My African adventure, from Chester to Cape Town

We recently sent the lovely Christine Lloyd, from our Chester city centre travel agency, to Cape Town. Here’s what she had to say on her return…

“What can I say. 'Cape Town'. I had an image in my mind before I visited and it truly surpassed this and more.

Chris South Africa

My vision of what it would be like was centred around Table Mountain, but there is so much more to this amazing city. A haven for foodies, it features everything from high-end restaurants to outstanding street food, all followed of course by the bustling, vibrant and safe nightlife.

From Cape Town a beautiful drive takes you to many coastal destinations such as Clifton and Camps Bay, Cape Point, Boulders Beach and the beautiful Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens.

Clifton Beach

I’d also suggest you make time for a stop at the Cape Winelands, a stunning area, as well as driving through Franschoek for its truly French feel.

Our next stop was Grootbos via Hermanus. Here we witnessed whales in the bay and again, a wonderful atmosphere. One thing I noticed was everywhere we visited was so clean, and all the locals took so much pride in where they lived and what they did.

Grootbos was ‘wow’; a beautiful private nature reserve and yet only two hours from Cape Town, a true retreat for flora and fauna enthusiasts who can witness the genuine conservation efforts which have been made here. This is another stunning area for whale spotting and stunning sunsets.

Following the Garden Route, we arrived at Knysna Heads and the waterfront, before heading down to Plettenberg Bay for our Ocean Safari. Sadly, we did not witness many whales, but plenty of seals – I guess that's nature for you!

Garden Route

Nearby there’s the perfect way to get up close to elephants at Knysna Elephants. Here you’ll take a short journey to the feeding station, with locally purchased fruit for a small donation, where you can enjoy an unforgettable elephant experience. Seeing and hearing what the sanctuary does to support these beautiful creatures brought a tear to my eye.

We then drove to our next destination: Shamwari, travelling through the Tsitsikamma National Park. This again showed that South Africa offers something for everyone - if you want excitement and a challenge this is the activity area for you. But with the world's biggest bungee jump – it’s not for the fainthearted! 

We arrived at Shamwari and I was in heaven. On our first day we almost saw all of the Big Five and I couldn’t believe how lucky we’d been. Again, think peaceful surroundings and that sums up this luxurious reserve, alongside being able to witness firsthand what Shamwari is continuing to do for their wildlife. From sundowners on an evening game, to excellent wining and dining and being able to share sightings with your own rangers at dinner… it was an experience I’ll never forget.” 

Shamwari game reserve

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