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South Africa – Wild at Heart

Wild at Heart - Girl in South Africa

Wild at heart )

A bunch of 6 crazy people, with no clue what to expect from this trip, went on an adventure to South Africa. Well, like every road trip, there were prior planning and arrangements, but up to the last days of our trip, we will still make major readjustments of the itinerary. But looking back, the beauty was in the mix of the uncertainty yet discovery.

So lets kick off with some of the best stuff we conquered in South Africa:

Gorgeous view at Aquila Game Reserve

Gorgeous view at Aquila Game Reserve

South Africa – Wild at Heart

1. Breathtaking Lookout/ Viewpoints

Table Mountain/ Signal Hill

Not labeled as the top 10 natural wonders of the world for nothing, the The majestic Table Mountain really frames the city of Capetown in such an idyllic manner. The magic of Capetown would be absent without it as a movie backdrop.

Ely and me with the view of Lion’s Head in the background

Ely and me with the view of Lion’s Head in the background

Beautiful trees on our way up to Signal Hill

Beautiful trees on our way up to Signal Hill

Beautiful view of Table Mountain. Pity we didnt get to go up due to strong winds

Beautiful view of Table Mountain. Pity we didnt get to go up due to strong winds

Dazzling night skyline of Capetown

Dazzling night skyline of Capetown

 

Cape Point/ Cape of Good Hope

Lets face it, there are tons of similar amazing lookout points in the world to see waves crashing against cliff rocks, Australia and America are just some of such places. However, Cape Point in South Africa is still one of the places you don’t want to miss out because of its unique geographic significance and the fact that 2 oceans, the Atlantic and Indian Ocean crosses!

Singapore Women in Travel - Photo was taken at Cape of Good Hope in South Africa

The iconic spot for photos to say you came to Cape of Good Hope!!( Photo credited Fahrtenbuch to F.Z Joe)

 

Breathtaking view from the lighthouse at Cape Point

Breathtaking view from the lighthouse at Cape Point

Couldnt resist a jump shot with such an awesome view

Couldn’t resist a jump shot with such an awesome view

Signboard of how far we are from home

Signboard of how far we are from home

Enjoy coastal views? Then Mauritius is another destination to consider to see the best cliff sights

Drakensburg

Derived from the Afrikaans name Drakensberge meaning ‘Dragon Mountains’, you can literally imagine a mystical creature lurking amongst the many raw rock Time columns of this world heritage site. Having get to spend 3 full days there, one still cannot get enough of the iconic feature – ‘The Amphitheatre’, which really takes your breath away. Standing there with the immense looming structure, you can almost imagine the words from the iconic movie Gladiator ‘ Brothers, what we do in life echoes in eternity!’ roared through the rocks here.

View of ‘Amphitheatre’ and ’ Policeman’s helmet’. Spot them!

View of ‘Amphitheatre’ and ’ Policeman’s helmet’. Spot them!

Little river with fresh spring water that we fill our bottles with( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Little river with fresh spring water that we fill our bottles with( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Trekking up all the way( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Trekking up all the way( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Beautiful rest point/ pit stop where we stopped to take many photos and felt like characters from the Lord of the Rings movie( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Beautiful rest point/ pit stop where we stopped to take many photos and felt like characters from the Lord of the Rings movie


2. The Wild and the Majestic – Animals in South Africa

Game Reserve and Safaris

If you are tight for time and would rather not have to drive around in your vehicle squinting your eyes to spot a zebra in the thousand acres of land, forget Kruger, we have a simple suggestion for you – Aquila Game Reserve.
Located 2 hours away from the Capetown city, this Game Reserve had been a popular choice by celebrities like Rihanna and many others. Slightly on the pricier and posh-ier side, it definitely is still a lovely experience to have. However, along the road trip, we did spot many other iconic wild animals like Ostriches, Rabbits, Gazelles, Cows and many more.

Huge lake with creatures of the unknown at Aquila Game Reserve

Huge lake with creatures of the unknown at Aquila Game Reserve

Wild Ostriches spotted along the coast on the way to Cape Point

Wild Ostriches spotted along the coast on the way to Cape Point

A lone ‘buck’ watching us, with the rest of his gang having ran off

A lone ‘buck’ watching us, with the rest of his gang having ran off

a lot of hippos spotted in this river!

a lot of hippos spotted in this river!

Lazy leopard swatting flies

Lazy leopard swatting flies

Big 5 and More spotted in this trip!

Big 5 and More spotted in this trip!

Beautiful cafe at Aquila Game Reserve with a lovely wall of animal collages

Beautiful cafe at Aquila Game Reserve with a lovely wall of animal collages

 

Boulders Beach Penguins

Fancy a beach that is totally owned by penguins?
Jackass penguins make Boulder’s beach their little love nest seasonally through the year. These unruffled penguins trot around like kings and go for swims and hunting in groups. Adorable yet humorous to watch them go about their little webbed lives.

Lazy penguins hanging around

Lazy penguins hanging around

The girls and the penguins. Wild at heart

The girls and the penguins. Wild at heart

 

3. Camping in the Vast

Our campsite against an amazing mountain view

Our campsite against an amazing mountain view

My very first full scale camping trip has been truly rewarding and eye-opening. With 3 cars stuffed with tons of things from tents to deck chairs to mattresses and gas stove, its amazing the degree of luxury camping we enjoyed in this trip. Meals were uncompromised too, with our very tasty ham and tuna sandwiches for lunch to delicious ‘Braai ( Barbecue)’ dinners every night. Steak, lamp chops, pork rashes, chicken fillets, ostrich meat, you name it. Thanks to Malcom and Jason and Dean for lending us heaps of camping stuff to make this experience really amazing.

 

Extensive set up ( Photo credited to Elysa)

Extensive set up ( Photo credited to Elysa)

 

Our daily feasts

Our daily feasts

 

Lights from our campsite from afar ( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Lights from our campsite from afar ( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Cosy in our 2 man tent with solar powered lamp.

Cosy in our 2 man tent with solar powered lamp.

 

4. Outdoor Activities to wet your every appetite

There’s so much when it comes to outdoors in South Africa. From paragliding to horse riding to white shark cage diving. The list is endless! But due to limited time, these were the 2 main things we did:

Trekking

Places like Drakensburg and Table Mountain are lovely spots for day hikes. Not sure about table mountain, but Drakensburg is definitely easy to cover for beginners to intermediate climbers, but remember to start early and don’t get caught in the setting sun ( for us, it starts to set at 5plus everyday). Getting stranded there in winter might not be the best idea.

Easy trek on the 2nd day on the way to ‘The Gorge’.

Easy trek on the 2nd day on the way to ‘The Gorge’.

Beautiful rock and stream running side by side( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Beautiful rock and stream running side by side( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Stunning view each step of the way. Wild at heart

Stunning view each step of the way. Wild at heart

 

Rock Climbing

Bronkhorstspruit, in short called ‘Bronkies’ is not too far out from the Johannesburg airport and has lovely manageable routes for climbers of all levels. Running parallel to a lovely brook, it’s a must-stay till sunset to catch wholesale MLB jerseys an amazing view of the golden sun-kissed surroundings. Having spend my last sunset in South Africa there on top of the ‘If women were gods’ climbing route, it was truly a overwhelming yet humbling and meditative moment taking in the vast creation of this world.

Lowering down after an amazing climb up ‘If Women Were gods’ route

Lowering down after an amazing climb up ‘If Women Were gods’ route

Si Ying conquering the route!

Si Ying conquering the route!

Jason against the lovely sun setting sky at the top of the route. The view is to-die-for! Wi

Jason against the lovely sun setting sky at the top of the route. The view is to-die-for! Wild at heart

For other rock climbing adventures, click here

 

5. Of Sunsets and Blue Skies

Now that the trip is over, the moments that keep flashing back to me every time I think of South Africa are the fiery sunsets and stunning blue skies lined with clouds of different forms. If the sky were to be a lady, I would say it never fails to dress itself up with its mood- casual light fluffy balls of cotton for a casual outing, silver linings for a happy date or wispy long strands of wispy translucent clouds for a magical date. Let the pictures speak for themselves.

The wild at heart against sunset view at Signal Hill, Table Mountain.( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

The wild at heart against sunset view at Signal Hill, Table Mountain.( Photo credited to F.Z Joe)

Carry me on your shoulder.

Carry me on your shoulder.Wild at heart

Fooling around while watching the sunset together at Signal Hill Capetown

Fooling around while watching the sunset together at Signal Hill Capetown

 

In conclusion, the South Africa experience was nothing like those picked up from footage in national geographic or what we pick up from the news. There is so much more that one can only muster with a longer stay in this wild untamed reserve.

Wild at Heart - Mornings have never been this wonderful, only because it is South Africa…

Wild at Heart – Mornings have never been this wonderful, only because it is South Africa…

For another great outdoor story, read my Canada Adventure here.

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