the Cape of Good
albeit bad weather for the first day we were there, but on the second
were rewarded with the most glorious weather that allowed us to go up
car to the top of Table Mountain. What a fantastic 3 days to
trip to a close and huge thanks to Ian, Michele, Bianca and Kiara for
We returned to
Johannesbug for 2 days and prepared for our departure. The night
before we left was a wonderful dinner with Chris, Angela, Stephen,
Meghan, Dad and Carol. The following day, it was hard to say
goodbye to Dad and Carol as they planned and gave us such a wonderful
holiday. We so appreciate it and look forward to the next visit!