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South Africa

Winning the Doggie Lotto

Winning the Doggie Lotto

I think it’s safe to say that Bow Wow is loving life in the UK. It’s certainly a far cry from the existence that he could have had as a township stray, surviving amongst the rainbow warrens of shacks in his birthplace, Imizamo Yethu in Cape Town, South Africa.


Condos in the Sky on our way to Namibia

Condos in the Sky on our way to Namibia

On a South African highway, we passed hundreds of Communal Weaver bird nests on top of electricity pylons. We likened these to condos in the sky.


Journey to Zimbabwe (Photo Diary)

Journey to Zimbabwe (Photo Diary)

After a break in Cape Town and with only 4 days left on Lucie’s South African visa, it was a case of pedal to the metal, past the boerewors curtain and all the way through Afrikaans country until we reached the Zimbabwe border.


Kimberley (Photo Diary)

Kimberley (Photo Diary)

From battle fields to diamond fields, Kimberley and its surrounding area is drenched in history. We stayed with a wildlife vet at Magersfontein Farm where the British suffered their greatest losses during the Boer War and explored Kimberley’s preserved ‘New Rush’ streets. With so many fortunes made and lost in this historic area, Back to Africa’s Sable Project at Mokala National Park is proving to be another success for the history books.


Raising Flags & Vuvuzelas in Durban by Bow Wow

Raising Flags & Vuvuzelas in Durban by Bow Wow

We catch soccer fever and make more furry friends in balmy Durban. I pass my state vet inspection without even a solitary flea. Lachlan is forced to carry me through a throng of amused football supporters but we are rewarded with a view of the staggering Moses Mandhiba stadium. We enter Swaziland to begin the most important phase of our quest.


Johannesburg (Photo Diary)

Johannesburg (Photo Diary)

From Mozambique, we headed back in to South Africa and with new visas, we picked up Bow Wow and headed for Johannesburg. Here we found out more about South Africa’s history by going to Constitution Hill, the site where thousands of political prisoners including Mahatma Ghandi and Nelson Mandela were once detained for opposing the apartheid regime. The former prison is now home to the Constitutional Court which protects human rights and embodies South Africa’s new culture of democracy. We also visited the Cradle of Humankind where some of the oldest hominid fossils have been and still are being discovered.


Kruger Park (Photo Diary)

Kruger Park (Photo Diary)

It’s 4:59am at the Kruger Park, the camp gates are about to open and we just can’t wait. Dawn breaks over the savanna and clasping tin cups of hot coffee and marmalade rusks we head for the Lion highway. What delights await us?


Journey to Swaziland via Durban (Photo Diary)

Journey to Swaziland via Durban (Photo Diary)

We catch soccer fever and make more furry friends in balmy Durban. I pass my state vet inspection without even a solitary flea. Lachlan is forced to carry me through a throng of amused football supporters but we are rewarded with a view of the staggering Moses Mandhiba stadium. We enter Swaziland to begin the most important phase of our quest.


To the Wild Coast and Beyond

To the Wild Coast and Beyond

Lachlan does the World’s highest bungy jump and Bow Wow joins a crew of salty surf mutts at J Bay which leads to a chance encounter with rock star scientist Brian Cox. We spend a few luxurious nights with Lucie’s relatives stocking up on biltong and gaining invaluable advice for the trip ahead. Humbled by the Wild Coast we can feel the bittersweet beauty of Africa’s extremes already getting under our skin and touching our hearts.


Growing Up on the Road by Bow Wow

Growing Up on the Road by Bow Wow

We finally hit the road and I learn of my important role on our journey. I meet many weird and wonderful creatures including a demented cockerel, truly terrifying ostriches, insomniac long horned cows, acrobatic monkeys, mountain ponies and donkeys, ice rats and a cheeky jackal who liked the look of my Hill’s dog food! I make some great new friends and sadly lose one too. No one said that growing up on the road was going to be easy.


Getting our Kicks on Route 62

Getting our Kicks on Route 62

We finally left, as ready as we would ever be, on May the 23rd with only two weeks to get to Lesotho and renew our visas! Following the infamous Route 62, we stayed in quirky Montagu, had a drink at the incongruous Ronnie’s Sex Shop, attempted to ride an ostrich and squeezed through a labyrinth of tiny gaps deep underground at the Cango Caves.


Journey to the Wild Coast & Beyond (Photo Diary)

Journey to the Wild Coast & Beyond (Photo Diary)

Lachlan does the World’s highest bungy jump and Bow Wow joins a crew of salty surf mutts at J Bay which leads to a chance encounter with rock star scientist Brian Cox. We spend a few luxurious nights with Lucie’s relatives stocking up on biltong and gaining invaluable advice for the trip ahead. Humbled by the Wild Coast we can feel the bittersweet beauty of Africa’s extremes already getting under our skin and touching our hearts.


Getting our Kicks on Route 62 (Photo Diary)

Getting our Kicks on Route 62 (Photo Diary)

We finally left, as ready as we would ever be, on May the 23rd with only two weeks to get to Lesotho and renew our visas! Following the infamous Route 62, we stayed in quirky Montagu, had a drink at the incongruous Ronnie’s Sex Shop, attempted to ride an ostrich and squeezed through a labyrinth of tiny gaps deep underground at the Cango Caves.


Return of the Quagga

Return of the Quagga

We were fortunate enough to join Hamish Currie, the director of Back to Africa (and a German film crew!), in the capture and relocation of two Quaggas, a zebra-like animal that was hunted to extinction. They were distinguishable by their stripes which were on the front half of their bodies only and they had a basic brownish colour at the rear. These incredible creatures are being brought back from extinction through a careful re-breeding programme.


The Otter Trail

The Otter Trail

The Otter Trail is a five day, 42km hike in the indigenous Tsitsikamma Forest by a breathtaking untouched coastline. You sleep in wooden huts with no electricity or mobile phone reception and for five days all you hear is the sound of the ocean and the incessant insect hum of the bush. Hailed as one of the World’s most beautiful hikes, this was the opportunity of a lifetime.


Otter Trail Pack List

Otter Trail Pack List

Gil Bauman has done the Otter Trail so many times that he has lost count! He has very kindly allowed us to publish his Otter Trail Pack List which has been finely honed over the years to cover all eventualities while being as light as possible.


Our Ultimate Weekend in Cape Town

Our Ultimate Weekend in Cape Town

Get the insider knowledge on Cape Town and learn of all the wondrous things to do, see and eat in one weekend. We have managed to narrow down a large list of favourites to bring you our ultimate weekend in the Mother City. Hold on to your hatsies..


Just Nuisance by Bow Wow

Just Nuisance by Bow Wow

Bow Wow learns about one of South Africa’s great dogs, Just Nuisance, the only dog ever to be enlisted in the Navy. He pays his respects visiting the life size statue and grave in Simon’s Town and learns about how important a dog can be.


City Slicker Baboons

City Slicker Baboons

Living with baboons in Cape Town is both wonderful and problematic. Baboons are the first species that we will cover as part of our involvement with the charity, Back to Africa. Find out how we tried to catch Jimmy, the baboon who is on the run, and how he cleverly foiled our plans!


Tails from Driehoek

Tails from Driehoek

Braving the leopards with Bow Wow, a.k.a. Leopard Bait, at Driehoek in the heart of the Cederberg. We meet an excited bushman and Zulu, a dog with two tails. Bow Wow pretends to like cuddles.


Step Back in Time

Step Back in Time

We step back in time to Wupperthal and design some shoes. Bow Wow makes a big impression with his ‘shake hands’ trick at the village school and we meet a German film crew. Mma Ramotswe would approve.


My Friend, Benjamin

My Friend, Benjamin

Meet my friend, Benjamin who helped keep me out of trouble. When staying in Citrusdal, what I thought was a frisbee, was something completely different!
Love ‘n’ Licks, Bow Wow


Beaverlac

Beaverlac

Getting to grips with Afrikaans, camping and constellations. We discover that Bow Wow is half otter in Beaverlac’s crystal pools and that you can take the dog out of the township but you can’t take the township out of the dog.


WE ♡ CT

WE ♡ CT

We are finally hitting the road after several delays so we thought we’d leave you with a few photos of our favourite experiences from this wonderful city. Recently whilst taking Bow Wow to be micro-chipped, we met Dr. Hamish Currie. He will be helping us with any doggie requirements we may need. We also plan to support his charity, ‘Back to Africa’.


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