Our 5 star Shamwari Experience Part 2

We were told to meet our guide at 15h30 in the bar/lounge where tea would be served before going on our afternoon game drive. Just enough time to sort out some warm clothing for the drive and perhaps relax a bit after a good lunch.

We met our ranger over coffee, (beautiful cake and savoury tarts as well, if you wanted them) and after a while of getting to know you, he outlined the “rules” of the game drive. Shamwari is very conscious of conservation and preserving nature, plus giving every guest the ultimate experience. The game vehicles carry a maximum of seven passengers, but normally 6 would be the maximum. This is great as everyone is on a side of the vehicle – no middle seat. Instead of a middle seat is a box where blankets are kept and you can put any belongings you don’t want straight away.

The first afternoon was very special as we saw giraffes – about 8 of them all together. They are so graceful with their long necks and they seem to love “posing” for you. There were lots of Zebras around and of course buck (or fast food for lions?). The first of the “Big Five” we saw were a family of elephants. It is fascinating to watch elephants especially the “children” who can play so beautifully. We drove around for a while and came across a family of lions – mother, father and five cubs (about 14 months old). This was really something to see. They were all lying next to the road and sitting watching them you just want to stroke them, but definitely not allowed.

Seeing 2 of the Big 5 in less than an hour is amazing but we were extremely lucky to see 2 black Rhino. Unfortunately these are bush dwellers and it is quite amazing to see how quickly they disappear into the thick bush – now you see them, now you don’t!

As the sun was setting we stopped for “sundowners”, a chance to stretch your legs and chat about all the animals we had seen.

We had a young Irish couple with us who were on their honeymoon – so decided that this must be why we were so lucky – the luck of the Irish!

We drove back to Long Lee in the dark and were welcomed back with a glass of sherry or hot chocolate to warm you up. It is pretty cold on the vehicles at this time of the year.

The dinner that night was in the Barn. The weather at this time of the year is not really good enough to sit outside around a “boma” so Long Lee uses their barn to set up for dinner, with all the food outside. Dinner was an amazing array of food with a lot of typical South African dishes such as “pap” and boerewors, koeksusters, brandy pudding as well as all the other dishes you could possibly want such as Kudu, fillet steak and lots of salads.

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