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8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

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Robbert
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8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Robbert » Sun May 17, 2015 11:13 pm

Well where shall I start...first let us introduce ourselves.
We, Ina and Rob are from Holland (aka The Netherlands) and started to visit South Africa in 1997 and have been back to SA almost every year, sometimes even twice a year. (did I say we are addicted to South(ern) Africa...? :) )
This year we were able to take a leave of 6 weeks (the years before 2015, travelling for 4 weeks was the max.) because we both are, lets call it, "retired" or something like that....

Lets start!

At the 25th of Februari our neighbour ringed our doorbell at 6.15 AM and asked: Are you ready? Yes, we are!
So within 10 minutes we were on our way to Schiphol airport leaving our cat and the tulips at home.

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On our way to the airport we picked up two good friends, they were flying to Cuba at almost the same time as we were leaving for Jo-burg, so the first part of our trip was very economic 8).
Arriving at Schiphol we noticed the temperature at that moment -2 degrees Celcius brrrrrr! We can't wait to be "back" in Jo-burg!

To be continued...
Last edited by Robbert on Mon May 18, 2015 8:40 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Award Public Sighting of the Month December 2006

8 parks in 6 weeks, two SA addicts from Holland ( from Kalahari to Wilderness) viewtopic.php?f=27&t=85752&start=270

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by billyf » Mon May 18, 2015 5:17 am

I'll join you here in South Africa on this trip = -2 at Schiphol sounds a bit chilly to me :D

Looking forward to this trip with you :popcorn: :popcorn:
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Mon May 18, 2015 5:21 am

Ina and Rob, I wish you a really wonderful time. I look forward to hearing your adventures. :D

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Grantmissy » Mon May 18, 2015 7:34 am

I also wish you a wonderful trip :thumbs_up: I am looking forward reading more and seeing :cam: .

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by pamelajane » Mon May 18, 2015 9:07 am

:D This sounds like it will be a great TR :thumbs_up:

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Robbert » Mon May 18, 2015 11:44 am

Hi,

Thank you all for your encouraging words! :gflower:
Lets tease you a little bit....


"Are you watching?"

Image

Best regards,

Rob
Award Public Sighting of the Month December 2006

8 parks in 6 weeks, two SA addicts from Holland ( from Kalahari to Wilderness) viewtopic.php?f=27&t=85752&start=270

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by SurfCindy » Mon May 18, 2015 1:59 pm

6 weeks :mrgreen: :mrgreen: never mind 8 parks :mrgreen: :mrgreen: WOW sounds like an amazing trip, so definitely hopping on board to hear/read all about your adventures.

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Robbert » Mon May 18, 2015 6:46 pm

Back again!

At Schiphol we had a very speedy check-in of our luggage and passport control so plenty of time left to look a bit around and have a cup of coffee. At the coffee corner there was a nice display with some of the famous Dutch Delft's Blauw porcelain. One of the pieces was a very nice copy of Dick Bruna's Nijntje.

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Slowly we walked to the waitingroom at the gate and there was our "9th" national park although not a South African one... our plane, a Boeing 777-300 was baptised "Nationaal Park Wolong". Wolong National Park is known for the protection of the Panda.

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Looking at the number of people waiting, things looked very promising....after boarding and take off we were able to take two extra seats. Good for us, paying for economy class, sitting like business class passengers (except for the meals :) )
Our flight departed exactly on time and was very comfortable. We arrived at Jo-burg about half an hour earlier.

Flying during daytime gives oportunities to shoot some nice pictures:

Les Alpes Maritimes in the distance, with snow on top
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Flying over the Mediterranean:
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Sahara Desert (1)
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Sahara Desert (2)
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Sunset over Central Africa (1)
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Sunset over Central Africa (2)
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At OR Tambo immigration office everthing went very swift and after a few minutes our luggage was already on the belt so off to Bidvest to collect our rental car. At Bidvest it was also very quiet, within a quarter of an hour we were sitting in an almost brand new Toyota Corolla, our "home" for almost 6 weeks.
A short drive took us to our final destination for that day, the Road Lodge hotel. We had booked a room in advance so we could almost feel our beds....
While I was looking for a good spot to park our car Ina went to the reception to get the message: "Sorry mam, we gave your room to somebody else because you were not showing up in time.... :( But they never told us that we had to be at the hotel before 10.00 pm (afterwards, at home, in the "small letters", we read about this policy on the website).
Luckely the people of Road Lodge phoned to the Sun 1 hotel next door and made a reservation for a room.
At the Sun 1 hotel I had to carry all our luggage up to the 3rd floor, no elevator or porter available...and Ina was still handicapped because she was operated two weeks before to solve the carpal tunnel syndrome in her right hand... :( :redface:
A bit of a disappointment after a pleasant trip, well at least we had a place to sleep...if the other guests would be quiet....:x

To be continued...
Last edited by Robbert on Mon May 18, 2015 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Award Public Sighting of the Month December 2006

8 parks in 6 weeks, two SA addicts from Holland ( from Kalahari to Wilderness) viewtopic.php?f=27&t=85752&start=270

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Jan van Wyk » Mon May 18, 2015 6:56 pm

I was waiting for your TR :dance: :dance: ..

Always good to see SA through the eyes of our loyal visitors who need some sunshine .... :hmz: and enjoy our wonderful parks!!

Superb start Rob......the packing and waiting is always the best and love the shots in the sky!!

If that Lion is a teaser it will be another brilliant TR!! :thumbs_up:

On board all the way :dance: :dance:

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by hilda » Tue May 19, 2015 4:18 am

Wow Robbert! Eight Parks in six weeks sounds wonderful! Great start to your trip report! Can't wait to read all about it! :dance: :dance:
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Tue May 19, 2015 5:12 am

What beautiful pictures. 8)

What a pity about the room. I have had a similar experience. It is most frustrating, as travelers are not always in charge of their destiny.

:popcorn:
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Robbert » Tue May 19, 2015 6:33 pm

Thank you all for being on board, the trip goes on!

Next day, at 9 o'clock, it is already 21 degrees Celsius. What a difference compared to yesterday morning!
After a tasteful breakfast at the Road Lodge Hotel we are on our way to our friends who are living on a farm near Kathu.
Our first coffee stop is in "Potch" where we enjoy a nice cappuccino at Mug & Bean. On we go to Klerksdorp, Ottosdal, Delaryville and from here straight on to Vryburg (no power due to load shedding so all the robots were down and the shops dark), Kuruman and finally Kathu!

At entrance of the farm:
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At 17.00h we arrive at our friends who are waiting for us with rooibos tea, homemade cheese cake and a hearty pie, Yummie!!!
Dark clouds at sunset and lightning in the distance. Later at night we listen to the rain, the first since December. Once again we Dutchies prove to be very reliable rainmakers :D (please enquire for our tariffs, discount is possible :lol: :lol: )

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Next morning we go for a walk with the two dogs Berta and Lena.

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It's already quite hot. Lena is chasing the blesbok (no pics, sorry :( ).
The cows are very curious but keep their distance, safely behind the "car".

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Back home the dogs are exhausted and stay on the stoep in the shade for the next four hours.
In the meantime we pack our camping gear (we leave it with our friends) and afterwards we sit on the stoep enjoying the silence, birds and the wind in the acacia trees.

Female Red-backed Shrike
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Time to test the new Canon 100-400 mkII lens for close-up capabilities. It doesn't disappoint, next time the macrolens will stay at home. Some examples (don't ask for the names of the insects...feel free to provide them):

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To be continued.....
Last edited by Robbert on Wed May 20, 2015 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Award Public Sighting of the Month December 2006

8 parks in 6 weeks, two SA addicts from Holland ( from Kalahari to Wilderness) viewtopic.php?f=27&t=85752&start=270

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Jan van Wyk » Tue May 19, 2015 6:49 pm

Love the built up to your report Rob :clap: :clap:

Two total different wolds from your home to the kalagadi sands between your toes :think:

Love the close ups and yip it is good to practice for the KTP action shots... :hmz:

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Goronta » Tue May 19, 2015 6:58 pm

I'm on board Robbert
Nice start :thumbs_up: .I know that feeling ,already at the airport we feel far away :dance:
Nice pictures :clap: :clap:
I will read your next episode from Ams tomorrow :wink:
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Punda Maria : May 1st-2nd
Pafuri : May 3rd -6th
Mopani : May 7th

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Robbert
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Re: 8 parks in 6 weeks, 2 SA addicts from Holland (from Kalahari to Wilderness)

Unread post by Robbert » Tue May 19, 2015 8:43 pm

Hi Goronta,

Take your raincoat, warm pull-over and umbrella with you, it's cold and rainy over here! Your always welcome to drink a cup of coffee or fresh rooibos tea at our place :)

Best regards,

Rob and Ina
Award Public Sighting of the Month December 2006

8 parks in 6 weeks, two SA addicts from Holland ( from Kalahari to Wilderness) viewtopic.php?f=27&t=85752&start=270


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