Caving with a touch of Cheetah

Trip Start Apr 04, 2006
1
69
80
Trip End Oct 23, 2006


Loading Map
Map your own trip!
Map Options
Show trip route
Hide lines
shadow

Flag of South Africa  ,
Tuesday, September 5, 2006

Intro text is pending ...

After a really comfortable night's sleep on my even-wider-than-Sunflower-Spot bunk bed at Backpacker's Paradise and having a breakfast of ostrich egg with 2 rashers of bacon accompanied by muesli & yoghurt with stewed fruit ... I started my day in Oudshoorn.

On the agenda is a visit to the Cango Caves & a Wildlife Ranch. The 20km drive that includes the Swartberg Pass is spectacular until your vehicle is pulled over to make way for the few hundred ostrich! Beats the heck out of the same sight of sheep, cows, or goats.

Aside
This area is known for ostrich farming & there are loads of ostrich egg souvenirs ... yes, I bought 2! How could I resist? There are painted eggs, glazed eggs, carved eggs, and egg lampshades. Let's not talk about the holders for these eggs. There are plain wooden rings, carved wooden rings, raised rings made of ebony that is carved as elephant heads where the trunks are the feet of the holders, and there are ivory holders and holders forged in metal of running ostrich ... whew! We can't get into the feathers ... I could shop for next year's Caribana costumes for ALL the bands. And the ostrich leather products that cost a fortune ... one handbag that I admired cost $1000 USD!!! Lastly, the jewellery (yes, bought some of that as well) where the beads are formed using traditional bushman techniques.

Back to the day's activities:

Cango Caves is interesting as far as the age of limestone formations, the sheer power of water it takes to form caves, geology stuff. However I should have chosen the Adventure tour instead of the standard tour. It would have been fun to crawl through the narrow passages and clamber over the uneven original cave floors.

The visit to the Wildlife Ranch was pretty nice (although a tad kitch). The highlight of which was the unparalleled opportunity to pet a cheetah. Oh man, was it ever amazing to run your hands over a cheetah's coat and listen to him purring like a household cat. The extra money spent on this experience benefits the Cheetah Sanctuaries in Namibia and after seeing them in the wild, I am more than happy to make the contribution. I have had my picture taken with my new friend, but I need a scanner to post it unto this site. Something that will have to wait until I get home.

P.S: The Backpacker's Paradise is worth a rave because this family really takes care of travellers. Tiny details are really great, the food is amazing and ridiculously affordable, the dogs are the friendliest esp. the Jack Russell and the Internet connection is THE BEST! Check them out at http://www.backpackersparadise.hostel.com/
Slideshow Report as Spam

Use this image in your site

Copy and paste this html: