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August 19, 2011

Call of the Wild

Call of the Wild
(9 Days Garden Route & Safari)

B = bed/breakfast       L = lunch         D = dinner        G = golf           S = safari

Call of the Wild is an extension of the Garden of Eden package (with some slight changes) which ends in Port Elizabeth. It also includes a safari at the nearby Addo Elephant Park and a visit to Schotia (a private game reserve next door).

Day 1: (overnight George)                             (DB)

Upon arrival at George airport you will be met by an Around the Green representative and transferred to your hotel. After checking in you will have the afternoon to relax (or you can schedule some practice time at the driving range). Dinner this evening will be enjoyed at the La Capannina restaurant in York Street.

Day 2: (overnight George)                             (BGB)

You are in for a real treat for round 1 on this trip. You will tackle the Oubaai Golf Estate, an Ernie Els signature course and his first offering in South Africa. The layout of the course is a traditional Links layout where veld grasses line the lush fairways. The course measures 6516m from the pro tee’s which is uniquely long for a Coastal course. Oubaai offers a wonderfully stimulating and enjoyable golfing experience.

After your round sit back and enjoy the wonder of the estate with a drink at the 19th hole, before returning to your hotel. This evening will be at your leisure.

Day 3: (overnight Knysna)                             (BLDB)

After breakfast you depart for the Karroo town of Oudtshoorn. Your first stop will be the Safari Ostrich show farm. Here you will learn something about these strange two toed birds and maybe even get to ride on one. From the ostrich farm you make your way to the limestone formations of the Cango Caves. Lunch will be had before you enter the caves (just in case you get lost!).

After your caving experience you make your way to the Cango Wildlife Ranch, which has one of the many cheetah outreach programmes in Southern Africa. Their conservation program is funded by your visit, so PLEASE try and look past the zoo aspect. Once your tour is complete you may even choose to have an up close and personal experience with the fastest land animal.

Your travels today are complete when you arrive in the coastal town of Knysna (one of the many favourite towns of South African holiday makers). Dinner tonight is at 34° South (arguably the best seafood restaurant in town).

Day 4:
(overnight Knysna)                             (BGB)

Round 2 is played at the Goose Valley Golf Estate. Originally a 9 hole course until the Gary Player Design Company created an 18 hole layout only 2km from Plettenberg Bay. The Keurbooms River nature reserve borders many of the holes that allow for spectacular views.

Set amongst the indigenous Fynbos, the course is in stunning condition 12 months of the year. It is built on pure sand with excellent drainage properties and uses recycled water from the Gans “Goose” River that meanders through the Estate. Golfers will experience breathtaking views of the lagoon, the ocean, the Tsitsikamma Mountains, trees and an abundance of animal and bird life.

Directly after your round you will go down to the beach where you embark on a boat trip to hopefully spot Southern Right and Humpbacked whales (weather permitting June – November), or seals and dolphins along the Robberg Peninsula. Upon returning to Knysna you can enjoy the evening at your leisure (if fine dining does not interest you tonight, we recommend the ribs at Oldie’s restaurant).

Day 5: (overnight Knysna)                             (BGDB)

Your 3rd round of golf finds you at the Simola Golf Club. The Golden Bear’s championship course has been created to challenge the professional and inspire the amateur. Nicklaus’ aim was to create a golf course that would be a demanding test of skill for the accomplished golfer playing from the back tees. At the same time offer a challenging, yet enjoyable experience for the average or beginner who thinks their way around the course.

After your round you will return to your hotel to freshen up and change. A sunset cruise on the lagoon awaits you, and directly thereafter you will enjoy dinner at Cruise Cafe.

Day 6: (overnight Port Elizabeth) (BB)

Today you depart for Cape St Francis. En-route you will visit the primate sanctuary at Monkeyland and the world’s largest free flying aviary at Birds of Eden. The Tsitsikamma Nature Reserve which, is considered by many to be the heart of the Garden Route, will be your next stop where you’ll have time to walk through indigenous forest out to the suspension bridge which crosses the Storms River mouth.

From the Tsitsikamma N.P you head to Port Elizabeth for the final leg of your holiday. You will be staying within walking distance of the Boardwalk which has plenty to choose from for dinner which will be at leisure. If you’re feeling lucky you may also choose to visit the casino.

Day 7: (overnight Port Elizabeth)                    (BGB)

Round 4 is played at the Humewood Golf Club. Found in the coastal city of Port Elizabeth, the golf course is a genuine seaside links, with wide and undulating fairways, fast greens and thick coastal bush. A round is a must for any golfer visiting the ‘Friendly City’ of Port Elizabeth.

The course boasts a variety of animal life with an abundance of plovers which makes up the club’s emblem. And, after your round of golf, relax at the “19th” and indulge in a spectacular view over the links course as well as Algoa Bay. Once again tonight dinner will be at your leisure. You have an early start for your safari tomorrow, so ensure you are well rested.

Day 8
: overnight Port Elizabeth                      (BSDB)

This morning you go hunting at the Addo Elephant Park, not with a rifle but with binoculars and a camera, in search of the elusive “Big 5”. This is a non-malarial area where a multitude of game roams freely. Apart from the Elephants, which give the park its name, you may also see Black Rhino, Buffalo, Lion and a variety of antelope such as Kudu, Red Hartebeest and Eland.

If that is not enough for you, after lunch you depart for the Schotia Private Game Reserve. Their open safari vehicles and guides will take you on an up-close game drive before a bush braai (BBQ) dinner at their boma. A 20-30 minute night drive will return you to the vehicle before returning to Port Elizabeth.

Day 9: (B)

Today is meant for R&R. Speak to your tour guide or the hotel travel desk regarding activities you may wish to do today. You may also choose to play an optional 9 holes at the Port Elizabeth Golf Club. Port Elizabeth Golf Club is a parkland course lined with mature trees, natural shrubs and many strategically placed fairway bunkers. Several doglegs add to the general difficulty of the course, while the bent grass greens present a formidable, yet enjoyable challenge for golfers

You may also choose to do some last minute shopping on the Boardwalk or simply spend some time on the beach. Should you choose to play golf please speak to your guide in advance as he/she will have to call in advance to book your slots. This afternoon you depart for the airport and your flight home.


May Your Drives be Long and Your Putts Few!

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