When I reflect on my trip to South Africa, I am filled with feelings of being grateful and incredibly happy. The country of South Africa, which too frequently is associated with being overly dangerous, is filled with so many exceptionally
generous and friendly people.
After flying in to Johannesburg, we travelled to Nelspruit and spent three days in Kruger National Park. We were advised that three days in the park would feel like three weeks of relaxation, but truly it took me until the last day to fully understand. Kruger National Park is magical.
Our days were spent waking up and heading out for a morning safari, relaxing in the early afternoon while observing hippos at a nearby watering hole, and then leaving again for an evening safari. The safaris were planned around the time the animals were most active, so the morning safaris started around 6:30am and the evening safaris concluded by 9:00pm. One of the most fascinating parts was watching how our guides interacted with the wildlife; not only were they incredibly respectful, but they were able to read the animals’ behavior in order to determine how close we could get.
In a total contrast to the brown hues and relaxed atmosphere of Kruger National Park, Cape Town was a vibrant and energetic city. Filled with stunning landscapes, spectacular hiking, and inspiring art, there was never a dull moment.
Some activities to note: Chapman’s Peak Drive, hiking Lions Head, watching the sunset from atop Signal Hill, visiting the stunning Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, having afternoon tea at the Silo Hotel, and –of course- hiking Table Mountain.
In addition, Cape Town is a foodies delight. From the abundance of varying restaurants to the incredible Saturday market at the Old Biscuit Mill, we were constantly enthralled. (For anyone visiting Cape Town, I strongly recommend
visiting The Old Biscuit Mill market on a Saturday, as the extraordinary food options will not disappoint).
Overall, I am so incredibly grateful for my trip to South Africa. In a country where experiences are prioritized over material goods, and wildlife is nurtured and respected, I was reminded of the beauty of our world.