ROAD TRIP – SODWANA BAY (1)


Langebaan to Hanover

Welcome to our road trip of December 2021. We are travelling by car across South Africa (from the west coast → north coast → KZN south coast → back to the west coast). The distance we will cover, will be around 5,000km (3,106 miles).

Our main purpose for this trip, besides seeing places we have not seen before, is for Berto to scuba dive in Sodwana Bay and then to be a little more adventurous … diving with sharks in the ocean in Umkomaas on the south coast of Kwazulu-Natal. We hope to share lots of pictures to show you our beautiful country.

Accommodation – Day 1:

Karoo Gariep Nature Reserve – New Holme Nature Lodge (Hanover, Northern Cape)

We left Langebaan, our home town, in perfect sunny weather. We will travel to Hanover in the Northern Cape province today – a distance of about 840km (521 miles).

Crossing an old railway track

When we crossed the provincial border from the Western Cape to the Northern Cape, long and straight roads awaited us with a few towns in between. When we started to plan our road trip a couple of months ago, we knew that we would like to travel on the back roads – by now, we know when travelling this way, you see unexpected beauties on your journey. Sometimes, our car was the only one on the road … just the way we prefer it!

A straight road going on for many kilometers

It was on one of these straight roads (between the towns of Williston and Carnarvon), where we pulled over to enjoy lunch. We parked our car in the shade of a few small trees, before packing out our lunch to enjoy with a cup of coffee and tea.

I prepared cheese & tomato buns and boiled eggs, while Berto made a fire the previous evening to ‘braai’ sausage (‘boerewors’)

With our tummies full, we continued on our trip. More straight roads followed and after about 200km, we drove into a very small village called Vosburg where we had to refuel our car. Although it’s a super small town, it took us some time to find a petrol station. After a while, we saw three petrol pumps – almost hidden away behind another building.

Re-fueling our car at Vosburg

While stretching my legs at the petrol station, I noticed a couple of goats in the street. They were eating the leaves from a big tree … that was until someone came to fetch them. I love these small towns!

Goats in Vosburg’s streets

Our last part of today’s journey, was through flat landscapes with mountains only visible in the distance. It was already 17:30 in the afternoon when we reached our destination for the day.

Flat landscapes on our way to Hanover

Just pass Hanover, we reached a gravel road that took us to our accommodation for the night, New Holme Nature Lodge in the Karoo Gariep Nature Reserve.

A gravel road leading to our accommodation

And what a lovely place! We were welcomed like family by the owners of the lodge who made immediately sure that we are comfortable after our long journey. Our room is called the ‘stalle’ (old horse stables that were converted into lovely rooms with a luxurious en-suite bathroom).

The front view of our room at New Holme Nature Lodge
Nice smelling flowers decorate the back of our accommodation

Once again, we met some wonderful travelers. A couple, on their way from Johannesburg to Cape Town, also overnight here and we had great conversations with them. That’s the beauty of traveling this way, you have the opportunity of meeting some amazing people.

There is an honesty bar in the lodge and Berto arranged for cold beers after our long 8-hour journey on the road
The dining room where breakfast and dinner are served

I saw the staff of the lodge feeding a couple of young lambs, one of them being only a week old. They asked whether I would like to help with the feeding and I immediately grabbed the opportunity of holding two bottles of hot milk while they were sucking like crazy!

Young lambs waiting for their bottles of milk

After a long day on the road, we still had enough energy to make a big fire to prepare our dinner. The feeling of sitting next to a fire in a far-away place with only nature’s wonderful sounds, is almost magical to us!

Our fire at New Holme Nature Lodge

We saw the most breathtaking sunset while sitting outside … the perfect way of ending a long day on the road!

What a magnificent sunset to end the first day of our road trip

Tomorrow, we are travelling to the Golden Gate National Park near Clarens in the Free State province – high up in the mountains. We will see you there …

Categories: South African Break Aways

65 comments

  1. We love a great road trip! Maggie

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ek toer te lekker saam. Mooi vertelling en foto’s. Reis veilig.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a lovely rest stop. And you got to feed the lambs! those long straight roads…great for driving but I tend to get mesmerized by the monotony. How do you avoid it, or is it not a problem for you?

    Liked by 1 person

    • We were so happy with our overnight accommodation – friendly people, amazing bed (and shower 😉) … and yes, how great that I got to feed the lambs (they are so adorable)! As for the straight roads … we’re used to be driving on roads like these in South Africa … and we talk a lot (and I read interesting stuff from our BIG travel book to Berto about the area in which we driving) – this way, we learn more about our country! Oh yes, and we eat and tell jokes to each other 😄.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the beauty of SA, looks like a wonderful trip.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It looks like it’s going to be another epic trip and your first night’s accommodation is lovely. I googled your hometown as I hadn’t heard of it and it seems to be a delightful place to live. Wish you could send some of your warm, sunny days our way as this week I’ve had to dig out my hat, scarf, boots and gloves!! Have a good weekend. Marion

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah Marion, I’m sure this is going to be indeed an epic trip … we are looking so much forward in exploring new places! Oh yes, Langebaan is such a beautiful seaside town and we’re so happy to call this our hometown! As for the sunny weather … you won’t believe it … but we had rain all day long (thunder storms and so WET) while staying here in the Golden Gate National Park! It feels like winter … but hopefully more sunny weather is waiting for us in the next couple of days!
      Take care and hope the weather is not too cold! Corna 🌸

      Liked by 1 person

  6. What a beautiful description of your day on the road, and who could possibly resist those sweet, little lambs! I’m looking forward to reading more about your cross-country adventure.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. A great beginning to what promises to be an awesome road trip. Life on the open road is full of adventure and beautiful sights. Stay safe and I’m looking forward to more captivating stories and beautiful photos!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Absolutely John. We know with a plane it’s much quicker (and easier), but we already saw places now we have not even heard of before and met some amazing people! Thanks for joining in on our road trip – next is Golden Gate National Park … a BEAUTIFUL place!

      Like

  8. Veilige reis! Ek hoop die genotlike eerste dag was sommer n goeie voorbode vir jul hele vakansie. O ja, die padkos laat mens se mond water – dis nou maar n Suid-Afrikaanse tradisie wat nooit mag uitsterf nie.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What fun! I can’t wait to follow along with you and learn more about South Africa. Love the sunset photos

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Mm, there’s nothing quite like a road trip. My word the weather looks infinitely better than here in Serbia. And your digs look very cosy, while the lambs are just gorgeous. Do you mind if I grab one of those sausages?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh, I love a road trip … even more so when there are new places to discover! Yesterday, we had real winter weather (thunder and rain storms) – but even that couldn’t stop us from exploring. But today was another glorious day … and it seems so will be the rest of our week here on the north coast (hot and humid) – Berto says it’s the perfect weather for diving 😁. Those sausages was great – afraid, they’re all gone!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. That lodge looks a wonderful place to stay, especially as you got to feed the lambs!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Nou verlang ek sommer na ons onlangse roadtrippie! Ons was by Vosburg en het by die Ketel koffie gaan drink! Dit is regtig die mooiste ou klein dorpie. Daar is soveel mooi in hierdie landskappe! Julle oornag blyplek lyk na ‘n lekker oorslaap plekkie! Mooi ry verder en geniet die pragtige natuur!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Love a good road trip – looking forward to seeing the next installments 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  14. This sound like quite the adventurous road trip. So far it looks like you’re off to a good start. I love the little spot you found to eat lunch on the road. Those baby lamb are adorable and how fun to help feed them!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • You are absolutely right … we’re off to a great start! Already saw some amazing places and arrived at the north coast yesterday … now it’s a week of sun, beach and sea! Oh yes, I loved the lambs’ feeding – it’s little surprises like this that make for wonderful memories!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Hooray for current travel! And what a big trip! I agree, fellow travelers are the kindest, most interesting people. And those baby lambs are the sweetest! I so appreciate your selections of the lesser traveled roads & out of the way places. Have so much fun, Corna, and please be safe swimming with the sharks, Berto! 🌞

    Liked by 1 person

    • We were so surprised to see all these “unknown”, but beautiful places Lisa! I think now is a good time to support our local tourism (especially in South Africa with the current travel ban). Thank you my friend, we’ll make the best of our road trip … I’ve given Berto your message (let’s hope the sharks are kind and friendly like the lambs I’ve met earlier 😉).

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Interesting wood decoration in the bedroom, gives it a natural feel. How fun to feed the lambs! ♥

    Liked by 2 people

  17. It is so strange to see a blacktopped road in your post! Lol That is a beautiful sunset. ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  18. The lambs are adorable and wow such a stunning sunset. Thank you for sharing our beautiful country, I cannot help but enjoy reading about it through your eyes 🌸💕

    Liked by 2 people

    • Henrietta, you’re absolutely right … those little lambs were just so cute (for only a week old, they had quite a firm grip on the milk bottle 😄). I’m glad you could enjoy our first day on the road with us – thank you for joining in. Take care, Corna 🌸.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I enjoyed reading this and
    I appreciate your hard work!. I know You have an impressive grip on this topic!.
    💞

    Liked by 2 people

  20. This is some awesome thinking. I love this! Wonderful ideas!💓

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Thank you for taking me on your road trip!
    Looks very dry but still beautiful.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Awesome, awesome, awesome. I have just started following your trip and I’m already hooked.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. O julle moet julle toer geniet! Ek is net so lief vir die langpad en hier is so baie skatte versteek in ons land.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I enjoyed reading this and
    I appreciate your hard work!. I know You have an impressive grip on this topic!.
    💞

    Liked by 2 people

  25. I have not stayed there but I have heard a lot about it.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Thank you for sharing your delightful travels, Corna. You & Berto are so much fun! 🌞

    Liked by 1 person

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