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Travel Advice - JNB  
User currently offlineSpeedbirdie From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 918 posts, RR: 52
Posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1386 times:

Evening all!!
So it appears I am taking a 5 day trip to JNB in September and would appreciate some advice. In total, I have a whole 2 days there and leave late on the 3rd day.
Now I am looking really for some advice on game reserves and safari trips. I have had a quick nose around and found that the horseback safari looks quite nice and friendly. Also if i do go on a safari trip, can anyone advice on the best kind of lense to take? Obviously I dont really want to carry a million lenses around and keep swapping and falling off horses!
Thankfully the whole trip is costing me less than £130 so cost really isn't an issue for trips and food etc.
Any tips and tricks and weather reports for mid September would be very much appreciated
Thankyou  Big grin


Never give up..
15 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8461 posts, RR: 10
Reply 1, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1378 times:
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Horseback safari? that's fine as long as you don't want to see any wild animals. If you have only 2 days here then plan on staying close by, it would be a waste of time to try to get to Kruger and spend the whole time travelling.

Pilanesberg is close by and home to the Big 5 as well as many other animals. It is an easy day trip and well worth the visit. I'm happy to take you if you like.

Weather in mid September is spring, should be mid to high 20s and early rains (we have no rain in winter).



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently onlineTK787 From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 4464 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1361 times:

Size matters in this case, the longer the better, nothing smaller than a 400mm.

User currently offlineLAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5
Reply 3, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1323 times:

Quoting Andz (Reply 1):
Horseback safari? that's fine as long as you don't want to see any wild animals

LMAO, speedbirdie, a horse might be a majestic looking animal but it would not make me feel safe going around a game reserve in a horse. Not too much difference IMO, between the meat of a Zebra and a Horse, best take an Elephant Safari but do they have those in South Africa? I have taken an Elephant Safari but that was in India on Asian Elephants.

Quoting Speedbirdie (Thread starter):
can anyone advice on the best kind of lense to take? Obviously I dont really want to carry a million lenses around

as already stated, a really powerful lense is what you need. You will need atleast 400mm, hopefully you have something like a Sigma 50-500 or a Canon 100-400, and dont do this while on a horse, for your safety.



"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
User currently offlineSpeedbirdie From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 918 posts, RR: 52
Reply 4, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1322 times:

Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 3):

Thanks! But I am scares stiff of elephants.. Wierd eh??

I shall try my hardest to get hold on a 400 then.. Thankyou..



Never give up..
User currently offlineLAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5
Reply 5, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1308 times:

Quoting Speedbirdie (Reply 4):
Wierd eh??

Yes, are you serious youre going on a Horse into the game reserve? good luck with some of those shots, hopefully you get a lot of closeup face shots of Lions.



"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
User currently offlineSpringbok747 From Australia, joined Nov 2004, 4387 posts, RR: 10
Reply 6, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1292 times:

Don't do the horseback safari. Instead go to Pilanesburg game reserve, like Andz suggested. I don't think they'll take you anywhere near the Big 5 on horseback...so you'll be missing out on that.


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User currently offlineQANTAS077 From Australia, joined Jan 2004, 5861 posts, RR: 39
Reply 7, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1287 times:

went to Pilanesberg back in January and thoroughly enjoyed it, we also went too a place called the Lion & Rhino park which isn't to far from Lanseria airport and its alot easier to catch a glimpse of the big cats here, We found Pilanesberg very hard when it came to spotting the Cats. Just hire a car take the drive out there, its beautiful to say the least. Stop off at Hartbeespoort Dam too if you get the chance...oh & avoid Hillbrow if you can, Myself & photographer, Jason Whitebird made a wrong exit and we ended up nearly getting car-jacked in broad daylight.

car hire should cost you...well, not much! its a very easy drive if you set out in the morning before 8am. We drove around the park the entire day...just bring lots of food & drinks from the local shops near to where you're staying in JNB.

[Edited 2007-08-26 02:50:13]


a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes, while everyone else believes the smile on your face.
User currently offlineOverlander From Ireland, joined Aug 2005, 150 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1285 times:

Your horseback safari sounds very interesting.

You mentioned in your post about lens etc.

Sometimes though, espescially for such a short journey, it is probably best to enjoy your time there and not overburden yourself with equiptment as there is a awful lot you could miss seeing while sorting out your lens etc and peering down your viewfinder.

Enjoy the space and time without worrying about the perfect picture.

All the best.

Overlander



It is better to travel hopefully.............but, always be prepared for the worst!
User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6363 posts, RR: 9
Reply 9, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1284 times:

Yeah, Speedbirdie, take it from Andz and I as Africans...don't horseback into a game reserve!!! Unless you have a big life insurance policy you want to leave your loved ones  Smile

Scared of elephants? That is weird...but you need to see one up close, in the wild, to truly appreciate how amazing of a creature they are.


User currently offlineLAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5
Reply 10, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1275 times:

Quoting SW733 (Reply 9):
Yeah, Speedbirdie, take it from Andz and I as Africans...don't horseback into a game reserve!!! Unless you have a big life insurance policy you want to leave your loved ones

Take it from all of us, a Horse doesnt stand a chance against a pack of hungry lions. That is seriously something I've never heard of.



"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6363 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1272 times:

Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 10):
Take it from all of us, a Horse doesnt stand a chance against a pack of hungry lions. That is seriously something I've never heard of.

Oh, I have heard of it. I think from a dude in a full body cast  yes 


User currently offlineTRVYYZ From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1374 posts, RR: 10
Reply 12, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1265 times:

Quoting SW733 (Reply 9):
Scared of elephants? That is weird.

There's nothing weird about that, atleast not after seeing this( warning very graphic)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8y2BUj0QCIo

it was the mahout and no stranger.


User currently offlineOverlander From Ireland, joined Aug 2005, 150 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (7 years 3 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 1262 times:

Quoting LAXspotter (Reply 10):
Take it from all of us, a Horse doesnt stand a chance against a pack of hungry lions. That is seriously something I've never heard of.

Speedbirdie,

Do not listen to this. Lions are not poised to pounce on you and your horse.

I went on a horse safari myself and it was a great experience.

You will be in the hands of experts who know a lot more about being in the bush than any of us on this website. Enjoy your journey.

All the best,

Overlander



It is better to travel hopefully.............but, always be prepared for the worst!
User currently offlineSandroZRH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (7 years 3 months 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 1199 times:

When I was in Kenya i just had a standard old crappy digicam with no lense and i managed to get perfectly fine pics. People tend to think that Safari means driving through landscape trying to spot animal that are miles away, but in reality, it's quite the opposite. We had lions walking 2 meters past our car, Giraffes running alongside us and Elephants crossing our way, even a Leopard crosse dthe street closeby, and a lot more. We even spotted wild Rhinos up in some hills after parking the car and a short walk. As for the lions, no need to be scared. We had a Landrover without windows and low doors, and parked no more than 2-3 meters from a Lion family with kids. I was scared to shits, but our guide told us to just stay silent and we won't get in trouble. I'd love to post pics for proof, but sadly i lost them when my previous PC crashed


Now I don't know wether the animals in SA are any different to those in Kenya, as in being more intimidated, but i doubt it.

Enjoy your trip, I'm sure you'll have a lot of fun! My 2 weeks Safari trip to Kenya (+ Tanzania) was probably the best ever trip in my life so far.

[Edited 2007-08-26 06:48:01]

User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8461 posts, RR: 10
Reply 15, posted (7 years 3 months 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 1185 times:
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Quoting Speedbirdie (Reply 4):
But I am scares stiff of elephants..

Last time I was in Pilanesberg in March I happened across this herd at a water hole, this particular park has an abundance of them and they are always great to see.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_2805.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_2792-1.jpg

Lots of giraffe too

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v155/andzz/IMG_2751.jpg

I only have a 18-200 lens.



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
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