Southern Africa

We started our trip in June 2016 in Swaziland, where we stayed at the Sondzela Backpackers in Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary. It is one of my favourite places on earth.

016 Mlilwane - Executioner's Rock

The mountain on the left is called Executioner’s Rock. In ancient times Swazis suspected of witchcraft or criminals were forced to walk off the edge at spear-point for their crimes.

This is what our accommodation looked like:

013 Mlilwane hut 1

Next we visited the Kruger National Park for twelve days, staying in three different campsites: Berg-en-Dal, Lower Sabie and Skukuza. Not a day went by when we did not have many sightings of a large variety of animals.

044 Kruger- Giraffes

Giraffes at waterhole. There is an interesting article at http://www.animalanswers.co.uk/animals/how-do-giraffes-drink-without-passing-out/   which explains why giraffes don’t pass out when they drink water.

050 Kruger- Baboons at dusk.jpg

The animals have right of way.

057 Kruger - Buffalo skull

This buffalo was the victim of lions or a leopard.

064 Kruger sunset

The sunsets in the Kruger Park are often stunning.

081 Kruger - Lions

These lions ignored the tourists with disdain. They like lying in the road towards the end of the day because the road stays warm for a while after dark.

088 Kruger - Waterhole with zebras and hippos

Waterhole with zebras, hippopotamuses and a crocodile

096 Kruger - Rhinos

White rhinos. In the three years from 2012 to 2014 1,858 of these magnificent animals were killed by poachers in the Kruger National Park.

133 Kruger - Kudu at waterhole

A kudu and impalas at a waterhole

140 Kruger - Elephants at waterhole

A large herd of elephants arrived while we were waiting at this waterhole. The one on the left kept a wary eye on us.

153 Kruger - Hyena with carcass

A hyena scavenging on a very smelly carcass

157 Kruger - Giraffe

We saw many giraffes every single day that we were in the park. They are the most graceful of animals and we never tired of seeing them in their natural environment.

163 Kruger - Zebras

A zebra with her baby

After the Kruger National Park we travelled to Namibia to visit the Etosha National Park in the north of the country. The park borders on the Etosha Salt Pan, which is 40 kms wide and 175 kms long.

187 Etosha - Kori bustard

We were surprised at the variety of birds and animals living in Etosha’s dry landscape. This bird is called a Kori Bustard. Not a bad name to call someone who gives one grief, I reckon.

194 Etosha - Springbok herd

There were many large herds of springboks in the park.

202 Etosha - Tree and blue wildebeest

Blue wildebeest – a common sight

244 Etosha - Gemsbok-1

An oryx. They thrive in dry areas.

223 Etosha - Gill, Mike & Jennifer on salt pan-1

Not a blade of grass grows on the Etosha salt pan. It is an endless vista of nothingness.

Finally we travelled to Cape Town and to Hermanus (see picture below), where we suffered from culture shock when confronted by the sea and the green landscapes after the barrenness of Namibia!

249 Hermanus-1

Tim Bruwer

Aftermath of OM:NI Reps Meeting @ COTA

…..It was such an intense meeting today that on the way home Darryl became a bit light-headed…… Daz1 …. but some news article in The Age finally brightened him up!…. Daz2 - Copy …. images were captured in ( and courtesy of) the iconic City Hatters Shop established in 1910 at the Flinders Street station. ..we believe that the hat he is wearing was in the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games and.. ..we wonder what the OM:NI guys (sorry – blokes) will get up to next? …. Admin