Growing up, my parents would take us touring to some or other part of South Africa or a neighbouring African country. We would travel by road and camp at various spots along the way. This has instilled in me a huge appreciation for South Africa and Africa and all that this incredible part of the world has to offer. I grew up in a beautiful, historical Karoo town called Graaff-Reinet, surrounded by national parks and private reserves as well as working livestock farms. I have loved the outdoors since I can remember. I would go mountain biking now and then early in the morning and race next to a herd of playful gemsbok (oryx) or red hartebeest. My family would take our boat out on the Nqeba Dam on weekends for an afternoon on the water under the blazing Karoo sun.
After finishing school and a year living in the UK and travelling through Europe, I moved to Stellenbosch where I also attended university. I spent five years there and absolutely fell in love with the Cape Winelands. I have since moved to Cape Town. This city is just a hub for adventure, culture and art. I spend most of my free time at the beach – either at Kogel Bay or the beautiful coastal town of Betty’s Bay – often heading out on the kayak, or hiking some of the many trails Cape Town and its surrounds has to offer.
Where have I travelled
I have travelled across South Africa extensively, from Namaqualand and the Cederberg, to Cape Town, the Garden Route, Eastern Cape and kwaZulu-Natal’s South and North Coasts. I’ve been snorkelling in Kosi Bay and Cape Vidal, and visited the Panorama Route, Kruger, Madikwe, Johannesburg, and so much more. I have rafted down the Orange River and camped on its riverbed, I have 4x4ed through the Sani Pass and Richtersveld. I have witnessed the Augrabies Falls in flood. I feel so blessed to be living in this beautiful country with so much to offer.
Apart from South Africa, I have travelled to Namibia, the Kgaligadi Transfrontier National Park in Botswana, and to Mozambique’s coast - a personal favourite. Mozambique is really something special. The culture is beautiful and colourful. A highlight of my travels there was sea kayaking off the coast of Xai Xai and spotting sea turtles for the first time. I also travelled to various countries in Europe, my favourites being Ireland, France and Turkey.
What I love about Africa
Africa is diverse. It is bold, and it is strong. It is - in a sense - still wild. It is waking up to the call of the cicadas and doves on summer mornings where it is already blazing hot outside. I love Africa first and foremost because it is my home. And because of it’s potential for adventure.
My best African Travel advice
Expect the unexpected: this is Africa and she lives by the beat of her own drum. Look out the window during long drives and appreciate the differences, the people and the scenery. Speak to a local travel agent with travel experience for the best advice. Ask questions and listen to the stories of the locals. Make time to relax to avoid over-excursion while travelling. Stay hydrated and use sunscreen! But, most importantly, come back again! There’s always more to see.
My recent travels
I’ve travelled to a number of South African destinations including the Kruger National Park and Madikwe Game Reserve. These two incredible safari destinations never disappoint, with superb game viewing and beautiful lodges. It was particularly exhilarating to speed through the bush following a pack of wild dog. Spotting my first leopard up close was unforgettable of course. I recently travelled to Botswana’s Okavango Delta and Chobe National Park; saw Victoria Falls in full flood, and visited Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park. I then headed back to Botswana to Nxai Pan National Park, the Central Kalahari Game Reserve, and the Kwando and Kwara Concessions in the Delta.
Where I’d love to go next
Everywhere. But If I had to narrow it down, I would have to say Uganda, Tanzania, northern Mozambique, Reunion Islands, Madagascar and Malawi. I would also love to see Canada, Slovenia, and Argentina.