Blog Day 43 Sat 18th June 2011
Woo hoo Safari day, we are on our way to Pilansberg Game Reserve. We’ve been kindly leant a Sat Nav which helps big time. On the way there we stop at Hartepedlesport Market. Dan is quite confused about which market to go to, as when he was here last time the market was made up of tin shacks. Now it looks as though some money has been invested into it as all the stalls are concrete rooms. Having said that there is a huge market that has opened up across the street which seems to be putting the more authentic market out of business. We see some souvenirs that we would love to get & Val had said we could drop them back with her & we’ll just have to go back for a visit which sounds good. Haggling hard aren’t not even the words, these guys are trying to make a living of course but we had our eyes on a beautiful hand carved solid wooden bowl & a rock carving & the guy wanted R1200 (£120), after about half an hour of listening to him pleading poverty and how he has the stall rent to pay, and that he always gives some of his profits to charity we manage to get him down to R140 (£14). We later found out that the cheeky git had a stall over in the more expensive market so he wasn’t doing as bad as he let on! We also got a lovely hand carved set of wooden coaster’s from R250 (£25) down to R60 (£6). After a couple of hours we are more than happy with our bargains and head on towards the game reserve. When we get there we check into our safari tent & head straight out for our own Game Drive. Before we even make it into the park are see our first species of animal, a daddy Baboon is giving a mummy Baboon a right good seeing to right on the side of the road, GO ON MY SON! As we move on we see Impala and Springbok feeding by the side of the road, whilst sitting here watching we notice something move, unbelievably we had driven straight past a massive Giraffe! As we head into the park, you can’t help but get that feeling that you’re driving into Jurassic Park, within 10mins we see Elephants, Giraffe, Springbok, Wildebeest & Impala. Our game drive doesn’t last long as the gates closes at 6. We don’t fancy spending the night in the car so we get back to the resort. Today is Saturday so we head into the bar just in time to catch the rugby. The derby games are happening this weekend so there is a great atmosphere in the bar.
Blog Day 44 Sun 19th June 2011
First of all Happy Father’s Day to our lovely Daddies, we are heading to Sun City today, via the game reserve. We get to see a few animals this morning. We get a real nice close up view of a huge elephant chilling out, munching away without a care in the world. We also see a couple of rhino right up on a hillside, not exactly a photo opportunity but still impressive to see. Other animals include Zebra, Impala, Springbok, Wildebeest, Giraffe and Baboons. We head out to Sun City and are really looking forward to spending the day in the Valley of the Waves. We hop on the sky train which takes you from the car park to the resort. On arriving there we head straight to the Cascades hotel and take the lift straight to the top floor. Up here we get a great view of the area and the Gary Player Golf Course. It looks stunning! We head back down and head to the pro shop at the course. Dan tries his luck and asks to speak to the manager about sending sports tours down here, with a view to blagging a free round. One lead balloon later and we are walking around the course not playing it. We head back through to the casino and on to the Valley of the Waves! Which is shut! What a joke! On finding that out we don’t really hang about for too much longer. We jump into the car and head back into the game reserve. On the way to the Pilansberg Centre, which is in the middle of the reserve, we drive past a watering hole. A family of Elephants are making their way down to the water. It’s really amazing to see these huge animals in their natural surroundings. We stop for a spot of lunch in the reserve & see Ostrich & Warthogs while we are eating. We jump back into the car and continue driving for about an hour, before we come across a single Giraffe standing in the middle of the road. As we wait for it to move on we realize that this one has taken on the role of lollypop lady. 10 huge Giraffe walk out of the trees one by one crossing the road right in front of us and head into the trees on the other side. As we drive on a little further Dan stops the car and switches off the engine. It’s deadly silent. We can hear something in the bush about 80m away, and it’s something big. We wait for about 15 minutes before we get a glimpse of a rhino. It’s such a rewarding feeling when you do actually spot something. When the park closes we go back to our safari tent to do our own Braii, Pork chops & seasoned vegetables & Potatoes, we have Impala just strolling around watching us, it’s crazy. They make the most annoying noises at night though a cross between snoring & grunting pigs but it’s great to be so close to nature.