Many people go to South Africa in search of the Big 5… the lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and Cape buffalo. But have you heard of The Marine Big 5? They are just as intriguing. Mighty whales, toothy sharks and playful seals, penguins and dolphins that live in the country’s coastal waters make up this captivating bunch.
South Africa is called the Rainbow Nation for its rich diversity of ancestry, cuisine, landscape and even languages. To help South Africans celebrate their heritage, September 24th is set aside annually to recognize all aspects of South African culture, including creative expression, historical inheritance, language, food, and the land in which they live.
National Heritage Day
The Parliament of South Africa allocated September 24th as National Heritage Day after the 1994 democratic election. An official public holiday, National Heritage Day was first celebrated throughout the country in 1995. In Kwazulu-Natal, the date was already known as Shaka Day in commemoration of Shaka Zulu, the legendary Zulu King who united the various Zulu clans.
Meet Lisa, our Communications Manager, based in our Corporate Headquarters in Sarasota, Florida. A voice-over artist and award-winning travel writer, Lisa has written, narrated and produced some of the Go Touch Down video’s you may have seen. She maintains our website, generates internal and external newsletters and correspondence, and works closely with our COO to create sales and marketing materials across multiple platforms.
Q: Where did you travel to last?
Lisa: This past May my husband and I went on a cruise from Italy to Croatia and through the Greek Islands. I had the opportunity to explore two of the cities on our new Go Touch Down Croatia tour – Split, and Dubrovnik. They were truly magical – our clients are in for a treat!
When touring Cape Town with us, you’ll be staying at one of two comfortable and conveniently located properties: Inverness Apartments, which we featured in a previous issue, or Best Western Suites Hotel. Best Western has 13 types of hotels in its brand portfolio from its Premium Collections right down to its Legacy brand, with which you are likely familiar. The Cape Suites is in a class by itself, with its spacious and stylish rooms and thoughtful amenities.
Meet Lucia Barnard, African Travel Specialist based in Sarasota. Lucia was born in South Africa and moved with her husband and two kids to the USA in 2009. After living in Atlanta for a year, they settled in Sarasota, Florida. This well-traveled and energetic Travel Professional has been in the Travel Industry since 1992.
Q: In your opinion, what are some of the must-sees on a first-time South African Tour?
Lucia: Nothing beats the African bush surrounded by an African sunset; however the Cape Town experience is filled with everything I want in a vacation… amazing food, culture, shopping, and exploring eco wildlife is a must-do.
Were you born between 1946 and 1964? If the answer is yes, then you are part of the 10,000 baby boomers a day who will reach retirement age over the next ten years. You, according to Certified Wealth Strategist David Kennon, can spend more in your retirement and go live all the dreams you put on the shelf. Go forth into retirement bliss, he says. Take the cruise, go on a safari, travel with your grandkids, and do any other thing your heart desires.
David meets about 30 – 50 baby boomers in his office every month through his Social Security Outreach classes. Over the years, he has noted a startling pattern: very few boomers are spending their retirement savings. They suffer from what he calls “spendophobia,” doggedly holding onto their money for fear of not having enough for and throughout retirement.
Passion, romance, adventure… what better way to fan the flames of love than at a wildly exotic locale? At Humala River Lodge, “wild” is the operative word. Humala is cozily tucked away in the Songimvelo Game Reserve, a 200,000-acre African wilderness, graced with hidden valleys, cascading waterfalls, and spectacular river gorges. Elephants, buffalos, zebras and wildebeest freely roam its grassy plains, while giraffes, kudu and impala find comfort in its densely wooded forests. Watch for birds in a rainbow of colors, silly monkey antics and hippos resting in the river. You might even get lucky and glimpse the elusive leopard at the blush of dawn.
They’re comfortable, convenient, and capacious! We are thrilled to announce that we have secured Inverness condo-style apartments as our new accommodation for our Cape Town Tour, as well as for the Cape Town portion of our Signature Tour. Inverness is in the trendy Sea Point section of the city near restaurants, cafés, bars, and boutiques as well as the lively Sea Point Promenade which stretches along the Atlantic Ocean. It is also just a few minutes’ drive to all of Cape Town’s other attractions, including Cape Point, Hout Bay, and the V and A Waterfront – one of South Africa’s most visited destinations.