I’d only just got back from two weeks in East Africa when a friend of mine Terry Von Guilleaume who runs the www.flysaavacations.com website in the US phoned me to say he was heading out to Sanbona on Tuesday for two days and why don’t I come out with my family as well.
Terry is out on a trip around South Africa from the US staying at a lot of the properties he uses on his website.
So we set off on Tuesday lunch time for the reserve which is about 3 ½ hour’s drive from Cape Town. We didn’t know at the time but we were in for an adventure and a very unique experience in that part of the world – rain and lots of it.
Sandona is a very large reserve of 54 000 hectares situated in the little Karoo just off Route 62 and is famous for its White Lion population. We arrived too late to go on a game drive on Tuesday afternoon but in time for sundowners and an excellent meal that night. The following morning it was raining and that’s what it did for the rest of the time we were there. Most of the roads became impassable but we still all braved the morning game drive. Wildlife was in short supply but we did see a female white lion in the distance and the boys loved the adventure (both our boys are starting to really enjoy the bush – we recently spent a week in the Kruger and they counted every living thing we saw :-)). On Thursday morning we decided to pass on the game drive and heard the bad news that there was only one gravel road open to the East gate of the reserve as the rivers had all come down and washed away the other roads. The other problem was that all the roads leading back to Cape Town were still closed. We however decided to leave as planned and luckily by the time we had left the reserve we found that the Tradauw Pass leading out of Barrydale was open again and we managed to get to the N2 and back to Cape Town.
Great midweek break, Sandona was excellent, Gondwana lodge perfect for families and the food and service was spot on. Go to Sandona for the scenic beauty and don’t expect great herds of wildlife and the terrain cannot hold a lot of wildlife as its mainly Karoo scrub.
– Garth Jenman (Managing Director of Jenman African Safaris)