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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Day 1 - African Safari

I am in love…..

with South Africa!!!!!  I can’t even believe everything I have seen today…antelope, giant eland, hippopotamus, lions, warthogs, zebras, elephants…and I wasn’t even at the zoo!!!! I was in South Africa!!!!!! In one of the most beautiful places in the world!!!

Kosa (South African tribe) Drummers

The morning game drive began at 6:30 (with a 5:30 wake up call)…and to tell you that I was having the time of my life is an understatement….I was having the time of 10 people’s lives!!!!!!!! Guy went on the kids’ game drive with them and I got to go out on my very first ever SAFARI!!!!!!   The reserve we are staying at has five different eco systems: valley bushveld, savannah grassland, fynbos (Afrikaans for fine woodland growth), riverine forest and acacia woodland.  For this reason, it has hundreds of animals living on this reserve, and I got to see some of them today!:)  We saw plains zebra….. they have an extra light brown stripe in between the black and white stripes to help with camouflage…


South Africa’s  national antelope…

One of the “big five” animals…the elephant or nglove in Kosa!!!  The “big five" are the elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, and the rhinoceros.  I was so surprised to see how graceful the elephant is.  You cannot hear him move through the grass at all…They can live up to about 40 years old, and the males leave the herd and come back only when it’s time to mate with a female…our guide called it “clubbing” for elephants!:)

These two lions are brother and sister…and the reserve has named them, Kat
(female) and Mohawk (male).  Our guide told us that Female lions live about 20 -21 years and the male lions live only about 13 years.  They are only "king of the jungle" for a short time!  They were sitting in the grass sunning themselves when we came upon them…..they are GORGEOUS!!!!!!

Then, we saw some ostriches. ( Little known fact:  An ostriches brain is even smaller than it's eye)

We even saw hippos in a shallow pond nearby....

The weather was a bit cold and rainy....but it was amazing to see all the animals.  We came back to the lodge for a delicious brunch and we could relax by the fire place...see Guy relaxing????:)

Then, in the afternoon, while the kids were with the on site nanny, Guy and I went out together on the adults game drive!:)

We saw wildebeests...

There are termite mounds everywhere all over.  Our ranger told us that the termite mounds here at this reserve get about 1 meter high.  but the mounds at Kruger can get up to 15 meters high...and the termites there are much bigger.  In Fact, he said that the termites there taste like peanut butter!!!!  The termites here taste a little like vinegar.:)  So, Guy decided to try them out

and just in case you're wondering....he said that they do taste like vinegar.:)
Dave also showed us a few trees which the bush men used to make spears...he tried to throw a spear....but it just didn't go that far!:)

Then, it was time for sunset drinks in the bush...

During drinks, we cold here a male lion roaring over the next after we were done, we hopped back in the Land Cruiser and found him!!

We were even lucky enough to see a female lion and her two lion cubs eating after their evening kill!!!

And then, it started to rain, and we headed back to the lodge for more great drinks, food ( the food was AMAZING!!!!!) and dancing from a local tribe!

And everything was like it had always been there…..

I could live like this…. I honestly didn’t care of it was a bit cold.  This is a once in a lifetime experience that I don’t ever want to forget!!!! And, as our ranger, Dave, said…. TIA…”This is Africa!”

1 comment:

  1. “I am in love…..with South Africa!” – I couldn’t blame you for falling head over heels with the place. Beautiful beasts, breathtaking views and a wonderful culture - what’s not to love? [Jordan Hood]