Evie visits South Africa
My First Safari

Evie. aged 12, was the winner of our Junior Travel Writer Competition in 2017, where we challenged our younger adventurers to write about their holiday experiences with Bushbaby. She travelled to South Africa with mum, dad and her two siblings and we think she’s done a great job with her fantastic write-up. So here, without further ado, and in her own words, is her take on a first family safari to South Africa:

South Africa was the best holiday of my life and I wouldn’t change the brilliant time I had there for the world.

My family was lucky enough to go to six different places (but all equally amazing) including: Cape Town, Hermanus, Franschhoek and three different places for safari. Every moment of being in South Africa I loved so much that I would do anything to go back…

When I arrived in the first place, Cape Town, I was surprisingly shocked at my surroundings because when I had thought of ‘Africa’ before, the first image that came up into my mind was large sandy plains and shanty towns. Cape Town was the exact opposite of that but in a good way. Whilst we were there for only four days we had so much choice in what to do and it was so hard as we wanted to do everything our mum had been told about by Bushbaby. In addition to a lot of fun activities such as holding real monkeys (I know right!!!), we went to Robben Island – a prison where Nelson Mandela was held captive – and had delicious meals by the V&A Waterfront. Cape Town was an amazing way to start the holiday and it just went uphill from there!

The next place we stayed was Hermanus and then Franschhoek. In Hermanus we did quite a few great things but as we only had a short time there our main activities were zip-wiring in a massive forest (which was so cool) and whale-watching which was the main attraction in Hermanus. We were so lucky because we saw whales spurting water and got to see them in their habitat. Whilst we were there, we also saw these really interesting animals (which I’d never seen before) when we were whale watching from the coast called Rock Dassies – they seemed to be everywhere! After a lovely two day stay in Hermanus, we drove to Franschhoek – the wine country. Franschhoek is a small and beautiful town which has so many lovely restaurants, wine estates and more importantly, chocolatiers! On our second day there, we spent the whole day on a wine tour. This meant we spent the whole day going to different wine estates so mum and dad could try different wines. Surprisingly, this wasn’t boring for Daisy, Ruby and I because it was really interesting learning about the different wines and which ones were nice and not so nice for mum and dad. The next morning we woke up early and set off for the airport to go on safari!

Fortunately, the flight wasn’t that long and after a drive from Johannesburg Airport we were at our first Safari place: Ant’s Nest and Ant’s Hill. The moment we got there we were filled with excitement because – at the time – it was night time and we couldn’t see anything but the next morning when we woke up in our luxurious beds and looked out of the window of our beautiful bush home, we were up dressed and ready to go on safari! All of our guides were very informative and we learnt so much. Although the driving safaris were terrific, the horse back safaris were something else altogether. Despite the fact that I had never rode a horse before, the horses there were so laid back, and trained so well that it was easy. I even learnt how to trot in three days!

After an amazingly brilliant time at Ant’s Nest and Ant’s Hill, we headed to our last place, Tuningi in the Madwike Game Reserve. Within 15 minutes of arriving we were off on a Game Drive. At first we saw a few interesting animals such as a Klipspringer, but then we saw something even better… two cheetahs who had just killed an antelope and were now eating it. We sat there transfixed by it for a couple of minutes and then drove off. Thinking it couldn’t get much better, from there we then saw two female lions and then some eight month old cubs. After a few minutes we drove off once more but then came back to see four six-week old lion cubs, which were probably the length of a ruler! Luckily for us, the safari ranger told us that this was the closest he had ever been to them as their mother wasn’t there. We were completely astounded by how cute they were and forgot that one day they’d be much larger and way more ferocious.

Over all, we had an amazing experience in such a beautiful country. I would like to thank Bushbaby especially for organising it.

About the author

Evie. aged 12, was the winner of our Junior Travel Writer Competition in 2017, where we challenged our younger adventurers to write about their holiday experiences with Bushbaby. She travelled to South Africa with mum, dad and her two siblings and we think she’s done a great job with her fantastic write-up.

Evie - Winner of Junior Travel Writing Competition 2017

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