Friday, October 8, 2010

Visit to Graskop

We planned a trip to Graskop and Kruger along with Srinath's parents. We happened to travel through all the popular routes in South Africa, namely the panorama route, the garden route and the wine route. I would like to start with the panorama route to kick start the travel posts.

About the Panorama route:
This route is the most exquisite scenic route in South Africa with waterfalls and canyons. As the name suggests we got all 360 degree view of the mountain range. We had the opportunity to travel around this place during various seasons. This time of the year being spring we happened to see lot of flowers and shades of green in the trees and plants.

Our journey from Johannesburg started at 7 a.m., with a break fast break at 9.30 a.m. at Belfast. We passed through Dulstroom a beautiful town with lot of hills and valleys.

The yellow flowers in Orgistad Oasis complex on the way to panorama route caught our eyes.

Around 12 p.m.we could view blyde river canyons as we entered the panorama route
Blyde river canyon: Though Blyde is the third largest canyon in the world it bags first place in the largest green canyons category.
The first spot we stopped to view the blyde canyon was three rondavels. This place is the best spot to view the blyde canyon. The three rondavels stood majestically and the view was breathtaking.
Three rondavels: Rondavel is the African type of hut which usually is round or oval shaped. There are three independent rocks which has shapes of African huts hence the name.

The next stop was at Potholes, the place of origin of Blyde canyon. The place is just right for photographers. The beautiful swirls and the intensity with which water ran through could be seen from the bridges across the river.
Bourke’s Luck Potholes:

 The place is named after Bourke who predicted the abundant gold deposits in that area though he could not find for himself. The place is abundant in red sand stones. The merger of Treur River with Blyde River with swirls caused over eons made the sand and rock to grind huge, cylindrical potholes into the bedrock of the river.
From potholes we proceeded towards the Berlin falls.

 This is yet another place to photograph. We happened to stumble on a place en route to Berlin falls while searching for a picnic spot which was close to a timber saw mill. The spot was wonderful with cool breeze. We settled under a huge tree with picnic.
The next destination was wonder view, the highest view point in that area. No wonder the view point is called wonder view.

 It was wonderful that we had an unrestricted view of the rain forest from an easily accessible point.
After having seen rain forest view the next point of interest was God’s window.

This is the most popular place around the panoramic route with cliff plunging to 700 meters with views of low veld and kruger national park. We purchased two pedestals from the tribal vendors to mark an end to the one day trip en route to Kruger.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Seventh wedding anniversary

By God's blessings I and Srinath have stepped into eighth year of our togetherness. We recollected the places we lived during our wedding anniversaries these years. Life was like tide with ups and downs. Initial days of adjustments were little difficult for me. From day one, every day is a learning experience and understanding is still improving. At times I wonder how many intricate understanding parts are there between a husband and wife. Observing the positives, the inherent talent he has dealing with people, the right decision making attitude have always made me feel that no other person would have been a suitable person for me. Though expectations always do not meet I can take it as a difference between a man and woman, hence balance would be there in life. We are lucky to be blessed by Srinath’s parents this year for our anniversary.