Kruger National Park … almost

Seems like it’s taken us days to get to Kruger … probably because it HAS taken us days to get there. We’re at Tzaneen having fish & chips for lunch and taking shelter from the rain. A reminder that we’re still in the tropics.

Our day of obstacles improved yesterday afternoon – decent roads, a visit to a shopping centre in Louis Trichard for essential supplies (bananas for Greg) and to replace the crappy folding chairs we bought barely a week ago and which have already broken. While we were in the checkout queue I spotted 2 copies of Simon Bryant’s first cookbook, Vegies. Simon is my favourite Adelaide chef. He used to be the Executive Chef at the Adelaide International Hilton, but now has his own food business, doing things ranging from cooking his version of Asian street food around Adelaide & at Fork on the Road food truck events, to spending this week cooking in San Francisco for the G’day USA/Australia Week. He also has an excellent range of lentils and legumes, sourced from around South Australia which is marketed under the ‘dirt(y) inc’ brand. Seems like he and his ‘people’ hasn’t realised that his book was available in South Africa – I’m going to watch out for it and give a tally at the end of the trip.

We found another nature reserve to camp in last night – the Ben Lavin Nature Reserve, a few kms south of Louis Trichard. Not many people there, but thankfully not as deserted as the ‘Marie Celeste Campground’ as we are now calling the┬áNwanedi Game Reserve. Nice camping area and what they call on-site tents, but which are actually solid constructions with thatch/canvas roofs. The reserve was originally farmland, but was donated to the Wildlife Society by Ben Lavin’s widow in the 1970s. More info here, with some great photos. We didn’t see any wildlife while we were there, but then, we didn’t really go looking for it.

And so we get ever closer to Kruger. Should get there this afternoon, hopefully.

I’ve got the pox! No, not really, but one side of my face is all red and blotchy. An allergic reaction to either to insect repellent I put on a couple of nights ago, or the thorny tree I walked into the same night. So many African plants have thorns, which is their best way of surviving here, I guess.

We’re planning our return to Joburg next weekend and hope to spend a few days there in a loft apartment. We’re just waiting to get confirmation from the owner. There are a few places available, at reasonable prices.

Camped at Ben Lavin
Camped at Ben Lavin, it rained overnight.
A Leopard tortise crossing the road on the way into Kruger
A Leopard tortoise crossing the road on the way into Kruger
Impala by the side of the road on the way into Kruger
Impala by the side of the road on the way into Kruger


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