By: Emma Reguer
In 2019, at the age of 15, I traveled to South Africa to visit my family. It was my first time on a plane. I went with my parents, brother, sister and friends of my parents for 10 days in a rental house. We left home very early by car with our luggage to go to Rennes train station and then take the train to Paris Charles de Gaulle airport.
After a 12-hour flight, we arrived in Pretoria, the capital of South Africa, and then took a 2-hour taxi to a small, not-so-known town in the south of South Africa.
Here’s a preview of our holiday home in Cape Town, where we’ll be staying for the next few days. The trip was very exhausting after 20 hours of transportation, so we took the opportunity to rest and enjoy the beautiful landscapes around our house, to walk.
The first day we went to visit a gigantic city that has many neighborhoods with vertiginous skyscrapers. The most famous and beautiful neighborhood in Johannesburg is undoubtedly Soweto. We discovered the historic neighborhood where Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu lived, with a guide because its history was very rich and the explanations very interesting. The Nelson Mandela Museum was amazing to visit and a great way to learn about his life and struggle.
The second day we spend the whole day making the most of the Kruger National Park, it is one of the largest nature reserves in Africa. I think the safari in the park was the best activity I could do during this trip. I saw the “Big Five” as the locals call them, they are the five most famous animals in the jungle: lions, elephants, rhinos, leopards and buffaloes. We visited this beautiful place with an experienced guide who knew the habits and behavior of the animals.
On the third day we went for a walk and visited the surroundings of our house. Towards the afternoon we went to the Orlando towers where we could do bungee jumping, at the end of the day we went swimming in a lake near our house.
On the fourth day we went out to discover the Blyde River Canyon, it is the third largest canyon in the world with its magnificent cliffs, forests and perfect waterfalls to cool off. For 4 hours we walked under a significant gap but it was incredible. The landscapes were simply beautiful and natural. In the afternoon we went to visit the closest town to the canyon, Graskop and on the way we could see two magnificent waterfalls, the Lisbon Falls and the Berlin Falls.
On the sixth and seventh day we visited the Madikwe reserve doing safaris and discovering animals that we had never seen before. We stayed to sleep in wooden cabins in the trees to be able to enjoy the two days. Madikwe Private Reserve is also much more confidential and preserved.
By the eighth day we left all the safaris and were able to return to civilization visiting a very dynamic and modern city, Port Elizabeth, which marks the entrance to the superb garden route. We discover the heritage and dynamics of the city, but also many famous buildings. We even got to see the sea and the city beach for the first time.
On the ninth day we visited the garden route where we were able to see blue whales and sharks, as well as some seals. We also did kitesurfing and surfing on the beaches of Hermanus.
On the tenth day, we rested on the beach from the very long days but also to get in shape to catch our plane which was at 2 pm
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