Flight Centre recently hosted some VIP guests at the Marly Hotel in Camps Bay, Cape Town, to promote the launch of their new Red Label Holidays. I was lucky to be included! I loved connecting with Erika from Die Burger, Bridget from Good Taste Magazine, Vicky from Opulent Living, Ilse from BizCommunity and, of course, the Flight Centre Brand Manager for the Western Cape Region, Reeva.
Here are just a few awesome ideas that jumped out at me from Pinterest. I personally love these ideas. There’s 83 altogether, sourced by PopSugar. These are popular experiences from all over the world which have become iconic in their own right. Check out my Travel Board on cool experiences like this which really appeal to me (and I’m certain will appeal to you, too!)
A few weekends ago I found myself at the Hydro in Stellenbosch for a weekend getaway treat. The Hydro offers all kinds of spa packages and its set amidst the beautiful winelands of the Stellenbosch wine region (40 minutes drive from Cape Town). Walking through the vineyards in between treatments, I was stunned by the truly picturesque sights I was seeing. Below are a few photos I took while walking around the estate. I did a course at Vega offered by Canon in the basics of photography, so I had a great time putting what I learnt to use!
Not so long ago I traveled to Bavaria, Germany, with family and friends. We landed in Munich and took a train to Oberammergau; the prettiest village I’ve ever been to. The reason we went was to watch the famous “Passion Play”, which is performed there only every ten years.
The weather in New York has been so hot! The ‘coldest’ I’ve experienced so far has been 26°C. I’ve been shopping for easy summer dresses and cool blouses to wear to class. I must say, one thing I do miss about Cape Town is the beach! What better way to put the summer rays to good use than by getting a nice tan and showing off your favourite swimwear 😛 Here are some other awesome destinations which, contrary to here in New York, are off the beaten track and still provide near-perfect summer weather and miles of sandy beaches .. plus they don’t have the suffocating crowds!
Barbuda, Eastern Caribbean
Part of the tiny nation of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbuda is a great alternative to the Bahamas. Whilst the island’s beaches stretch for miles, its most well-known spot is the Pink Beach, so named because of its rose-hued sands. Barbuda has only one paved road that runs outside the main population centre of Codrington and it’s possible to while away hours without encountering a single tourist.
Little Corn Island, Nicaragua
A tiny island off the Caribbean coastline of the nation of Nicaragua, Little Corn Island can only be accessed by ferries. As such, this laid-back island is relatively free of tourists. It has very little infrastructure and heaps of untouched tropical beaches. And, though you may encounter a handful of locals working or playing soccer, the beaches are usually deserted.
Great Lakes, Michigan
With plenty of quiet beaches, gentle waves and a rustic, woodsy setting, the sandy beaches of the Great Lakes are secluded enough to make you feel like you have your own private seafront. Try the Lake Huron and Lake Michigan shorelines for the best coasts and take a walk into the friendly towns that dot the area, if you actually end up needing more company!
Soak up some culture along with some sun on the beaches of Cartagena in Colombia. You can admire its well-preserved 17th-century architecture while you fill your belly with the local cuisine, particularly the Colombian delicacies of Bandeja Paisa and Fritanga.
Cabo Polonia, Uruguay
Uruguayans recommend this laid-back peninsula village for a private beach experience. 4-wheel drive trucks or horses will take you over the dunes to a hidden beach, where you can get settled in a rustic motel or vacation bungalow, before strolling into the rugged and undeveloped areas that surround the beach.
My dogs really make me smile. It’s one of the reasons I love coming back home. My Chocolate Labrador, Bella, gets up to all kinds of mischief when we go walking. She’s not like my Golden Retriever Joe Fox who is happy to just sit in the sea and never wants to leave! I cherish every moment I’m with them.
Even though I now live in the U.S, I was born in South Africa. I try visit as often as possible. We are surrounded by so much beauty there everyday! I thank God for the wild + exotic marvels he provides for us in that part of the world.
I don’t think tourists realise just how beautiful it is there. I don’t think they understand the similarities there with where they’re from. When they book their trips to South Africa, I’ve heard they expect to find mudhuts all over the place with animals walking through dirty streets in a 3rd world pocket of nothingness. That’s simply not true. Of course they’ll always be poverty wherever you go, but the picture they have in their head is completely innacurate. I remember back to when I lived in New York. People didn’t think South Africa was developed at all. I hope to change that misconception!
When they land, tourists are always surprised to find that we have a very normal lifestyle there with bars and nightclubs just like them. We have attractions, schools, universities, businesses, buildings, highways and entertainment just like them. We have a well-developed and working infrastructure. I’ve been all over the world and our international airports are the best I’ve seen.
They gasp at our beauty. They enjoy our top-class hotels, our polished service and our commercial culture – just like they have. They see our world-class education facilities, our safe amenities, our well-spoken citizens, our clean streets, our modern households, our friendly attitudes, our quirky sub-cultures and our huge fashion scene.
They recognize our healthy lifestyle in amidst stunning settings. They love the open space, the land, the people, the views. They marvel at the Cape Winelands, the game reserves, the nature, the beaches, the rolling hills and the mountains. They toast to our sunsets and drink wine under our starry skies. They visit heritage sites of our world leaders like Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu.
Our greatest assets are our minds. We as a people are very forward-thinking and cosmopolitan. What I love about us is that we’re also down-to-earth and mindful of those less fortunate.
Our wildlife is part of our beauty.
In South Africa, you can get up close and personal with our animals. It’s unlike anywhere else in the world. Around where I grew up on the east coast of the country is a lion park. It’s called “Seaview Predator Park”. If you’re planning a trip to South Africa, this is definitely a place you want to go.
Even though all the animals are in cages, trust me, they are well-looked after. They are tame and sociable with tourists. Check out Seaview’s Facebook Page here and scoot over to Pinterest to see my Africa board.
Each and every time I watch the video my business filmed of them, my passion for my homeland grows stronger. Cape Town and Johannesburg have made their names famous internationally, but don’t underestimate the lesser-known places off-the-beaten path such as Port Elizabeth (5 hours from where Nelson Mandela was born!).
All in all, our time is coming.
Photos: Dane Doubell
Cover Photo: Death To The Stock Photo
© Tamika Scripps and The Starlit Path, 2017. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Tamika Scripps and The Starlit Path with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Meet Nicole Thomson. She’s a graphic designer who grew up in South Africa and then moved to Australia to live and work.
I should be saying Gooday’ mate! But I haven’t got there yet. I’m too South African by heart, so Hello it is! I’ve known Tam since the first day of grade one, on which I went to her house to play Barbies! She is fabulous and we have been through plenty together. From shows, to choir, to band, to a good night together! After growing up in Port Elizabeth, several bouts of travel and studying graphic design, I decided I wanted to see the world from another angle. I moved to Perth, Australia, to see what adventures lay ahead. There have been good times and challenging times, as well as three magical months in Bali in between. But what has remained is the building of the chapters of my story. We all have a story to tell. Be they good or bad chapters, they’re all chapters that strengthen and challenge us to become the people we are destined to be. We learn from each other’s stories, are guided by them, and make our own destinies from those stories. We all have the power to tell our own story, so go out there and start writing yours. Each one has a dark chapter and a chapter full of light, but at the end of the day it’s your own. We are all unique, we are all different and we are all destined for greatness.
Aeterna Non Caduca: Strive for the everlasting and not the passing things of life. That’s the tattoo I got, whilst living in Bali for three months after quitting my job in Australia. I decided life was about more than spending three hours a day in traffic, going to a dull, blue-painted office that had saddened stained carpets and a not-so-welcoming wafting smell of an old library mixed with your grandmother’s house! I think it sums up so superbly the thing we’ve all forgotten the most. As humans, we so easily tend to get caught up in the day-to-day hum of our lives, allowing the bitchy girl at work to get under our skin, or the guy who still hasn’t asked you to be his girlfriend after 3 months of ‘sleep overs’. We obsess over the conundrums and incredible velocity of every day life instead of realising the importance and the beauty of what we can create as eternal. As we know, nothing is really eternal and we all face the ever pirouetting circle of life. But we can choose what we hold as eternity. Is it our memories, our families, our friends or the mesmerizing world that surrounds us? What ever it is for you, choose to strive more to embrace it, treasure it and immerse yourself in it. Although we are not always – or ever – in positions to quit our jobs and escape to exotic islands, we still have every opportunity to stop for a minute, take a deep breath and realize that there is more that surrounds us. There is more happiness, joy and magic in the eternal than in the things that we forget. So I challenge you from now on, to Aeterna Non Caduca – Strive for the everlasting and not the passing things of life!