The bus from Namibia down to Cape Town felt quite luxurious – a seat each, a distinct lack of goats onboard….and a telly. Unfortunately the telly meant 26 long hours of The God Channel. Every day Africa came up with a new patience game to play. In a stroke of luck, I met a fellow kiwi at Cape Town’s Green Elephant hostel who happened to have a spare ticket to the NZ-Slovakia football match; bingo! We decided to road-trip along the Garden Route for a few days before the game.
Lightning had struck the mountains in Betty’s Bay one night, lighting up the hills behind our backpackers like a Christmas tree.


After watching them jump about, it’s easy to see why African penguins are also known as Jackass penguins.


Although they are officially protected, baboons are considered a pest in many parts of Africa. A man in Betty’s Bay told us a wee tale about how he came home one day to find that a baboon had broken into his house. It had smashed or eaten everything in its path. He grabbed his shotgun (which just happened to be nearby) and killed it. Not knowing how to dispose of the evidence, he grabbed the box which had held his new TV, put the baboon in it and drove to the local pub. Leaving the box on the back of his ute, he strolled inside for a beer. About 20 minutes later he came back out, the box had been nicked and he went home carefree.


The waters off Gaansbaai on the southern coast of Africa are a regular stomping ground for great white sharks. They like this part of the ocean due to the number of Seal and Penguin colonies. This juvenile great white eyeballed me from less than 30cm away when we went under the water in a cage; but it was during the boat trip back that things started to get scary. Huge swells, the boat tipping side to side, people throwing up, and everyone onboard aware that just down there in the water were rather a lot of sharks…


Having never seen a rock hyrax or ‘dassie’ before, I was suprised to hear that they are related to elephants. We got to have a closer look at a skeleton, and sure enough there are little tusks! Also interesting to note is that dassies produce large amounts of hyraceum (sticky mass of dung and urine) which has been used in the treatment of several medical disorders including epilepsy and convulsions.


The ostriches of Ootshorn take a liking to my camera.


Bird-watching at the estuary in Wilderness.


After a failed attempt at surfing (45 minutes of dodging rocks), I went back to collecting interesting shells at Jeffrey’s Bay.

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Port Elizabeth’s shopping mall had had enough of vuvuzela noise before the World Cup had even begun.


Armed with a pottle of face-paint, we set about recruiting South Africans to support the kiwi team at the NZ-Slovakia match.


Vinny and Kate, pre-match Rustenburg.


Amy gives her lungs a work-out. Johannes tries telling her that only Slovakians know how to play this instrument.


Own face-painting not recommended after one too many beers on a frosty morning!


The only supporter at the game not suffering from the icy cold winds.


28 years since NZ last made it to the Soccer World Cup so I’m told.


The beautiful old Market Theatre in downtown Johannesburg was a central meeting point for creative South Africans during Apartheid.


White rhino’s in Pilansburg Park north of Rustenburg.                                                                                                    Back to Home


No washing line in South Africa was complete without at least a few yellow football shirts.


Bryn has a kick-around with a group of kids in Soweto.


1. Couldn’t get enough of the yummy mealie pap and sauces at Rustenburg’s markets.
2. Trying on a South African style muumuu at the markets in Soweto.


John from Vilakazi street. He likes to relax in the morning sun and watch passers-by visiting the houses of his ex-neighbours Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.


Graffiti in Soweto.


The whole of Africa was behind Ghana at the World Cup; they became the continental heroes. Central Johannesburg this day was no exception. All ages braved the cold to watch a Ghana-Australia showdown on the big screen.

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All content copyright © Charlotte Hayes 2011
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