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Afrikaans Museum and Monument
21 Jun 2014
 
     

Afrikaans Museum and Monument

Die Afrikaanse Taal Museum en Monument (ATM), also known as The Afrikaans Language Museum and Monument, comprises a museum and an outdoor monument. Together, the two sites exist to broaden public knowledge and appreciation of the Afrikaans language. The language museum was established in 1975 with the aim of collecting and conserving material and information related to the origins and the development of Afrikaans. The affiliated Afrikaans Language Monument on nearby Paarl Mountain was designed by architect Jan van Wijk...

(GPS coordinates: -33.766314, 18.943192)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/cultural/afrikaans-museum-and-monument

Aerial Boardwalk, Dlinza Forest
20 Jun 2014
 
     

Aerial Boardwalk, Dlinza Forest

Looking for a bird's eye experience without a high fear factor rating? This tour takes you deep into the forest and up to the canopy to meander along the first boardwalk in South Africa. It will get your heart pumping, but it’s more about communing with nature than adrenalin. Dlinza Forest is just outside Eshowe, a 90-minute drive from Durban. Here you will find a 125m walkway, ten metres above the ground. From it you can look down on the forest floor and spy on what goes on high up in the trees...

(GPS coordinates: -28.891962, 31.451441)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/activities/aerial-boardwalk-dlinza-forest

Boulders African Penguin Colony
20 Jun 2014
 
     

Boulders African Penguin Colony

The African penguin colony at Boulders near Simonstown has attained celebrity status – at least among local and international nature-lovers, who flock here to watch and photograph the diminutive black-and-white inhabitants of Boulders up close. Foxy Beach in Boulders has the best penguin viewing. For a small fee, visitors are able to get within a few feet of the birds via a semi-circular boardwalk that encircles the colony. In season, the walkway offers the added bonus of elevated whale-watching. For an additional fee, visitors can access the beach with a guide and be in very close proximity to the penguins...

(GPS coordinates: -34.195722, 18.449175)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/animals-nature/boulders-african-penguin-colony

Elandsberg Eco Tourism
20 Jun 2014
 
     

Elandsberg Eco Tourism is situated on a Rooibos tea estate outside Clanwilliam in a quiet and safe valley filled with natural fynbos and fascinating rock formations. Set in the midst of the wealth of the Cederberg plant life and renowned seasonal wild flower displays, the two comfortable self-catering apartments allow you to simply relax, or choose to enjoy hiking, bird-watching, guided Rooibos and Fynbos Safaris and the variety of activities on offer in the surrounding area…

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/accommodation/elandsberg-eco-tourism

(GPS coordinates: -32.118811, 18.683660)

Augrabies Falls National Park Trail
19 Jun 2014
 
     

Augrabies Falls National Park Trail

Trip into the heart of the Green Kalahari region north of Upington, and you will find yourself in off-road running heaven. Just north of Kakamas, Augrabies Falls National Park unfolds in all its dramatic splendour. Through this lunar landscape winds a near endless network of gravel roads and trails tailor-made for wilderness thumping...

(GPS coordinates: -28.593277, 20.337584)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/trail-running/augrabies-falls-national-park-trail

Gary Player Country Club Golf
19 Jun 2014
 
     

Gary Player Country Club Golf

The Gary Player Country Club’s exquisite 7 000m long bushveld course at Sun City is one of South Africa’s most demanding layouts, providing tricky shot-making in a rugged and enchanting environment. Situated in an extinct volcanic crater within the 50 000 hectare Pilanesberg Game Reserve, thorny vegetation, reddish bunkers and an abundance of birdlife give the course an unmistakably African feel…

(GPS coordinates: -25.346634, 27.10003)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/activities/gary-player-country-club-golf

Cloete’s Pass
19 Jun 2014
 
     

Cloete’s Pass

Cloete’s Pass is not as spectacular as some of the other passes in the southern Cape, but still well worth the trouble. The real reason for taking this route is to connect to the dirt road that runs along the foothills at the back of the Langeberge Mountains. This road veers off to the right to Van Wyksdorp about 50km after Herbertsdale, or you can continue along the foot of the Langeberge to the top of Garcia pass. A descent down Garcia, or Gysmanshoek for the more adventurous, takes you back to the N2. This detour will take about 3 to 4 hours, and is a very pleasant alternative to the 1 hour it will take you to race between Mossel Bay and Heidelberg along the N2.

Lotheni MTB Trail
18 Jun 2014
 
     

Lotheni MTB Trail

The beautiful Lotheni Valley and the Lotheni Nature Reserve lie in the southern Drakensberg Mountains. This remote valley is recommended for its magnificent scenery and beautiful camp. The 8km mountain-bike trail starts close to the camp and crosses over several small streams, taking you up and down a few fairly steep, winding gradients. Once on the grassland plateau, breathtaking views of the surrounding escarpment can be absorbed at length...

(GPS coordinates: -29.450076, 29.525011)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/mountain-biking/lotheni-mtb-trail

Kings Kloof Rock Climbing
18 Jun 2014
 
     

Kings Kloof Rock Climbing

This very safe crag, sandwiched between Rocky Valley camp and Achterbergh resort near Krugersdorp, is very new, having being bolted only a couple of years ago, but is very popular both for the very tranquil, picturesque valley/kloof setting and because the climbing is reasonably tame. No booking is required but there’s an entrance fee of R30 per person payable at Rocky Valley camp. Please note that each and every person is required to sign an individual indemnity form, with a parent/guardian signing for those under 18 years. The book is in the electric box just in front of the managers house, where you sign the indemnity and leave your money. There are 49 largely vertical routes on hard quartzite ranging from 12 to 25 metres high...

(GPS coordinates: -26.066132, 27.779076)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/climbing/kings-kloof-rock-climbing

Goukamma Traverse Trail & Event
17 Jun 2014
 
     

Goukamma Traverse Trail & Event

The 18km trail starts from the Goukamma River Pont on the eastern side of the Goukamma Nature Reserve, traversing from east to west to finish in Sedgefield on the Village Green. With this in mind, runners must arrange transport between these points. Once on the trail, you follow single-track and jeep track along the dune system. Part of the beauty of this trail run is that you will be ridge running atop high, grass-covered dunes, with breathtaking views of the ocean to the south and of some of the wide vleis and lakes to the north. It is quite simply a ‘wow’ run, capturing the absolute essence of the Garden Route at its very best... 

(GPS coordinates: -34.065523, 22.943526)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/trail-running/goukamma-traverse-trail-event

The Cranefly
17 Jun 2014
 
     

The Cranefly

Craneflies belong to the order Diptera, and the one imitated here is intended to represent Nephrotoma antennata, a medium sized, and delicate insect with a wingspan of approximately 25 mm, predominantly yellow or tan abdomen and thorax with a few black markings. However, tied in different colour combinations and size to match the naturals, the fly could easily be fished as an imitation of other insects such as a Net-winged Midge in a dark brown or black. 

These insects are not in any way prolific on our streams, but the general buggy appearance, especially the legs, which move in the surface film with the push and pull of the current, means it is loaded with familiar triggers for the trout. Because of its effectiveness as a deceiver of fish, it has become one of my signature patterns. My experience is that it is best fished in smooth flowing water, close to the banks and under over-hanging vegetation rather than the rough and tumble of the riffles.

The tying sequence is the same as the order of the material list below. The legs are the only unusual tying process in this fly. They are tied loosely as the first step behind the eye with tips facing forward and so that the individual hairs can be manipulated between thumb and forefinger more or less evenly around the shank. After completing the thorax, the legs are pushed back over the wings and held in that position by forming a head with tying thread behind the eye to finish the fly.

Legs – 8 to 10 hairs of Gray Fox or Squirrel, Hot spot (optional) – Red DMC thread No. 4015, Wings – White Z Lon or Antron, Abdomen – Tan Turkey biot, Thorax – Yellow/orange SLF dubbing.

Guest blog by Peter Brigg 
callofthestream.wordpress.com

Vernon Crookes MTB Trails
16 Jun 2014
 
     

Vernon Crookes MTB Trails

The 10-kilometre, scenic single track is actually a shortcut created by the staff walking between reception and the main KwaMzukwa gate. It starts behind the Vernon Crooke's Nature Reserve offices and clings to the contour for several hundred metres before becoming quite steep and heading straight down the hill, where you will have to dismount and carry your bike across the stream. The 20-kilometre circuit with return rides out to the 4x4 track and viewpoints is another option. Don’t miss the road to the scenic viewpoint...

(GPS coordinates: -30.270632, 30.606719)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/mountain-biking/vernon-crookes-mtb-trails

Leeuwenboschfontein 4x4 Trail
16 Jun 2014
 
     

Leeuwenboschfontein 4x4 Trail

Leeuwenboschfontein lies in a valley, against the backdrop of the beautiful Klein Karoo. This is your chance to appreciate the uniqueness and variety of the Karoo fauna and flora, packaged in deep blue skies, endless vistas and deafening silence. The 20km Mountain trail can be separated into three sections. A grade 3 drive will take you up to the lookout point. A grade 5 return route leaves from the lookout point and follows the northern contour to a boundary gate. Finally, once you are down from the lookout point, a grade 3/4 loop sets off to the west...

(GPS coordinates: -33.566608, 19.985713)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/4x4/leeuwenboschfontein-4x4-trail

Langebaan Sea Kayaking
15 Jun 2014
 
     

Langebaan Sea Kayaking

The hard west coast seasons are part of its allure and Langebaan promises to leave visitors with memories of startling blue sea, acres of flowers and the enticing smell of fish braais. For kayakers the 17-kilometre-long, 40-kilometre-wide lagoon from Saldanha Bay to Geelbek provides an ideal centre for exploring and learning about the area. Guests are greeted at 9.30am on the beach, where boats are permanently stored, with a light snack, equipment fitting, safety briefing and a quick how-to session...

(GPS coordinates: -33.090935, 18.030372)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/rafting-kayaking/langebaan-sea-kayaking

The Blend
15 Jun 2014
 
     

The Blend: 79 Roeland Street, Cape Town

My week lunches had already seen hip spaces like I Love my Laundry and Truth on Buitenkant Street, but at the beginning of this year I discovered a hidden gem around the corner. The Blend. It’s a café with all kinds of goodness inside – quality espressos, packed ciabattas of bacon and brie, and unlimited WiFi. On my first visit I asked a waiter for the WiFi password and, although he didn’t know it, he spent the next ten minutes running around trying to find out for me. I’ve learnt now that the password changes every day, and you receive this treatment every time. They’re keen to impress. It’s that kind of service which makes it feel like home. I didn’t want to leave the space. It’s home, it’s the city. A perfect blend.

- Guest blog by Brad Harris

Namaqua Caracal 4x4 Trail
14 Jun 2014
 
     

Namaqua Caracal 4x4 Trail

The beauty of this trail is that you get to feast your eyes while satisfying your 4x4 lust for adventure in this vigorous climate and rugged landscape. Quiver trees and enormous granite outcrops lead to the icy Atlantic and its spectacular coastline between Hondeklipbaai and Groenriviersmond. The route starts at the world-famous Skilpad Wildflower Reserve before descending the Kamiesberg Mountains via the Soebatsfontein Pass...

(GPS coordinates: -30.165912, 17.797921)

Read more at www.nightjartravel.com/namaqua-caracal-4x4-trail

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