The journey began at the Saxon Hotel where we enjoyed superior service and luxury, just what you need after a long transatlantic flight. After an early morning breakfast and a quick transfer to the Federal Air Lounge we soon found ourselves buzzing along at altitude heading towards the Sabi Sands.
Londolozi is world famous for leopard, but we were treated to some of the finest hospitality under the African sun. The game was plentiful to say the least, wild dog on our first afternoon, cheetah on the airstrip and herds of elephants in view from the camp. It was also the added touches of a craft beer tasting at sunset, the marvelous bush breakfast in the warmth of the winter sun that were greatly appreciated. Nothing was too much, even a round of golf was arranged in between game drives at the local course in Skukuza. Sitting in the Varty boma on our last evening being thoroughly entertained by talented guides by day and ambitious rock stars at night. It’s tough to leave a place that creates such everlasting memories and I know a few tears were shed.
A short hop down to Cape Town and we were soon settling in to our villa overlooking the vibrant Camps Bay scene. The African Penguin colony at Boulders Beach provided an effective, albeit short lived, distraction from the highlight of the day which was the fear-confronting experience of shark cage diving. The Apex Shark Expeditions team were exceptional and met every possible expectation; their passionnd their professionalism for what they do and how they do it is certainly a benchmark for the industry. We observed several different sharks throughout the afternoon satisfying our curiosity for these deadly predators. The day ended with an almighty breach by an enormous shark that resulted in a roar of cheers by the awestruck team.
Table Mountain and Cape Point on a windless sunny day is simply hard to beat. Sensational meals at The Test Kitchen, Bistrot Bizerca and La Petite Ferme brought rightful recognition to the mouth-watering meals that the chefs created. No trip is complete without a guided trip to the wine lands of Franschhoek to taste some of South Africa’s finest. Wine maker Gareth Hardres-Williams our, extremely knowledgeable guide for the day, chose some fantastic vineyards and kept us entertained with his humor and stories of his life as a game ranger.
Its amazing how many life-changing experiences can be accumulated in just eight short days. That is what Africa is all about, memories that will last a lifetime and stories that will grow by the day.
We were extremely fortunate to see a pack of wild dogs on our first afternoon. We spent some time trying to track them so it was really rewarding to find them and watch their natural behavior and eventually seeing them on an impala kill.
There is a magical moment that happens when you invite people to get off the vehicle and to walk amongst a journey of giraffe. Their faces start with a fascinating look of disbelief morphing into a child like gleam on Christmas morning. It really is a wonderful experience and a allows one to experience just how tall these giants are.
It is always good to give animals their space and watch stories unfold. We watched this mother leopard looking for her cub. Patiently waiting and respecting her pursuit, we were rewarded a wonderful scene of a the cub running towards his mother and watching them reunite and share the special moment with them.
Our ranger and tracker team Tom and Jerry, did an outstanding job using their skills to track and find these magnificent males. To be sitting so close in an open vehicle next to these super predators is an experience that makes the long distance travel to get to Africa completely worth it.
World class guide,Tom Imrie has been at Londolozi for the last 10 years. Formerly a golf pro, he really made the trip for us with a round of golf alongside hippos, giraffe and the green trimming warthogs. The golf course at Skukuza, who’s scorecard sports an amazing image of a lioness eating a buffalo on the fairway is a wonderful experience that Tom managed to squeeze in between our morning and afternoon safari.
Its always best to get up early to enjoy the spectacular views from the cable car on Table Mountain.
Rock Hyrax enjoying the view from the top of Table Mountain. These cute little animals spend their mornings basking in the sun much to all the photographers delight.
These comical birds are easily seen at Boulders Beach and is a popular spot for most tourists to visit. What people don’t realize is there are less than 20 000 African Penguins remaining in South Africa.
We had a phenomenal shark cage diving experience with Apex. The team were outstanding and went out of their way to make sure we had the best time. A four meter great white breaching with with such speed and ferocity is something we will never forget.
A special thanks to Jimi Partington from the Apex team who shared his incredible sequence of images with us.
Seeing great whites in action like this is a thrilling experience. Add that to the natural predations which take place around Seal Island and spending time underwater watching them glide effortlessly through the frigid Cape Water is an absolute must if you visit Cape Town.
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Contact Mammoth Safaris
+27 78 152 9479
No.35 Viljoenshoop Rd
Elgin, Western Cape, South Africa