In July this year I went to South Africa to spend a week on a truck with 23 other people, driving from Johannesburg to Durban on the east coast. I had never been to Africa before and I really liked the idea that for once I wouldn’t have to deal with all the practical things myself, I could just lean back and enjoy. Or, not entirely – everybody helps with cooking and cleaning and stuff, but it was so nice to not have to drive or plan for myself! In this post I want to show what it was like to travel with Acacia Africa through South Africa (hint: it was awesome).
Here’s the truck, Shangani!
First stop on the road from Johannesburg to Kruger National Park. This was a simple gas station with a whole bunch of real life African wildlife right out back.
In the afternoon we drove past Blyde Canyon..
..and stopped at Burke’s Luck Potholes, beautiful place.
And finished the day at God’s Window just before the sun went down.
Finally arrived at Kruger and dinner. You could buy great South African wine for next to nothing at the bottleshops, so we made sure to take advantage of that.!
The second evening at Kruger there was a performance by a local dance band next to the fire.
That was a fun night. We spent two days driving around the Kruger National Park, which was absolutely fantastic. We saw so many animals in those two days!
I have a full blogpost from Day 1 here..
..and another from Day 2 here.
After Kruger we set sail towards Swaziland. Beautiful drive in a landscape that really changed character from where we had started out.
My little space for the drives:
And looking forward:
We stopped in Swaziland at the Ngwenya Glass Factory, which is supposed to be rather famous. It was pretty cool to get a look inside.
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We arrived in Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary where we were staying for the next 2 nights right around sundown.
Just gorgeous! We who had elected to sleep accomodated rather than in tents got to sleep in these cool huts:
The next morning we went out to see a traditional Swazi village, which I have a full blog post about here.
We had the afternoon off in Mlilwane after we came home from the village. Mlilwane is a place where wild animals simply walk around all over the camp which is quite special to experience.
So I was super excited to go horse riding that afternoon around the camp.!
Full blog post from the horseride here.
And another good dinner. I had bought a (souvenir) mug at Kruger that turned out to be excellent for bringing red wine around the camp..
From Swaziland we spent an entire day driving to St. Lucia on the coast. It wasn’t the most interesting of days – we did drive through the Hluhluwe Game Reserve, but hardly saw any animals compared to when we were in the Kruger, so instead I got a lot of reading done on the truck. Most of truck was asleep though.!
A great surprise was the accomodation in St. Lucia – tent rooms!
We loved this place. On our final day on the tour we went for a morning trip out to see hippos in the river. I thought this was a really nice way to end the tour, with more animals and some we hadn’t seen up close until then.
Full blog post on the hippo tour here.
In St. Lucia we came across this big market:
This was probably the largest market we saw, as we did get the chance to shop at a handful or so during the week. I’m very happy with the African souvenirs I got with me home from the markets we visited; an elephant figurine and a bracelet from Swaziland, and some tablemats and a Kruger mug from South Africa.
We left St. Lucia after lunch and were on our way towards Durban, which took us the rest of the day to get there. I had enjoyed being on this trip so much. I thought we had a great community among us on the truck, and the experiences we got were amazing. I am definitely looking into doing more trips with this company, as it’s just about the cheapest option of ‘African safari’ and you really get something for your money. As long as you’re okay with some long days on the truck and doing chores each evening of course.
My First Kruger Safari Photo Journal
My Second Kruger Safari Photo Journal
In Swaziland: Visiting A Traditional Village
Horseriding at Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary, Swaziland
Hippos Big & Small In St. Lucia, South Africa