Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens

table mountain seen from kirstenbosch gardens

“Kirstenbosch – The Most Beautiful Garden in Africa”

A trip to Cape Town is incomplete without a day trip to Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens! Nestled against the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, these lush gardens are simply bursting with both indigenous and exotic plant and animal life. Kirstenbosch is wonderful for botanists, nature enthusiasts, outdoor lovers, bird watchers, foodies, families, and anybody who enjoys beautiful views and interesting plants. Having grown up in Cape Town, I have visited the gardens many, many times, and yet every time is a new adventure!

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Exploring Napoli & The Amalfi Coast: Mediterranean Paradise On A Budget

The Amalfi Coast has become a popular destination for luxury beach holidays, and it’s not hard to see why – with its dramatic craggy coastline, gorgeous, tiny hotels and B&Bs perched atop cliffs overlooking Vesuvio and the Bay of Naples, delicious fresh seafood, impossibly blue water, and plenty of small-town Italian culture to discover, this slice of Mediterranean paradise is stunning. With unparalleled beauty comes exclusivity, and that can mean soaring accommodation prices and tourist traps. You may have seen the glamour of luxury travel along the Amalfi Coast in magazines and on Instagram, but did you know that you can have your own Amalfi adventure on a budget?

You can still swim in the azure ocean, eat authentic Italian food, and live it up in Positano without getting yourself into debt. With a bit of planning and the help of insider tips, you will be able to have your own Amalfi adventure on the cheap!

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Ostia Antica – Daily Life in Ancient Rome

Today’s modern city of Rome has amazing glimpses into the glory of the Roman Empire, with buildings such as the Colosseum and the Pantheon, but these sights are still surrounded by many layers of contemporary history and culture. A visit to Ostia Antica, on the other hand, provides a unique and immersive experience of daily life in ancient Rome, within the ruins of a remarkably preserved and isolated ancient Roman city.

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Elgin, South Africa – A Romantic Escape into the Apple Valley

A Spring Wedding in the Overberg Countryside, South Africa

Last year in October, my husband and I had our family wedding celebration at South Hill Farm in Elgin, just outside of Cape Town. October is springtime in South Africa, which means frequent cloudbursts, apple blossoms, green vineyards, sunshine, and bright blue skies dotted with wispy white clouds. The weekend was absolutely perfect, and every time I look at the photographs of our wedding day and honeymoon, I get homesick.

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German Christmas Markets

Christmas in Germany is nothing short of magical, especially to someone whose Decembers have always been hot and sunny. I never quite understood the whole “festive Christmas spirit” until I visited a real Christmas market for the first time, wrapped up in a huge calf-length winter jacket, thermal hat and gloves, and a cup of Glühwein in hand. I actually got excited, whereas back home our plastic Christmas tree, carols about snowmen, and steaming hot Christmas meals simply made no sense in the 30° C beach weather. I still adore summer Christmases back home, with chilled rosé wine, family, and a lekker fish braai by the pool, but European Christmases are extra-special to me due to their novelty.

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Top 3 Hannover Highlights

Hannover was the first city I called home in Germany, and it remains one of my favourite cities in the country. Situated in Northern Germany, about 1.5 hours away from Hamburg by car or high-speed train, Hannover is a small and laid-back city that is often overlooked by travellers. Known as the “City of Gardens” in Germany, Hannover is full of beautiful green spaces – public parks, the grand and breathtaking Herrenhauser Royal Gardens, plenty of wide, tree-lined avenues, the Maschsee Lake, and countless beautiful gardens both public and private.

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Contiki Eurotrip 2010 – Part 1: London to Paris, Italy, Greece, and Egypt!

In June 2010, I embarked on the adventure of a lifetime with my brother. We set off on the “Ultimate European (plus Egypt)” Contiki tour – forty nine days of travelling, 3 continents, 17 countries, and countless life-changing experiences. I kept a journal during the tour, and I’ve decided to transcribe it here as a kind of nostalgic account of my most intense travel experience to date. So, here’s an insider look into travelling Europe with Contiki!

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Hameln / Hamelin

The quaint medieval German town of Hamelin (Hameln in German) is perhaps best known for the legendary folk tale of the Pied Piper of Hamelin (Der Rattenfänger von Hameln). The first account of this terrible event was recorded 100 years afterwards in the town’s records, and it is unknown whether there is much truth in it or whether it is merely an entertaining myth.

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