A weekend spent in Clarens

20 Jul 2017

For nature, art and fun, Clarens is an ideal getaway. Find yourselves in a frenzy of art buying, restaurant hopping, cycling, game driving, trout fishing, birding and late night wining and dining.

A visit to Clarens is so rich with experience— here is why:

Walk the Angels Wing Trail – this requires some forward planning and reserving as it’s a 2-day trail. The Angels Wing Trail in Clarens is popular and perfect for a weekend break. Your vehicle can be left at the secure parking lot off the R712 Golden Gate Road. You are then collected and taken up the mountain in a 4×4 vehicle to the Ouma’s Kraal overnight hut.

Cool off in streams and rock pools, enjoy beautiful views and find yourself forgetting all about your busy city-life. There are plenty of other hiking trails, so do some research to find the perfect walk for your fitness level.

Contact: +27 (0)86 152 2262Romantic-Clarens_1120x600

Drink at the Clarens Brewery which was inspired by fun, adventure and a passionate approach to brewing craft beers. The team at the brewery share an incredible knowledge of beer and cider brewing, as well as a modern approach to creating new flavours. Situated in the heart of this little town it offers locals and visitors the opportunity to sample a selection of ales, ciders, liqueurs and spirits. Tastings and brewery tours are conducted free of charge, so you really have no excuse!

The brewery has a gorgeous location at the foot of the magnificent Maluti Mountains.

Contact: +27 (0)82 901-4700The Clarens Mountains during winter months

Relax at the Clarens Wellness Day Spa where the focus is on de-stressing and healing. A variety of treatments are on offer including couples treatments, body therapy and massages. This Wellness Day Spa has a team that is dedicated to the healing and harmonising of mind, body and soul. Their professional manner, goal for inner peace and natural treatments equips them to make every treatment an unforgettable one.

Contact: +27 (0)82 887 1503 Clarens, Free State_1120x600_3

Adventure with some river rafting down the Ash River as it’s not enough to just soak up awesome scenery; you want to immerse yourself in it too. Whether it’s feeling the rush of the rapids with some white-river rafting or hiking up incredible mountains, there are plenty of adventures to have in this scenic corner of South Africa!

Your adventure starts in town where you meet your guides before driving 12 kms out of town to begin the days rafting down the Ash River. Although white water rafting can be quite extreme, have no fear as there are rapids suited to everyone. Going down this 18 km stretch of the Ash River you will encounter the river’s Grade 3 and 4 rapids, including Car Wash, Fish Pond and Big Surprise.

Clarens Xtreme
Tel: +27 (0)58 256 1260
Cell: +27 (0)82 563 6242
Email: ollie@clarensxtreme.co.za

Outrageous Adventures
Cell: +27 (0)83 485 9654
Email: kallie@outrageousadventures.co.zaThis way to Clarens in the Free State

Eat your way through Clarens, as there is no shortage of great restaurant, pubs, bistros, farm-style kitchens, delis and even a gourmet shed. If you’re a foodie whose calling is finding small town culinary hotspots or a tourist travelling to the town, you’ll be kept busy all weekend indulging in home-made treats. Here are some favourites:

Gourmet Shed,  in a converted sandstone barn, it offers a unique restaurant and country-style feasting.

Artist Café, ideal if you are traveling with children and offers cosy indoor seating, with a fireplace or cool comfortable outdoor seating where you can get lost in the views of the mountains.

Clementines restaurant and bar, here you can dine with stunning views of the mountains.

Sugar and Cinnamon, which is great for a breakfast pit stop with homemade deliciousness.

Get your morning started with a hearty breakfast at The Courtyard Café.

Finding accommodation in Clarens is easy, as you are spoilt for choice. Here are a few to get you started:

Waterford House is a great option for golfers as it’s on Clarens Golf and Trout Estate. The luxurious home has a comfortable, cottage-like feel and covered patio with views of the mountain.

Brookside Self-Catering Cottage is within easy walking distance of the village square and offers twin self-contained apartments, which sleep two each. 

Rebellie Game Farm  is set in the mountains outside Clarens and boasts an impressive 4×4 trail.highlands

TRAVEL TIPS

Clarens Tourism Authority
Tel: +27 (0) 58 256 1542
Email: clarens@bhm.dorea.co.za

HOW TO GET HERE

Clarens is in the Eastern Free State highlands, approximately a 3-hour drive from either Johannesburg or Bloemfontein.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

Any time of year is good but autumn and spring are particularly beautiful.

Mandela Day – Discover the legacy

18 Jul 2017

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela

Mandela Day is celebrated annually on 18 July, the celebration of Nelson Mandela’s birthday. In order to celebrate the life of Madiba South Africans have chosen to honour our first democratically elected president by performing acts of service. The message behind Mandela Day is simple: each person has the ability and the responsibility to change the world for the better. Mandela Day calls on us all, every day, to make the world a better place.

If you are as big of a fan of the Mandela legacy as we are, then you have to visit some of these iconic places in order to fully immerse yourself in his profound life…

Nelson Mandela Voting Line sculpture

Walking around the beautifully made Voting Line sculpture at the Donkin Reserve in Port Elizabeth, you get the true sense of the Rainbow Nation of South Africa. The metal figures represent all the communities who share the land – and who voted peacefully on 27 April 1994.

The Mandela House

Visit the home where Nelson Mandela lived with his family in Soweto, from the 1940s until the 1990s, the home to which Madiba returned after his 27 years in prison. Situated in Vilakazi Street, this iconic home has been restored to give visitors a glimpse and some insight into his family life. The home is filled with memorabilia and historical photos. 

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Drakenstein Correctional Centre

When Nelson Mandela arrived to live at a private house in the precinct of Victor Verster Prison (now Drakenstein Correctional Centre) between Paarl and Franschhoek in December 1988, it was his first taste of normal life after nearly 27 years in prison. Groot Drakenstein Prison is actually the place where the famous image of Mandela walking out of prison in 1990 is taken.

Liliesleaf Farm Rivonia

Often called the Home of the Freedom Struggle, this place was a “hide-out” and meeting place for top ANC and SACP activists. This was also the site of the Liliesleaf Farm police raid on 11 July 1963 that resulted in the Rivonia Treason Trials and eventual incarceration of many senior ANC leaders.

The artistic Mandela Capture Site

Mandela Capture Site

On 5 August 1962, police waved down a car on a lonely country road in KwaZulu-Natal. At the wheel was Nelson Mandela, posing as a chauffeur, his arrest lead to the Rivonia Treason Trial, ultimately seeing him spend 27 years in prison. Today, this site is marked by an impressive sculpture in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. Until relatively recently, the Mandela Capture Site was just a small bricked area with a plaque but in 2012, an impressive steel sculpture and visitor centre was unveiled to give full recognition to the significance of this spot.

Robben Island

As you make your way through the corridors of Robben Island, you get transported to a time in South African history where the country reached a turning point. Standing in the jail cell that housed Nelson Mandela for so many years brings to heart the emotional story of the South African struggle for democracy and equality.

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The Apartheid Museum

The Apartheid Museum focuses on the system of racial discrimination that became synonymous with South Africa from 1948-1994. The Apartheid Museum, close to downtown Johannesburg, even greets visitors with a very real reflection of what it was like to live in a racially segregated society.

The Nelson Mandela Museum

To give a true overview of Nelson Mandela in all phases of his life, from his youth in Qunu to his role as statesman, the museum built in his honour comprises three separate structures: the Bhunga Building in Mthatha, the Qunu component and an open-air museum at Mvezo, where Madiba was born. 

If you would like more detailed information about the places and events that are so historically important please download the Madiba’s Journey app on the Apple iStore or Android App Store and explore more.

 

The Northern Cape is waiting for you this winter

21 Jun 2017

Small town charm, fun activities and a festival or two – what more could you possibly need this winter? We think it’s time for you to pack a bag and head out to the serene and beautiful province of the Northern Cape for the best weekend getaway. Here are few reasons why the Northern Cape is where you should be this winter.

Hot Air Ballooning

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What better way to view the Kalahari Desert’s red sand dunes than from the beautiful and clear skies of the Northern Cape. From high up, you can see the vast beauty that South Africa has to offer. Hot air ballooning in the Northern Cape is the perfect activity to make you feel like winter does not exist, and it is the best way to enjoy the peacefulness of this province.

Contact
Hot Air Ballooning South Africa: +27 83 446 9423

Augrabies Falls National Park

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You will feel you like you have entered into another world and you will forget all about the winter blues once you have spent some time exploring this magical place. Get to see fascinating rock formations like the Moon Rock, which towers 30m above the park, offering a fantastic 360-degree view for those who are willing to venture up. Prepare to have your breath taken away at the summit.

Contact
Augrabies Falls National Park: +27 54 452 9200
Email: augrabies@sanparks.org

Hantam Meat Festivals

In winter, good food is always welcome, and the Northern Cape has just the festival to satisfy your appetite. The Hantam Meat Festival takes place in Calvinia and celebrates meat in all kinds of ways – from braai to stew and all the delicious preparations in between. There are other activities that will keep you and your family entertained. The event runs for two days from 25 to 26 August 2017.

Contact
Hantam Meat Festivals: +27 27 341 8200
Email: vleisfees@klk.co.za

Riemvasmaak Hot Springs

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Do you fancy diving into a pool that looks like it comes straight out of the movies? We have just the place for you – created by volcanic eruptions centuries ago, the spring water is kept warm by the earth’s underground activities. Once you’ve warmed your chilled winter bones, some scenic hiking and more fun opportunities are available.

Contact
Riemvasmaak Tourism: +27 73 383 8812 or + 27 83 873 7715

Pofadder Town

Located in what is said to be the middle of nowhere, this quiet little town has so many good things waiting just for you. Experience all kinds of outdoor adventures in this beautiful little town from hiking and quad biking to 4×4 adventures and delicious farm-fresh lamb. Make a stop when passing by this town and see what Klaas Pofadder, the person the town is named after, saw in it.

Contact
Pofadder Hotel: +27 54 933 0063
Email: info@pofadderhotel.co.za

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What are you waiting for? The Northern Cape has so much more to offer, so why not take a Sho’t Left this winter and enjoy the beauty and adventure that lies in this province.

Contact
Northern Cape Tourism

Tel: +27 53 832 2657
Email: info@experiencenortherncape.com

5 reasons to put on your jacket and head on a winter safari

15 Jun 2017

Winter is no longer coming, it is here. You probably don’t want to leave the warmth and comfort of your house, but have you considered that winter may be the best time to head to the bush. Here’s why:

The beautiful weather

We can all agree that South Africa has beautiful weather all-year round, but during winter there is more blue in the sky, the air is cooler, the sun is out and you don’t even have to worry about getting sunburnt. You will no longer need big hats that obstruct your view to block the heat. Even better, with no rain and cooler temperatures, the threat of mosquitos getting in your way is significantly decreased. And nobody likes having to reek of repellent.

Spot more wildlife

While we all have our reasons for loving the bush, it’s obvious that the wildlife itself takes centre stage in all our hearts. Well, in winter, you’re most likely to see the wildlife. Why? Because the weather is dry and the rains are few, so animals tend to congregate around the most reliable watering hole. Not only this, without all the green summery foliage getting in the way, the dry winter brush is much easier to peer through, helping you spot way more animals.

It is not packed

This time of year is usually a low season for bush visits. That makes it the perfect time to go to national parks – you can be sure that you will not be bothered by large roaming packs of human beings. You can practically have the park to yourself on many routes.

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Specials

With low seasons in tourism come low prices and specials at lodges and hotels, so you can save and see the beautiful country at the same time. There are wonderful packages available on Sho’t Left for you to enjoy this winter.

There is always more to see

Enjoy a bon fire and wine, with a great view of the stars away from the city lights, on chilly nights that make you realise how beautiful the bush really is.

If you ever need a mid-year break from the everyday hustle of life, the South African wild is the place to go. So go on, get off the couch and go wild on a Sho’t Left to the nearest national park this winter.

Cosy winter retreats

8 Jun 2017

Venture out and brave South Africa’s nippy season with these winter getaways to beat the big chill. From beach houses and luxury lodges to incredible hideouts, there are plenty hidden gems to visit on weekends this winter.

Here are some delightful options to consider when you hit the road in search of an ideal winter getaway:

Tau Game Lodge, Madikwe:

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One of the first lodges built in the Madikwe Game Reserve, Tau is a traditional safari lodge and its spacious lounge offers an opportunity to sit back and relax on a comfy couch after a game drive.

Abalone House, Paternoster:

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This delightful hotel along the West Coast promises solitude and a great crackling fire. Order a glass of port and forget the world exists as you enjoy the guesthouse decor, inspired by the vibrancy of Tretchikoff.

De Oude Kraal Country Estate & Spa, Free State:

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About 35 km south of Bloemfontein on a working sheep farm, De Oude Kraal offers a retreat to birdwatch, horse ride, tuck into a hearty meal and view a spectacular winter Free State sunset. Book a room with an open fireplace for a cosy winter vibe.

De Hoek Country Hotel, Magaliesburg:

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This five-star country house is constructed of sandstone. Its interiors are filled with Oregon pine and Mahogany, and dressed with luxurious fabrics. Dining is the finest of crystal and silver affairs. This winter, luxuriate in one of the superior suites that come with their own fireplaces.

Granny Mouse Country House, KwaZulu-Natal Midlands:

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Deluxe rooms at this popular country house and spa on the Midlands Meander, at the foot of the Drakensberg Mountains, have great fireplaces. Warm your toes after a day of exploring the arts and crafts in the area.

Tenahead Mountain Lodge & Spa, Rhodes:

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This five-star lodge is surrounded by the Drakensberg, Witteberg and Maluti mountains, and as such luxuriates in the magnificent scenery of peaks, valleys and streams. Large, double-glazed windows in the rooms offer unmatched panoramas, while open fireplaces remove any chill from the air.

With these and more amazing establishments available to you this winter, there’s no excuse to not pack an overnight bag, head out and experience South Africa’s winter in the comfort of these incredible hidden gems. 

 

 

 

 

 

Come experience wild Durban

15 May 2017

While Durban is a busy urban centre, a few hours’ drive from the city lies a number of phenomenal wildlife destinations. From Durban’s Sharks Board to uShaka Sea World for marine wildlife to Hluhluwe-Imfolosi and a host of smaller parks along the Elephant Coast, or down south to Pure Venom reptile park or inland to private reserves or the Lion Park – there’s wildlife aplenty not far from Durban.

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Sardine Run

In July most years the annual Sardine Run hits the beaches of the south coast, when millions of small, silver fish migrate up the coastline, followed by predators such as dolphins, whales, sharks and seabirds.

Umgeni River estuary

The Umgeni River estuary is a popular picnic spot. At low tide, the shallows are exposed, and thousands of birds, including terns and pelicans, gather to feast. Get close to nature and birdlife by traversing the boardwalk through the protected Beachwood mangroves on the north side of Blue Lagoon.

CROW

Don’t miss CROW (Centre for Rehabilitation of Wildlife) in Yellowwood Park, a wildlife hospital that cares for injured and orphaned wild animals and birds. Also worth a visit is the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board for an informative glimpse into the world of these impressive, misunderstood predators.

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Hluhuluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve and the iSimangaliso Wetland Park

KwaZulu-Natal is a leading conservation area packed with game parks and reserves. In the north are the Hluhuluwe-Imfolozi Game Reserve and the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a World Heritage site. Both are renowned for large populations of wild animals and exquisite bird life.

uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park and small boutique game reserves

Inland is the mighty uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park, another World Heritage Site that is home to a wealth of plant and birdlife. Numerous smaller boutique game reserves such as Tala and GwaHumbe lie in the mid-Illovo region, and the Lion Park is close to Pietermaritzburg.

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DID YOU KNOWHluhuluwe is the oldest game reserve in South Africa. Now you have every reason to visit KwaZulu-Natal, not only does it have great beaches but you are also able to view some of the best wildlife.

6 TOP THINGS TO DO IN KZN

11 May 2017

South Africa’s third-smallest province, KwaZulu-Natal has a wealth of scenic and cultural attractions that include the country’s most popular beaches lying to the south and north of Durban. Add to that its bushveld reserves to the north, historic battlefields and the dramatic Drakensberg mountains, and you truly have a place that offers something for everyone.

Have you visited…

uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park

The uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park is home to 35 000 examples of San rock paintings and a huge diversity of protected plant and animal species. While there are many mountains in South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal’s 200km long uKhahlamba Drakensberg escarpment is by far the most impressive.

WHO TO CONTACT: +27 (0)31 355 7500 / Email: kznta@iafrica.com

HOW TO GET HERE: The Berg is divided into the southern, central and northern regions. The N3 national road between Durban and Johannesburg is well signposted to access routes for each of these regions.

Unspoilt scenery in the Drakensberg

Durban Botanic Gardens

Africa’s oldest surviving botanical gardens, the Durban Botanic Gardens are a magnificent testimony to more than 160 years of dedication and care by a succession of curators. Not only do these gardens offer travellers a scenic respite from the busy city, but they’re world-renowned for their indigenous and exotic plant collections from the subtropics – cycads, ferns, bromeliads, palms and orchids, among many other stunning flowers and more than 80 magnificent heritage trees.

WHO TO CONTACT: Durban Botanic Gardens+27 (0)31 322 4021 / Email: dbginfo@durban.gov.za

HOW TO GET HERE: The Durban Botanic Gardens are located west of the city centre towards the suburb of Berea, in Botanic Gardens Road, above the Greyville Racecourse. A shuttle bus connecting the city centre to the gardens leaves regularly from Sydenham Road.

Durban Botanical garden

Segway tours at Moses Mabhida Stadium

Since they first hit South African shores the funky, modern design of the Segway transporter has held a fascination for the young and the young-at-heart. By taking a tour of the Moses Mabhida Stadium using this unique mode of transport, you’ll be able to tick two boxes on your to-do list at once! A Segway tour of Durban’s Moses Mabhida Stadium combines the fun and freedom of a ride on one of these uber-cool mobility transporters with a comprehensive overview of one of South Africa’s top sporting attractions.

WHO TO CONTACT: +27 (0)31 303 4534 / Email: mms@segwayglidingtours.com

HOW TO GET HERE: Take the N2 north towards the north coast. As you move out of the city centre, you cannot miss the Moses Mabhida Stadium on your left. Physical address: Shop 16A, 44 Isaiah Ntshangase Avenue, Durban.

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Around June each year, word gets out along the KwaZulu-Natal coast that the sardines have arrived. They’ve swum for more than 30 days from their spawning ground in the Cape to reach South Africa’s east coast. Scores of fishermen join the sharks, game fish, marine mammals and birds that gorge themselves on the shimmering band of silver fish.

BEST TIME TO VISIT: Book your trip anytime from mid-May to mid-July.

WHO TO CONTACT: KwaZulu-Natal Tourism +27 (0)31 366 7500 / Email: info@zulu.org.za or Seal/Sardineun.net Expeditions+ 27 (0)21 422 0394 / Email: info@sardinerun.net

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Beer tour of KwaZulu-Natal

Following the province’s beer route is not just about drinking beer (although it goes without saying that you’ll be tipping many a tankard, should you so wish) – it’s as much about discovering the history behind the brew and the art of beer-making from exceptional brew masters at eight of the region’s breweries.

Try the Khangela Brewery in Durban, well known for umqombothi, a traditional beer made from maize (corn), maize malt, sorghum malt, yeast and water. Umqombothi is popular among a large proportion of South Africa’s beer drinkers.

WHO TO CONTACT: KwaZulu-Natal Beer Route / Email: kznta@iafrica.com

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Discover the iSimangaliso Wetland Park

The coastline of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park is the only remaining major nesting site in Africa where Loggerhead and Leatherback turtles still lay their eggs and it is a sight that should find its way on to every bucket list. Don’t forget about the sand forests, thornvelds, open savannahs and welcoming beaches of False Bay, while Charters Creek is a wildlife haven for larger game species such as elephants, buffaloes, rhinos, leopards, giraffes and tsessebe.

WHO TO CONTACT: iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority +27 (0)35 590 1633 / Email: info@isimangaliso.com

HOW TO GET HERE: iSimangaliso is easily accessible by road. Take the N2 north from Durban until you reach it. Durban is the closest city with an international airport, the King Shaka International Airport. From here, St Lucia is less than four hours’ drive away.

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Durban’s endless summer

2 May 2017

They don’t call Durban “South Africa’s playground” for nothing – so dig your toes in the sand, take a dip in the sea and enjoy your time in this great city. The weather is gorgeous all-year round, which is why we can brag about Durban’s coastline, even during the winter months! Durban welcomes visitors to a relaxed, outdoor lifestyle where braais, seafood and curry restaurants, clubs and friendly accommodation establishments provide everything an out-of-towner could wish for while on holiday.

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The Beaches

Durban’s beaches lie along a stretch of golden sand, known as the Golden Mile. From Blue Lagoon’s fishing spot to the sunken Vetch’s Pier, a host of flat, sandy beaches invites you to set down an umbrella and towel, and while away hours in the sun.

With its warm water, awesome waves and seemingly endless stretches of sandy beaches, you’ll soon understand why Durbs is everyone’s favourite seaside playground. Premier beaches in Durban include body-boarding hotspot – North Beach; and swimmers’ delight – South Beach; while Bay of Plenty and Dairy Beach are top surfing breaks. Swimming takes place at all of these beaches, closer inshore.

The LEARN 2 SURF Durban surf school is based at Addington Beach, just north of uShaka Marine World.

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The Activities

About 15 minutes’ north of Durban, Umhlanga Rocks beach is lined with luxury hotels and apartments. This is a fun spot with a permanent holiday vibe. Umhlanga’s village is full of restaurants, sidewalk cafes, pubs and clubs. If you’re after a quieter spot, Umhlanga’s Bronze Beach is more secluded, while Umdloti, Salt Rock and Zinkwazi, further north, are more family friendly.

With a long, paved promenade, the Golden Mile offers joggers, cyclists, dog owners, surfers, body boarders and walkers the opportunity to enjoy early-morning and late-afternoon exercise.

Visitors cannot miss Durban’s striking Moses Mabhida Stadium, host venue to top-notch sporting events, Segway tours, a city-viewing SkyCar and bungee swing.

CONTACT: +27 31 582 8242

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Closer to the harbour, uShaka Marine World, a world-class water park, aquarium (with fish, dolphins, seals, penguins and others) and restaurant and shopping complex overlooks the ocean, and offers hours of entertainment for the whole family.

CONTACT: +27 31 328 8000 / mkt@ushakamarineworld.co.za

WHO TO CONTACT FOR MORE INFO

Durban Tourism
Tel: +27 31 322 4164
Email: funinsun@iafrica.com

HOW TO GET THERE

Fly in via Durban’s King Shaka International Airport, located 45 minutes north of Durban at La Mercy. Or take the N3 from Johannesburg, a road trip of about 580km.

Cool Cape Town and its cool activities

19 Apr 2017

Cape Town is not only a pretty face, there is so much to do and see it could make you dizzy with all the choices. Here is a little guide to some great activity options – some are affordable and some may need to be considered as once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, but all will be totally worth it!

Hop on hop off bus

A classic favourite when visiting Cape Town, as it provides the easiest and most convenient way to visit the Table Mountain Cableway and it offers a great introduction to Cape Town’s City Bowl, as well as Camps Bay and the Atlantic Seaboard. A red bus ticket allows you to hop on and hop off on all tours so you can start your double-decker experience at any of the stops on the route. Their open-top tours are a delight for anyone wanting a safe, fun and informative introduction to the city.

Their bestseller for the bus: 1-Day Ticket Cape Town, R170 

City Sightseeing South Africa also offers an array of community tours, from the free walking tours in and around the city to multicultural township experiences, sidecar adventures and even a chopper flip! They do a LaGuGu Township experience, which is great. The LaGuGu Township Tour is a not-to-be-missed township tour that offers a unique, personal, in-depth and unforgettable experience of the Cape Town townships of Langa (the city’s original and oldest township) and Gugulethu.

Harley Davidson Motorcycle Tours

This unforgettable journey takes you along some of the most spectacular scenery along the coast of Cape Town. The journey begins on the Atlantic coastline through Clifton and Camps Bay to Hout Bay. After a short coffee stop across the famous Chapman’s Peak Drive, wind your way down to the Cape of Good Hope. Lunch can be enjoyed at the Two Oceans Restaurant (on your own account) with its great view across False Bay before making your way back towards Cape Town along the False Bay coast.

Cost: Chauffer Ride – R3200 per person / Guided from two people – R1565 per person plus R1800 per bike

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Lion’s Head Paragliding

Probably the most exhilarating adventure sport in Cape Town with no previous experience or knowledge required. They are disabled-, gay- and pet-friendly, having taken wheelchair-bound paraplegics, old and young – the oldest person was nearly 93! Anybody can fly! You simply need a good state of health – good walking shoes and 30 minutes to two hours. With a very experienced pilot behind you, you will feel just great! Paragliding is the most amazing feeling. Once in the air, most people are surprised that they feel so relaxed. You sit comfortably upright (like on your sofa at home). 

Cost: Paragliding Tandem Flight – R1150pp / Paragliding Tandem Flight with Pictures & Videos –R1400

Tokara wine and olive tasting

Tokara is a picture-perfect destination that offers visitors a unique combination of award-winning wines, brandy and olive oils, a gallery of fine art, a restaurant featuring one of South Africa’s leading chefs as well as a delicatessen. This could be an outing on its own as there is so much to do. You could start off with some wine and olive tasting and then enjoy lunch on the estate while taking in the views and relaxed atmosphere.

Cost: This depends on whether you taste wines, olive oils or join them for lunch.

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Scootours

The first of its kind in SA – enjoy an exhilarating downhill descent on the Monster Mountain Scooters. The scooters are non-motorised, making this an eco-friendly adventure. These Swiss-designed scooters are used in the Alps during the summer season on the ski slopes when the snow has melted, so you can imagine the power and speed.

Cost: Driver Tickets – R490 pp / Junior Passenger Tickets – R270 pp / Kids Birthday Party – R350 pp

Gin-making experience

Nestled neatly between Salt River and Woodstock is a bustling and creative commercial complex called the Salt River Arcade. Within this lies a small yet highly productive micro-distillery named the Woodstock Gin Company. Here they are passionate about letting people know that gin is so much more than Juniper berry-infused alcohol.

If you prefer a pint, you could also visit the Woodstock Brewery for a beer-making experience. Situated in the heart of Woodstock, the Woodstock Brewery Tap Room is the place to go to sample and buy the full range of Woodstock Brewery beers. You can organise a tour and tasting or you can buy a pint and relax in the beer garden, both of which give you a view of the working brewery.

Cape Town International Jazz Festival

Music lovers, did you get to the Cape Town International Jazz Festival this year? We know this activity requires some planning since it’s an annual event, but it’s a great one and should be a highlight on everyone’s calendar – every year! Recently held in Cape Town, we suggest you add it to your itinerary for next year and make a weekend of it in the Mother City.

What’s it all about? Now in its 18th year, the much-loved annual music festival beckons to both fervent jazz devotees and mainstream music lovers. Since its inception in 2000, this awesome gathering has seen its audiences grow exponentially and has successfully carved out a space for itself on the world’s events calendar, with fans from across the globe travelling to South African soil to attend.

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The Gogos enjoy the Eastern Cape

12 Apr 2017

We think everyone should get to enjoy all that South Africa has to offer, most of all the wisest of our nation – the gogos. The “Gogos on Tour” initiative aims to treat our senior citizens to some awesome experiences at various places across their provinces.

This week, the lovely gogos from the Eastern Cape were treated and delighted to a host of activities, and this is what they got up to…How well do you know your city? The gogos were treated to a city tour and loved every minute of it. East London City Tour is the only river port in South Africa and a unique holiday destination. Explore the city and visit historical sites, including the East London Museum, which is the home of the Coelacanth – a fish which was discovered at the Chalumna River. This town prides itself on its Victorian-style buildings and one of the best beaches in the country.

Contact: +27 83 487 8975

The gogos enjoyed a busy day, and after their tour they headed to East London Aquarium

The East London aquarium is small, but fun and informative thanks to a number of unique displays and features including a whale-watching deck, a breeding colony of African penguins and some of the best seal shows in the world. Here the gogos could explore the marine life on display as well as take in a show.

Tel: +27 43 705 2637

Gogos together

The gogos got to lunch in style at an art gallery before going to their lovely accommodation for the evening. At the Garden Court East London Hotel, the gogos enjoyed a welcome drink and dinner. Garden Court East London Hotel, located on the city’s spectacular Eastern Beach Promenade and close to the CBD, is the ideal base for those travelling for business, as well as leisure travellers visiting one of South Africa’s most historic cities. Overlooking the Indian Ocean, the Garden Court East London Hotel is a perfect springboard from which to explore great, local attractions and is a short walk from the beach.

Contact: +27 43 722 7260

Day two started off with a trip to the East London Zoo

Situated in the Queens Park Zoological Gardens, you’ll find the East London Zoo. With a remarkable variety of plant life and vegetation, this outstanding zoo is home to a wide range of animals, birds and reptiles.

You can expect to see tigers, white lions, brown lions, a hyena, a jaguar, giraffe, springbok, chimpanzees, Chacma baboons, other small monkeys and much more.

Contact: +27 43 722 1171

After fun at the zoo and a relazing pamper session, the gogos had worked up an appetite and what better way to enjoy the beautiful Eastern Cape then to have lunch at a beachfront restaurant. If you enjoy eating out, East London offers a wide range or restaurants designed to cater to your specific tastes, and of course everyone loves a meal near the ocean. The gogos got to enjoy lunch together before heading home.

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Nine provinces, numerous pampering sessions and one great meal after the other – this was our final Gogos Tour and what a great time the gogos have had! From the Western Cape right up to Limpopo, the gogos have been able to experience amazing sites, sounds and attractions. What a treat it has been to spoil these wonderful gogos. 

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