Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Live the Magic of Africa Blog Has Moved!

Please visit us at our new blog location on wordpress.com: Live the Magic of Africa

We would love to hear your thoughts on the appearance of the new blog! See you there . . .

Monday, April 6, 2009

Animal Spotlight: The Giraffe

Tall. Lean. Graceful. Magnificent. Can you guess which African animal encompasses all of these characteristics? If you guessed the giraffe, you’re absolutely right.

Known for being the tallest mammal in the world, the giraffe is also one of the most spectacular to observe in nature. In fact, some people go to Africa for the sole purpose of seeing a giraffe in at least once in their lifetime. Observing the giraffe’s towering neck, friendly aura, peculiar black tongue, and mesmerizing colors and patterns is unlike any other experience, making this creature one of Africa’s most unique animals.

What else makes these animals so spectacular?
  • The average giraffe’s legs are 6 ft. tall, while the neck can be 20 ft. tall! Their total body height is around 13 – 15 ft.—and they’re quite lanky.
  • They can sprint up to 35 miles per hour.

  • Remember the black tongue mentioned above? It can grow anywhere from 18 - 21 in. long!
  • Giraffe’s travel in herds ranging from 20 – 40 individuals and are led by a male giraffe—also known as a bull.

  • Each giraffe has a different set of patterns, which are unique to that individual giraffe.

  • While the average human baby is around 7 ounces, the average giraffe baby is around 6 ft. tall and weighs 100 – 150 lbs. and endures a nice 6 ft. drop as the mother gives birth—agonizing for both the mother and the baby. Wouldn't you say?
Game drives, walking safaris, and horseback riding safaris, are some of the best ways to observe a giraffe herd up close. Watching their gentle movements offers a refreshing change from observing a lion pounce on its prey.

Isn’t it time you went on the African safari vacation of a lifetime? Let Hills of Africa Travel plan for you an authentic and completely tailored itinerary guaranteed to satisfy all of your personal preferences. Whether you want to plan an African family safari, honeymoon safari, or any safari in between, Hills of Africa Travel is dedicated to making your dreams come true. Contact us today at (877) 845-4802. Africa awaits you . . .

Friday, April 3, 2009

Little Vumbura: Experience the Magic of this Spectacular Oasis

Explore the unspoiled wilderness of the eclectic Little Vumbura, as you enjoy an authentic African safari vacation. With its private feel and stunning landscape, it’s no wonder Little Vumbura is one of the most highly acclaimed destinations in Africa. Situated at the northern region of the Okavango Delta, this island is nothing short of fascinating.

Adding to the memorable experience, the prestigious ecotourism company, Wilderness Safaris, offers exceptional accommodations, excursions, safaris, and amenities for all its visitors. Little Vumbura has six luxurious tents, which is the perfect way to spend your evenings among the serenity of nature. Situated in a legendary Okavango forest, the camp has a pool and patio area overlooking the sprawling landscape.

The bushveld and floodplains in the area offer spectacular game-viewing year-round. The wide spectrum of vegetation is a haven for exotic birds and other forms of intriguing wildlife, while the multiple waterways spread throughout the area are home to hippos, antelope, and crocodile.

The surrounding floodplains are a popular place to view zebra, wildebeest, and Cape buffalo as they quench their thirst in the hot African sun.

An adventurous Little Vumbura safari is nothing short of a sheer delight! Not only is the area one of the best spots for game-viewing in Africa, but the landscape is absolutely stunning.

Little Vumbura safaris:
  • Enjoy a wide spectrum of game, such as the waterbuck, giraffe, elephant, Cape buffalo, vervet monkey, cheetah, lion, and baboon. The full range of creatures in the area, and the opportunity to see all of the animals known as the Big Five, makes this location a must-see destination.

  • Observe a vast amount of vibrant birds, such as the wattled crane, egret, little bee-eater, and fan-tailed widowbird.

  • Choose from various types of safaris in the area, such as a game drive, walking safari, dug-out canoe (Mokoro) safari, or power boat safari. Whatever your preference, Wilderness Safaris is there to make sure you’re satisfied.

Experience a world like no other on the eclectic island of Little Vumbura. Hills of Africa Travel is dedicated to creating the perfect itinerary for you, around your every preference. Whether planning an African family safari, or honeymoon safari, Hills of Africa Travel is there to make your dreams come true. Contact us today at (877) 845-4802. Isn’t it time you took the trip of a lifetime in the hills of Africa?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Emin Pasha Hotel: Treat Yourself to an African Safari Trip of a Lifetime

Relax in the lap of luxury while on an exquisite African safari vacation at the enchanting Emin Pasha Hotel, in the capital of Uganda, Kampala. This boutique hotel, situated outside of the bustling urban life of the City, boasts an elegant and charming atmosphere, and is the perfect place to stay while on a gorilla trekking safari, family safari, or honeymoon safari.

The Emin Pasha Hotel is:
  • Defined by its constant, exceptional service. Whatever your need, the staff at The Emin Pasha Hotel is dedicated to fulfilling that need to your complete satisfaction.

  • Full of fantastic, modern amenities, sure to satisfy your every desire while on an African safari vacation.

  • A boutique hotel, equipped with 20 luxurious rooms. After a long day on an adventurous African safari, retreat to your room where the majestic landscape and magical aura of Africa comes to life through the room’s set up and décor. Egyptian cotton sheets, wrought-iron bathtubs, elegant hardwood floors, and the perfect bed to rest, are just a few of the many elements included in each room.

  • Recognized for its extraordinary dining and world-renowned wine selections. The celebrated Fez Brasserie and Wine Bar is considered one of the most exclusive and high-end places to dine in Uganda. Your palate will be delighted by each dish, as they offer a fusion of international and local flavors.
  • Well-known for its majestic spa. Enjoy a day of pure bliss as you relax in the spa’s tranquil setting while receiving a relaxing facial, sensual massage, or delightful pedicure, among many other services.

  • Known for its awe-inspiring architecture and interior design. Old-world Africa fuses together with a modern flare to create a truly exceptional and unique atmosphere at the Emin Pasha Hotel.
  • Located in two acres of relaxing exotic gardens full of flowers, intricate vines, and canopying trees. The Emin Pasha Hotel is also the perfect distance from the center of town, where shopping, dining, and entertainment thrives.

Don't miss out on staying at one of the most celebrated hotels in Africa. Isn’t it time you indulged yourself with a luxurious African safari vacation ? Or the perfect honeymoon safari vacation? Hills of Africa Travel is dedicated to building the perfect travel itinerary around your every personal preference. Contact us today at (877) 845-4802, to learn more about a life-altering African safari trips

Monday, March 30, 2009

Culture Spotlight: The San Tribe’s Bushmen

An African Safari vacation is not just about the sightseeing and game-viewing—it’s about experiencing a unique culture completely separate from your own. One of the most intriguing and unique cultures in all of Africa is the San Tribe’s Bushmen. The emotional and spiritual fulfillment of immersing yourself in this unique culture cannot be matched by any other experience.

Known as hunters and gatherers, the people of this culture were the earliest settlers in the Kalahari Desert region. There is an estimated 85,000 indigenous Bushmen alive today, according to National Geographic magazine. The Bushmen’s legendary history dates back tens of thousands of years ago. In fact, according to several genetic studies, all of humankind can be traced back to these people.

Enjoy an interactive walk with them through the villages, as they share with you their extensive knowledge about survival and the secrets of the land. Hear them interact through a unique language, which consists of various “click” sounds. This rare insight into the intriguing San Tribe allows you to learn about their effective hunting skills and crafting skills. Discover how to make an authentic bow and arrow from natural resources, and understand which wild plants are edible and which ones aren’t.

The tribe’s immense respect for nature is illustrated through their lifestyle choices. They do not cultivate crops, or keep cattle or any other animals. Their knowledge about plants is so extensive, that they know which ones to eat for nutritional purposes, and which ones to use for medicinal purposes. The act of going out together to gather plants is a huge social activity for the community.

Another way they show this respect for nature is through their hunting traditions. When they kill an animal for food they use every part of the animal, wasting nothing. The tribesmen usually hunt zebra, lion, antelope, and other wild game, and use the meat for food, and the hides for blankets.

While on a Botswana family safari, or honeymoon safari prepare to be bewildered by the Bushmen’s legendary history as you spend time with them in a local village opening your mind to an exceptional and diverse culture. Understanding the Bushmen’s deep respect for nature is not only enlightening, but humbling, as well. Contact Hills of Africa Travel today at (877) 845-4802, to help you plan the trip of a lifetime.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Soul Safari to Africa with Ainslie MacLeod: The Itinerary

Are you ready to take a once in this lifetime journey to South Africa where you will uncover the innermost secrets of your life's purpose and discover the spiritual pathway to Living the Life your Soul Intended?

Then, join author and psychic Ainslie MacLeod on an expedition to uncover your soul’s unique purpose in this life. On this 9-day Soul Safari, you’ll explore the mysteries of the life plan your soul created before you were even born, and learn to harness your own spirituality to create a happier and more fulfilling future—one of total self-acceptance and endless potential.

Dates: October 19–27, 2009
9 days/8 nights
We carefully crafted the itinerary for our “Soul Safari with Ainslie MacLeod.” It consists of only 2 destinations; Madikwe and Cape Town, but don’t let its simplicity fool you. It is one powerful journey!

October 19 – 23 (1st 4 nights)
Destination: Madikwe
Accommodation: Madikwe Safari Lodge

Madikwe Game Reserve

Madikwe Game Reserve marks the ecological transition point from the Savannah to the Kalahari Desert. This diversity of ecological habitat results in a very broad base of animals. Home to the Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo, and elephant) game viewing is excellent. Professional and skilled rangers will deliver a world-class interpretive experience of the bush in 4X4 safari vehicles. Photographic opportunities of the reserve’s fauna, flora and topography are excellent.

The reserve was proclaimed in August 1991 and is currently one of South Africa's largest game reserves and best-kept secrets. This reserve has the distinction of being one of the few game reserves in the world to be established purely because it was the most appropriate and sustainable land use for the area. The reserve consists of vast plains of open woodlands and grasslands, dissected and bordered by rugged mountain ranges and rocky hills. The re-stocking of Madikwe with animals indigenous to the area began in mid-1991. Since then, more than 8,000 animals of 28 species have been introduced in the largest game translocation exercise in the world at that time.

Madikwe Safari Lodge
Madikwe Safari Lodge offers nothing short of luxurious hospitality and spectacular wildlife encounters in a malaria-free environment. The camp has a total of 20 suites with no luxury forgotten. Guests will enjoy the large bedroom area, their own private plunge pool, circular fireplace, spacious dressing area, personal bar, and private bathroom with a choice of indoor or outdoor shower.

October 23– 27 (2nd 4 nights)

Destination: Cape Town
Accommodation: 12 Apostles

Cape Town

The "Mother City" was the first South African port established by European settlers in the 16th century. Cape Town is the cultural and creative epicenter of South Africa, with more artists, designers and poets choosing the melting-pot palette of people and natural beauty of Cape Town as their inspirational home.

Visitors to Cape Town can explore the dichotomy of a less-than-perfect past with a present and future full of possibility – a discourse that many creative people can fully engage with and which visitors will instinctively relate to.

From the curated exploration of cultural, historical and social issues by Iziko Museums to the exhibition of musical street life in the Mother City’s townships, Cape Town has a strong creative economy and a treasure chest of talent of music, dance, theatre, poetry, fashion, art, culinary skill and design.

Cape Point and Boulders Beach
One of the most popular tours which offers a spectacular coastal journey through to Cape Point – the romantic meeting point of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. This area along the Peninsula boasts some of the most breathtaking and unique scenery in the world. It combines a fascinating collage of beaches, mountain ranges and wildlife.

Boulders Beach and the Penguin Colony
Boulders beach is an idyllic beach located close to Simonstown heading towards Cape Point. This unique beach is perhaps more popular due to its inhabitants, a colony of some 3000 African Jackass penguins. It is said a pair of the penguins first settled in 1982 and the colony has steadily grown ever since.

Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens
Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens is well known around the world for the diversity of indigenous plants cultivated there and the scenic mountain setting. Half of South Africa's species of flowering plants are cultivated, including about 9000 varieties of indigenous plants unique to the Cape South Africa - locally known as Cape 'fynbos'. There are also many specimens of rare and endangered plants on display.

Cape Town City and Table Mountain

Take a step back in time and join us on an exploration of the “Mother City” – its views, its history and its people.

Table Mountain
The ancient Table Mountain often draped in swirling cloud and flanked by its attendants Devil's Peak and Lion's Head, forms an impressive backdrop to the sprawling city of Cape Town and is a well known subject for many postcards and photographs. It stands at the head of a chain of mountains forming the Cape Peninsula National Park which follow the line of the Peninsula to Cape Point.

Daily Activities
Table Mountain October 19 – arrival, afternoon game drive, lunch and dinner at Madikwe Safari Lodge, evening workshop with Ainslie MacLeod

October 20, 21 and 22 - morning game drive, full English breakfast, mid-day, 3 hour workshop with Ainslie MacLeod, tea, afternoon game drive, lunch and dinner at Madikwe Safari Lodge

October 23 – breakfast, morning game drive, check out of Madikwe, charter flight to Johannesburg (50 min), domestic flight to Cape Town (90 min) transfer to 12 Apostles Hotel in Cape Town, assignment of new rooms, Dinner with Ainslie MacLeod at 12 Apostles

October 24 – breakfast, full day, private guide wine tasting tour with lunch at Grande Provence and dinner at Africa Café. Evening workshop with Ainslie MacLeod.

October 25 – breakfast, full day, private guide tour of Cape Point, Hout Bay, Simons Town, Cape of Good Hope and Boulders Beach with lunch at Black Marlin and dinner at Five Flies.

October 26 - Cape Town City Tour and Table Mountain, lunch will be at a restaurant of your choosing, dinner will be an Andulela cooking experience.

October 27 –breakfast, transfer to airport.

(Per Person Cost is based upon 2 people sharing – we will assign room mates for those traveling alone)

Includes: -
• Airport Meet & Greet upon arrival at JNB
• Charter flight from Johannesburg Airport to Madikwe Game Reserve
• 4 nights all inclusive accommodation at Madikwe Safari Lodge, South Africa
• Charter flight from Madikwe Game Reserve to Johannesburg
• Airport Meet & Greet upon arrival at Cape Town and transfer to hotel
• 4 nights B&B accommodation at 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa, Cape Town, South Africa
• Lunch and Dinner at Select restaurants per the itinerary on Oct 24 and 25
• Full day, private guided tour of Cape Winelands on Oct 24
• Full day, private guided tour of Cape Point on Oct 25
• Half day, private guided tour of Cape Town city on Oct 26
• Andulela Cooking experience on Oct 26
• Road transfer from 12 Apostles to Cape Town Airport for return flight

Excludes: -
• International Flights: USA to JNB, round-trip, to arrive JNB by 10AM on October 19, 2009 and depart Cape Town on October 27, 2009
• Domestic Flight: JOHANNESBURG to CAPE TOWN, to depart JNB no earlier than 3PM on October 23
• The following meals are not included: Dinner on Oct 23, Lunch on Oct 26, Lunch on Oct 27
• Gratuities
• Items of a Personal Nature

What are you waiting for? We can't wait to show you the Magic of Africa and help you Live the Life Your Soul Intended.

Click here to book your Soul Safari to Africa with Ainslie MacLeod.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Soul Safari with Ainslie MacLeod

A once-in-this-lifetime journey to South Africa where you will uncover the innermost secrets of your life’s purpose and discover the spiritual pathway to Living the Life Your Soul Intended.

Join author and psychic Ainslie MacLeod on an expedition to uncover your soul’s unique purpose in this life. On this 9-day Soul Safari, you’ll explore the mysteries of the life plan your soul created before you were even born, and learn to harness your own spirituality to create a happier and more fulfilling future—one of total self-acceptance and endless potential.

Enjoy 4 Spectacular Days on Safari

• Spectacular game-viewing in one of South Africa’s largest game reserves and best-kept secrets.
• View all the big 5 and then some: Lion, leopard, rhino, buffalo, elephant, wild dog, zebra, giraffe, impala, wildebeest, and more.
• Luxurious accommodation with individual bungalows and private plunge pools at Madikwe Safari Lodge.
• Dine on 5-star meals paired perfectly with fine South African wine.
• Feel good about patronizing a safari lodge that sets a fine example in sustainable tourism and interact with the locals that benefit.
• No need to worry about malaria – this is a malaria FREE game reserve.

Experience Ainslie MacLeod and His Soul World

• Explore the world of your soul, including its age, its type, and its missions, and uncover the plan your soul created for you in this lifetime.
• Discover the impact of your previous incarnations, and learn how to use your past to enhance the present.
• Be the first to learn fascinating information Ainslie has garnered from his spirit guides, but NOT found in his book The Instruction.
• Get insightful, helpful information about yourself that is not available elsewhere.
• Questions for Ainslie? Enjoy 9 full days of VIP access.

Exhilarating Travel Experiences Continue in Cape Town

• Rejuvenate yourself in the lap of luxury at the 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa.
• Perched perfectly between stunning mountains and the Atlantic Ocean, enjoy spectacular 360 degree views, day and night.
• Spend a glorious day tasting the finest of South Africa’s wines, set in some of the most spectacular scenery in the world.
• Spend a magnificent day seeing the scenic splendors of the Cape area, including a ride in a cable car to the top of Table Mountain, a visit to the penguins at Boulders Beach, the stunning cliffs at the Cape of Good Hope and the charming marina village of Simons Town.

What are you waiting for? There are only 32 spaces available on this journey and they won’t last. Book Now