Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Leopard and Python Tug-of-War

A massive snake may not be the average feline's choice of chew toy. But there was no stopping these leopards having a tug of war with one unlucky python. The six-and-a-half-ft (2m) long African rock python became the unwilling 'rope' in the game, after being captured by a female leopard in the long grass.

But as she dragged it, still wriggling, along behind her, she was ambushed by her over-zealous son who wanted to land the kill for himself. The young male snatched the end of the enormous snake in his powerful jaws, and tried to tug it away from his mother. The two big cats fought ferociously over their prey for half an hour, in front of stunned guests at the MalaMala game reserve, South Africa.

The brutal battle was only ended when the female leopard gave up, retreating to a tree while her son tucked in to his prize. But he only ate a morsel before deciding it was not to his taste, and discarding the snake's body in the long grass. The unusual scene was caught on camera by American photographer Josh Scheinert.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Photo of Table Mountain on St Patricks Day

Original image via tvcritics

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Top of de Mountain to Ye!

See Table Mountain light up in green to celebrate St Patrick’s Day, from 20h00 on March 17, 2011. Photo courtesy dkeats

Various St Patrick’s Day 2011 celebrations will be held in Cape Town on Thursday, March 17. Table Mountain will be illuminated with green lights in the evening, in recognition of the work done by Irish charities in the Mother City, as well as to commemorate the links between Ireland and Cape Town.

It is fitting that these celebrations take place on a Thursday, which has become the official “Vote for Table Mountain” day. Table Mountain has been shortlisted as a New7Wonder of Nature, but needs your vote if it is to achieve this status. You can play your part by sending the word “TABLE” via cellphone text message to 34874, or by casting your vote online.

Here are a few places that will be celebrating the green spirit in Cape Town on Thursday 17th March 2011:

The Dubliner

Quintessentially Irish, be sure to expect a huge celebration at The Dubliner bar in Long Street on 17 March. Leprechaun lookalikes will serve you green beer, while the live music pays homage to shamrock ‘n roll! Be sure to arrive early for a few fun giveaways and, of course, to avoid the line.Long Street City Bowl +27 (0)21 424 1212

Perseverance Tavern

This traditional Irish bar will celebrate St Paddy's with Guinness hats, Irish music and Guinness Draught specials. 83 Buitenkant Street Gardens +27 (0)21 461 2440

The Royal Oak

The bar ladies will be dressed in green and black, serving Draught Guinness and Kilkenny for R23 a pint. The evening will also be full of fun games with scratch cards given for every pint bought where each customer can win a free pint, a hat or some other item. Harvan Centre Marine Circle Cape Town +27 (0)21 557 0354

Twankey Bar at The Taj


This popular spot will have Guinness prizes up for grabs and a chance to possibly win a trip to Ireland for you and a friend. Of course, there will also be entertainment and lots of drinking... and did we mention drinking?33 Hout Street City Bowl +27 (0)21 424 7453

Monday, March 14, 2011

South Africa Outperforms 2010 Global Tourism Market

South Africa recorded a remarkable 15% increase in tourist arrivals to the country in 2010 – outperforming the global average by 8%. And while the Fifa World Cup in June and July played a role in the increase, tourist arrivals were buoyant all year round.

Last year saw just over eight million (8 073 552) tourist arrivals compared to slightly over seven million (7 011 865) in 2009, comparing well with international standards.

Figures from the UN World Tourism Organisation showed that global tourism arrivals were estimated to have grown by 6.7% in 2010. This meant that South Africa outperformed the global market by 8%.

For the full story, on SouthAfrica.info click here.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Is Google Able to Increase Airfares?

Online travel companies say Google's proposed $700 million acquisition of flight information company ITA Software.company acquisition will drive up airfares.

Members of the FairSearch.org coalition are urging the US Justice Department to block the Google-ITA deal - just as it did in November 2008 with the Google-Yahoo! advertising agreement.

They are claiming that Google's purchase of ITA would give the Internet search giant too much control over the online travel sector and lead to higher prices and fewer choices for consumers.

"You're taking the dominant flight search engine company, which is ITA, and you're combining it with the dominant online search company, which is Google," Thomas Barnett told AFP.

For the full article on iafrica, click here.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lake of Fire

Do not panic, there is not another ash cloud emergency over Europe. In June 2010, a team of scientists and intrepid explorers stepped onto the shore of the lava lake boiling in the depths of Nyiragongo Crater, in the heart of the Great Lakes region of Africa.

Members of the team had been dazzled since childhood by the images of the 1960 documentary "The Devil's Blast" by Haroun Tazieff, who was the first to reveal to the public the glowing red breakers crashing at the bottom of Nyiragongo crater. Photographer Olivier Grunewald was within a meter of the lake itself, giving us a unique glimpse of it's molten matter. Paula Nelson

The view from the volcano’s rim, 11,380 feet above the ground. At 1,300 feet deep, the lava lake has created one of the wonders of the African continent.

The permanent lava lake of the Nyiragongo is the biggest in the world, an estimated 282 million cubic feet of lava. In 1977 and 2002, the lava lake breached the crater, destroying a large part of the city of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

At night, the base camp is illuminated by the light of the lava lake.

Franck Pothé approaches the lava. For such a close encounter, the wind must be at his back, pushing the heat away. Pothé is constantly informed of the swirling winds via radio contact with other members.

Marc Caillet is the first member of the team to reach the lake’s rim.

For more images click here.