As we drive from Sydney to London, via Africa, we are sharing our expedition with you. Feel free to read on and say ‘Hi’ in the comments below.
The coast road towards Cape Town, named the Garden Route, is one of country’s most popular tourism attractions … it’s like the gods of South Africa got together one day and waved their magic wand in this region, it is beautiful.
Camping on the dramatic coast at Storms River was a favourite, as was chatting at 10am with a few locals sipping back ciders at the camp a few days before christmas. One of the funny blokes couldn’t get over our rigs set-up and told us to put him in our will as the Troopy’s benefactor. After we told him we were heading up through Africa he laughed and said ‘So I’ll have the Troopy sooner rather than later!’
^ Storms River
^ Driving, driving, driving
We had planned to spend two weeks in Cape Town over the festive season and rented out a garden cottage to bide our time away from the packed-to-the-brim camp sites to quieten down. We loved the Old Biscuit Mill Markets and driving around Chapmans Peak, Cape Of Good Hope, heading to the cinemas to watch Mandela. But we got frustrated ‘waiting’ around and spending too much money so we hit the road to see meet fellow overlanders up North and hiked in the Cederberg.
One of our favourite people on the planet, Jacques, got back to his home in Stellenbosch and he would’t hear of us staying anywhere else. And when we found out we had to wait a week for a part for the car (replacing our broken thermostat) he didn’t blink an eye. What a legend, we feel so lucky. Drinking too much wine in Stellenbosch (a stunning winelands area!) is too easy and set the tone for a very alcoholic January… that originally had whispers of being alcohol-free! whoops
^ Delair Graaf – dropped into the nearest winery to do a tasting and collect a few bottles and accidentally ended up at the fanciest place in town *ooops*
^ One of many lunches with our mate JB in Stellenbosch
^ Mojito time at the Old Biscuit Mill, Cape Town
^ We have a bit of a tradition around mojitos and travelling
^ Food galore at the markets
^ The Slow Market near Stellenbosch
^ The Slow Market near Stellenbosch
We also visited the Tracks4Africa team and got the new update of their maps loaded onto our Garmin Montana. T4A are the GPS mapping system for Africa, it’s an incredible company that uses travellers tracks and waypoints to create and evolve maps for Africa. This trip would be impossible (or a hell of a lot harder!) if Tracks4Africa didn’t exist. If you are interested you can read a post we wrote by clicking here.
^ Tracks4Africa meet up
After an extremely thorough mechanical checkup and new thermostat we finally left Cape Town. Unfortunately on the road North we overheated within hours, again in 40′ heat at altitude and on medium incline. A big old drama unfolded eliminating every element of the cooling system and we waited overnight for a new radiator to be couriered in. A guy who follows us on Facebook, Enrico, saw our post and turned up saying ‘I’m here to help!’ – we were left in little doubt as the day unfolded and ended up sleeping at his house with a belly full of braii meat that he was a little angel sent to Springbok to look after us 😉 (Thanks again Enrico!)
^ Not again! Overheating 30kms from Springbok
^ The INCREDIBLE Andre of Silverton Radiators in Springbok. We are still talking about how lucky we are that we met him that day
^ Enrico and his gorgeous family take us in for the night to their house on a nature reserve!
^ Braiiing it up and putting the crazy day into perspective
Heading north towards the Kalahari (Kgalagadi NP) we endured two searingly hot days at Augrabies National Park to wait it out for a Monday to arrive so the nearest town would open. The task at hand was to find ourselves a new fan. We got into town early and hustled our arses off. After securing a part, arranging a courier (it had to come from Johannesburg), arranging a delivery address, arranging a payment at a local bank, arranging having our window crack sealed we then arranged a stiff drink and a spot to sleep the night as we waited to see it all our emails and conversations turned into a fan appearing the next day.
The thing to note here is that even in South Africa things take a while so when we called it a day we felt quite chuffed at what we had achieved!
^ Augrabies Falls National Park, Northern South Africa (the temps reached 43 degrees that day!)
^ Driving inside Augrabies Falls National Park
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