Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2014 - top 10 cities

1. Paris, France

2. Trinidad, Cuba

3. Cape Town, South Africa

4. Riga, Latvia

5. Zuerich Schwitzerland

6. Shanghai, China

7. Vancouver, Canada

8.Chicago, Illinois, USA

9. Adelaide, Australien

10. Auckland, New Zealand

To see the article click here. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

1.2m foreign arrivals in SA for July

StatsSA reported on Monday that more than 1.2 million travelers from other countries came to South Africa in July 2013. Compared to last year, this is an increase of 12%. 

"A majority [90.1%]... were in South Africa for holidays, compared to only 6.5%, 1.8% and 1.6% of tourists who were in South Africa in transit, for business, and for study purposes respectively."

Of the tourists who visited the country this year, 204 120 were from overseas, and 564 460 were from Southern African Development Community countries.

The data indicated that a total of 3 285 691 travellers - arrivals and departures - passed through all South African ports of entry in July 2013. This was about 200 000 more than last year.

To see full article see here 

Thursday, October 31, 2013

World Travel Awards

Earlier in October the World Travel Awards-Africa took place, where South Africa’s three major cities- Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg shone.

Hailed as "The Oscars of the travel industry" the World Travel Awards celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and is acknowledged globally as the ultimate travel accolade, rewarding world-leading hospitality brands.

Voting for the competition is online and encourages travel and tourism executives and business and leisure tourists to vote for their favourite destinations, resorts and game reserves, among others.

The World Travel – Africa Awards turns the global spotlight on the continent’s leading leisure and commercial destinations, and sees some African nominees, like South Africa, breaking into international categories.

South Africa ranked high in international category nominations, but stood out in the Africa heats, winning 32 awards out of 57 categories, including leading African airport, beach destination, family resort, city hotel, conference venue, safari lodge and spa resort.

The awards also saw East African state Kenya score honours.
To see full article see here

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Thursday, October 17, 2013

750 days in the Kalahari Desert

Wildlife photographer Hannes Lochner spent 750 days in the harsh surroundings of the Kalahari Desert to chronicle the life of a female leopard and in doing so delved into a dark and fascinating nocturnal world of big cats and other predators.

Through his incredible project, Mr Lochner, 41, documented the struggle of Luna the leopard to raise cubs in one of the most punishing environments on earth, where big predators become more active at night, and when the photographer's visibility is severely diminished.

He also captured some stunning and often comical pictures of other creatures, bug and small, including colourful lizards and a pair of quizzical-looking owls.

He travelled a colossal 100,000km during his time at the Kgalagadi TransfrontierPark in South Africa. The images, collected in his new book 'The Dark Side of the Kalahari', capture the awe-inspiring beauty and breathtaking diversity of life in the region.

Shooting mostly at night, the Cape Town-born photographer had to brave: night-time temperatures of -13 in the winter, while trying to catch up on his sleep in sweltering 40C heat in the day.

There was a female leopard, named Luna, which had to protect her cubs from the park's lions, cheetah, spotted hyenas, brown hyenas and jackals, all of whom will kill cubs on sight.
The leopardess had three litters during the two years and three months she was trailed by Lochner. Her middle two cubs were killed by a brown hyena, but she later gave birth to another two which survived.

Also, unusually for leopards, she was regularly joined by 'family man' Oscar, the father of all three litters.

See the full article here and to see more pictures, visit our facebook page.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Eight Cape Town beaches were awarded Blue Flag status

If beaches have Blue Flag status, that means they are clean, safe and secure, and adhere to international safety and tourism standards.

"Having Blue Flag beaches and marinas is a significant tourism draw-card, because international visitors know what to expect when visiting a Blue Flag beach or marina."

The city said Cape Town had the highest number of Blue Flag beaches in the country.

The Blue Flag is awarded annually to over 3650 beaches and marinas in 44 countries across Europe, South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, New Zealand, Brazil, Canada, and the Caribbean.

The eight beaches granted Blue Flag status are as follows:

Camps Bay
Clifton 4th

The two marinas that got Blue Flag status are Granger Bay Water Club and the False Bay Marina.

To see full article see here. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Sea Point pool praised as on of the best in the world

The Sea Point swimming pool, which is built on the beachfront overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, was named among world’s top ten swimming pools by Britain’s The Guardian newspaper.

The description on The Guardian’s website reads: ‘The Pavilion swimming pools in Cape Town are a local institution. You swim your lengths while watching super tankers moored alongside twirl on their anchors. Sometimes surf from the cold Atlantic Benguela current washes over the deck.’

“This is a great accolade for Cape Town and reaffirms our commitment to providing top quality public facilities where people can enjoy time with friends and family outdoors. The Sea Point swimming pool is one of our prize facilities and is an extremely popular destination for both tourists and locals,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services, Alderman Belinda Walker.

During the peak summer season (October to February) the swimming pool attracts up to 60000 visitors over the period and more than 20000 visitors per month in December and January. The swimming pool can accommodate up to 1300 people at a time.

The facility is open throughout the year, and a handful of Capetonians persevere with their training throughout winter, even when water temperatures drop to about 12 degrees Celsius. 

To see the full article see here.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The most spectacular wildlife photos

To see the most spectacular wildlife photos from the National Geographic Photo Contest, see here

Hermanus Whale Festival

The Hermanus Whale Festival is celebrating the returning of the southern right whales to the bay of Hermanus for its 22nd year from Friday, 20 September to Tuesday, 24 September. Some events are also held on the following weekend on Saturday, 28 September.

As home to the best land-based whale watching in the world,
Hermanus is just the right place to pay homage to the magnificent Southern Rights, and there’s no better time to recognize their miraculous survival than during September, which is peak whale-watching season in the coastal village.

The marine giants will definitely remain the star of the Hermanus Whale Festival, but on land, visitors to the small seaside town can expect to be equally dazzled by great entertainment and activities, gut-busting eats, quality crafts and kiddies fun.

Plus, the fit and sporty can participate in one of four Hermanus Adventure Week activities such as the Hermanus Open Water Swim, the Hermanus Whale Festival Night Run, the Hermanus Whale Festival Mountain Bike Classic or the festival trail run.

See the full article see here.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Kirstenbosch Chelsea Flower Show at the V&A Waterfront

When the Kirstenbosch Chelsea Flower Show Exhibition was launched at the V&A Waterfront on Friday 30 August, 2013, the overall sentiment of the visitors was: “It”s blooming beautiful!”.

The inspirational exhibition, which runs daily from 09h00 to 18h00 at the Mother City’s premier seaside shopping destination
V&A Waterfront until Tuesday 24 September 2013, is free to the public and features the gold medal winning exhibition within the Clock Tower precinct.

A 33 time Chelsea gold winner, this year’s spectacular exhibit is themed 'Come into the Garden', and the achievement has particular poignant meaning as both
Kirstenbosch and the Chelsea Flower Show celebrates their centenaries in 2013.

The exhibition is a snapshot of South Africa’s distinctive botanical heritage. Come and experience the beauty and tranquillity of being surrounded by the Dell and Cycad Amphitheatre on one side and the Protea Garden and mountain skyline on the other of the circular exhibition.

Other highlights include South Africa’s indigenous fynbos such as the protea and Mandela’s gold strelitizia, as well as the oldest plants in the garden.

See the full article see

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Celebration of World Tourism Month in Cape Town

September is World Tourism Month and the City of Cape Town is doing a lot in order to celebrate it the right way. On World Tourism Day, 27 September 2013, the celebration culminates, when Cape Town’s Big Six attractions will sign a Responsible Tourism Charter.

By signing the Charter, the chief executives of the Big Six – the Table Mountain Cableway, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, the V&A Waterfront, Groot Constantia, Cape Point and the Robben Island Museum – will commit to a more sustainable and responsible tourism industry in Cape Town, in line with the 2013 World Tourism Day theme “Tourism and Water: Protecting our Common Future”.

In Cape Town, September traditionally has a strong focus on citizen tourism. Residents, Cape Town’s best ambassadors, are encouraged to become tourists in their own city by making use of affordable and exciting experiences right on their doorstep.

“Tourism is a key economic driver for Cape Town and the largest contributing sector to the Western Cape economy. The City has lined up programmes aimed at growing local tourism this month and will be encouraging residents to discover the hidden gems within our beautiful destination,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Tourism, Events and Marketing, Councillor Grant Pascoe.

Cape Town was awarded the accolade of the ‘World's Top City in Africa and the Middle East’ in the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards 2013 as well as being ranked fourth overall in the Top 10 Cities in the World list.

Other accolades include being named:
The ‘16th Top Destination in the World’ and ‘Top Destination in Africa’ by TripAdvisor’s travel community in 2013; 
The ‘Favourite City Worldwide’ by 17 000 Telegraph readers at The Telegraph Travel Awards in 2012; 
The ‘Number Two City in the World’ and the ‘Top City in Africa’ in the Conde Nast Traveller Readers’ Choice Awards 2012;
The ‘Best Beach Destination in Africa’ at the World Travel Awards 2012; 
Eighth in the ‘Top 10 Truly Unique Beaches in the World’ by Tripadvisor 2012; 
‘One of the World’s Ten Most Loved Cities 2012’ by CNNgo.

See the full article see here.