Friday, November 4, 2011

Panorama Route in Mpumalanga ~ part 1 of vacation

Our vacation with my dad in Mpumalanga and Limpopo was divided in 3 parts. First we drove to Plumbago Guesthouse, a beautiful and unique little place with only 3 rooms. So you can imagine that we got the undivided attention of the owners Ilara & Robbie. The guesthouse is settled between banana and avocado farms at the end of an bougainvillea-lined drive way. So picturesque!
The house, the ambiance, the setting is so graceful and beautiful, we felt like visiting good friends instead of being guests of a B&B. The details in the rooms and the table setting was something I had never seen so pretty and fine! A great start of our vacation! From Plumbago we visited the Panorama Route, Blyde River Canyon and the gorgeous surroundings, cute towns in this part of SA we haven't seen so far in detail. We just drove through once, but now we actually had time to stop at places we found interesting. A worthwhile trip!!

The area we stayed in is called Hazyview, and now I can see why... always there seems to hang a mist, everything is foggy all the time. No wonder the gardens are so lush and green, this area is so wet and moist! So totally different than Joburg where it is dry and much more yellow.

The garden of Plumbago was my dream, all those herbs and cute flowers. I got inspired by her fresh use of herbs at every meal that as soon as we came home I planted my mini herb garden, but nothing compared to Ilara's little space of heaven!

The highlights of the Panorama Route are beautiful waterfalls, the greenest canyon on earth ~ Blyde River Canyon, caves occupied by men for 50.000 years and a cute mining village called Pelgrim's Rest. This is the area where the gold diggers used to hang out! Jasmine was wondering if there were still places where she could find a piece of gold... well, we didn't try to find it. We had other things to see! Like the Mac Mac Pools, a cute village full of crafts and a silk making studio! Who knew SA makes their own silk.... it's the only one in SA and we found it!!

God's Window was next ~ a gap in the Drakensberg escarpment with a view of the low veld and the Kruger National Park. And on real clear days you can even see Mozambique! Unfortunately it was a bit foggy, so the view was not that clear. But the walk up there through the rain forest was gorgeous!! Beautiful flora and fauna!

Next stop were the Berlin Falls, it plunges 48 meters deep into a creek. At every stop we made to see one of the viewing points on the Panorama route they had set up little stalls with women selling local crafts. I loved these older ladies, one even with a baby on her back, must have been her grandchild and we promised them on the way back from the climb to the waterfall to buy something. So she is holding the wooden cutting board I bought. Handmade and really nice wood! Our first souvenir on the trip!

Next was Bourke's Luck Potholes, named after Tom Bourke who predicted that gold would be found in this vicinity. The deep, cylindrical potholes have been scoured out over millions of years by sand and stones swirled round by the water. It is magnificent to see and it is hard to see on the pictures how huge this all is. But look at the one with the bridge (left under) and the people on it, then you get a feel of the hugeness.

Just magnificent!

The girls find the rocks fun to climb on and pose for us :-)

Although this day was not finished yet, but the pictures takes so so long to download I will do the rest another day. We just have to see it in stages....

Monkey's everywhere we stop for a drink or some food along the way. They are cheeky and steal the food out of your hands if you don't watch them closely!!

This one was following us the whole time waiting for our ice cream to finish, well we gave it gladly to him, just to get rid of him! They are a bit scary, if they would grab you of jump on you... you don't know what disease they carry with them?

Mom taking care of her young...

I love all the plants along the roads....

Till next time, enjoy your day!
Mireille xx

1 comment:

Leah Maya Benjamin said...

Its so beautiful, you never realize how different the terrain is all throughout different countries.


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