Pictures: Sue Adams and Supplied
How is it possible, in this magnificent country, to pick one location or view that is my favourite? South Africa is a world in one country, with so many fabulous places from which to choose. I love Joburg, the hustle and bustle of this mining city that has an urban forest as its big heart. I love Soweto because of the spirit. I love the Karoo and the Eastern Cape.
So many fabulous places, but my favourite spots have to be Umdloti on the North Coast, and the banks of the Crocodile River in Mpumalanga. My family and I spend regular rest time in each location and choosing between them is hard. Our flat in Umdloti is high on the dune-side of town and looks down on the Indian Ocean, where dolphins and whales are regular visitors. It’s a holiday town with marvellous restaurants, but on our hill we can cocoon and feel alone. We love it. The new airport is a boon as well.
However, to sit on the cliff between Malalane and Komatipoort and look out over the Crocodile River and the Kruger Park is to be in a place that everyone dreams about but few experience. We once saw a herd of buffalo wander down a bank, not seeing a pride of lion beside it. Too late they realised the danger and we watched the drama play out in front of us as if it were on National Geographic. Yes, it was brutal, but it was nature in all its glory, sustaining itself as if for our edification alone.
I love the quiet times the most; sitting with a book at midday and thinking that nothing is happening. But after half an hour I’ve seen birds and animals galore and have felt the rhythm of the mighty river as it brushes against the timeless bushveld. It’s even better when I share this special place with my family. Then it feels like a part of heaven.
Tune in to John Robbie on Talk Radio 702 (also DStv Music Channel 856) weekdays from 06h00 to 09h00.