Sometimes I forget how lucky I am to have grown up in the North West province of South Africa.
As a kid, we spent our weekends visiting friends on farms, ran around bare feet in the mud and explored the bushveld. On a recent trip home, I was reminded of the beauty that this province has to offer. My dad took us to the Pilansberg Game Reserve where we went searching for the big 5.
South Africa is known for the BIG 5. These animals are namely the lion, elephant, leopard, buffalo and rhino. On a good day, you might be able to spot all five these animals in the game reserve! People often think, as we live in South Africa, that we live among lions and ride our elephants to school. Although this might happen in other parts of the world, in South Africa, we need to visit game reserves to view these majestic animals up close.
Giraffes at Pilansberg Game Reserve
On Sunday, 24 May, it was my 30th birthday! I decided to enter my thirties by hiking at the Jonkershoek Nature Reserve.
Jonkershoek is situated just outside Stellenbosch. It’s about an hours drive from Cape Town, or two hours if your GPS doesn’t work! Entrance to the reserve is R40 per person and there’s quite a few hiking trails to chose from. I just wanted to do an easy stroll, so we opted for the Swartboskloof to Sosyskloof trail.
The Jonkershoek reserve is set in a beautiful valley surrounded by the Boland mountains. Unfortunately, recent veld fires destroyed some of the beautiful fynbos in the area. On the trail, we saw dark patches of plants and flowers. I felt sad. It almost seemed as if these flowers got stuck in time, all that’s left is a memory of the days they showed the world their colors.
Scenery around Jonkershoek Nature Reserve