Enhance Your Stay

In our last blog, we shared ideas of great day trips around South Africa. This month, we’re keeping things, even more, local – ‘cause local is lekker!
A blissful break at one of our properties simply isn’t complete without “holiday extras” – those unmissable activities that are perfect for a truly unforgettable time. These magical extras are sure to fill your holiday with special moments, wherever you are! Enhance your stay by taking the time to pre-book them, to ensure your holiday is packed full of activities you love… and you could save with early booking discounts. It’s a win-win!

Boat Cruises

When was the last time you sat back and relaxed on a small boat or barge – just cruising along, taking in the peaceful scenery and sharing a few laughs with your family and friends? On your next visit to the Garden Route, book an unforgettable boat cruise from Knysna River Club or Knysna Chalets. Here you’ll get to explore the lagoon, seeing this breathtaking area from a whole new vantage point. If the weather is fresh, a beanie and hot chocolate will go down a treat, and for warm days not much beats a GnT!

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Moving inland… at Qwantani you’ll be amazed by the refreshing solitude and wide-open spaces that you’ll discover onboard their newly refurbished barge. Few places in the country serve up sundowners in such magnificent surroundings – Sterkfontein Dam is calling.

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Ride into the hills

The faster life gets, the more it makes sense to slow down on holiday. What better way to pause for a second, unplugging from your phone, work and the news than exploring the area on an enjoyable horseback ride? Many of our resorts offer horse riding for riders of all abilities which makes this a great activity for families and groups of friends. Rides are also different lengths allowing you to choose something short and sweet or a real adventure through the wilderness.

Tee up

For those who love a little pain or punishment 😉, golf is always an entertaining affair. We’re sure you’ve heard of our championship course on the KZN South Coast at Selborne Golf Estate, Hotel & Spa. Well did you know that many of our properties such as La Montagne have agreements with local courses where you can enjoy members rates – just for the pleasure of staying with us? So great!

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Relax to the max

One of the most popular pastimes at our properties is a luxury treatment or massage at La Vita Spa. Get yourself into your partner’s “good books” by booking something special for them or you both. This way you’ll get to make more decisions on what you’ll be doing during your well-deserved holiday (they will love the treatment that much!) plus your partner should treat you like the rockstar you are 😉.

Make something more of your holidays by booking “extras” in advance! They’ll give you #MagicalMemories that you can savour for a lifetime and that’s what travel is all about.

‘Til next time, we hope your holiday dreams keep coming true, they’re just some holiday extras away.

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aMAYzing Adventures

You’ve probably heard it over and over again… but life really is a journey, not a destination!
To celebrate life and create #aMAYzingMemories, here are ideas of great day trips to do and places to go this May. Spending time with people you love, doing things you love, discovering what South Africa has to offer and just enjoying the moment is what this blog’s all about! Instead of regretting the memories you’ll never have, let’s make them now with your perfect families and friends for a life filled with happiness.

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The aMAYzing Cape Town!

Our list of must-do day trips starts out with a fun-filled day in the Mother City – after all, ladies first 😉.

As Cape Town is South Africa’s Mecca for foodies, this blog wouldn’t be complete without some tasty ideas of places to go around the Mother City that would make for an unforgettable day out. We recommend eating out at Mojo Market in Sea Point which is open daily AND you can buy awesome artisanal products there. Other things to enjoy are live music and live sports on TV – it’s a vibe!
On Saturdays, the Biscuit Mill in Woodstock is calling. This market has more than enough food stalls to choose between, delicious Espresso Lab coffee on offer and fine dining (if that’s your thing) at one of RSA’s best restaurants – The Test Kitchen… you’ll be spoiled for choice during your super foodie adventure.

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What could make for a better road trip than a drive along Chapman’s Peak – which is considered one of the most beautiful places on earth?! To make the most of it pack some snacks and a few refreshments which you can enjoy at a picnic spot along the way. What’s more, as you near the Noordhoek end of the drive you can stop for a delicious wine tasting at Cape Point Vineyards where you’ll be amazed by the beauty of the estate (which you can walk around and even picnic on).

Another outing that’s sure to be filled with fun is a drive through Kalk Bay, stopping for something to eat and to explore the quaint boutique stores. Kalk Bay is a quiet town with its own fishing harbour, on the Cape Coast just below Boyes Drive (which we highly recommend taking for its views). Here you can enjoy a coffee watching the waves splash up against the windows of The Brass Bell Restaurant, get a delicious ice cream from the Ice Café or buy clothes that are truly unique from its many boutique stores. Just down the road is Simon’s Town where you can end off your day trip with a walk along the shore, watching the playful penguins hop around!

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To make a memorable getaway of it, book to stay at one of our super Cape Town properties – there’s more than enough to do in the Mother City to justify an extended stay 😉.

Next, we explore…

The Garden Route😊

If you haven’t been before, the Garden Route must be one of South Africa’s biggest gems, and what’s more – it’s just made for magical day trips.

We suggest starting your perfect day out with a cup of coffee or a bite to eat at île de pain on Thesen Island. Their food is just delicious and the bakery has amazing bread and patisseries for you to snack on later in the day. After that choose between driving up to Knysna Heads to take in the impressive views, going for a boat ride on the lagoon, hiking in the Wilderness or spending the day catching some rays on Plett’s popular beaches.

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A trip to the Garden Route wouldn’t be complete without exploring its amazing forests. Check out the Garden of Eden just off the N2 to see just how impressive the birdlife of the area really is! For dinner, if you’re after something extra special, try out Hunter’s Country House, just a short drive from Plettenberg Bay. Here unforgettable food and world-class service are dished up on its charming estate – perfect for #MagicalMemories. For accommodation that couldn’t be located any better, look no further than these choice offerings.

And last but not least we travel to the friendly…

KwaZulu-Natal Midlands

With a route that’s named after relaxing day trips – The Midland’s Meander – it’s time to plan yours! The Midlands makes for a magical long weekend when driving from Gauteng or Durban 😊 so don’t forget to stay at Midlands Saddle & Trout which is perfect for kiddies and some horse riding, or at Whispering Waters where you can unwind in peaceful surroundings and catch a trout or two 😉.

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With a number of dams in stunning mountainous surroundings, fishermen travel from far and wide to catch a trout in the Midlands’ beautiful waters. If you haven’t fly fished before – lessons are on offer, after which you can try your luck at snagging one of the canniest fish around. You can book a dam through Wildfly in Nottingham Road – a wonderful way to take in the blissful outdoors.
On your discovery of the Midlands, make sure you stop at the Nelson Mandela Capture Site to take in the rich history of the place. It’s a perfect photo opportunity and the Visitors Centre is sure to impress with light treats to snack on and memorabilia on offer to remember your trip by.

Fun-tastic activities that you can enjoy along the Meander include doing the Karkloof Canopy Tour where you’ll zip-line from platform to platform through the spectacular Karkloof Forest Reserve – ideal for the energetic!

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If you’re into natural wonders, stopping at Howick Falls is a must! One of South Africa’s 10 highest waterfalls, take in the impressive scenery before unwinding on the banks of Midmar Dam (4km away) or having a delicious meal at the Jackie Cameron School of Food & Wine.

We hope this blog has given you some great ideas of new things to do or places to go to discover South Africa and have an aMAYzing adventure – after all, life’s about the journey 😉.

‘Til next time, have magical times with your family and friends and let us know what you get up to on social media by using the hashtag #MagicalMemories.

Family-fantastic Destinations & Activities – Approved for the best time!

This month we’d like to share some ideas that we pinky-promise will help you have the best possible getaway with family or friends – from the best destinations to some activities that will leave you breathless (in a good way).

Turn your life into a travel blog…

Isn’t life great?! Well, maybe not all of it but life’s what you make it and holidays are always amazing. Why not go on holiday to make and capture #MagicalMoments with loved ones? Travel is an investment, after all – it gives your mind and body a much-needed break and the memories you make stay with you for a lifetime. You can look at photos over and over, thrilled that you went somewhere special with your loved ones and had such a great time – that happiness is PRICELESS!

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We know that holidays are all about family and the amazing women out there are the centre of every family! Guys – make your wife, mom or sister ultra-happy with some La Vita Spa magic 😊 these holidays! They’ll be feeling great again – back to their best and ready to join in on all the holiday fun – for the rest of your stay at one of our perfectly located properties.

Great getaways also require lots to see and do. Take a look at these resorts which are ideal for a relaxing time and they are perfect for fun too. So, whether you’re happy kicking back on a verandah with a good book or maybe you are a thrill seeker who likes to have busy, more energetic days, here goes…

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Gethlane Lodge – Mpumalanga

Only 4 hours’ drive from Pretoria – if you live in Gauteng and haven’t stayed at Gethlane Lodge you’ve been missing out! Not 1 but 5 sparkling swimming pools set the scene, in amazing bushveld surroundings, for a very relaxing time! With lots on the go including unmissable game walks alongside our furry friends (even getting within arm’s reach of these fun critters!), rejuvenating spa treatments, and a boma that is perfect for spending an evening with loved ones – a magical getaway’s in store!

Magical Experiences Nearby:

  • Visit Blyde River Canyon to enjoy a coffee or sandwich with one of the world’s best views
  • Pilgrim’s Rest and God’s Window both make for great day-trips
  • See a Leopard from up close at Kudu Private Nature Reserve
  • Try out quaint coffee shops in Lydenburg for a memorable time

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Cape Town – Western Cape

By far the most popular tourist destination in Africa, Cape Town is amazing all year round. There’s so much to do indoors that the weather doesn’t really matter… Crazy meal deals, specials on entertainment, cheaper flights and more availability at the best attractions (than in December) will do a lot to make you smile. On that subject… spacious, comfortable accommodation in the best locations will WOW you – have a look at these top spots which couldn’t be better placed for you to enjoy Cape Town’s hottest attractions during your holiday.

What to see & do in the Mother City:

  • Try out MOJO Market in Sea Point for the tastiest light-meals and craft drinks in town (just 300m from Riviera Suites)
  • Watch a live show by some of South Africa’s best performers at the Labia Theatre (700m from Mount Sierra)
  • Shop for stunning clothes by SA’s best designers (just a short walk from Hastings Hall) 

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Bushman’s Nek – Southern Drakensberg
In a perfect location for exploring the picture-perfect foothills of the Southern Drakensberg, Bushman’s Nek offers a resort experience like no other. You can unwind while trout fishing, horse riding or sitting on a verandah taking in the stunning views. Time spent around the rock-hewn pool is also a must! For a great family holiday, we recommend staying in the rustic self-catering log-cabins or large apartments and trying out the tasty dishes at Bushpot restaurant onsite. There’s also a daily entertainment programme to enjoy and the Fred First Kids Club which will keep the little ones busy all day long.

Must-do Southern Drakensberg Activities:

  • Get your adrenaline going with a game of paintball at Bushman’s Nek
  • Drive up Sani Pass on an unforgettable day trip
  • Explore the beautiful Berg landscape on a peaceful horseback ride
  • Relax in the splendid surroundings of Xumeni forest
  • Hike along contours for the best views of our picturesque valley and stop for a dip in the river on your way back to the resort
  • Tube down the Southern Berg’s beautiful rivers

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Selborne Golf Estate, Hotel & Spa – KZN South Coast

Now more family friendly than ever thanks to the addition of the FUN-tastic Fred First Club with its unmissable activities for kiddies, Selborne really is worth a try if you haven’t stayed there before. There’s luxury accommodation, a spa where all your troubles will float away, delicious dining, superb golfing and a beach nearby to keep adults more than happy 😉… and with so many kids facilities, they’ll definitely have a great time too. What’s more – Selborne has one of the best entertainment programmes around, from live music to wine pairings, curry nights and Sunday roasts – something exciting will definitely be on the cards during your stay!

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Unmissable South Coast Attractions:

  • Take kiddies to Crocworld for a day they’ll never forget
  • Scuba dive to experience an underwater paradise
  • Ride horses along the South Coast’s beautiful beaches

We hope these properties which specialise in family-fantastic activities that the little ones will love during a holiday will leave you feeling refreshed and with lasting memories too! Browse through the rest of our properties for other great getaway options.

Sharing is caring😉. Let us and our first-class members and guests know about your holiday by posting photos and tagging us using the hashtags #MagicalMemories, #FirstGroup and #FamilyTastic.

Wanderlust – It’s time to warm to winter

It is un-Brrrrr-lievable how quick this year is going, we have chills just thinking about winter (which seems so far away in this hot weather… but winter is coming [ahem Game of Thrones fans]). And yes, winter can be fresh but there’s also so much more to it than just the weather – especially when travelling in South Africa. Now’s a great time to book a winter getaway – after all, the early bird gets the worm.

Think about exploring Cape Town…
A world-famous holiday destination for good reason. When winter arrives, the beaches might be less appealing but there’s still loads to do from amazing shopping to South Africa’s best dining and a host of live events. If that wasn’t enough our properties offer spacious accommodation in which to relax and get cosy – you won’t want to leave! Not to mention, Mount Sierra has an indoor splash pool, perfect for the warmer days when the kids want to play and there’s also great daily entertainment on offer.
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Indulge in an aromatherapy full body massage, proven to help with several winter-related conditions, like dry skin, anxiety and insomnia or you can really heat things up with a hot stone treatment – the perfect winter warmer.

It’s no coincidence that winter and wine share the same first letters; farms in Durbanville and Stellenbosch will still be serving wine, so get your blood pumping with a glass or two of red and even better… most restaurants will be offering winter specials 😊. What’s more – you get to skip the summer holiday traffic – so what’s not to like?!

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Flights are cheaper at this time of year and it’s easier to book fantastic entertainment as most things are less busy. Why not shop to really look the part as you’ll be saving on so much during your winter getaway? Embrace the winter fun with your wardrobe too!

Something else to do – go snow hunting 😊! Some of us have never been in snow before or would like our friends or family to experience it. Book to stay at one of our properties [link] and you never know – you might just get lucky. Even a trip to Cape Town could see you enjoying snow-filled days in the impressive Tulbagh or Ceres scenery! Obviously, there are no guarantees when it comes to the weather, but you have to cast a line to have any chance of catching a fish 😉).

If taking a break in the outdoors is what you’re after
Make your winter “wanderful” with entertaining activities and magical moments wherever you choose to wander 😊. Consider a hot air balloon ride, going to a concert, doing a relaxing road trip to a nearby town or filling your days with laughs by making the most of our amazing outdoor activities and entertainment programmes.

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Winter’s also the best time of year to go on game drives at South Africa’s amazing reserves, some of which are just a short drive from our properties on the KZN North Coast. The grass is shorter at the game reserves in winter so it’s easier to see further and there’s usually less water around too, so you know the animals will swamp any waterholes, dams or rivers which makes them easy to find. Plus, those late afternoon sundowners just can’t be beat!

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Look no further than our properties like Gethlane Lodge (Burgersfort), Qwantani (Sterkfontein Dam), Magalies Park (Hartbeespoort) or Hole in the Wall (Coffee Bay) for a taste of the great outdoors. Drinking a cup of coffee (or something else 😉) watching kids roast marshmallows on the fire is one of the priceless little things that makes winter so special – and this time of year is filled with “wanderful” activities that you can discover, especially at our unique properties 😊. Again, nearby activities will often come at a winter discount and the resorts are just as great as always.

If you haven’t tried them before, Gethlane Lodge is home to wildlife, has an amazing entertainment programme and magical sunsets, and lies just an hour’s drive from natural wonders including the Blyde River Canyon.

At Qwantani spectacular views over the vast dam and onto surrounding mountains are breathtaking in the clear winter weather! There’s also horse riding and great activities like Boma Braais which are perfect for the whole family to keep warm and experience the thrill of the outdoors.
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Magalies Park, less than an hour’s drive from the centre of Pretoria, is another winter “wanderland” thanks to its unbeatable facilities and service. In the superb surroundings, you can play golf, go fishing or have sundowners on a barge cruise! There’s also a spa onsite and loads of other attractions in the area.

For a taste of the sea, visit the unspoiled Wild Coast at Hole in the Wall near Coffee Bay. Here you might just be surprised by warm weather which is just perfect for horse riding or hitting the driving range on the beach, going for hikes and eating seafood at the resort’s famous braais. You’ll be following the sun by having a relaxing winter getaway at Hole in the Wall without even knowing it 😊.

Life’s lekker (amazing) at the sea…
Whale watching is also recommended in winter as is experiencing the world-famous Sardine Run on the KZN South Coast which our Margate properties are perfectly located for!

Did we mention that South Africa’s best waves happen in winter (really) and that’s why all the surfing competitions happen at this time of year 😊?! A great day out could be watching your first surfing competition with snacks or a GNT in hand or why not take some longboarding lessons yourself 😉?
Make your winter sparkle with spoils from Cazabella, the jewellery is perfect for those nights out on the town, going to the theatre or having dinner with someone special 😊.
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Wander into the warmth of a happy, fun-filled holiday this winter – there’s so much to explore and do – and it’s the cheapest time to travel too 😊.

‘Til next time, it’s time to warm to winter!

Planning the perfect romantic getaway this Valentine’s Day…

It’s almost 14 February, the internationally-recognised day of LOVE. If you’ve planned a romantic getaway, even if it’s just to spoil yourself – good on you, you’re doing better than we are! For those of us that have left things a little late – don’t stress – here are some tips to have a memorable Valentine’s Day and how you can celebrate “Valentine’s Day” with the one you love.

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Valentine’s Day is all about sharing and celebrating with those you love. It doesn’t have to be a hassle and it definitely shouldn’t break the bank 😊. If you’d like to book into one of our luxury resorts with our amazing First Group Valentine’s specials that include couple’s wellness treatments or magical touches like food platters and sparkling wine in your room – book now!
Here are a few great ideas if you are looking for other ways to ignite the spark this Valentine’s Day…

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If you’ve booked into one of our cool properties after Valentine’s Day for a Honeymoon for example, make sure you use the VIP room menu! What it is: A service where you can order amazing extras like romantic turndowns, rose petals in your room, sparkling wine and snack platters – basically you’ll live like a King and Queen. The great thing about the VIP room menu is you can order it all year roundfor special occasions. Yes, you read that right! So, here’s our second tip, maybe you can’t get away now, due to a lack of leave or for other reasons, so if you haven’t booked to go away over 14 February (or until our Valentine’s specials end), book now  for some other time this year and have an amazing belated Valentine’s getaway! We’d suggest surprising your partner or family with the booking confirmation over a scrummy pancake breakfast that you’ve cooked up on Valentine’s Day (or over a candlelit dinner the night before if you need some time off from cooking 😉) and it’s up to you if you want the destination to stay a surprise or not 😊. That way you won’t have to make any excuses why you didn’t do anything for Valentine’s Day – you made the effort, in time, and the surprise trip’s just going to happen a little later in the year 😉.

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Other easy ways to make the day special are little outings or meals out. Our properties have great new menus, why not visit on the weekend of 16 and 17 February for a delicious meal with your loved ones? Another great idea is taking the day off on Thursday to go for a road trip somewhere you’ve been dying to visit for ages like a day visit to La Montagne for a pizza at our recently refurbished Italian restaurant if you live in KZN or you could even spend the day doing fun activities nearby (it’s mid-summer in South Africa so maybe cooler activities in the sea, at a river or even relaxing around a resort’s pool 😉).

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Lastly gifts go a long way – beautiful flowers and chocolates are always well received but what about gifts that your loved one would cherish for years to come or the prezzi of an ultra-relaxing massage (who doesn’t love those 😉?). Share the love with your kiddies, with a membership to the Fred First Club! It’s a great gift because they’d get a hamper of goodies that’s worth more than the membership costs, a FREE milkshake on their birthday at certain properties and they’d also get to enjoy Fred’s amazing entertainment and competitions all year long.

#MakeMagicalMemories this Valentine’s Day one way or another, you and your loved ones deserve them!

Please share whatever you do for Valentine’s Day with us on our social media using the hashtag #FirstForLove.

Til next time,

Happy holidaying – let’s share the love!

New Year’s Resolution – Travel More

With the silly season now over and some great new memories to hold onto, what’s 2019 got in store for us?

We hope you loved the delicious recipes that Chef Sam shared with you in our last blog, we certainly did… SCRUMMY! So, some of your friends and family have probably told you what their New Year’s resolution is for 2019. Maybe its to help out at a charity, empty clutter out of their home, see more of their friends or even eat more greens… Well, this is our suggestion for a great resolution: Travel more!

There’s something magical about visiting your favourite places or exploring new ones and you can do this with your favourite people or alone if you feel like some peace and quiet. You might not have heard this but medical studies have shown that people who travel more live longer… really! Before you say people that travel are the ones with money for medical care or good quality nutrition, these studies compared top earning people, some who chose to work throughout the year and others who took holidays and the people who chose to take a break somewhere cool generally live for 3 years longer! Crazy. It seems that a real break does more good for our health than we knew – and who likes getting sick or burnt-out anyway?!

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Let’s plan for our healthy resolution. Are we going somewhere new or to an old trusty – our home away from home? Now’s the time to book to make it happen otherwise we might procrastinate and we all know that a week turns into a month and before you know it – the year is gone and you didn’t get to do the travelling you’d hoped for.

Travelling really is an investment. Think about it. Memories, rest and great health are all super valuable and lots of the happiest people are backpackers who don’t have loads of possessions or money in the bank. They love meeting new people from different cultures or backgrounds, experiencing new places and getting to know themselves better in all of these environments. If you were getting on in years, would you love to have albums filled with cool holiday pics or a photo of a better car? Will you really think back fondly about all the time spent at home watching TV?

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Let’s get this year right with a great holiday or two! Cut back on a couple of things and make those magical memories come to life! Are you going to try for a longer holiday or maybe a long weekend somewhere nearby? Maybe you can even fit in two long weekends away?

South Africa’s known for great weather but probably the best time of year across the country has to be autumn. Its warm and usually not windy, the days are normally filled with blue skies (perfect for outdoor activities and entertainment) and you can also explore with the benefit of less hustle and bustle by going out of peak season (getting better deals when eating out, cheaper accommodation and a whole lot more. For the best deals, you can join Vaczone where members get up to 50% off their main meal at 1000 restaurants across South Africa!!! As trying out local food is such a BIG part of travelling, these massive savings make it easier to travel for longer (and to eat out more 😉. Plus, all that money you didn’t use out of your holiday’s spending allowance can go towards your next amazing getaway – meaning another magical time away will be that much sooner!

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Places we love in autumn include Cape Town with less congestion on the roads than in December, it’s easier to get into great restaurants and the famous landmarks are all less busy (plus, the weather is just stunning 😊). Relax on Clifton’s famous beaches, shop at the V&A Waterfront or watch a Kirstenbosch Summer Concert before the end of March.

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Next up on our dream list of must-visit places is the Garden Route. If you haven’t been before, this unspoilt stretch of South Africa’s coast is one of the most unique places on earth. Super conveniently located for a great time are Knysna Chalets and Knysna River Club which are within walking distance of great restaurants, the lagoon (of course!) and Knysna’s amazing activities like boat cruises, hiking and so much more.

If Bushveld is what you’re after, we recommend Gethlane Lodge and Waterberry Hill in Mpumalanga 😊. This time we’d suggest going a little later in the year for slightly cooler daytime temperatures, possibly June or August. Have fun watching wild animals, splashing around the pool or dining on some hearty meals. From Waterberry Hill, it’s just a short drive to get into Kruger National Park – another must-visit destination which you could tick off your bucket list, if you haven’t been before, thanks to this New Year’s Resolution 😊 and money you’ve saved through Vaczone.

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Make 2019 a year worth looking back on with big smiles thanks to one or two great holidays! Now’s the time to make it happen and it’s all up to you; no one else is gonna do it for you 😉.

Let us know which cool places you are hoping to visit in 2019 and don’t forget, holidays are the best medicine, maybe even better than eating your greens 😉!
‘Til next time,

HAPPY TRAVELS!

Super Festive Holiday Recipes

Before we get started on some scrumptious reading and even more supercalifragilisticexpialidocious recipes, which are just perfect for your upcoming holidays, we’ve got something really exciting to share! This holiday our First Group properties with restaurants are offering amazing entertainment and menus for Christmas Lunch, New Year’s Eve Dinner and Year-End Functions, ideal for making #MagicalMemories!

Take a look: https://bit.ly/2UaJXR6
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The festive season has finally arrived 😊 😊 😊.
For those of us that are lucky enough to get leave over the upcoming holidays, that means lots of time spent with family and friends, and loads of tasty food too.

In a BONUS EDITION of our blog, we’ve included professionally crafted recipes from Chef Sam Stone which are perfect for self-catering over the festive season! These recipes only have a few steps and they also don’t require fancy techniques or hard-to-find cooking utensils which means foolproof, delicious food for all of us to enjoy, yay!

If you’ll be having some kiddies around over the festive season, get them involved too. It could ignite their passion for cooking and will definitely save you some elbow grease 😉

Have a look through these Chef Stone recipes and once you’ve tried them all, let us know which one was your favourite! Also, please send us photos of the yummy food on social media – we can’t wait to see!!

Grilled Prawns & Egg Fried Rice
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Yield: 2 portions
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

Queen Prawns – de-veined, leave shell & head on | 16
Garlic Clove – sliced | 2
Fresh Ginger – finely chopped | 20g
Lemon Juice | 30ml
Lemon Zest – finely chopped | of 1 lemon
Butter | 100g
Smoked Paprika | to taste
Basmati Rice – boiled till tender | ½ cup (raw weight)
Egg – beaten | 1
White Onion – finely chopped | 120g
Red Pepper – finely chopped | 100g
Frozen Corn – boiled till tender | 50g
Soya Sauce | 1tbls
Oyster Sauce | 1tbls
Spring Onion – thinly sliced diagonally | 2
Salt | to taste

Technique

  1. Combine, butter, garlic, ginger, lemon juice and lemon zest in a small sauce pan. Allow to simmer for a few minutes, until butter has infused with aromatics – remove from the heat and set aside.
  2. For the prawns – marinade prawns in lemon garlic butter for 10 – 15 minutes. Place on the grill, basting frequently, only turn once – while continuing to baste with the butter. Remove from the heat once bright pink and meat is still moist and tender.
  3. For the rice – in a medium frying pan, sauté onions in a little butter until translucent – don’t let them caramelize as they will begin to sweeten.
  4. Add red peppers and corn, sauté for a further 5 – 10 minutes stirring occasionally.
  5. Turn the heat up slightly, add the beaten egg and stir with a fork to break up the coagulated egg. Make sure that there are no large clumps of scrambled egg.
  6. Lastly add cooked rice, soya sauce and oyster sauce – remove from the heat but continue to stir to prevent rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Taste and season if necessary – fold in sliced spring onions.

Spoon rice onto serving plates and top with buttery grilled prawns.

*Tip:  Add chopped Italian parsley to left over butter, drizzle over plated prawns to add extra flavor.

Mom’s Savory Muffins
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Yield: 12 muffins
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

Self-Raising Flour – sifted | 2cups
Sundried Tomatoes – roughly chopped | 100g
Fresh Rosemary – roughly chopped | 2Tbls
Danish Feta – cut into cubes | 80g
Mature Cheddar – grated | 100g
Wholegrain Mustard | 1tsp
Salt | to taste
Ground Black Pepper | to taste
Melted Butter | 1Tbls
Milk | to form batter
Egg – beaten | 1

Technique

  1. Pre-heat oven to 1800
  2. In a mixing bowl combine flour, sundried tomatoes, feta, rosemary, mustard, salt and pepper – mix well.
  3. Make a well in the centre of the mixture, pour in butter, milk and egg.
  4. Mix until all ingredients are well integrated.
  5. Spoon into a greased muffin tray – bake for 12 – 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and place onto a cooling rack.

*TIp: Alternative flavorings: sautéed spinach, olives, sautéed mushrooms, sautéed courgettes, variety of herbs, sweet corn, pan-fried bacon, ham.

Shellfish Paella
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Yield: 8 portions
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

Queen Prawns – cleaned & de-shelled | 32
Half Shell Mussels – cleaned | 1kg
Baby Squid – cleaned | 500g
Scallops | 500g
Risotto Rice – rinsed | 2cups
Dry White Wine | 400ml
White Onion – finely chopped | 1
Garlic Clove – finely chopped | 2
Red Pepper – finely chopped | 150g
Frozen Peas | 150g
Saffron Threads | 1g
Fish Stock – heated | 1L
Diced Tin Tomatoes | 1tin
Saffron Threads | 1g

Technique

  1. Heat a little oil in a large frying pan, individually par-cook the prawns, mussels, baby squid and scallops – remove and set aside.
  2. In the same pan, add a little butter – over a medium heat sauté onions, peppers and garlic until translucent. Season with a sufficient amount of salt.
  3. Add rice, coat in the butter and continuously stir – add the wine and saffron, simmer until completely absorbed into the rice.
  4. Add the tin of tomatoes, including the juice, and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes. You can add 1tsp of sugar if you don’t like the tartness of tomatoes.
  5. As the liquid starts to cook away, add one ladle at a time of fish stock – this process is done until the rice is al dente.
  6. Just before the rice has cooked completely, add the frozen peas and par-cooked shellfish – stir continuously to prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pan and burning. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if necessary.
  7. Serve immediately into serving bowls, finish off with roughly chopped Italian parsley.

*Tip: Simmer the shellfish shells in the pre-made fish stock to ensure an intense shellfish flavor imparts into your finished dish. This is called a double stock.

Red Velvet Ice Pops
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Yield: 6
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: Over Night

Ingredients

Water | 190ml
Good Quality Dark Chocolate – 70% cocoa, finely chopped | 30g
Cocoa Powder – sifted | 30ml
White Granulated Sugar | 360ml
Egg White – beaten lightly | 1
Plain Cream Cheese – at room temperature | 100g
Buttermilk | 380ml
Good Quality Beetroot Juice – reduced | 60ml (volume once reduced)

Technique

  1. Bring water to a light simmer, add chocolate, cocoa powder and sugar – stir continuously. Remove from the heat and allow to cool down to room temperature.
  2. Add cream cheese, buttermilk, beetroot juice and egg white – blend with a stick bender.
  3. Pass mixture through a fine sieve.
  4. Pour into ice cream popsicle moulds and place in the freezer.
  5. After 4 hours, stick an ice cream stick into the middle of the mixture in each mould.
  6. Freeze overnight.

*Tip: Churn mixture in an ice cream churner for a red velvet ice cream.

Coconut & Cardamom Crunchies
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Yield: 24
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

Butter – softened | 220g
Bicarb Soda | 90g
Golden Syrup | 2tbls
Rolled Oats | 2cups
Desiccated Coconut | 1cup
Cardamom Seeds – finely crushed | 1tsp
Self-Raising Flour | 1cup
Castor Sugar | 1cup
Vanilla Essence | 1tsp

Technique

  1. Pre-heat oven to 160o
  2. Grease a baking tray with butter or spray and cook, then line with baking paper and grease again.
  3. Melt butter over a low heat in a small saucepan, add bicarb and golden syrup.
  4. Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, make a well in the centre.
  5. Pour melted butter mixture into the well of the dry ingredients. Mix well.
  6. Press crunchie mixture into baking tray ensuring the mixture is even.
  7. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven and cut into portions while still warm. Allow to cool slightly before removing portions onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

*Tip: Filling Alternatives: banana & caramel, baked apple & cinnamon, peach & apricot

BBQ Pork Spare Ribs & Corn Bread
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Yield: 4 portions
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

BBQ Pork Ribs

Smoked Pork Ribs | 2 racks
BBQ Sauce | 2cups

Corn Bread

Butter | 250ml
White Sugar | 250ml
Eggs | 4
Cream Style Corn | 1can
Mature Cheddar – grated | 250ml
Cake Flour | 250ml
Polenta | 250ml
Baking Powder | 20ml
Salt | 2.5ml

Technique

  1. For the Ribs – marinade ribs in BBQ sauce for 20 – 30 minutes.
  2. Place in the oven, over a grill or braai, basting occasionally until ribs are cooked through.
  3. For the Bread – Pre-heat oven to 1600
  4. Cream butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add eggs, one at a time until well combined. Mix in cheese and corn until just mixed.
  6. Add sifted flour, polenta, baking powder and salt – fold together.
  7. Pour into bread or cake tin.
  8. Bake for +- 1 hour or until cake skewer comes out clean.

*Tip: Use leftover corn bread for a breakfast alternative, toasted & topped with generous amount of salted butter.

Warm Baked Pancakes
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Yield: 4 portions
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

Pancakes | 8

Filling

Fresh Strawberries – cut into quarters | 200g
Blueberries | 120g
Icing Sugar – sifted | 4tbls
Dark Chocolate Spread | 8tsp

Crème Patisserie

Butter | 50g
Full Cream Milk | 600ml
White Granulated Sugar | 150ml
Egg Yolks | 4
Cake Flour – sifted | 75g

Topping

Flaked Almonds | to garnish

Technique

  1. Preheat the oven to 1600
  2. For the pancakes – use 1 tsp of chocolate spread per pancake, use the back of the teaspoon to spread over the one side evenly.
  3. In a mixing bowl, evenly combine berries and icing sugar – divide the mixture and spoon onto the chocolate side of the pancake.
  4. Roll the pancake and place into a greased baking dish – the pancakes must fit snug in the dish.
  5. For the crème patisserie – warm the milk and half the sugar in a medium-sized saucepan.
  6. Beat the egg and the rest of the sugar until light and fluffy using an electric beater.
  7. Add all the flour at once and mix well until lump free.
  8. Slowly pour the milk over the mixture while stirring – return it to the heat on low, until it thickens.
  9. Add the butter when you remove it from the heat, mix until dissolved and well incorporated.
  10. Pour over the pancakes and sprinkle with almond flakes, bake in the pre-heated oven for 10 – 15 minutes, until pancakes have sufficiently warmed through enough to soften the fruit.

*Tip: Filling Alternatives- banana & caramel, baked apple & cinnamon, peach & apricot

Roast Chicken with Chickpea Stuffing
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Yield: 8 portions
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

Chicken – free-range | 1
Vegetable Oil | 2Tbls

Stuffing

Chickpeas – drained | ½ tin
Garlic Cloves – peeled & roughly chopped | 3 large
Lemon – zested & squeezed | 1 large
Red Onion – chopped finely | 120g
Red Chilli – deseeded & finely chopped | ½
Sage – roughly chopped | 2 Tbls
Rosa Tomatoes – halved | 50g
Extra Virgin Olive Oil | 2Tbls
Salt & Pepper | to taste

Technique

  1. Pre-heat oven to 1800
  2. In a mixing bowl add the chickpeas, lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil – mash slightly using a fork until a rustic chunky mixture has formed.
  3. Add garlic, lemon zest, red onion, chilli, sage, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Mix well. The mixture will look a bit dry, however, the chickpeas will soak up the natural juices from the chicken while roasting.
  4. Stuff the chickpea mixture into the cavity of the chicken, secure with toothpicks or trimmed skewers.
  5. Rub chicken skin with vegetable oil, salt and pepper.
  6. Place in a suitable roasting tray and roast the pre-heated oven for approximately 75 – 90 minutes, depending on the size of your chicken.

*Tip: To check that your roast has cooked all the way through without hacking into your chicken, pierce the chicken between the breast and leg using a skewer (near to the bone) – if the juices run clear your roast is ready to remove from the oven.

Savory Anytime Waffles
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Yield: 4 waffles
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

Cake Flour – sifted | 1cup
Baking powder | 1tsp
Baking Soda | ½ tsp
Egg – beaten | 1
Buttermilk | 1cup
Salted Butter – melted | 30ml
Baby Spinach – shredded, rinsed & dried | 100g
White Sugar | 1tsp
Ground Black Pepper | to taste

Technique

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine buttermilk and butter.
  2. Mix flour, baby spinach, baking powder and baking soda separately.
  3. Add dry mixture into wet mixture – whisk until smooth and lump free.
  4. Pour a third of a cup onto a pre-heated waffle iron for 5 – 6 minutes.

*Tip: Use leftover corn bread for a breakfast alternative, toasted & topped with generous amount of salted butter.

Wow aren’t those recipes amazing!
Happy eating everyone and we hope that you have great holidays wherever you will be. Keep safe and we can’t wait to catch up with you early in the New Year!

P.S. We’re off to cook some crunchies for a festive road trip, see ya later! 😊

Go Big On Budget

Hello, happy travellers. It’s time to talk travel again (and it should never end)! This post is all about getting more for less – doesn’t that sound great? Well, here it goes…

How can we all enjoy great holidays that won’t break the bank?

1Play your cards right 😉
First of all, if you want to get the most out of your budget you need to travel smart! Don’t plan a trip somewhere that’s super expensive when you’re on a tight budget because the two simply don’t go together (as much as we wish they did!). More affordable places like South Africa’s Wild Coast, Mozambique, Poland and Ecuador are where you can find some of the best deals worldwide.

After all, going to a “value-for-money” destination doesn’t mean you won’t have an amazing holiday! Would you rather eat fresh prawns for a whole afternoon in Mozambique or buy an apple or sandwich in a super expensive city for the same price?!

2All-inclusive packages can also be great value so keep an eye out for the latest deals! Another way to get even more for less is to travel out of season. Some of the best weather falls outside of the holidays (yes really!) so you won’t be missing out, PLUS, there’s usually less traffic and tourists, which means better deals when you get there and it’s easier to book for attractions and meals out!

Budgeting up a storm
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Don’t sigh! We’re not talking about budgeting for boring things like servicing your car! This is money you’ll love spending – all we’re suggesting is planning around your holidays a little. Think about how many holidays you want to go on over the next year… Do you want one long trip or a few shorter ones? Once you’ve decided, then you can work out a budget for each trip to help you decide where to go and where your bucks will go furthest so you don’t miss out on anything special 😊.

Save it for when you’re there
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Something a LOT of travellers get wrong is wasting money on transport ☹. You can save by going to places with cheaper flights, by flying indirectly, buying a travel card for once you are there or even packing your walking shoes to skip paying for transport once you’ve arrived. Doing these things could save you thousands before your holiday even starts, giving you more to spend when you’re there 😊.  “I’ll have the seafood pla­tter thank you” 😉.

Delicious discounts
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Another great way to travel for less is to go to places where you’ll get amazing discounts. They could be for things like being retired, being a local citizen or a citizen of a neighbouring country, because it’s out of season, etc. These discounts can be as big as 50% which makes a huge difference, so don’t miss out on this super easy way to save BIG! Also, shop around for specials once you’re on holiday… cheaper excursions or going to happy hour can’t hurt and working your magic to pay what locals pay is the name of the game 😉!

Cash Only
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Stick to a cash-only system – you will be doing yourself a favour! Spending money on your debit or credit card may be a bit easier, but does tend to make you overspend. Keeping cash on you can really help you stick to your budget. Only take the cash you need with you when you go out and make sure that is all you spend – allocate yourself a specific amount for each day and keep that cash on you. You never know – you may even end up saving some money!

Happy travels everyone. Hopefully travelling for less lets you go on even more or even longer holidays than before!

Perfect Places | Priceless Memories

On behalf of all travellers, I think it’s fair to say that we all love the world we live in (or large parts of it at least). Otherwise, we wouldn’t make the effort that we do to have the special travel experiences which we treasure so much. As with many things in life, the things that we could lose forever are normally the ones that we treasure most. Maybe travellers understand this feeling more than most.

Sadly, our world is one of those things – it is changing every day and although a lot of it is for the better – unfortunately, there are some great places that are changing forever for the worse. Before you get sad thinking about this, we hope that this blog shows you that there’s still time to view some of these incredible places before they change forever. Maybe you could even travel to them with your kids, nieces and nephews or grandkids… and if the journey sounds too strenuous or costly, possibly you could talk the next generation into going, so that your family gets to experience the wonder of these great sights before they have changed forever. By doing this you wouldn’t have missed out on some of the best things that planet earth has offered over past millennia. Interestingly, the most famous natural sites that we could think of are dotted all around the globe. This goes to show just how diverse our planet really is and that there are great things to do in every corner of the globe.

Swim in the Great Barrier Reef – Australia
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We’ve all heard of this beautiful destination and for good reason.  It simply is a huge expanse of incredible sea life that offers unsurpassable snorkelling and scuba diving. Sadly, with the slow but steady rise of ocean levels around the world, large parts of this unbelievable reef are becoming just too deep to sustain the ecosystems as they currently are.

Why not make a once in a lifetime journey to see this wonderful part of the world and you’ll be blown away by how unspoiled it is, how diverse the sea life is and just how large it is – did you know that the Great Barrier Reef is almost 3 times the size of England?! The memories and photos from your trip there will last forever. The stories of your trip that you share with younger generations will inspire them to appreciate nature, and particularly the ocean, as much as you do… teaching them to understand just how amazing parts of it can be.

Our Package For You:
4 nights from R18 100 per person sharing

Valid 01 Feb – 31 March 2019
Subject to availability and currency fluctuations.

Included in your holiday:

  • Return airfare from Johannesburg to Cairns
  • 4 nights’ accommodation in Cairns
  • Cruise from Cairns to a luxury 3 level pontoon on the Outer Reef and enjoy a truly relaxing day in sumptuous surroundings.
  • Estimated Airport taxes

For more information, call 087 808 2000 or click here.

Climb Mt. Kilimanjaro – Tanzania
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Disclaimer 😉 this isn’t for everyone as climbing the extinct volcano which is called Mt. Kilimanjaro requires at least a moderate level of fitness. Why we’ve included it on this list is because even if we aren’t all fit enough to get to the top, we all know someone who is! 😊

It’s worth visiting Mt. Kilimanjaro now because the glacier found on top of it is slowly shrinking with each passing summer and it will probably be gone completely in the next century. Views from the top of this African landmark will always be awe-inspiring but part of the mountain’s magic has always been its snow and ice which climbers are welcomed by when they reach its highest sections. Let’s hold onto that part of Mt. Kilimanjaro’s history by getting someone to experience it who will, without doubt, remember being on top of a surprisingly cool Africa forever.

Our Package For You:
5 nights from R10 100 per person sharing

Valid 01 March – 20 April 2019
Subject to availability and currency fluctuations.

Included in your holiday:

  • Return airfare from Johannesburg
  • 5 nights’ accommodation in Arusha
  • Daily breakfast
  • Estimated Airport taxes

For more information, call 087 808 2000 or click here.

See Rhinos – South Africa
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Many of us love animals. Their traits and habits, the way they might perceive the world or maybe even the way that they are so distanced from the hustle and bustle of modern life makes many people fascinated by them, especially the rare and unique ones which often pose no threat to us at all. Well, if there was an animal that was the poster child of the prehistoric era it surely would have to be the rhino. This mighty mammal has evolved over millions of years (it once was 5 metres tall and during the last Ice Age rhinos had a thick fur coat!) and thanks to conservation we can still enjoy watching the latest version today! HluhluweImfolozi Park in Kwa-Zulu Natal, the world’s second oldest game reserve, is one of the best places to view both black and white rhinos – sightings of white rhinos are even common there!

To see the rarest rhino of them all, travel to Indonesia to see the Javan rhino. Sadly, there are less than 80 specimens of this incredibly rare mammal left on earth but there is still time for them to be enjoyed. Whether you are in the mood for the beach or the bush, maybe it’s time to see a rhino first-hand?

Our Package For You:
2 nights from R5 950 per person sharing

Valid 16 January – 20 April 2019
Subject to availability and currency fluctuations.

Included in your holiday:

  • Return airfare from Lanseria to Durban
  • 2 nights’ accommodation in Durban
  • Daily breakfast
  • Return airport transfers
  • Full Day Hluhluwe Game Reserve Tour

For more information, call 087 808 2000 or click here.

Hike through the Amazon Rainforest – Brazil
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Nature lovers will love the thought of hiking through the seemingly endless rainforest in Brazil which is known as the Amazon. Although the forest will always be there, many of the largest trees are being removed for timber and some sections of the world-famous forest are being cleared for cattle farming ☹ Today the Amazon rainforest is roughly half the size of Europe! Imagine the mind-blowing species of birds, mammals and insects that can be found in a forest that large.

Why not go on a once in a life time trip to see mother nature in her full glory? Surely there is no place on earth where the air would be fresher 😉

Our Package For You:
5 nights from R16 100 per person sharing

Valid 01 Mach – 23 April 2019
Subject to availability and currency fluctuations.

Included in your holiday:

  • Return airfare from Johannesburg
  • 5 nights’ accommodation in Manaus
  • Daily breakfast
  • Meeting of the Waters with Lunch take in amazing views of the Amazon River
  • Estimated Airport taxes

For more information, call 087 808 2000 or click here.

Walk on the Ilulissat Glacier – Greenland
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For those of us that are scared of spiders and snakes, a trip to Greenland might be more appealing! This pristine part of the world is known for unbelievable natural sights like hot springs, beautiful mammals and glaciers. Although Greenland gets very snowy most winters – unfortunately, snow is becoming harder to find in summer than ever before. Some people expect that summers in Greenland will become ice-free by 2050 ☹

Well, there’s still time to walk through this fresh, pristine country to take in its beautiful icy scenery. One of the highlights of a trip to Greenland would be to walk on its most famous glacier, the Ilulissat glacier. This glacier is so remarkable it has even earned UNESCO World Heritage status! So, are you in the mood for some fresh air and fun spent walking through the snow or over thick, slowly moving ice? Well now is the time.

Our Package For You:
5 nights from R23 600 per person sharing

Valid 12 February – 12 April 2019
Subject to availability and currency fluctuations.

Included in your holiday:

  • Return airfare from Johannesburg
  • 5 nights’ accommodation in Reykjavik
  • Daily breakfast
  • Inside the Glacier – the Ice Cave

For more information, call 087 808 2000 or click here.

We hope that you’ve enjoyed some of these ideas on how we can enjoy the planet that we live on as much as possible. Maybe some of you will add one of these trips to your bucket list and we hope that it turns out to be one of the best times of your life.

Have fun on your travels, there still are so many amazing places to visit – let’s make the most of it 😊

The Last Straw – Be the difference

We all love our planet. With this in mind, we at Off Beat Holiday Club have been doing all we can to make a difference. From recycling to sourcing water locally or even onsite, hiring locally and even using renewable energy at some of our properties, we’ve been making a difference! Look out for our biggest initiative to date – the #TheLastStraw campaign.  Most of our properties are only providing plastic straws on request while we source alternatives in a war against plastic while we champion this initiative and raise awareness about pollution, recycling and alternatives. This has already made a major impact!

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Following our lead, are you ready to be the change you wish to see in the world? Not just at home but when you travel too (as we know you love to travel?!)

Getting away from the rush of everyday life (for most of us) and just taking some time for yourself is amazing. It’s time you will cherish, whether you’re with family, friends or are travelling alone. On top of having a great time, why not travel in a way that also makes the world a better place?

When it comes to travelling these days, almost everyone thinks about their impact on the world – which is super important! But how many of us also act responsibly, to do our bit which adds up?! We’ve come up with a few handy, convenient ways that you can be a more responsible traveller to join us in making a difference just like our #TheLastStraw initiative. Be the change!!!

First of all, what is a responsible traveller? It’s someone who travels in a sustainable way that benefits the country or area they’re visiting. To do this take note of the impact you’ll have and actively work towards travelling in a way that has the best possible impact. This includes wildlife, the environment, pollution, the local people and the economy, and your carbon footprint. Take a look at our helpful tips on being a more responsible traveller:

Start at home
Home Off
Yes, you can even make a difference before you leave for your trip!

  • Empty your fridge – a lot of our properties are self-catering, so don’t buy more new food at your destination than you need to! If you’re travelling by car, rather pack a coolbox and take everything with you. Now you can plan some of your meals ahead of time with what you have in the fridge. An added bonus, your fridge will use less power while you’re away and you won’t waste food. Maybe even turn it off to defrost, saving power and getting that chore out of the way 😉
  • Turn off your water & geyser – It’s a waste to leave your water on if no one is home because you might have slow leaks that you never notice. Also, why not give your geyser a break, saving you electricity in the process! Plus, if there are plumbing problems in your area while you’re away (like a major leak), an off geyser is less likely to get damaged than one that is running.
  • Unplug any appliances that don’t need to be on – Like your TV, decoder, oven, hairdryer/straightener, washing machine, lamps and anything else you can think of. Some appliances use up to 30% of their full consumption when left on standby! You can save loads of power by unplugging them.

Pick the right holiday destination
Many of our properties have initiatives to create a better environment for everyone – whether it’s through recycling, using boreholes to save water or even donating to local charities like children’s homes. Before you book your stay, find out what the resort does to be socially responsible. If every traveller did this, holiday destinations would be forced to do more good 😊

Support local
Support Local
Yes, we said it! You may be in the habit of buying products from brands you trust but going on holiday is all about experiencing everything that’s local or different – isn’t it? Supporting the local community has such a positive impact on the area you’re in, such as community well-being, creating jobs and increasing wages, entrepreneurship, and even environmental sustainability. So next time, think before you buy that Big Mac – and try something local! 😉

Educate yourself
Being a responsible traveller isn’t only about saving water and electricity! By learning about the cultures you will be coming across, you can be respectful of the locals to have a better social impact. Before you leave for your holiday, learn about any other culture you might be coming across, the food, acceptable clothing and the rules and values of the people you are visiting. Obviously, you can’t learn everything but knowing a little will help when choosing where to eat, shop, how to greet the locals, and even what to wear. You’ll also find out some great tips during your research on what’s worth doing which will make your trip even better 😊

Another thing – when taking photos of the locals, ask permission first. It’s the right thing to do and they might even pose for you. This will also help start conversations, giving you even more great memories to take home!

Keep it up at home
Recycle home 2After your holiday, you can even find out more about what you can do to protect the environment and people of the area you’ve just visited. Even if you can’t afford to donate money, make a difference by spreading the word about the initiatives you’ve learnt about. Spreading the word is half of the work!

Leave only footprints
When you travel, look after the environment like you’re at home – after all, this world is our home! Don’t litter, say no to plastic, recycle everything you can, and keep your waste to a minimum. Also, use a reusable bottle instead of buying bottled water. Plastic is killing our oceans and causing cancer.

Another way you can avoid leaving a carbon footprint is by using public transport or walking to areas that are close by. Use an electric car if you’re going to be driving around, they’re getting better and better.

We hope this blog helps you to make a difference when travelling. If you have any ideas that we’ve left out, please share them in the comments!

Travel safely and we look forward to planning many memorable holidays with you.