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Contents This Way South Africa Flashback On the Scene Gauteng North West Limpopo Province Mpumalanga KwaZulu-Natal Free State Eastern Cape Northern Cape Western Cape Shopping Sports Dining Out The Hard Facts Swaziland Namibia Botswana Zambia On Safari Wildlife Checklist Index Maps Cape Peninsula

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Fold-out map South Africa, Garden Route, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban

South Africa Martin Gostelow and Bernard Joliat


Framed: a citrus-fruit seller in Namaqualand.

ties here, while night drives in an open vehicle offer a good chance of encountering a variety of nocturnal predators such as serval, caracal and genet. More adventurously, the Augrabies Rush is a half-day rafting trip that passes over a succession of grade 1 to 3 rapids upriver of the waterfall.

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park Slightly more than 200 km (120 miles) north of Upington by road, the former Kalahari Gemsbok National Park penetrates into the vast Kalahari Desert. The last refuge of the San, the desert also 56 covers parts of Namibia and Bo-

tswana. The park, founded in 1931, originally covered 9,500 sq km (3,700 sq miles), making it the second largest in the country after the Kruger Park. In 2000, it was amalgamated with Botswana’s Mabuasehube-Gemsbok National Park to form the co-managed Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park—at 38,000 sq km (14,800 sq miles) one of the largest protected wilderness areas in the world. A mesmerizing landscape of tall red dunes, overhung by a seemingly permanent blue sky, and transected by the Auob and Nossob Rivers (neither of which flow more often than once in ten

NAMAQUALAND years), this vast, arid park would be worth the admission price for its austere scenery alone. But it also happens to offer superb game viewing: lion, leopard, cheetah, spotted hyena, bat-eared fox and black-backed jackal are all like to be seen over the course of a few day’s visit, while more elusive nocturnal predators include the aardwolf and brown hyena. The handsome gemsbok (oryx) for which the park was originally named is common, as are springbok, eland and wildebeest. The appealing ground squirrel, meerkat and yellow mongoose thrive on the dunes, as does an excellent selection of dry-country birds and raptors. Remote as it is, the Kgalagadi park is easily reached and explored in an ordinary saloon car, and three rest camps—Twee Rivieren, Mata Mata and Nossob— provide comfortable accommodation and a range of provisions.

Namaqualand From the end of August until the end of September, after the southern hemisphere’s springtime rains, the normally arid and inhospitable plains of Namaqualand—a succulent-rich region dividing the Western Cape from the Kalahari— are transformed into an immense carpet of some 4,000 species of vividly coloured flower. The small country town of Springbok, about

RICHTERSVELD NP • KIMBERLEY 300 km (186 miles) west of Upington, is a popular and wellequipped base from which to explore the floral displays, as— closer to Cape Town—is the underrated West Coast National Park near Suldhana Bay.

Richtersveld National Park Further north, near the border with Namibia, Richtersveld National Park continues nature’s festival. Among its rocky mountains and immense sandy plains, half of the plant life found here is unique to this part of the world. The Halfmens (or Elephant’s Trunk) trees, with trunks crowned by a clump of leaves resembling a human head, count among the most astonishing plants on earth. Temperatures in summer can be extremely hot, but you can share the cool of the evening with the desert-loving springbok. Rise at dawn to drive along dry river beds and you may see a family of cheetah silhouetted against the skyline. Kimberley The capital of the Northern Cape, the legendary diamond town of Kimberley, on the border with Free State, is sure to interest anyone dazzled by sparklers. Four mines, made up of a labyrinth of galleries, own the lion’s share of 57 the glittering prizes.


once covered most of northern Botswana. It is now a flat plain that comes to life when it rains. A sand ridge more than 100 km (60 miles) long shows one boundary of the great lake, which has long since dried up. Even when water is relatively scarce the animals enjoy munching the greenery. Nxai Pan National Park

When it rains hereabouts, from November to March, the ancient lake bed turns green. Then graceful zebras, gemsboks and springboks and clumsy wildebeest flock to the Nxai Pan to nibble the grass, drink and breed. The area is also renowned for its population of giraffes and leopards. Migratory birds make this a seasonal halt, to the delight of binocular-wielding bird-watchers. A landmark south of the reserve is a grove of baobab trees, named Baines’ Baobabs after Thomas Baines, the artist who painted them in 1862. Thick-trunked baobabs, known in some circles as monkey-bread trees, produce fruit which has medicinal uses. The branches also provide welcome shade, and this particular crop, forming “one magnificent shade”, as Baines wrote, is really memorable. Fruit of the loom: a magnificent carpet in geometrical patterns.

Makgadikgadi Pans

Once upon a time there was a lake bigger than Lake Victoria here, but it all dried up—a very distant memory that’s revived in the rainy season. All that’s left of the prehistoric lake are large depressions called salt pans, just the sort of environment to attract waterfowl. This is the place to admire a huge blush of pink flamingos. The plains to the west, which are not saturated with salt like the remains of the lake, abound in wildlife, especially after the rains arrive in October or November. The area is a main migration route for antelope and the predators that follow them. For tourists, four-wheel drive is the only feasible means of locomotion for Nxai Pan and Makgadikgadi reserves. Central Kalahari Game Reserve

In the very centre of Botswana, the world’s second largest game reserve is bigger than some respectably sized European countries—for instance Denmark, Switzerland or the Netherlands. This is essentially virgin territory—no roads, no campsites— and the government has wanted to keep it that way. You need a special permit to visit the reserve. One of the few landmarks has the strikingly evocative name of 117

Claude Hervé-Bazin

MAMMALS can go without water for long periods. Its fur is dark beige and its horns rather short. Absent from southern Africa, it is widely distributed in arid parts of East Africa, in particular Samburu National Reserve and Tsavo East.


Blue wildebeest Connochaetes taurinus With horns like handlebars and a cow’s head, a skinny body, bushy Claude Hervé-Bazin

“pronk”) more than 2 m in the air, which it does when alarmed.


Gerenuk Litocranius walleri With its interminable, slender neck, the gerenuk can stretch higher than most other antelopes to reach the acacia leaves and twigs that form its diet. It often stands on its long hind legs to nibble as far up the tree as possible. It lives in arid regions and

158 Gerenuk

Blue wildebeest beard and long fly-swatter tail, the wildebeest (or gnu, as the Hottentots say) resembles an African version of the bison. In summer, the mass migration of hundreds of thousands of white-bearded wildebeest, crossing the plains of East Africa in search of fresh grass, makes an impressive spectacle. It braves every danger: attacks by big cats, crocodileinfested rivers, and the birth of calves along the way. In South Africa, the local sub-species has a black beard.

BOVINES Black wildebeest Connochaetes gnou Endemic to the grassy South African highveld and Swaziland, this formerly common antelope—darker than the blue wildebeest and with a distinctive white tail —has been reduced by hunting to an estimated 4,000 individuals, many protected on private ranches. A good place to look for it is Golden Gate National Park.

(southern Tanzania and Zambia) is regarded by some authorities as a full species, with horns that close together like a scorpion’s pincers. Those of the tawny Jackson’s hartebeest are somewhere between the two, forming a U-shape. The red hartebeest of southern Africa has a paler, rustier coloration than the more northerly races. Topi Damaliscus lunatus Known as the tsessebe in southern Africa, the topi is closely related to the hartebeest and similar in overall appearance, but much darker. Com-



nies zebras and wildebeest on their migration, this animal is easily identified by its stately air, its exceptionally long face, and its shiny coat. Seven races are recognized, each with a distinctive horn shape. Most common in East Africa is Coke’s hartebeest, sandy in colour and with widespread lyre-shaped horns mounted on bony pedestals covered with hair. Lichtenstein’s hartebeest

mon on the grassy plains of East Africa, it is usually seen in small family groups, but occasionally travels in herds of several hundred.

Claude Hervé-Bazin

Claude Hervé-Bazin

Hartebeest Alcelaphus buselaphus Found in fairly large herds on the grassy savannah and plains of East Africa, where it frequently accompa-

Blesbok Damaliscus dorcas Endemic to South Africa, this lightly built relation of the topi was hunted close to extinction in the 19th century and most of the extant population is essentially domestic. Two very dis- 159

O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O O 174 O

Jackal, black-backed Jackal, common Jackal, side-striped Klipspringer Kudu, greater Kudu, lesser Leopard Lion Meerkat Mongoose, banded Mongoose, dwarf Mongoose, white-tailed Monkey, blue (Sykes) Monkey, de Brazza’s Monkey, Patas Monkey, red-tailed Monkey, vervet Nyala Oribi Oryx Pangolin Reedbuck Rhinoceros, black Rhinoceros, white Serval Sitatunga Springbok Suricate

145 145 145 161 152 153 142 142 148 148 148


Topi Warthog Waterbuck Wild cat Wild dog Wildebeest, black Wildebeest, blue Zebra, Grevy’s Zebra, mountain Zebra, plains

159 163 155 144 144 159 158 165 165 164

REPTILES 147 150 150 150 150 150 153 161 155 166 154 163 163 144 154 157 148


Chameleon Gecko Lizard Nile crocodile Rock python

168 167 167 168 167


Crowned crane Fish eagle Flamingo Hornbill Marabou stork Ostrich Secretary bird Vulture, hooded Vulture, white-backed Weaver

171 169 170 170 171 169 171 172 172 172

INDEX Botswana Antelope 118 Central Kalahari GR 117 Chobe NP 115 Francistown 110–111 Gaborone 110 Gaborone GR 112–113 Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park 119 Khutse Game Reserve 119 Mabuasehube GR 120 Makgadikgadi Pans 117 Maun 112 Moremi Wildlife Reserve 114 Nxai Pan NP 117 Okavango Delta 113–114 Serowe 110 Tsodilo Hills 114–115 Namibia Ai-Ais 98 Bethanie 99 Burnt Mountain 98 Cape Cross 101 Daan Viljoen Game Park 95 Erongo Mountains 97 Etosha National Park 102 Fish River Canyon 98 Gross-Barmen 97 Himba 103 Hoba Meteorite 103 Kalkfeld 97 Kaokoland 103 Karibib 97 Keetmanshoop 98 Kokerboom Forest 98 Kolmanskop 100 Namib Region 99–102 Namib-Naukluft Park 100 Okahandja 95 Omaruru 97 Otjiwarongo 97 Petrified Forest 98 Skeleton Coast 101–102 Spitzkoppe 97

Swakopmund 101 Twyfelfontein 98 Vingerklip 98 Von Bach Dam and Recreation Resort 95 Walvis Bay 100 Waterberg Plateau Park 97 Windhoek 94 South Africa Addo Elephant NP 51 Apple Express 52 Augrabies Falls NP 55–56 Bloemfontein 46–47 Blyde River Canyon 28–29 Brandwater Hiking Trail 47 Cape Agulhas 65 Cape of Good Hope 63 Cape Peninsula 62–64 Cape St Francis 68 Cape Town 59–62 Cedarberg Mountains 70 Citrusdal 70 Clarens 47 Constantia 62 Cullinan 22–23 Durban 33–35 East London 50–51 Elim 65 Eshowe 41 Fish Hoek 63 Franschhoek 64–65 Garden Route 65–70 George 67 Giant’s Castle 44 Gold Reef City 19–20 Golden Gate NP 47 Graaff-Reinet 52 Grahamstown 51 Hermanus 64 Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Game Reserve 36–38 Hout Bay 63 iSimangaliso Wetland Park 39

Johannesburg 18–20 Karoo National Park 70 Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park 56–57 Kimberley 57–58 Knysna 67 Kruger National Park 30–32 Kuruman 55 Kwa-Ndebele 23 Ladybrand 47 Lambert’s Bay 70 Lesotho 48–49 Madikwe GR 25 Makhado 26 Mandela, Nelson 15 Mapungubwe NP 26–27 Mossel Bay 65–67 Mountain Zebra NP 52 Muizenburg 63–64 Musina 26–27 Namaqualand 57 Ndumo Game Reserve 38 Nelspruit 29–30 Oudtshoorn 68–70 Paarl 64 Phinda Resource Reserve 38 Pietermaritzburg 42–43 Pilanesberg GR 25 Pilgrim’s Rest 29 Plettenberg Bay 68 Polokwane 26 Port Alfred 51 Port Elizabeth 51 Pretoria 21–22 Richtersveld NP 57 Robben Island 61 Robertson Valley 65 Royal Natal NP 43–44 Sabi Sands GR 32 Seal Island 67 Shakaland 40–41 Shamwari Game Reserve 51 Simon’s Town 63 Soweto 20–21 Stellenbosch 64 Strandfontein 70


INDEX Sun City 24 Swellendam 65 Table Mountain 61–62 Tembe Elephant Reserve 38–39 Tsitsikamma Coastal NP 68 Tulbagh 64 Tzaneen 27 uKhahlamba-Drakensberg 43–44 Ulundi 40 uMkhuze Game Reserve 39 Upington 53–55 West Coast 70 Wild Coast 42 Wilderness 67 Willem Pretorius GR 47 Wine Country 64–65 Xhosa 52 Zululand 35–42

Swaziland Ezulwini Valley 88 Hlane Royal National Park 89 Lobamba 88 Lowveld 89–90 Malolotja Nature Reserve 86 Mantenga NR 88 Manzini 89 Matsamo Cultural Village 85 Mbabane 86 Mbuluzi NR 89 Mkhaya Game Reserve 89–90 Mlawula NR 89 Mlilwane NR 88–89 Ngwenya 86 Phophonyane NR 85 Piggs Peak 85 Shewula Community Reserve 89 Sibebe Rock 86–88

Zambia Blue Lagoon NP 134 Kafue NP 134 Kalambo Falls 133 Kasanka NP 133 Lavushi Manda NP 133 Liuwa Plain NP 134–135 Lochinvar NP 134 Lower Zambezi NP 131 Luambe NP 132–133 Lusaka 126 Mpulungu 133 Ngonye Falls 134 North Luangwa NP 132 Shiwa N’gandu 133 Sioma Ngwezi NP 134 South Luangwa NP 131–132 Sumbu NP 133–134 Victoria Falls 126–127

GENERAL EDITOR Barbara Ender-Jones LAYOUT Luc Malherbe MAPS Elsner & Schichor; JPM Publications PHOTO CREDITS Claude Hervé-Bazin pp. 1, 118; p. 2, /Van Meter p. 7, /Parnell p. 16, /stanfair p. 45, /Bayley p. 74, /Smit p. 99, /Pitcher p. 107, /Karock p. 113, /Malsbury p. 119, /Lamb p. 121, /Kratky p. 139, /Bogaerts pp. 140–141; Bildagentur Huber/Gräfenhain pp. 4, 61, /Simeone p. 27, /PictureFinders pp. 34, 69, 82, /Ripani p. 56, /Achmann p. 76, /Schmid p. 95, /Bernhart pp. 103, 116; Ariadne van Zandbergen pp. 9, 19, 21, 29, 31, 37, 41, 54, 72, 83; CORBIS/Bettmann p. 11; Bernard Joliat pp. 23, 24–25; Rachel Cavassini pp. 58, 91; p. 66; /Borgese pp. 123, 130; Oscar Max/ p. 104 Copyright © 2009, 1997 by JPM Publications S.A. 12, avenue William-Fraisse, 1006 Lausanne, Switzerland – All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and retrieval system without permission in writing from the publisher. Every care has been taken to verify the information in the guide, but neither the publisher nor his client can accept responsibility for any errors that may have occurred. If you spot an inaccuracy or a serious omission, please let us know.


Printed in Switzerland, Weber Benteli/Bienne – 11893.00.4798 – Edition 2009