Wow!! We returned this past Friday from the beautiful country of South Africa and all of us were simply amazed throughout the trip. Thanks to the advice of many people in these forums, our trip went flawless. We were spoiled by the gifts inside Kruger.
Our first day inside the park and we saw all of the Big 5! With us having our 4 boys with (ages 7, 9, 11, and 12), this was an incredible start. In fact, it almost worried me they might get disappointed after such an incredible first. NOPE!! They went on to see all Big 5 AGAIN on the 3rd. In between, they saw a group of 5 Lions eating a Rhino. They saw 25 major specicies of animals, including a family of 6 CHEETAH playing together 12 meters from our safari vehicle. At one point, they saw 100 elephants in the Ravine outside Byamiti. At Talamati, they heard and saw a Lion come right up to the watering hole (as it roared before showing up -- letting us all know to get out there).
Thanks to a FANTASTIC guide and his assistant, the trip was unbelievably educational and constantly entertaining. Our family knows more about poop and footprints than ever imagined. Within a day, they were helping track the prints along the roadside. We went from 2 days at Byamiti to 2 days at Talamati (what a gorgeous drive from one to the other).
As we watched people self-drive, we were THANKFUL we didn't make that mistake. They would pull up, look around, see nothing, and leave. Our awesome guide would say, "Just wait. Give it a little time and something will come out to this watering hole." Sure enough, it did. You felt bad for the people self-driving. Why? At the hides, people would share what they saw during the day or ask each other about what was watching happening in front of us all at the hide. We could explain everything. Until we told them, they seemed lost as to what they were experiencing. We owe a lot to our guide and how he taught us (of course, we know we have MUCH MORE to learn in the future). A great guide makes a HUGE difference.
Kruger, thank you for treating us like KINGS!! Oh yea, I forgot to mention we saw 2 Leopards -- including one that jumped out in front of our Safari vehicle. Everyone remained calm and quiet and then he walked along the side past us. WHAT A RUSH!!
Next, we went onto a private game reserve where we continually got within 5 to 10 meters of the same animals we learned a ton about in Kruger. The order was perfect. Kruger first. Then a private reserve.
May your work be your playground. May life be your everything!
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