Paul McCartney would approve
21.03.2017 - 23.03.2017 94 °F
Sometimes when I travel I wonder if I have gone to far
Leaving the posh but relaxing environment of Stellenbosch we hop in the Jeep and leave all the shops and restaurants behind. We head off to the East South East of on a long journey on a very hot day. We are five people , 4 big duffels, 4 big backpacks full of camera equipment, some tex bars,water and peppermint crisps all shoved into a Jeep Wrangler.
We are told it is about three and a half hours and it is a very hot day, probably 90+ degrees F. We are all very cheerful taking in the scenery along the way we stop for a quick break after about 2 hours, the scenery changes from some small towns to just farm land, a small wind farm, brown fields on rolling hills that have been harvested already. Even though it is so hot we remember they are going into fall here.
After another hour we turn off onto a rocky road, not the ice cream, for the last very bumpy 30 K before we arrive at thegate of theHoop nature reserve. Here we left in the good hands of Calvin our host at the Ocean House. We now climb up into an open Land Rover for the last 15 or 20K to our home for the next three days. This road is rockier and bumpier than the one before and the car has been here before, it takes the bumps and rocks like a seasoned pro, helping to set the scene for this remote place. This part of the reserve is all Fynbos, ( fine bush) over 1000 species of them, sand dunes and beyond that the Indian Ocean. Another 20 minutes bumping along taking in the scenery and breathing in the sea air laced with the different fynbos as the new adventure begins. What lies ahead is truly special.
The staff meet us with a traditional welcome song, hand towels to refresh and cool and a tall Shirley Temple to rehydrate. There is a stark contrast from Stellenbosch and the lush green sophisticated DeLaire Graff property with all the statues and manicured grounds to this completely wild nature reserve which makes me feel a bit like I have landed on the moon. I haven't even seen anything yet and I am in love with this place. It has all the elements of nature that I love. The sea, the sand, rocky cliffs, sand dunes and animals grazing freely it is just about heaven on earth. There is a calm here that I have never experienced anywhere else. No noise, no ambient light and no TV and just enough internet connection to be happy. All I can hear are birds singing and before I unpack I ask our host and hostess if we can stay an extra night!