Just over a year ago the hubby and I were taking the dog for a walk and were chatting about holidays. Seeing as 2017 was 10 years since I had fallen ill and our lives hadchanged quite dramatically we decided we wanted to celebrate. The decision was made to head to South Africa and see some animals.
As I am normally chief holiday organiser, I asked that he organise this one and keep it all as a surprise. All I knew was that we would fly into Johannesburg and fly out of Cape Town. Letting go of the reins was pretty hard, as I am a bit of an organisational freak, but I did it and it was the trip of a lifetime!! we chose to go at the end of August so that we would have the chance of seeing the most wildlife.
We spent one night in Joburg before we headed off on a 2 day Safari.
If you do find yourself in Joburg a must visit for a spot of dinner and beautiful SA sunset SA views is Marble.
Watch the sunset then go and eat some outstanding food cooked by the chefs on open flame.
It was an early start to head off on Safari. We used detour Africa and we were heading too was Pilanesberg National Park, one of the smaller safaris but as soon as we got through the gates we were surrounded by animals galore.
Water buffalo just chillin’ on the grass, hippos coming out and walking along the waters edge.
A large male elephant came out of nowhere and as we watched him come closer, our driver realised he was a little wound up and clearly in the mood for some funny business, so it was best to make a dash for it and head off in a different direction.
On arrival at the park lodge Bakubung Bush Lodge we were right on the edge of a watering hole, and the room we had had larger windows overlooking it. The room and surrounding area of the lodge was surprisingly really accessible, which made our stay far more comfortable.
that afternoon, after a bit of down time at the lodge, it was time to head out on our next adventure in a large Safari jeep to venture deeper into the park and see even more animals.
After half an hour of driving there was a call to be quite, as to our left were a group of lions, the male feeding within feet of us and the females on look out, it was amazing.
Then to our surprise we got stuck in an elephant traffic jam, it was like the scene out of the Jungle Book, where the elephants all walk in a row ‘1,2,3,4, keep it up 2, 3,4’
That evening was a bri in the centre of the park with fires, dancing and singing!!
Waking up the next morning to the sounds of the animals just outside our window was something else, watching all of the wildlife while we had breakfast was a breakfast to remember.
That day we made our way back with our driver through the park and stopped for lunch overlooking another watering hole. While stuffing our faces on ostrich burgers we were lucky enough for a herd of elephants to coming strolling behind us and up to the watering hole, playing, squirting water at one another, eating the salt rock left out for them, and then stamping on it before leaving so none of the other animals could enjoy!! Little buggers!!
Going on a Safari was something I had only ever dreamed of going and it really was a dream come true.
Accessibility for my Wheels – Pretty damn good
Joburg was pretty accessible, mind you the drop curbs were not so dropped!, but it was doable. There are a number of accessible hotels we stayed in the Crowne Plaza, which was walking distance from a large mall and in a good position for a 1 night stay.
I don’t have links or details of accessible safari due to not organising this trip, but it definitely was more accessible than I thought. I’m sure you can find companies that are fully accessible and suit your individual needs, as I was happy to be lifted we used detour Africa one of the main Safari organisers, they were super helpful and did all they could to make things as comfortable as possible for us. But we did not have an accessible vehicle, but a jeep which helped give some great views.
The Lodge itself was extremely accessible with full facilities in the accessible bedroom, a small ramp into the room and fully eauipprd wet room, which was a great surprise. A small note though if you have a front/third wheel to a manual chair this is a great help.
We had asked for an Accessible tour from the lodge to go further into the park, but it seemed wires got crossed and I had to be lifted onto a large Safari truck. A small inconvenience for a wonderful experience that I will never forget.
This really was a bucket list experience and I would recommend it to anyone. It really was part of a holiday of a lifetime.