Monday, May 24, 2010

Africa Safari: Arriving

One of the biggest highlights on my South Africa trip was the visit to the Kruger National Park.

Or most would call it: Safari.

safari sunset


A tourist attraction Africa has long been famous for.

giraffes
to see animals! in the wild! or be seen.


More correctly known, Kruger National Park is one of the biggest game reserves in South Africa.

And after three days in Cape Town, that's where we were heading to.

kitty eyes


If you see a green patch on where the arrow is pointing, that, my friend, would be the safari I'd be living in for the next three days. ;) *leaping in joy*


There are two ways to get to Kruger National Park:

One is to drive. Which of course would take you 24 hours on the wheel according to google maps, which meant realistically, it would take 3 whole days of driving.

So we opted for the second, more sane, choice, which was to fly.

plane


It wasn't anything fancy, bigger than a propeller, smaller than an Ikea truck.

But the ride would get us to our destination in two hours instead of two days.


And then we arrived in probably the most beautiful airport in the whole of South Africa.

kruger airport


Looks like a long house to me. A long house that houses a family of 9 generations.

(or known as "rumah panjang" - a sort of native house in Malaysia that's incredibly long and will be extended whenever a new family in the family is formed)


And because unlike a normal traveler, we don't travel like normal traveler do, we travel in style.

Instead of camping out in the park like most budget-limited backpacker would, we were sleeping in the Safari chalet/hut on the park.

thriple sharing chalet


Equipped with air-cond and attached toilet.

twin sharing safari chalet


My "neighbour" Pete insisted to be loyal to his brand and hung Nestle Drumstick banner outside his hut.

chalet with nestle drumstick banner


I could already imagine, having a glass of wine sitting outside the porch at night underneath the eerie moonlight in the middle of one of the biggest safari in the middle of no where in South Africa, this has got to be the life.

moon
Although it also made the whole werewolf myth much ghoulish to tell, thanks to the venue.


Instead of driving aimlessly around ourselves in our own rented cars, we were driven around by professional park guides in gateless jeeps.

jeep


You know how most safaris in other parts of South Africa have their jeeps fenced up for tourists because they would feed the animals, aka lions, through the jeep to lure the animals, well, not in Kruger Park.

It's a good move because then wild animals would not turn to human or jeep-looking creature to look for food, hence they would not be dependent on us, or attack us when hungry.

jeep full of people
imagine all the good food on the truck.


This gave us a lot of room and "visuals" to being in a safari. The feeling, I can tell you, is really overwhelming, and scary at times.

some animals


Though sometimes the closest animal that would get to our jeep was a possum looking animal that looked half like a rat and half a meerkat (think Timon from Lion's King movie).

standing up


Then on top of that, we have professional rangers driving these jeeps to look for animals for us!

shot bullet
playing with a rifle bullet by the ranger... woooo...


A service that's not cheap when you're forking out of your own pocket.

I was pretty hyped about the entire idea of living in the safari together with the animals.

Especially wild animals I don't get to see everyday, and definitely not in the wild.

Animals that otherwise would consider endangered, dangerous or too wild to be standing in the wild outdoor side by side.

It was all set. I packed my bags. Got on the plane. And ready for another three days of adventure.


The only problem, now, was that...

Well..

That morning, before I got on the plane to Kruger,

I flipped open a local English newspaper at the airport and this was the first article that was shoved at my face.

missing person in kruger


Read: "...Suspected poacher devoured by lions in Kruger National Park."

o.O........

First thing went through my mind:


"I'm F*cked."




kitty eyes


Don't even pull the puppy dog eyes on me, missy.

I have my eyes on you. *two fingers eye to eye flipping back and front gesture*

11 comments:

  1. wow that park looks awesome i bet it is amazing! Dont get to close to those big kittys or else nom nom nom :P

    you go on a lot of adventures and i read your blog for a long time now and was wondering do you have a job or are you rich?

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  2. umm.. did u shoot the lion with wide angle or telephoto lens?

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  3. best wwooo africa! i hope one day i can go there!

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  4. It is once in a lifetime experience to be able to go to a African safari. Show us more pictures of animals in the safari, would ya? :)

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  5. i am an indian but want to go there....all the best

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  6. I think someone stole your pictures/publish without asking.

    http://blog.sanriotown.com/brb1006:mymelody.com/

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  7. U got f*ck really? By whom? Wish I'm the one giving u the high ya!!

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  8. very good ..
    it's interesting for me, thank you .

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  9. Goodness me, that's one of the most beautiful place you've seen there :-)
    I had to go there someday!

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  10. That critter is so cute! It looks lost though, I hope it's family/tribe didn't abandon it. Aww

    Haha, I hope you're safe and don't get eaten.

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  11. What a memory.... That jeep which was full of food... all came from Malaysia... fresh! Hehehehehehe

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