“SA Farmers fingered in lion smuggling” – “The Times”

Since yesterday there have been articles in the news regarding the issue of South African Farmers involved in lion smuggling from Botswana as well as canned hunting. This is not new. The stories have been circulating for many many years, yet, nothing gets done about it. Any person whom can think for themselves, must think, when they visit one of the numerous Lion parks which have jumped up all over Limpopo and North West, “where do the cubs go”. Also, why is that you see a cub for a few months and then…..gone. When asked, and I have asked, you get a vague answer. I am not saying each and every Lion Park owner is a smuggler or involved in canned hunting etc. However, what I am saying, some of you cant get so massively rich from just having a few visitors to your Lion Park or Centre. And that is my point of view and I stick by it. Hence I refuse to visit any one of the numerous ‘come pet a lion cub” centre’s.

I do not know what the solution is, as money talks here, but the day that we as humans think only of money and getting it off our heritage in Africa, is not only disgusting but extremely sad.

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UGANDA – A TOURSIT DESTINATION OF CHOICE

Uganda is a fast growing tourist destination due to its natural endowment as a country gifted by nature, stability and hospitable people. Uganda weaves its spell the moment you set you feet on its soil.

Ecologically, Uganda is where East African savannah meets the West African jungle. Where else, but in this lush country can one watch lions prowl the open plains in the morning and track chimpanzees through the rainforest in the same afternoon.
But the most humble experience of course is setting off into the misty mountains to stare deep into the eyes of the mountain gorilla. And of course in Uganda , you have a checklist of a 1000 different bird species. Imagine that.

When visiting Uganda, you should visit:
• Bwindi Impenetrable National Park – this ancient rainforest is home to about half of the world’s mountain gorilla and looking into the eyes of these gentle giants is most probably the most exciting and emotional experience you will ever have on an African Safari.
• Kibale National Park – Kibale is home to 13 primate species and here you have the opportunity to track the chimps and they are a joy to watch
• Kidepo Valley National Park – this is one of Africa’s last great wilderness areas and predators are well represented..so this is the place for lions. While the game viewing is excellent, it is the sense of quiet isolation that set this place apart from others and as yet, undiscovered by the mass safari lovers.

Whether you are a first time safari-goer or a seasoned African traveller, Uganda with its unique blend of forest and savannah is simply dazzling.

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Groot Marico

I have had a fascination with the Groot Marico (Groot meaning Great), since I read  Herman Charles  Bosman’s short stories about Oom Schalk Lourens and Krisjan Lemmer, the biggest liar in the Bushveld.  I still love the stories and still read them from time to time.  I still laugh and  feel sad at times and touch the pages of the book when I read something which is written heart wrenching beautiful.

A few years ago, I got my chance to travel through the Groot Marico and the very first thing I saw was a massive field of yellow sunflowers with the faces turned to the sun.  And that was my introduction to the Groot Marico.  And it seems everything is bigger in the Groot Marico.  The stories, the river, the flowers and of course the huge Groot Marico Moon.  As Herman Charles Bosman said:

“I have seen the moon in other places besides the Marico. But it is not the same there. 

It does strange things to you, the Marico moon, and in your heart are wild and fragrant fancies, and your thoughts go very far away.”

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A travel addict

I am what they call a travel addict.  However, not just anywhere.  I used to travel to different parts of the world – “overseas”, Europe and America, South America, etc.  And then about 12 years ago, other half just about force me to go with to Namibia for a 6 week trip.  Just the two of us.  Travelling at our leisure from one place to another, with no pre planning.  It was the best holiday ever.  

And well, I got hooked.  And on what you may ask?  Well, on Africa of course.  I live in South Africa, but like many South Africans, I thought I have to travel “overseas”.  That is the the in thing to do.  And I was not interested in travelling around Africa or even around my own country.  This trip however change it for me forever.  

We started travelling through South Africa and in between going to Botswana for a little look see.  And wham! I was hooked for ever.  Slowly we ventured into other Africa countries.  Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, etc.  And our love affair started with this beautiful continent of ours.  

Call me narrow minded, but I have not been on another “overseas” holiday since.  I travel exclusively in Africa and to be honest I cannot get my fill.  Yes, we have tremendous problems in Africa, but which other continent can beat us for being as wild and beautiful as our queen, Africa

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Ghana – a destination to consider

AKWAABA is an expression you will hear a number of times during your stay in Ghana.  AKWAABA meaning, “you are welcome”.
And you will feel welcome, in this Land of sunshine.  The people here have been labelled with “being the friendliest”  in Africa.

Here you will find wonderful white sandy tropical beaches, a country with a rich heritage,  wildlife areas of interest. 

And of course the sun.

Ghana is nestled in between from the South by the Atlantic Ocean, on the West Cote d’Ivoire, the East by Togo and North, Burkina Faso, making this a tropical country.  Ghana has a estimated population of 20 million.

Since the climate is warm and tropical throughout most of the year, remember to take light clothing when you visit Ghana.  There are also no restrictions on what women may wear.

Ghana is any nature lover’s dream, with it sunny climate, it offers wildlife ranging from elephants to monkeys, crocodiles to turtles and this country is an absolute must for the birders out there as well as the butterfly enthusiasts.

This country is well worth a visit.