We arrived in joberg after our 10 hour flight brimming with excitement on my behalf and anticipation on SO's. This was my 3rd trip but SO's 1st.
Having spent 10 months listening to me how amazing this place was and having to drag me off the forum we were now near our destination.....
Our first bit of luck came when they hadnt got the car we booked....instead we got the next model up, a seven seater that was much higher, great for sightseeing.
After nearly 5 hours including a food shop in nelspruit we approached the bridge at malelane, somehow as you drive onto the bridge the world behind dissapears and all you think about is what will be.
We got out on the bridge took in the air and sounds, got the cameras ready and then got to the gate. We bought a guide book from the counter, only later to find it hadnt got all the animal and bird pics at the back to tick off your sightings and had to eventually buy a better one in berg-en-dahl
Our first sighting a mongoose, to far away to identify accurately and too quick for a photo but I was already smiling
We went straight to camp, not seeing much on the way, booked in, pitched the tent by the fence and headed out on the matjulu loop, where we spotted some southern ground hornbills and a couple of big elliphants before deciding to head back to camp and relax for tomorrow.
We visited the dam and saw our first rhino of the trip on the other side of the water.
and then waited for the sun to dissapear.
That night we were visited at the fence by a wary and shy hyena and we were soon asleep.
We were up and out as the gate opened on our way to the gardenia hide, we stopped for a while to watch the sun rise on what we hoped would be a lucky day.
We got out at the hide and while watching the various birds we could hear lions
. What else can you do? we set of to see if we could find them.
We arrived on the s114 and were nicely told by a gentleman of 3 lions in the grass further up the road, we arrived and they were still there
with only one other car there, we sat and watched as impala approached and then detored away, elliphants came close and then dissapeared but the lions sat still untill... another car appeared and the gentleman leaned out of his car :huh: straight away one lion got up and left. At this point we decided to leave and as I drove past I explained to the man his wrong doing and why the lion left so soon after he arrived, my SO was a little embarrassed (though later on in the trip she became the one who wished to tell everyone which laws they were breaking)