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Amazing wildlife, unique cultures, and spectacular landscapes. Share experiences of your Africa.



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AfricaBotswana Africa Family Adventure

HCWT 04.23.2012 21:52 0 0


Botswana Family Adventure
Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park

    The Kalahari in Africa reveals itself to only those who seek with a true heart… I took my 13-year-old son Caleb to the Kalahari Desert not realizing that this trip would be such a memorable journey. The exotic animals and plants we went to see didn’t compare with our encounters with the Bushmen that call this unspoiled arid vastness home.

 Caleb and I saw the tall Secretary bird, the Kori bustard and Whitebacked and Lappetfaced vultures.

The magnificent gemsbok are spotted in the Park.

The magnificent gemsbok are spotted in the Park.

There were also magnificent gemsbok, ostriches, playful springbok, kudo, a big herd of Blue wildebeest with their babies, and also several sly jackals.

    We were awakened at sunrise with the sky now a canvas of colors and swirls. Animals made their way to the watering holes and hunted for breakfast. Birds sang and squawked their disenchantment with our intrusion. We spotted a vicious looking hyena stalking and circling a herd. The hyena’s smaller hind legs and large muscular front legs are well designed for dragging carcasses. As Caleb and I watched, the brown hyena brought down a large gemsbok calf. On this second trek into the park we sat for quite a while watching the dance of death when a thundering dazzle of zebras stormed past us.

The Bushmen have been eking out an existence on the subcontinent  for many thousands of years.

The Bushmen have been eking out an existence on the subcontinent for many thousands of years.

    Farther down the dirt path, we saw a large herd of Blue wildebeest. These creatures are called the junk food of the African continent because everything preys on them. We saw a lumbering black-maned lion, which many visitors don’t get the opportunity to see.

    On the edge of the Kgalagadi Park, we saw Bushmen living on small plots of land allocated to them in 1997. These natives live primarily in Botswana and nearby Namibia, although archaeological traces all over the southern parts of the continent show that their presence go back many thousands of years. They speak a language called Nama, and they were as eager to get to know us as we were them. Ostrich eggs serve the Bushmen as a source of moisture and protein and they also use the eggs to make beautiful crafts. One engaging woman engraved an ostrich egg for us and used ostrich eggshell beads and leather to make Caleb a unique bracelet that he wears daily.


Read more about the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park

More adventures...

South Africa - Back to my Homeland  

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AfricaThe Wilds of Tanzania - family travel adventure ideas

HCWT 02.07.2012 17:34 0 0


Lion King and friends

     Your family is in for a treat when you discover the wilds of Tanzania.  This tented safari takes you through Tarangire National Park with large populations of wildlife -- lion, leopard, buffalo, wild dog, cheetah, and elephant.  
    Then back in your custom 4-wd (roof hatches and ample windows) and you’re off to explore the dry and rugged landscape of the Lake Eyasi area, where you’ll encounter the Hadza tribe and can learn of their ancient culture.  
    You can see the black-maned lion, endangered black rhino, wildebeest, zebra, elephant, hippo, jackal and hyena along with an assortment of bird life at Ngorongoro Crater.  There are also chance sightings of the Masai herdsmen tending their cattle.
    Visit Olduvai Gorge, famous for the discovered remains of Homo Erectus; view the huge herds of wildebeest and zebra in the impressive wildlife sanctuary, Serengeti.
    Your evenings will be spent in large walk-in tents, dining on wonderfully prepared meals and sharing the day’s adventures around the campfire.
Ultimate Africa offers a variety of itineraries to see Africa.


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AfricaSouth Africa - A journey back home.

HCWT 01.27.2012 17:43 0 0

The Fairest Cape

    After a day of rest, we piled into the car and headed for one of Cape Town’s most famous southeasterly suburbs, the naval base of Simon’s Town. Here we visited the small markets that have cropped up all over South Africa in the last 10-15 years. Hundreds of these markets offer such items as wooden and stone carvings, statues, salad spoons, and chess sets along with hand-dyed fabrics; wire, metal and bead objects; and T-shirts. This is shopping at its cheapest if you’re using dollars or Sterling. The boys had great fun spending their pocket money on inexpensive, but not tacky, ethnic goodies.
    Near Simon’s Town is Boulders Beach, where a colony of African Penguins has settled in over the last 20 years. You can view the penguin colony from the boardwalk, or walk down to the small beach where you can climb the boulders and sit closer to the birds.
    A good day trip from Cape Town was to Cape Point the most southwesterly point in Africa, and near both the Atlantic and Indian oceans. Actually, Cape Agulhas, a bit farther south, is where the two oceans merge. Cape Point is worth a visit for its romance, its beauty, and its baboons. The baboons are fun to watch, but they do steal and they can bite, so you have to be wary of them. We celebrated my husband Andrew’s birthday over lunch at the Two Oceans Restaurant, which affords stunning views all around. It also offers a varied menu including some typical South African dishes. On the way home, we stopped at several ever-present roadside markets to buy carvings, pottery, and cool bush hats for the boys.
    We enjoyed a couple of good beach days at Fish Hoek, which offers a wide sandy beach with safe swimming for children, two restaurants (where we sipped G&Ts while watching the boys play on the sand), and a large car park. Like most beaches down the eastern side of the Cape Peninsula, Fish Hoek is hot and sunny in the morning, but can become quite windy in the afternoon. The western side of the peninsula is less windy, but the Atlantic Ocean is almost too cold for swimming. If you want to swim at the beach, plan mornings at the beach and afternoons sightseeing.

Enjoy more of Marjie's visit back home to South Africa at Back to My Homeland.

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Where is Alyx?

Alyx is near the 10,677-ft elevation of this Ski Resort offering awesome views and super ski slopes. Where is she? Click here to find out.

Tips, Tricks & Tactics

Camping the Great Outdoors
...ideas to consider

   "Since that first camping trip, all of our trips have been only partially planned, with itineraries set more as ideas than as fixed schedules.  We usually take each day one at a time, and do whatever feels right for that particular day.  Slowing down to smell the roses has never been so sweet as when we travel with our two kids!"  -- David, Westminster, MD

 Take it from David, there's a time to plan and a time to take one day at a time.


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