Blue cranes in the Overberg

Road trip stories.  I have many. Why?  Because it's a lot more exciting than just flying to your domestic destination.  So except for speed, what is the most exciting thing that could happen on an average flight? Chicken or Beef?Road tripping to Cape Town with Shefetswe and Erenei, we were driving somewhere between Caledon and Bot River in the Overberg when my eye caught something in a field next to the road.  As I spotted it Shefetswe remarked, "Wow! Check the Blue Cranes."…

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A thousand years in the making -The Tsitsikamma Big Tree

One of the best know attractions in the Tsitsikamma is The Big Tree, one of the giants of the forest and thought to be up to 1000 years old.  The Garden Route from the Tsitsikamma through Knysna to Wilderness is famous for its indigenous forests and precious trees, amongst them the Yellowwood.  The Outeniqua Yellowwood tree is also South Africa's national tree which makes this particular Outeniqua Yellowwood even more special. Getting to the Big Tree is very easy.  First of all…

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Outeniqua Yellowwood Tree at Natures Valley

I used to travel down the Garden Route quite often while I was still tour guiding but these days don't often get a chance to go further than the Tsitsikamma.  Driving down to Natures Valley on our recent Easter weekend Sho't Left in the area I had to stop at one of the view points on the way down on the Grootrivier Pass.  Its not a view point as much as it's a tree point.  The view is of a little…

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South Africa’s National Anthem – Nkosi Sikelele’ iAfrika

South Africa's National Anthem is a combination of Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika ("Lord Bless Africa" in Xhosa) and the previous national anthem, Die Stem van Suid-Afrika ("The Call of South Africa" in Afrikaans).   The anthem as we sing it today has been in use since 1996 when it was released as the new national anthem of South Africa under the new constitution.  The anthem uses several of the official languages of South Africa.  The first two lines of the first stanza are sung…

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I am an African and proud of it

https://youtube.googleapis.com/v/O0pKrpj-Loc&source=udsI am an African and I am proud to call myself an African.  Yes, my forefathers came from Europe a couple of hundred years ago, but my father, grand father, great grand father and before him was born in Africa.  As was I.  Does it mean that the fact that I am white means I'm not an African?  I beg to differ from anybody who would so say so.  I am a white African.  A proud African.  One with a passion for…

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King Protea – South Africa’s National Flower

South Africa's national flower is the King Protea.  The King Protea (Protea cynaroides) is the biggest flowering protea specie and forms part of the Cape Floral Kingdom (Fynbos). Protea cynaroides is a species of protea in the huge family Proteaceae which comprises about 80 genera with about 1600 species.  The name of the plant family Proteaceae as well as the genus Protea, both to which Protea cynaroides belongs to, derive from the name of the Greek god Proteus, a deity that was able…

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Kings Protea in Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve

The Van Stadens Wildflower Reserve west of Port Elizabeth is one of the best and easiest accessible areas around to see proteas and other species in the Cape Floral Kingdom.  Flowers like the King Protea, South Africa's national flower, and the Pin Cushion Protea is found in abundance and when in flower is a real treat to see along one of the reserve's two trails.  I try to visit the reserve at least once or twice a year, even if its…

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King Protea

Today is the 1st of September which means it SPRING DAY. YAY! Winter is over (even if its only on paper) and everybody is looking forward to summer. To celebrate the coming of spring I am posting a pic of the King Protea which is South Africa's national flower. And to make it relevant to Port Elizabeth, the picture was taken in the Van Staadens Wildflower Reserve. The reserve is about 25 minutes from town and a excellent spot to…

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