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DansDeals Forum => Destination Guides And Trip Planning => Topic started by: damaxer91 on November 11, 2010, 12:53:58 AM

Title: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on November 11, 2010, 12:53:58 AM
Anyone been to Cape Town? I'm thinking of heading over there in Feb.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on November 11, 2010, 06:57:17 AM
why would you go there? dont you know s.a. is dangerous?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: SuperFlyer on November 11, 2010, 08:19:43 AM
why would you go there? dont you know s.a. is dangerous?

depends the hoods really.

besides, he might want to get back at the insurances for paying them all those years....
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on November 11, 2010, 08:34:10 AM
why would you go there? dont you know s.a. is dangerous?

This is coming from Mr. India, Royal Jordanian who wants to go to DXB. :) :) :)

CPT is no more dangerous than any of the above.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on November 11, 2010, 09:37:44 AM
sure it is. even the locals have hired bodyguards at all times
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on November 11, 2010, 10:04:43 AM
sure it is. even the locals have hired bodyguards at all times

You are getting confused with Joberg. Every South African tells me not to worry about Cape Town at all
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: SuperFlyer on November 11, 2010, 12:51:43 PM
As I put it:"Depends da hood"
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on November 11, 2010, 03:13:15 PM
As I put it:"Depends da hood"
wee, we were talking about cape town so you shouldve said "c.t. isnt dangerous"
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: SuperFlyer on November 11, 2010, 06:34:59 PM
wee, we were talking about cape town so you shouldve said "c.t. isnt dangerous"

noo, Yeoville iz  maa fwiend.
Title: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: zakdude on September 21, 2011, 05:59:39 PM
Has anyone been to a really nice hotel in cape town ???
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: aussiebochur on September 21, 2011, 06:16:43 PM
Number 1 on TA, http://www.2inn1.com/

Never been though.
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: Expert Flyer on October 30, 2011, 10:10:41 PM
Has anyone been to a really nice hotel in cape town ???

The Table Bay Hotel at the Waterfront. Really nice.
Never slept there though, only parked my car for free there once and checked out their hotel
Title: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: rab on December 14, 2011, 05:57:28 PM
With my next mini RTW through Aeroplan with their business special, I'm transiting through JNB, with A layover of 17 Hours, From 4:30AM to 9:30PM, I did it specifically even tough there is no J availability with SAA from JNB-JFK, and I will go this segment with Economy, Because I wanted to step foot on this continent for free (it's only counted as a stopover so i'm not paying the millage level for Africa).

But now I read that there are security concerns with Johannesburg, So what would you suggest, are there Any things that I could do safely in that day in Johannesburg, also what's the best way to prevent my luggage from being stolen, Do anyone here have experience with Johannesburg, And do anyone know how is that flight on SAA from JNB-JFK, (it's A 16-17 Hour flight).

Anyone's experience would be appreciated, Thanks 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Expert Flyer on December 21, 2011, 09:06:02 AM
I have had experiences and travelled to both JNB and CPT.
Title: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: farmerjoe on December 21, 2011, 09:15:29 AM
I was in cape town for two weeks and also traveled thought the rest of SA, Zimbabwe, Zambia, and Botswana, so feel free to ask.

And you don't havto worry about cape town being dangerous, the people there are great!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on December 21, 2011, 01:20:11 PM
And you don't havto worry about cape town being dangerous, the people there are great!!
are you saying that the people that i think are dangerous are really great?
Title: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: farmerjoe on December 21, 2011, 01:37:18 PM
All I'm saying is i spent a year in Africa, and some time in cape town, if u stay in a normal neighborhood u shouldn't have any problems.
and yes everybody I met there was extremely nice!!
Title: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: PlatinumGuy on February 29, 2012, 08:04:39 AM
Apparently there is no thread about SA yet. My cousins are going on a bar-mitzvah trip with their grandparents. I will not be going along  :-[

They will land in Johannesburg on Wednesday and depart the second Sunday afterwards.

Budget is not much of an issue.

I figured they should get a flight to Cape Town immediately, then spend the second Shabbos in JNB.

Looking for all recommendations, specifically:

I'm thinking about a train (http://www.bluetrain.co.za/) for the way back from CPT to JNB. (yes, I saw the price)

Any info will be much appreciated.
Title: Re: Re: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: Ergel on February 29, 2012, 08:50:22 AM

(yes, I saw the price)
Quote

 Budget is not an issue at all.
 
FTFY
Title: Re: Re: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: PlatinumGuy on February 29, 2012, 08:59:06 AM
FTFY
I don't know what you mean. Just wanted to point out it's outrageously expensive, but they seem to be willing to pay it.
Title: Re: Re: Re: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: Ergel on February 29, 2012, 09:13:07 AM
I don't know what you mean. Just wanted to point out it's outrageously expensive, but they seem to be willing to pay it.
Just pointing out that if that's the case seems like there is not an issue at all with the budget (if there is one at all)
Title: Re: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: PlatinumGuy on February 29, 2012, 10:10:52 AM
Was just recommended this http://www.radissonblu.com/hotel-capetown
Title: Re: Help me plan a South Africa trip
Post by: PlatinumGuy on February 29, 2012, 12:41:27 PM
Namibia is in, either for this trip or for another shortly after

Also, anyone ever stayed here http://www.shamwari.com/propertygalleries.asp
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: PlatinumGuy on February 29, 2012, 02:50:25 PM
Is the Claremont Shul active (on Shabbos)?
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: yo on March 19, 2012, 12:04:45 AM
the one and only hotel is legit
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: PlatinumGuy on March 19, 2012, 01:02:56 AM
radisson blu waterfront is supposed to be the nicest
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: BrooklynCPA on March 21, 2012, 10:22:46 AM
I can arrange a great price for the "Radisson Blu Waterfront". PM me if interested.
Title: Re: Really nice hotel in cape town.
Post by: Expert Flyer on March 22, 2012, 11:32:50 AM
radisson blu waterfront is supposed to be the nicest

I though that The Table Bay Hotel (located at the V&A Waterfront) was among the best in CPT
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: txtmax4 on March 27, 2012, 01:04:26 AM
I spent over a year in South Africa. While there are "safer" places/neighborhoods than others, you should always watch your back and make sure you know where you are.
Capetown feels much safer due to the fact that the streets are way more populated than anywhere else because it is a tourist spot, however, besides for its touristy area it is a regular city so, even by car, you should make sure you know where you are going.
Not to scare you or anything...
Highways are cool, I drove 100's of miles all over the place.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 23, 2012, 12:57:31 AM
Highways are cool, I drove 100's of miles all over the place.
Not to scare anyone but the Highway outside Cape Town is the most dangerous in the country. Try and make sure you don't get stuck anywhere near Kayalitcha.

If anyone has questions on South Africa, kashrus and what to see where let me know as I grew up there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on August 23, 2012, 06:55:48 AM
radisson blu waterfront is supposed to be the nicest

Thanks but I'll stay at the One and Only or the Taj
Title: Renting cars in Joburg, South africa
Post by: NOOCH on March 20, 2013, 08:33:55 PM
i need to rent a vehicle woth at least 6 seats and Automatic transmission,  anyone know where to start?
the regulars (carrentals.com, Priceline) have not helped
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: txtmax4 on March 21, 2013, 12:22:58 AM
i need to rent a vehicle woth at least 6 seats and Automatic transmission,  anyone know where to start?
the regulars (carrentals.com, Priceline) have not helped
Try to find out from Lubabs there if "Lisa from Avis" is still around ;)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: em0616 on March 21, 2013, 02:13:02 PM
Find a friend to teach you how to drive stick shift. It's really not that difficult, and takes only a few hours to master at the most.

There are also tutorials online.

e.g. see: http://www.stickshiftmasterclass.com/node/2

http://learnstickshift.com/

You will save tons in rental and fuel costs.


i need to rent a vehicle woth at least 6 seats and Automatic transmission,  anyone know where to start?
the regulars (carrentals.com, Priceline) have not helped


Try to find out from Lubabs there if "Lisa from Avis" is still around ;)
i need to rent a vehicle woth at least 6 seats and Automatic transmission,  anyone know where to start?
the regulars (carrentals.com, Priceline) have not helped
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on March 21, 2013, 11:53:30 PM
Find a friend to teach you how to drive stick shift. It's really not that difficult, and takes only a few hours to master at the most.

There are also tutorials online.

e.g. see: http://www.stickshiftmasterclass.com/node/2

http://learnstickshift.com/

You will save tons in rental and fuel costs.
Will be hard though together with the adjustment of driving on the other side.

I once reserved an auto getz which was the cheapest auto, and all they had in auto was a brand new mercedes so they gave it to me for the same price!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: em0616 on March 22, 2013, 03:01:34 AM
Driving on the left is not as hard as it seems. Just shifting with the left hand is the challenge.

Well the typical visitor to South Africa is not driving the streets of Hillbrow, but mostly highway, and is
following the traffic in front. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on March 27, 2013, 10:32:23 PM
Driving on the left is not as hard as it seems. Just shifting with the left hand is the challenge.

Well the typical visitor to South Africa is not driving the streets of Hillbrow, but mostly highway, and is
following the traffic in front.
The driving part isn't hard it's getting used to where to turn left and right when there is no one in front of you, as well as calculating the distance between you and the side of the road from an angle you are not used to. Roundabouts aren't that much fun either until u get the hang of it. By now I can easily drive on both sides but it did take getting used to.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: nachas on December 09, 2013, 02:43:29 PM
I will be traveling to Cape Town, Zambia, and Kruger Park. Anyone know of a good way to get a US or Canadian number cell that will work in those areas and still be reasonably priced??
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: txtmax4 on December 23, 2013, 11:54:13 AM
I've had a great time in Kruger twice with a bunch of guys (beers the whole day and BBQ after dawn every night, blind whisky tasting and bonfires) and once with a family I went with (more relaxed style). But I always thought of it as an awesome place to go as a couple and, although I haven't brought my wife there yet, hope to make it there soon. It's just breathtaking, a place the size of Israel basically raw and natural, the only modern infrastructure you have there is the camps, some of them quite rustic, which are gated for obvious safety purposes.
(The real deal would have been Botswana where all you have is one cold shower and two guards with rifles at night, it's done in groups of about 10-12 people and requires advanced reservation).

I honestly don't know much about hiring trackers, we did everything by ourselves and saw the big 5 (http://www.krugerparkreservations.com/TheBigFive.asp) every time, you do have to have an eye out for it cause any animal camouflages. But basically, you drive drive drive and you'll see tons of animals. There's a max speed limit of 50 KMH so just enjoy the relaxing drive and look out for animals.
The only time we hired someone was for the night tours since it is anyhow forbidden to be out on a private car after 6pm..
Rule #1, whenever you see cars piled up at a certain spot it means there's something interesting going on there.. Make your way over there, FAST!

Early in the morning is when the animals go look for prey. like 5am... Seeing a kill is considered the highlight of a Kruger experience though it's not always easy to spot.
If you're ending your day at 6 you should be in bed 9-10 and start your day early, you can stop at any camp (follow the easy map and directions on roads) for breakfast/lunch/pit stop/ relaxing. There's usually a map in every camp center with people reporting where they've seen what animal.
As an added bonus, you can always see hienas at night near the camps gates since people give them their leftover dinner, which is not a good thing, but you can take advantage of them being there.

The camps I stayed at AFAIR were Satara, Skukuza. Letaba, Olifants. I think they all had AC and for sure hot water shower. They are all distinct, each with it's own style. IIRc Satara was the most basic but still very good conditions. All camps are "cute" each in it's own way.
I also stayed at Pretoriuskop but AFAIR, wildlife there is limited to some impala and bucks, nothing major as it's far from center.
I heard that there are walking tours but never did them, I believe advanced reservation is required.

At night, lay on the grass and look up at the stars, it's the clearest sky I ever remember seeing, even got a glimpse of the milky way...
Bonus: Hearing the lions roar at night loud enough you'd think they are right next to you :)
Camps aren't always well lit at night so don't freak out if you encounter an animal as some camps have loose buck and impala IN the camp.
Also, baboons can enter the camps (a monkey is a monkey), watch out for those.
Some camp units you rent have the kitchen area outside the unit, outdoors. Don't leave any food out there cause you might wake up to it all ransacked by the baboons..

This is all info based on my experience about 10 years ago, so excuse me if things have changed since then and are not exactly like I'm describing here.

If you really want to go with someone and don't want to do it on your own look also into kosher tours, where they feed you kosher food and arrange the whole shebang for you.
But the Kruger experience as I know it is grab a car, some beer and some biltong (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biltong) and drive your behind around a whole day and ENJOY!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yare on December 23, 2013, 01:30:50 PM
I've had a great time in Kruger twice with a bunch of guys (beers the whole day and BBQ after dawn every night, blind whisky tasting and bonfires) and once with a family I went with (more relaxed style). But I always thought of it as an awesome place to go as a couple and, although I haven't brought my wife there yet, hope to make it there soon. It's just breathtaking, a place the size of Israel basically raw and natural, the only modern infrastructure you have there is the camps, some of them quite rustic, which are gated for obvious safety purposes.
(The real deal would have been Botswana where all you have is one cold shower and two guards with rifles at night, it's done in groups of about 10-12 people and requires advanced reservation).

I honestly don't know much about hiring trackers, we did everything by ourselves and saw the big 5 (http://www.krugerparkreservations.com/TheBigFive.asp) every time, you do have to have an eye out for it cause any animal camouflages. But basically, you drive drive drive and you'll see tons of animals. There's a max speed limit of 50 KMH so just enjoy the relaxing drive and look out for animals.
The only time we hired someone was for the night tours since it is anyhow forbidden to be out on a private car after 6pm..
Rule #1, whenever you see cars piled up at a certain spot it means there's something interesting going on there.. Make your way over there, FAST!

Early in the morning is when the animals go look for prey. like 5am... Seeing a kill is considered the highlight of a Kruger experience though it's not always easy to spot.
If you're ending your day at 6 you should be in bed 9-10 and start your day early, you can stop at any camp (follow the easy map and directions on roads) for breakfast/lunch/pit stop/ relaxing. There's usually a map in every camp center with people reporting where they've seen what animal.
As an added bonus, you can always see hienas at night near the camps gates since people give them their leftover dinner, which is not a good thing, but you can take advantage of them being there.

The camps I stayed at AFAIR were Satara, Skukuza. Letaba, Olifants. I think they all had AC and for sure hot water shower. They are all distinct, each with it's own style. IIRc Satara was the most basic but still very good conditions. All camps are "cute" each in it's own way.
I also stayed at Pretoriuskop but AFAIR, wildlife there is limited to some impala and bucks, nothing major as it's far from center.
I heard that there are walking tours but never did them, I believe advanced reservation is required.

At night, lay on the grass and look up at the stars, it's the clearest sky I ever remember seeing, even got a glimpse of the milky way...
Bonus: Hearing the lions roar at night loud enough you'd think they are right next to you :)
Camps aren't always well lit at night so don't freak out if you encounter an animal as some camps have loose buck and impala IN the camp.
Also, baboons can enter the camps (a monkey is a monkey), watch out for those.
Some camp units you rent have the kitchen area outside the unit, outdoors. Don't leave any food out there cause you might wake up to it all ransacked by the baboons..

This is all info based on my experience about 10 years ago, so excuse me if things have changed since then and are not exactly like I'm describing here.

If you really want to go with someone and don't want to do it on your own look also into kosher tours, where they feed you kosher food and arrange the whole shebang for you.
But the Kruger experience as I know it is grab a car, some beer and some biltong (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biltong) and drive your behind around a whole day and ENJOY!
how many days do you need for a good trip to kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: txtmax4 on December 23, 2013, 01:44:10 PM
how many days do you need for a good trip to kruger?
3 days/nights is optimal. 4 if you're having a really good time with good company.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Cbs on February 23, 2014, 12:53:48 PM
Last trip as a bachelor!

Heres a quick itinerary i thought of without too many details. If you can help please do.

Heading for SA next Sunday iy"h, will be landing in joberg tuesday morning (after full day stop in FRA)

Tuesday - go around Joberg, get some food for the week, visit relatives. - At night fly to CPT.

Wednesday till sunday early AM - Be in Capetown

Sunday early fly back to JNB and pick up food , drive to kruger.  - Be there until wednesday early AM or tuesday night and then head back to JNB for wednesday night flight .

in CPT i found a house to rent on flipkey -- no ratings but looks amazing. what ya'll say? -- http://www.flipkey.com/cape-town-condo-rentals/p708225/

Where do i arrange a house and a tour for kruger? are there any shops in kruger for snacks , beer etc.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on February 23, 2014, 12:56:26 PM
Last trip as a bachelor!
Chabibi, these things are thrice the fun when you're doing it with your wife. Save it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Cbs on February 23, 2014, 01:02:40 PM
Chabibi, these things are thrice the fun when you're doing it with your wife. Save it.
tickets booked in November on UA glitch ..... - will go again. g-d willing - and its always better the second time
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on February 23, 2014, 01:08:14 PM
Last trip as a bachelor!

Heres a quick itinerary i thought of without too many details. If you can help please do.

Heading for SA next Sunday iy"h, will be landing in joberg tuesday morning (after full day stop in FRA)

Tuesday - go around Joberg, get some food for the week, visit relatives. - At night fly to CPT.

Wednesday till sunday early AM - Be in Capetown

Sunday early fly back to JNB and pick up food , drive to kruger.  - Be there until wednesday early AM or tuesday night and then head back to JNB for wednesday night flight .

in CPT i found a house to rent on flipkey -- no ratings but looks amazing. what ya'll say? -- http://www.flipkey.com/cape-town-condo-rentals/p708225/

Where do i arrange a house and a tour for kruger? are there any shops in kruger for snacks , beer etc.

I just got back from there a few weeks ago.
I am a bachur as well and went with a friend. We stayed in the Atlantic Affair Boutique Hotel in Sea Point. The hotel is good for the price and is the best location you will get. Literally one minute to their best restaurant and 3-5 minutes to 2/3 grocery stores that have good (extremely cheap) take out and other products.
I went to Kruger with a company that I would highly recommend- Nohngo Safaris. If you pay them for a tour they include the transportation and housing. Beer and snacks can be purchased in the park at any camp site. The real benefit of going with a guide at this time of year is that it is a raised vehicle and you will see over the grass, they also communicate with other guides to help you see the animals. Also the guides are extremely knowledgeable and learning about the animals as you watch them is invaluable.
Please PM me and I can talk over the phone. I spent a lot of time planning the trip and it worked out very well.
Best of luck.
I will write up a trip report when I am bored in class one day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on February 23, 2014, 01:11:18 PM
I just got back from there a few weeks ago.
I am a bachur as well and went with a friend. We stayed in the Atlantic Affair Boutique Hotel in Sea Point. The hotel is good for the price and is the best location you will get. Literally one minute to their best restaurant and 3-5 minutes to 2/3 grocery stores that have good (extremely cheap) take out and other products.
I went to Kruger with a company that I would highly recommend- Nohngo Safaris. If you pay them for a tour they include the transportation and housing. Beer and snacks can be purchased in the park at any camp site. The real benefit of going with a guide at this time of year is that it is a raised vehicle and you will see over the grass, they also communicate with other guides to help you see the animals. Also the guides are extremely knowledgeable and learning about the animals as you watch them is invaluable.
Please PM me and I can talk over the phone. I spent a lot of time planning the trip and it worked out very well.
Best of luck.
I will write up a trip report when I am bored in class one day.
You can ask the hotel for a discount and the safari can give you one as well.
How much were your tickets?
Cape Town is just amazing! The Jewish infrastructure makes it one of the best places in the world. [Disclaimer- I have not been to as many places as many people on the forums- but until you go there you cannot disagree!]
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Cbs on February 23, 2014, 01:13:27 PM
I just got back from there a few weeks ago.
I am a bachur as well and went with a friend. We stayed in the Atlantic Affair Boutique Hotel in Sea Point. The hotel is good for the price and is the best location you will get. Literally one minute to their best restaurant and 3-5 minutes to 2/3 grocery stores that have good (extremely cheap) take out and other products.
I went to Kruger with a company that I would highly recommend- Nohngo Safaris. If you pay them for a tour they include the transportation and housing. Beer and snacks can be purchased in the park at any camp site. The real benefit of going with a guide at this time of year is that it is a raised vehicle and you will see over the grass, they also communicate with other guides to help you see the animals. Also the guides are extremely knowledgeable and learning about the animals as you watch them is invaluable.
Please PM me and I can talk over the phone. I spent a lot of time planning the trip and it worked out very well.
Best of luck.
I will write up a trip report when I am bored in class one day.
Thanks
tickets were about $480 each

i was thinking to rent a car
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: E-MAN on September 16, 2014, 04:35:13 PM
Anybody know best award options for NY > JNB?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on September 16, 2014, 05:10:10 PM
Anybody know best award options for NY > JNB?
Try to get US air to route NYC-HKG-JNB
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: E-MAN on September 16, 2014, 05:37:45 PM
Try to get US air to route NYC-HKG-JNB
How many miles in First?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on September 16, 2014, 05:51:58 PM
How many miles in First?

Could be as low as 40k miles with US, and that includes a stop in TLV ;)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on September 16, 2014, 06:39:42 PM
Could be as low as 40k miles with US, and that includes a stop in TLV ;)
Anyone ever pull that one off?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on September 16, 2014, 06:43:49 PM
Anyone ever pull that one off?

Yup was on DDMS some time ago.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Racer7400 on September 17, 2014, 04:39:50 AM
here is a link to that post (http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/28399)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 26, 2014, 04:09:02 AM
Both VFA and LVI charge visa-on-arrival fees for US citizens, arrgghh. Don't think they can possibly compare to IGU/IGR anyway.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on December 26, 2014, 11:21:48 AM
I've been looking into avios tickets from JNB to CPT however I am getting quoted $190 in fees for a round trip? After looking online, most blogs stated that the fees for this route were capped at $44 each way. Has something changed since then? Are there any ways to use miles for these flights but avoid fuel surcharges?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 26, 2014, 11:31:22 AM
I've been looking into avios tickets from JNB to CPT however I am getting quoted $190 in fees for a round trip? After looking online, most blogs stated that the fees for this route were capped at $44 each way. Has something changed since then? Are there any ways to use miles for these flights but avoid fuel surcharges?
The $44 applies to BA tickets.
Per passenger OW
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on December 26, 2014, 11:35:47 AM
I've been looking into avios tickets from JNB to CPT however I am getting quoted $190 in fees for a round trip? After looking online, most blogs stated that the fees for this route were capped at $44 each way. Has something changed since then? Are there any ways to use miles for these flights but avoid fuel surcharges?
It's a reward saver discount.
Transfer 1 Avios to BA and you'll get the discount for the next 12 months.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on December 26, 2014, 01:25:57 PM

It's a reward saver discount.
Transfer 1 Avios to BA and you'll get the discount for the next 12 months.

I just transferred points from Avios to BA and I still see the same $190 cash outlay. Maybe it takes a day or 2 to reflect on my account?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on December 26, 2014, 01:26:49 PM
I just transferred points from Avios to BA and I still see the same $190 cash outlay. Maybe it takes a day or 2 to reflect on my account?
Did you logout and back in yet?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on December 26, 2014, 01:28:13 PM

Did you logout and back in yet?
Yeah. I even went back and transferred a few more avios from my Iberia account and see the same cash requirement. Anyone else see this too?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on December 26, 2014, 01:30:10 PM
Transfers from Iberia may not count.
Try a transfer from AMEX or Chase.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on December 27, 2014, 03:50:52 PM

Transfers from Iberia may not count.
Try a transfer from AMEX or Chase.
You are right. Weirdly, transfers from Iberia don't count to enable reward flight saver however I now see the flat $44 fee per segment. Thanks!!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: begin27 on December 27, 2014, 11:22:30 PM
Cape Town is simply the most beautiful city in the world.  It is flanked by striking mountains and the bluest sea.  If you go to Seapoint too, and kosher eating is of interest to you, there are five synagogues in walking distance and three very nice kosher restaurants.  The best time of year to go is dec-March.  I have lots of family there and have always had a very nice experience.  If you are concerned about safety, go out with others at night.  But I personally never experienced any issues. :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 27, 2014, 11:27:40 PM
Cape Town is simply the most beautiful city in the world.  It is flanked by striking mountains and the bluest sea.  If you go to Seapoint too, and kosher eating is of interest to you, there are five synagogues in walking distance and three very nice kosher restaurants.  The best time of year to go is dec-March.  I have lots of family there and have always had a very nice experience.  If you are concerned about safety, go out with others at night.  But I personally never experienced any issues. :)

Thanks. Any nice and affordable hotels within walking distance to the shul and kosher area? Any recommendations?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 27, 2014, 11:28:33 PM
Thanks. Any nice and affordable hotels within walking distance to the shul and kosher area? Any recommendations?
Yes.
I like the Atlantic Affair Boutique hotel
I was there last January and am returning there in less than a month
Around the corner from the main meat place and 5-7 minutes from the shuls. I felt safe and welcome there
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 27, 2014, 11:29:20 PM
Yes.
I like the Atlantic Affair Boutique hotel
I was there last January and am returning there in less than a month
Around the corner from the main meat place and 5-7 minutes from the shuls. I felt safe and welcome there

Affordable = points options? :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 27, 2014, 11:31:27 PM
Affordable = points options? :)
No its a small place.
But a regular room runs less than $120 a night and the penthouse is less than $150 a night. It is really the best location for food and shul. 2 minute walk to the grocery store that has kosher take-out
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 28, 2014, 02:32:45 AM
I just got back from there a few weeks ago.
I am a bachur as well and went with a friend. We stayed in the Atlantic Affair Boutique Hotel in Sea Point. The hotel is good for the price and is the best location you will get. Literally one minute to their best restaurant and 3-5 minutes to 2/3 grocery stores that have good (extremely cheap) take out and other products.
I went to Kruger with a company that I would highly recommend- Nohngo Safaris. If you pay them for a tour they include the transportation and housing. Beer and snacks can be purchased in the park at any camp site. The real benefit of going with a guide at this time of year is that it is a raised vehicle and you will see over the grass, they also communicate with other guides to help you see the animals. Also the guides are extremely knowledgeable and learning about the animals as you watch them is invaluable.
Please PM me and I can talk over the phone. I spent a lot of time planning the trip and it worked out very well.
Best of luck.
I will write up a trip report when I am bored in class one day.

Can you write a little more about how you researched to find a good and affordable trip to Kruger? I am in contact Nohngo now too and 2 others that I found online. How long was the tour you did, and how much did you pay per person?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 28, 2014, 09:28:20 AM
Can you write a little more about how you researched to find a good and affordable trip to Kruger? I am in contact Nohngo now too and 2 others that I found online. How long was the tour you did, and how much did you pay per person?
I went to tripadvisor and they were ranked number 1. I emailed them and a few other companies and they were very kind and responsive to my questions. They picked me up from a residence in JoBurg and returned me to that area as well. The guide was friendly, knowledgeable and energetic.

The best compliment I can give this company is that I am using them again in a month for another safari.

I did the four day adventure safari and it was perfect. You spend half of the first day on the way to the safari in a nice air conditioned van and you have a stop half way up there to stretch and move about. (whole thing takes about 3 1/2 hrs). Then we had the rest of that day and the following 2 days for safari. The last day we drove around in the morning and returned to JoBurg by early afternoon.
The current price is 8950 Rand which is about $775. I think I paid around $740 a year ago. They are giving me a discount this year since I am a returning customer.

Another point to add: The adventure option comes with a private bathroom and a small kitchenette area with a burner (electric) and a fridge. While the budget option is cheaper but has shared bathrooms, no kitchenette and you dont get the night drive included.
Truthfully, the best drive we had was the night drive because of the lions that were hanging out on the street and the wild dogs that were running around.

3 pictures from the night drive:
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7498/16126654141_c959de764f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/qz4jr4)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7508/15508893193_02ae3f194e_b.jpg)[/url
[url=https://flic.kr/p/qz4ihv](https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8656/16126650281_438903a5e3_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/pCt8Ce)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 28, 2014, 09:30:16 AM
Affordable = points options? :)
There are other hotels that do take points, but overall this is a better value and definitely a better location. Some people like renting apartments, but I am taking a garden route tour so will be spending 5 nonconsecutive days at the hotel.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 28, 2014, 11:03:26 AM
I went to tripadvisor and they were ranked number 1. I emailed them and a few other companies and they were very kind and responsive to my questions. They picked me up from a residence in JoBurg and returned me to that area as well. The guide was friendly, knowledgeable and energetic.

The best compliment I can give this company is that I am using them again in a month for another safari.

I did the four day adventure safari and it was perfect. You spend half of the first day on the way to the safari in a nice air conditioned van and you have a stop half way up there to stretch and move about. (whole thing takes about 3 1/2 hrs). Then we had the rest of that day and the following 2 days for safari. The last day we drove around in the morning and returned to JoBurg by early afternoon.
The current price is 8950 Rand which is about $775. I think I paid around $740 a year ago. They are giving me a discount this year since I am a returning customer.

Another point to add: The adventure option comes with a private bathroom and a small kitchenette area with a burner (electric) and a fridge. While the budget option is cheaper but has shared bathrooms, no kitchenette and you dont get the night drive included.
Truthfully, the best drive we had was the night drive because of the lions that were hanging out on the street and the wild dogs that were running around.

So I would only have 2 days to do safari tour, Sunday and Monday. Have return flight Monday night. They quoted me and a few friends for the most basic tour R3,000 per person. Though this will be more communal and will not include a night drive. What do you think?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 28, 2014, 11:11:18 AM
So I would only have 2 days to do safari tour, Sunday and Monday. Have return flight Monday night. They quoted me and a few friends for the most basic tour R3,000 per person. Though this will be more communal and will not include a night drive. What do you think?
The reason for the price is the pick-up and crop-off in Johannesburg.
When are you going?
I would not miss going on a safari after traveling all the way there. Are they taking you back late on the second day?
Make sure you leave Johannesburg early and return late if you do it this way. Also tell them you don't need an hour break for lunch at the pit-stop. They will not guarantee any sightings, but I saw 4 of the big 5 multiple times on my safari. If you will be disappointed if you dont see every animal then a private game reserve may be better, but it will cost you a bunch more.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 28, 2014, 11:16:10 AM
The reason for the price is the pick-up and crop-off in Johannesburg.
When are you going?
I would not miss going on a safari after traveling all the way there. Are they taking you back late on the second day?
Make sure you leave Johannesburg early and return late if you do it this way. Also tell them you don't need an hour break for lunch at the pit-stop. They will not guarantee any sightings, but I saw 4 of the big 5 multiple times on my safari. If you will be disappointed if you dont see every animal then a private game reserve may be better, but it will cost you a bunch more.


They would take us from Johannesburg and return us to the airport. This is for beginning of March. So you would say the price is right at about US$258 for the two days per person?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 28, 2014, 11:19:46 AM
They would take us from Johannesburg and return us to the airport. This is for beginning of March. So you would say the price is right at about US$258 for the two days per person?
Yes. If you break down the price it is really good.
3 1/2 hr drive each way and gas is not cheap!
2 days of guided tour
1 night in a hotel
You are paying about $125 a day which is very reasonable.
Tip will be an additional 300R a person ($26)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 28, 2014, 11:23:13 AM
Yes. If you break down the price it is really good.
3 1/2 hr drive each way and gas is not cheap!
2 days of guided tour
1 night in a hotel
You are paying about $125 a day which is very reasonable.
Tip will be an additional 300R a person ($26)


I guess so. When I was fishing for prices I was comparing to how much I paid for a 2-day guided tour in the Amazon. They also included pickup and dropped from manaus and all the transportation to get deep inside the jungle, many outings during both days and night, and communal room. They charged us about US$150 per person.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 28, 2014, 11:30:37 AM
Cape Town is simply the most beautiful city in the world.  It is flanked by striking mountains and the bluest sea.  If you go to Seapoint too, and kosher eating is of interest to you, there are five synagogues in walking distance and three very nice kosher restaurants.  The best time of year to go is dec-March.  I have lots of family there and have always had a very nice experience.  If you are concerned about safety, go out with others at night.  But I personally never experienced any issues. :)

Definitely true. CPT is gorgeous. Kosher food is cheap (but make reservations during their summer, it gets super busy), hotels are not.

But the Westin CPT with C+P was a great deal and a very nice hotel. 8.6 CPP.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on December 28, 2014, 11:38:20 AM

Definitely true. CPT is gorgeous. Kosher food is cheap (but make reservations during their summer, it gets super busy), hotels are not.

But the Westin CPT with C+P was a great deal and a very nice hotel. 8.6 CPP.

Would you recommend the Westin based off of its location? We're trying to decide between the Westin and an AirBnb listing. The only thing about the Westin that concerns us is that it seems somewhat far from the waterfront. Is there action around the Westin or does it require taking a cab to get to the popular destinations in Cape Town from the Westin?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on December 28, 2014, 11:41:13 AM
Would you recommend the Westin based off of its location? We're trying to decide between the Westin and an AirBnb listing. The only thing about the Westin that concerns us is that it seems somewhat far from the waterfront. Is there action around the Westin or does it require taking a cab to get to the popular destinations in Cape Town from the Westin?

cabs are cheap and you should take them to see the best destinations.  You can also take the hop on/off bus to table mountain and other destinations from that area.
I would prefer to be closer to the food by staying in sea point. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 28, 2014, 11:41:39 AM
Would you recommend the Westin based off of its location? We're trying to decide between the Westin and an AirBnb listing. The only thing about the Westin that concerns us is that it seems somewhat far from the waterfront. Is there action around the Westin or does it require taking a cab to get to the popular destinations in Cape Town from the Westin?

20 min walk, 5 min drive. We drive one night to see what it was all about but were underwhelmed (perhaps because we decided not to get out of the car). We mostly used the Westin as a base for driving to Cape of Good Hope/Cape Point (perhaps THE most stunning drive in the entire world), great white shark diving in Gaansbai, driving for kosher food (10 min drive to Seapoint), driving to Table Mountain etc.

For us, we prefer nicer accommodations and are willing to drive a bit farther.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bk90 on December 28, 2014, 09:23:05 PM
My husband and I just booked a trip to Johannesburg in March- we are thinking of doing a safari Wednesday- Thursday, March 11-12th, and then going to Cape Town for the rest of the trip. Anyone else going then that would be interested in joining a safari those days?

All other suggestions and trip itineraries are also welcome! Thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 11:16:23 AM
For any Kosher food info you need in South Africa:
http://www.uos.co.za/kashrut/
 
If you are driving from JHB to Kruger, consider adding the Panoramic Route (http://www.sa-venues.com/maps/mpumalanga-panorama-route.htm) to your trip, which includes about half a dozen waterfalls and breathtaking views.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 12:33:59 PM
For any Kosher food info you need in South Africa:
http://www.uos.co.za/kashrut/
 
If you are driving from JHB to Kruger, consider adding the Panoramic Route (http://www.sa-venues.com/maps/mpumalanga-panorama-route.htm) to your trip, which includes about half a dozen waterfalls and breathtaking views.


Thanks do you know a good link where I could find a map of shuls in cape town? Thinking of staying in a hotel near the waterfront, and would like to be walking distance to an orthodox shul if possible.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 01:00:54 PM
Thanks do you know a good link where I could find a map of shuls in cape town? Thinking of staying in a hotel near the waterfront, and would like to be walking distance to an orthodox shul if possible.

I'm not so familiar with the Cape Town scene, but I found this, (http://godaven.com/maps.asp#Mode=Search&Name=Cape Town) although I think it is missing many Shuls.

According to that, it looks like you are looking at a 45 min- 1 hour walk
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 01:07:45 PM
I'm not so familiar with the Cape Town scene, but I found this, (http://godaven.com/maps.asp#Mode=Search&Name=Cape Town) although I think it is missing many Shuls.

According to that, it looks like you are looking at a 45 min- 1 hour walk

Thanks found one that is a 20 minute walk, the Gardens Shul. It is under 2km from the hotel.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 29, 2014, 01:11:35 PM
3 1/2 hours from JHB to Kruger doesnt sound quite right. Its around 250 miles and took us over 5 hours.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 29, 2014, 01:12:22 PM
Yeah, and the roads for much of it are terrible (read: potholes large enough to swallow a car whole). Definitely closer to 5 than 3.5.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 01:13:12 PM
Thanks found one that is a 20 minute walk, the Gardens Shul. It is under 2km from the hotel.

Enjoy the choir!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 01:16:01 PM
Yeah, and the roads for much of it are terrible (read: potholes large enough to swallow a car whole). Definitely closer to 5 than 3.5.

Definitely not 3.5 hours, that's nuts. Though I don't remember the roads being THAT bad.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 29, 2014, 01:29:19 PM
regarding an earlier comment about Cape Town just an FYI but when you talk about the waterfront most people assume you mean the V&A waterfront and not e.g. Sea Point.   
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 29, 2014, 01:39:44 PM
Regarding the comment about doing a 2 day safari. If you're thinking of going to Kruger,  you should definitely fly from JHB and not plan on driving.  Even then Kruger is huge - about the size of Israel.  2 days is probably too short.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 02:04:17 PM
(read: potholes large enough to swallow a car whole).

Alol :) All the kruger sites write the roads are great.

Enjoy the choir!

It's not orthodox?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 02:05:09 PM
Regarding the comment about doing a 2 day safari. If you're thinking of going to Kruger,  you should definitely fly from JHB and not plan on driving.  Even then Kruger is huge - about the size of Israel.  2 days is probably too short.

Nhongo safari's offers a 2-day tour, leaving early in the morning on day, doing a game drive from the afternoon, and then waking up early on day 2 doing a morning game drive, and they head back to JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 02:06:22 PM
Updated the wiki with lots of info for restaurants, if I missed any please write. And note if milk is CY or if meat is Glatt etc..
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 02:14:14 PM

It's not orthodox?

It is! it has a male choir. You'd be hard pressed to find a non-orthodox shul in SA.

if meat is Glatt etc..

All meat is glatt. Mehadrin = glatt. Mehadrin Commission = Lubavitch.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2014, 02:27:02 PM
Sun City is not in Johannesburg it is about 2.5 hours away.

It is right next to Pilansberg, which is like Kruger's little brother. If you are not able to make the trip to Kruger, you can go there instead. (not close to the experience Kruger is, but it is something.)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 02:38:41 PM
It is! it has a male choir. You'd be hard pressed to find a non-orthodox shul in SA.

All meat is glatt. Mehadrin = glatt. Mehadrin Commission = Lubavitch.


Sun City is not in Johannesburg it is about 2.5 hours away.

It is right next to Pilansberg, which is like Kruger's little brother. If you are not able to make the trip to Kruger, you can go there instead. (not close to the experience Kruger is, but it is something.)

Thanks, good to know.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on December 29, 2014, 10:36:50 PM
My flight lands in JNB at 4pm Friday. Then back to NYC at 830pm Wednesday.

Thinking about finding a R/T flight to CPT for Saturday to Tuesday..?

Any itinerary advise for such a short trip?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 29, 2014, 11:15:23 PM
My flight lands in JNB at 4pm Friday. Then back to NYC at 830pm Wednesday.

Thinking about finding a R/T flight to CPT for Saturday to Tuesday..?

Any itinerary advise for such a short trip?

Hope ur flights don't get delayed. 2 days is what I am planning for CPT to, def doesn't do justice for it, but playing with what I have.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on December 30, 2014, 12:33:47 PM
Hope ur flights don't get delayed. 2 days is what I am planning for CPT to, def doesn't do justice for it, but playing with what I have.

Yeah I didn't realize when booking on the 9th, that I would land the afternoon of the 11th. Wish I had a few more days.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on January 01, 2015, 12:22:35 PM
Yeah I didn't realize when booking on the 9th, that I would land the afternoon of the 11th. Wish I had a few more days.

if i understand correctly, you leave on Wed and get to JNB on Friday at 4pm. Not sure if this matters to you but shabbat comes in around 5 or 6 and you still have to clear customs, immigration etc.  After being in economy for 2 nights you plan to fly to CPT the next day.  3 nights in CPT and then another 2 nights flying back to the US.  If this is the case, I would suggest skipping CPT and going to Kruger Park from Sun-Tues.   
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 11:45:40 AM
Thinking about doing with the Delta glitch on VS. Crazy to go with kids? If I arrive Friday morning and leave the following Sunday night, is that enough time?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: robbie on January 08, 2015, 11:48:14 AM
Thinking about doing with the Delta glitch on VS. Crazy to go with kids? If I arrive Friday morning and leave the following Sunday night, is that enough time?
for what? but the answer is no
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 11:57:38 AM
I mean a week and two days later. Would want to do CPT, Kruger and JNB
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 11:59:02 AM
Now looking at arriving Wednesday 9AM and leaving the following Wednesday night. Thoughts?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 08, 2015, 12:03:33 PM
Not enough time. Weds to the following Sunday, however...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 12:28:00 PM
And If I split the difference?
Arrive Thursday AM. Thu-Shabbos in JNB. Sunday-Tuesday(Wednesday?) in Kruger. Wednesday(Thursday?)-Sun in CPT?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 08, 2015, 12:29:17 PM
And If I split the difference?
Arrive Thursday AM. Thu-Shabbos in JNB. Sunday-Tuesday(Wednesday?) in Kruger. Wednesday(Thursday?)-Sun in CPT?

Should be doable in a pinch.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 12:31:13 PM
Still deciding if this is nuts to do with 2 kids
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 08, 2015, 12:32:25 PM
And If I split the difference?
Arrive Thursday AM. Thu-Shabbos in JNB. Sunday-Tuesday(Wednesday?) in Kruger. Wednesday(Thursday?)-Sun in CPT?

Sounds very doable to me, not sure bout the kids part :) - I am trying to get all that in 6 days - the JNB part.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on January 08, 2015, 12:35:32 PM
Now looking at arriving Wednesday 9AM and leaving the following Wednesday night. Thoughts?
That's enough time for Kruger and CPT?
Do 2 weeks and add in Victoria Falls :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 08, 2015, 12:36:36 PM
That's enough time for Kruger and CPT?
Do 2 weeks and add in Victoria Falls :)

Think you will still be wowed after IGU?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 12:42:49 PM
Should be doable in a pinch.
If it was Wed-Sun how would you split it up?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 08, 2015, 12:53:10 PM
If it was Wed-Sun how would you split it up?

CPT when you arrive, stay there for shabbos, Sunday night/ Monday head to Kruger, Thursday return to JNB for shabbos.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 01:07:41 PM
Now having second thoughts. Thinking of going in the summer which is wintertime there. CPT looks very chilly in the winter
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 08, 2015, 01:13:09 PM
Now having second thoughts. Thinking of going in the summer which is wintertime there. CPT looks very chilly in the winter

Personally, I loved CPT in their summer. But if you go in their winter to Kruger, you'll be treated to an awesome time at Kruger because in the winter, all the animals congregate around the watering holes, and you'll see all sorts of things, maybe even a kill!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 08, 2015, 01:13:30 PM
If it was Wed-Sun how would you split it up?

What is your time on the ground? i.e when do you arrive and depart JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on January 08, 2015, 01:16:12 PM
Arrive 9 AM leave 8 PM

Same for all the options
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 08, 2015, 01:18:54 PM
Arrive 9 AM leave 8 PM

Same for all the options

Go straight to CPT, stay through early Sun/Mon morn. If you can, take non-stop flight from CPT to Kruger, spend 3-ish days there, and drive one-way to JNB on Weds/Thurs, spend a couple days and shabbas in JNB, then head out on Sunday.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 08, 2015, 01:40:15 PM
Go straight to CPT, stay through early Sun/Mon morn. If you can, take non-stop flight from CPT to Kruger, spend 3-ish days there, and drive one-way to JNB on Weds/Thurs, spend a couple days and shabbas in JNB, then head out on Sunday.

CPT when you arrive, stay there for shabbos, Sunday night/ Monday head to Kruger, Thursday return to JNB for shabbos.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on January 09, 2015, 07:20:24 PM
if i understand correctly, you leave on Wed and get to JNB on Friday at 4pm. Not sure if this matters to you but shabbat comes in around 5 or 6 and you still have to clear customs, immigration etc.  After being in economy for 2 nights you plan to fly to CPT the next day.  3 nights in CPT and then another 2 nights flying back to the US.  If this is the case, I would suggest skipping CPT and going to Kruger Park from Sun-Tues.

That's a good point, but for some reason, I feel like I have to visit CPT if I'm in South Africa..

I went on a Serengeti Safari a while back, so seeing the animals wouldn't be a must-do priority for me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 12, 2015, 02:53:10 PM
Flight from AUH arriving into JNB at 5:10pm. Will it be enough time after clearing customs and switching terminals to make a 7:25pm flight to CPT? (2h15m).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on January 12, 2015, 03:25:39 PM
Flight from AUH arriving into JNB at 5:10pm. Will it be enough time after clearing customs and switching terminals to make a 7:25pm flight to CPT? (2h15m).

You're pushing it, but you can make it with some running. (though after your crazy flight in, are you interested in running?)

Switching terminals means walking. It's not like you can take a bus or train. You'll have to walk anywhere from 5-20 minutes from international to domestic. On one hand, your arrival process will take a bit longer than the average US international flight, but your domestic departure will be a bit quicker. Security is definitely much quicker than the US.

Disclaimer - things may have changed in the last couple of years, which is the last time I was there, and I've never transferred from international to domestic.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 12, 2015, 09:57:56 PM
You're pushing it, but you can make it with some running. (though after your crazy flight in, are you interested in running?)

Switching terminals means walking. It's not like you can take a bus or train. You'll have to walk anywhere from 5-20 minutes from international to domestic. On one hand, your arrival process will take a bit longer than the average US international flight, but your domestic departure will be a bit quicker. Security is definitely much quicker than the US.

Disclaimer - things may have changed in the last couple of years, which is the last time I was there, and I've never transferred from international to domestic.

Thanks, hard to decide. The later options are with SAA and are more $$$, this one is with Kulula.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on January 12, 2015, 10:24:04 PM
Thanks, hard to decide. The later options are with SAA and are more $$$, this one is with Kulula.

If you check in online at AUH you should make it. You only need to drop off your bags half hour before the flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 12, 2015, 11:46:44 PM
Flight from AUH arriving into JNB at 5:10pm. Will it be enough time after clearing customs and switching terminals to make a 7:25pm flight to CPT? (2h15m).

We had a 4 hour connection, and I remember sitting in the lounge for at least 2 hours. I think you should be fine provided no delays and you don't dawdle.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on January 13, 2015, 12:34:34 AM
Anyone have thoughts on doing a safari in Kruger (S. Africa) versus Chobe (Botswana)? Is one substantially better/worse than the other?
I have a preference for Chobe because it will allow me to also stop at Victoria Falls.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 02:09:38 AM
If you check in online at AUH you should make it. You only need to drop off your bags half hour before the flight.

Will try to do that.

We had a 4 hour connection, and I remember sitting in the lounge for at least 2 hours. I think you should be fine provided no delays and you don't dawdle.

We are booked! Praying for no delays now.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: JamesIV on January 13, 2015, 04:43:07 AM
We are booked! Praying for no delays now.
I have the same issue (landing 5:10 want to catch the 7:25 flight) Let us know what happens...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 10:15:45 AM
I have the same issue (landing 5:10 want to catch the 7:25 flight) Let us know what happens...

Our flight is not for a while, when is yours?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on January 13, 2015, 11:40:48 AM
If youre flying with Kulula you will need to recheck your bags.  I dont see how you think this is a good idea. This is Africa.  You have no idea how long it will take for your luggage or get through passport control and then customs. You then have to run with your luggage to another terminal and then you dont know how long the lines are or how many people will be working the check in at Kulula(even though if I recall its done through SAA).

Chobe is fantastic. Quite a different experience to Kruger.  Keep in mind that when people talk about Kruger they might also be referring to the private game parks that abut Kruger. They are super expensive(starting at $400/p/p/day min) but they are a real experience if you can swing it. Chobe is great because its a day trip to VF. Chobe is also more expensive than Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 12:22:26 PM
If youre flying with Kulula you will need to recheck your bags.  I dont see how you think this is a good idea. This is Africa.  You have no idea how long it will take for your luggage or get through passport control and then customs. You then have to run with your luggage to another terminal and then you dont know how long the lines are or how many people will be working the check in at Kulula(even though if I recall its done through SAA).

Mango is a subsidiary of SAA, Kulula is a subsidiary of Comair. I am hoping this will all work work out. Plan B if we miss that flight, is to book a last minute BA flight for the next morning at 7.5k + $44, and sleep at an airport hotel.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on January 13, 2015, 12:26:52 PM
I was there last January and the customs process was very fast. And check-in for our next flight took tow minutes and security line was maybe 10 people. I am returning in a week and a half and have a connection that is 2 1/2 hrs and will let you know how it goes- landing JNB going to CPT.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on January 13, 2015, 12:27:07 PM
This is Africa.
JNB isn't some third world airport. It will take roughly the same time to get through customs as any international airport.
you dont know how long the lines are or how many people will be working the check in at Kulula
Domestic travel in SA is usually a breeze and very quick to get through checkin and security. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 12:37:29 PM
I was there last January and the customs process was very fast. And check-in for our next flight took tow minutes and security line was maybe 10 people. I am returning in a week and a half and have a connection that is 2 1/2 hrs and will let you know how it goes- landing JNB going to CPT.

Tks, please report back. What airline are you using for the JNB-CPT flight?

JNB isn't some third world airport. It will take roughly the same time to get through customs as any international airport.Domestic travel in SA is usually a breeze and very quick to get through checkin and security. 

Tks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on January 13, 2015, 12:59:22 PM
SAA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 01:31:28 PM
SAA

Dates I was looking at, they were almost double the amount that Kulula and Mango were asking for. Cheapest there is FlySafair but their times weren't good.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on January 13, 2015, 01:44:58 PM
Dates I was looking at, they were almost double the amount that Kulula and Mango were asking for. Cheapest there is FlySafair but their times weren't good.
They were the only flight that left late enough when we landed. Was about the same price as the rest.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on January 13, 2015, 01:47:13 PM
Trevor Noah


Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: JamesIV on January 13, 2015, 05:01:46 PM
Our flight is not for a while, when is yours?
We're going in march
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 10:26:42 PM
We're going in march

Same here.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on January 13, 2015, 10:46:17 PM
Trevor Noah


The SAA announcements are the only smiles I get on the 18 hour flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on January 13, 2015, 11:13:42 PM
Dates I was looking at, they were almost double the amount that Kulula and Mango were asking for. Cheapest there is FlySafair but their times weren't good.

FlySafair is also much cheaper for my dates in September..

Are all these airlines legit?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on January 13, 2015, 11:35:32 PM
FlySafair is also much cheaper for my dates in September..

Are all these airlines legit?

FlySafair have only been around for about 3 months now. Mango is here since '06 and Kulula since '01.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on January 14, 2015, 08:56:42 AM
Gotcha. Thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: MiA305 on January 19, 2015, 10:28:53 PM
First time in South Africa w/ 2 friends in Mid February. We arrive in Johannesburg on at 5:10PM and have a safari the next day. The last citybug transfer that we found leaves for Nelspruit at 6:00PM. It will be very tight to make that transfer. There is a greyhound coach that leaves at 10:00PM but doesn't get in until 2:30AMm. We don’t want to rent a car and drive at night because we heard it is not that safe. Anyone know any other buses or transportation options available that leave from Johannesburg Airport (JNB) to Nelspruit at around 7/8PM? Your help is much appreciated!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on January 19, 2015, 10:31:31 PM
First time in South Africa w/ 2 friends in Mid February. We arrive in Johannesburg on at 5:10PM and have a safari the next day. The last citybug transfer that we found leaves for Kruger (Nelspruit) at 6:00PM. It will be very tight to make that transfer. There is a greyhound coach that leaves at 10:00PM but doesn't get in until 2:30AMm. We donít want to rent a car and drive at night because we heard it is not that safe. Anyone know any other buses or transportation options available that leave from Johannesburg Airport (JNB) to Kruger (Nelspruit) at around 7/8PM? Your help is much appreciated!!

That's a super tight connection, made all the more risky because you'll likely have to wait for checked bags. Odds are you're not gonna make that connection.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on January 21, 2015, 08:56:47 AM
A friend and I are going to South Africa in March with the EY deal. Landing in JNB at 8:40A on Wed 3/11 and departing JNB at 8:30P on Mon 3/16.

I was originally thinking to go straight from the airport to Sun City on Wed and do that and Pilatesburg, return to spend Shabbos in Jo'burg and then fly to either VFA or LVI on Sunday, see Victoria Falls, and the return to JNB on Monday and take flight back to AUH.

After reading this thread and doing other research, I'm thinking that Kruger might be a better call for the Wed-Fri trip. Anyone have thoughts on that? Also is anyone else going to be there then who might be interested in setting up a Kruger trip? Is there a provider who offers a kosher Kruger trip of such a short length? Any ideas or advice for this would be appreciated!

Also, a lot of people on here seem to be big CPT fans. Might that be a better option than Vic Falls for Sun/Mon? Or is that not nearly enough time for CPT and it would be better served being saved for a future trip? (It seems like one day is certainly enough time for Vic Falls. Anyone disagree?)

Thanks in advance!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on February 01, 2015, 02:14:08 PM
A friend and I are going to South Africa in March with the EY deal. Landing in JNB at 8:40A on Wed 3/11 and departing JNB at 8:30P on Mon 3/16.

I was originally thinking to go straight from the airport to Sun City on Wed and do that and Pilatesburg, return to spend Shabbos in Jo'burg and then fly to either VFA or LVI on Sunday, see Victoria Falls, and the return to JNB on Monday and take flight back to AUH.

After reading this thread and doing other research, I'm thinking that Kruger might be a better call for the Wed-Fri trip. Anyone have thoughts on that? Also is anyone else going to be there then who might be interested in setting up a Kruger trip? Is there a provider who offers a kosher Kruger trip of such a short length? Any ideas or advice for this would be appreciated!

Also, a lot of people on here seem to be big CPT fans. Might that be a better option than Vic Falls for Sun/Mon? Or is that not nearly enough time for CPT and it would be better served being saved for a future trip? (It seems like one day is certainly enough time for Vic Falls. Anyone disagree?)

Thanks in advance!

My wife and are going at the same times.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 01, 2015, 08:16:26 PM
What are your plans for while you're there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on February 01, 2015, 10:41:12 PM
What are your plans for while you're there?

Itís a work in progress. Having some issues because we want to go to the falls and Cape Town but canít find flights. Flights between cities in Africa are only available once a day, in the middle of the day. That means a trip from the falls to Cape Town usually takes two days, with a full day stopover in Johannesburg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 01, 2015, 11:23:32 PM
True, which is why I'm thinking to only do one of the two this trip and save the other for a different time. I was just shmoozing with a local who says that Cape Town is a must-do, but he agreed with me, that if I only have a day to spend there, I'm better off with Victoria Falls, as that can better be done in a single day, whereas in Cape Town it would only be the tip of the iceberg. That's what I'm leaning towards right now.

You have any thoughts to doing Kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 03, 2015, 09:44:00 AM
Agree that with a day, you are forced to skip Cape Town.

Unless you have the very, very minimum two days and one night, you're gonna be forced to skip Kruger, too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 03, 2015, 12:54:21 PM
I was in Johannesburg for a few days without time for jaunts to Cape Town, Kruger or to do other serious touring. Here is a quick TR:

On our first day we drove out to the Lion Park, which is probably the biggest "must do" for tourists in Johannesburg. It has different self drive camps where you watch prides of lions from your car, and then you can go into an enclosure to pet and take pictures with lion cubs. The latter is super fun, and if you know anyone who went to SA and has pictures with lions - this is most likely where they did it.

(http://i.imgur.com/DXqAzz7l.jpg)

Itís very difficult for me to find a picture without anyone in it!

About 10 minutes from the Lion Park is a place called Heia Safari Lodge. It's a lodge and conference center that has giraffes, zebra, springbok and other game walking around the premises, as well as a small dam. You can enter the grounds for free and walk around and get real close to these animals, which is cool.

On day two, we left Johannesburg at 4:00am and drove out to Pilansberg. It is like a little brother to Kruger. We got there at 6:00am. We got to see elephant and rhino real close, as well as loads of zebra, kudu, warthog, wildebeest, impala and other calves. Must be to do with the time of year we were there. We left just after midday, and managed to get through a nice chunk of the park. If you don't have enough time for Kruger, it is a great option to see some wildlife.

(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7392/16380557575_510038f5fe_z.jpg)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7439/16378808721_6c308ed66a_z.jpg)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7417/15760397583_7966e69d76_z.jpg)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7435/16380474355_af33b1d4f4_z.jpg)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7317/16380435665_0e47c9d2be_z.jpg)
(https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7348/15757922064_1aed543676_z.jpg)

The exchange rate provides fantastic value for money in South Africa, especially in the restaurant dept! These are the places I visited on this trip:

Metsuyan Ė Finally! A classy and elegant restaurant in South Africa. The food is terrific too. The ribs were unbelievably tender and flavorful, and the steak was grilled to a perfect medium rare. Sushi appetizers were great, and sushi has never been good in South Africa.

RTG (Ready to Go) Ė As the name suggests, a fast food/take out joint. Is has a bunch of interesting burgers and hot dogs. I didn't try their Chinese menu, and their scotch fillet was ok, though not great.

Corner Cafť and Mooz brothers Ė decent breakfast and lunch places. Nothing especially good to write about, though they do have free wifi! I would say Corner Cafe has the better food of the two.

Michellos Ė You can get by with their pizza and fries, but if you are going to South Africa, load up on the meat!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 03, 2015, 12:57:39 PM
Flight from AUH arriving into JNB at 5:10pm. Will it be enough time after clearing customs and switching terminals to make a 7:25pm flight to CPT? (2h15m).

Know a couple of people who just did this with even less time than you, and made it breathing easily, without rushing at all.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 03, 2015, 02:00:50 PM
Know a couple of people who just did this with even less time than you, and made it breathing easily, without rushing at all.

Thanks and thanks for the great mini TR. If I have only 2 days in Joburg would you recommend go for a night to Kruger, or do a day trip to Piburg and a day in Joburg?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 03, 2015, 02:27:57 PM
Thanks and thanks for the great mini TR. If I have only 2 days in Joburg would you recommend go for a night to Kruger, or do a day trip to Piburg and a day in Joburg?

Are they two full days? For instance, a friend just left very early Sunday morning from Johannesburg, and did the "Panoramic Route;" Blyde River Canyon, the Three Rondawels, G-d's Window/Wonderview, the Potholes, Lisbon and Berlin falls and then stayed overnight in Hazyview. Monday: entered Kruger at opening time, spent a full day there and drove back to JHB. That's a packed itinerary, and many will balk at driving from Kruger to JHB through the night. (if you left Kruger from their southern gates at closing, you'd get back to JHB at around 11:30-12:30) but for a once in a lifetime trip, it may be worth it. If you wanna skip the scenery stuff and do Kruger only, it's even more doable.

But, unless you really want to do Kruger specifically, with just 2 days you'd probably be better off doing a Pilansberg trip. You could stay overnight in Pilansberg and do a guided sunrise/sunset game drive in an open top jeep, ala Kruger. You could also stop on the way at Haartebeesport Dam or Magaliesberg, or visit Sun City.

Be aware that Kruger is a malaria area, that could affect some people decisions on staying overnight.

The thing about the safaris is that there is so much luck involved. You don't want to drive 6 hours each way to Kruger, be there for only a few hours and see nothing. If you drive 2 hours to Pilansberg each way and see some mosquitos, it won't hurt as much.

Besides for the restaurants and Jewish infrastructure, there is nothing particularly interesting in Johannesburg IMHO. Touring Soweto might be, I've never done it and there are riots going on now, so it was out of the question for me on this trip.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 03, 2015, 02:49:37 PM
Are they two full days? For instance, a friend just left very early Sunday morning from Johannesburg, and did the "Panoramic Route;" Blyde River Canyon, the Three Rondawels, G-d's Window/Wonderview, the Potholes, Lisbon and Berlin falls and then stayed overnight in Hazyview. Monday: entered Kruger at opening time, spent a full day there and drove back to JHB. That's a packed itinerary, and many will balk at driving from Kruger to JHB through the night. (if you left Kruger from their southern gates at closing, you'd get back to JHB at around 11:30-12:30) but for a once in a lifetime trip, it may be worth it. If you wanna skip the scenery stuff and do Kruger only, it's even more doable.

But, unless you really want to do Kruger specifically, with just 2 days you'd probably be better off doing a Pilansberg trip. You could stay overnight in Pilansberg and do a guided sunrise/sunset game drive in an open top jeep, ala Kruger. You could also stop on the way at Haartebeesport Dam or Magaliesberg, or visit Sun City.

Be aware that Kruger is a malaria area, that could affect some people decisions on staying overnight.

The thing about the safaris is that there is so much luck involved. You don't want to drive 6 hours each way to Kruger, be there for only a few hours and see nothing. If you drive 2 hours to Pilansberg each way and see some mosquitos, it won't hurt as much.

Besides for the restaurants and Jewish infrastructure, there is nothing particularly interesting in Johannesburg IMHO. Touring Soweto might be, I've never done it and there are riots going on now, so it was out of the question for me on this trip.

I would be in Joburg from Friday noon, gonna stay there for Shabbos and my return flight is 8:30pm Monday night. So I have from MS till about 6 on Monday. If I were to never return to SA anytime soon, is it better "to do" Kruger with all that shlep to just be there for a night and two short game drives? Or will I see close to as much action in Piburg as well?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 03, 2015, 03:13:29 PM
Not worth 8-10 hours of driving for half of one day and the other half of another. Sure, you can see things in Kruger that you wouldn't in Piburg, but you can just as likely not see anything.

Stick with Piburg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 03, 2015, 03:16:12 PM
I would be in Joburg from Friday noon, gonna stay there for Shabbos and my return flight is 8:30pm Monday night. So I have from MS till about 6 on Monday. If I were to never return to SA anytime soon, is it better "to do" Kruger with all that shlep to just be there for a night and two short game drives? Or will I see close to as much action in Piburg as well?
Is it doable? Yes. Should it be done? Probably not. It depends on what type of traveler you are. You'll spend 10-12 hours of those 2 days driving at crazy hours on stretches of sketchy roads. (though mostly highway)

But if you like to live on the wild side, and Kruger means that much to you, I guess you could go for it. it will make for a memorable trip, if not the most practical.

ETA: As AJK said far more succinctly ;-)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 03, 2015, 10:16:21 PM
Not worth 8-10 hours of driving for half of one day and the other half of another. Sure, you can see things in Kruger that you wouldn't in Piburg, but you can just as likely not see anything.

Stick with Piburg.

Is it doable? Yes. Should it be done? Probably not. It depends on what type of traveler you are. You'll spend 10-12 hours of those 2 days driving at crazy hours on stretches of sketchy roads. (though mostly highway)

But if you like to live on the wild side, and Kruger means that much to you, I guess you could go for it. it will make for a memorable trip, if not the most practical.

ETA: As AJK said far more succinctly ;-)

Thanks. Kinda stuck with Kruger because its the real one and there will be a lot more wildlife there. Big difference for me and my friend, would also be the lack of having to rent a car to shlepp on the drive for such a short stay, for Kruger we looked into Nhongo Safaris and seemed quite impressed, didn't look into PIburg so much yet.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 05, 2015, 11:41:52 AM
Thanks. Kinda stuck with Kruger because its the real one and there will be a lot more wildlife there. Big difference for me and my friend, would also be the lack of having to rent a car to shlepp on the drive for such a short stay, for Kruger we looked into Nhongo Safaris and seemed quite impressed, didn't look into PIburg so much yet.

I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.     
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 05, 2015, 12:08:45 PM
I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.   

+1

The tracker we were with could spot things for which normal people needed binoculars. It was truly remarkable.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 05, 2015, 02:55:48 PM
I agree with your sentiment that Kruger Park is the real deal and worth the effort.  Another couple of options is to stay overnite in a private game park that abuts Kruger. You will pretty much be guaranteed seeing the big 5. Its expensive though. If you can fly there thats even better.  The other option is to self drive to Kruger early Sunday morning(leave 3am) and overnite in one of the restcamps e.g. Lower Sabie.  Sign up for a walking safari in the afternoon and a night safari for the evening(You cant self drive at night).  You can also sign up for an early morning safari for Mon.  At noon drive back to JNB.  Even though you can self drive in Kruger, you can find yourself driving for hours and seeing nothing not even a bird. The guys who do the safaris can spot a leopard behind a tree at 300 yards.     

Thanks for the advice, after speaking to many people visitors and natives, we are leaning more toward Piburg now, still not sure.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dlandau714 on February 05, 2015, 10:38:27 PM
There's a new kosher safari lodge called Thandeka that's about 2 hours north of Johannesburg http://www.thandekalodge.com/ - saves at least a full day of travel in lieu of Kruger. If anyone goes there, please let me know how it is
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 05, 2015, 10:53:50 PM
There's a new kosher safari lodge called Thandeka that's about 2 hours north of Johannesburg http://www.thandekalodge.com/ - saves at least a full day of travel in lieu of Kruger. If anyone goes there, please let me know how it is
I know nothing of the lodge, and it may be very nice, but it's most certainly not something that would be "in lieu of Kruger."

Kruger is home to animals in their natural habitat. This is more like a zoo, with a few (trained/tamed) animals inside enclosures.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dlandau714 on February 05, 2015, 10:55:54 PM
A lot of people only have a day or two on the ground in South Africa, so this is a more feasible option time-wise
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 05, 2015, 11:26:57 PM
There's a new kosher safari lodge called Thandeka that's about 2 hours north of Johannesburg http://www.thandekalodge.com/ - saves at least a full day of travel in lieu of Kruger. If anyone goes there, please let me know how it is

It's about $450/night for 2 people - includes kosher meals, lodging and two safari activities. Is that a decent price? I know that private game lodges are generally expensive, how does this fall in?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dlandau714 on February 05, 2015, 11:36:32 PM
This is the only other place I found with the option of an onsite kosher kitchen http://www.royalmalewane.com/rates/ - it starts at about $2564 per couple per night
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 05, 2015, 11:52:34 PM
This is the only other place I found with the option of an onsite kosher kitchen http://www.royalmalewane.com/rates/ - it starts at about $2564 per couple per night

Well by that price, $450 is a bargain!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on February 06, 2015, 02:39:12 PM
And the Holiday Inn costs less than the Waldorf. Must be a bargain
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 06, 2015, 02:51:41 PM
So Nhongo Kruger Safari is now fully booked for the dates I was interested in, seems like it will Pilanesberg now, thanks Yehuda57 for the tips, tr and the pics of that. I hope to be able to see some lion if I go to Piburg for 2 days, will def have to return for Kruger and bungee jumping.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 06, 2015, 04:10:18 PM
So Nhongo Kruger Safari is now fully booked for the dates I was interested in, seems like it will Pilanesberg now, thanks Yehuda57 for the tips, tr and the pics of that. I hope to be able to see some lion if I go to Piburg for 2 days, will def have to return for Kruger and bungee jumping.
Enjoy. Check the pilansberg twitter to see where animals are being spotted if you self drive.

If you stay in the park overnight, the lodge price should include morning or night drives, or even bush walks. As others have said, a good ranger can drastically improve your sightings and overall experience. And if you do a game drive, take a sweater!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 06, 2015, 04:48:24 PM
Enjoy. Check the pilansberg twitter to see where animals are being spotted if you self drive.

If you stay in the park overnight, the lodge price should include morning or night drives, or even bush walks. As others have said, a good ranger can drastically improve your sightings and overall experience. And if you do a game drive, take a sweater!


Thanks, we are looking into doing it with a tour from Pilanesberg Safaris, camping in a sleeping bag overnight, what do you think?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 07, 2015, 07:36:52 PM
Thanks, we are looking into doing it with a tour from Pilanesberg Safaris, camping in a sleeping bag overnight, what do you think?
If camping is your thing, by all means. I slept in tent in pilansberg, but that was in high school more than 15 years ago. Now I'm more of a comfy bed kinda guy.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 07, 2015, 07:39:32 PM
If camping is your thing, by all means. I slept in tent in pilansberg, but that was in high school more than 15 years ago. Now I'm more of a comfy bed kinda guy.

For one night camping is my thing, especially when it means saving a few hundred..
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 16, 2015, 10:32:03 PM
Any way to get kosher food delivered to jnb airport? Have stop over there on way to cape town.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 16, 2015, 10:57:08 PM
Any way to get kosher food delivered to jnb airport? Have stop over there on way to cape town.

I doubt it, but if there is I could use it too. Where's Dan's comment about Ubering it..?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dlandau714 on February 16, 2015, 11:47:56 PM
You can - I asked the same question in the Jewish Johannesburg group - the members listed the restaurants. How long is your stopover?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 17, 2015, 01:14:26 AM
You can - I asked the same question in the Jewish Johannesburg group - the members listed the restaurants. How long is your stopover?

Mine is 2h25m.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 17, 2015, 05:49:01 PM
Mine is 2h25m.

Mine too...Dates?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 17, 2015, 09:27:13 PM
Mine too...Dates?

Connecting from EY to Kulula?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 18, 2015, 11:37:32 AM
Connecting from EY to Kulula?
Yes
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 19, 2015, 01:25:52 AM
Just came across this - http://www.victoriafalls-guide.net/questions-regarding-yellow-fever-vaccination.html. Great for anyone planning on visiting the Victoria falls, zambia side, no more yellow fever thingy required when returning to JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 19, 2015, 01:34:24 AM
So much conflicting information out there about Victoria Falls, regarding the visa costs, anyone here been there? If I would fly JNB-LVI and then VFA-JNB how much would I have to pay in Visa fees?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on February 19, 2015, 02:31:03 AM
Just came across this - http://www.victoriafalls-guide.net/questions-regarding-yellow-fever-vaccination.html. Great for anyone planning on visiting the Victoria falls, zambia side, no more yellow fever thingy required when returning to JNB.
Great news.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 19, 2015, 12:18:40 PM
Question for opinion?

We have 2 days avail to do one of these 4 options ex-Joburg, take into consideration we will not be renting a car.

1) Johannesburg and Soweto touring, ability to go to Kosher restaurants around the city etc.
2) Kruger Tour, one afternoon drive and one morning drive, costs US$365.
3) Pilanesberg Tour, one afternoon drive, one evening drive and one morning drive, costs US$275.
4) Victoria Falls, should cost about US$400, including return flights, hotel, visas, park entrance fees.

Thanks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 19, 2015, 09:42:13 PM
Anyone?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 19, 2015, 11:06:31 PM
Anyone?

Based on what I've read I would do kruger or victoria falls depending on preference,
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 19, 2015, 11:35:59 PM
Question for opinion?

We have 2 days avail to do one of these 4 options ex-Joburg, take into consideration we will not be renting a car.

1) Johannesburg and Soweto touring, ability to go to Kosher restaurants around the city etc.
2) Kruger Tour, one afternoon drive and one morning drive, costs US$365.
3) Pilanesberg Tour, one afternoon drive, one evening drive and one morning drive, costs US$275.
4) Victoria Falls, should cost about US$400, including return flights, hotel, visas, park entrance fees.

Thanks.
1) I would prefer the other options. No car would limit you on this too.
2 and 3) it comes down to choosing if you'd prefer a more relaxed time, with more time seeing animals, or you feel like you'll never see Kruger again so you need to go even though you'll have less time seeing animals, and you'll spend much more time on the road. I'd be inclined to go with the former, especially as you may be able to squeeze in a restaurant or two in jnb.
4) I've never been. Can't offer an opinion.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 20, 2015, 01:08:52 AM
Based on what I've read I would do kruger or victoria falls depending on preference,

1) I would prefer the other options. No car would limit you on this too.
2 and 3) it comes down to choosing if you'd prefer a more relaxed time, with more time seeing animals, or you feel like you'll never see Kruger again so you need to go even though you'll have less time seeing animals, and you'll spend much more time on the road. I'd be inclined to go with the former, especially as you may be able to squeeze in a restaurant or two in jnb.
4) I've never been. Can't offer an opinion.

Thanks, seems like I will def have to return to do a Safari properly the right way. In Victoria Falls I feel a half day on each side is sufficient, on the other hand, to go all the way to Kruger to be there for about 5 hours for the "chance" doesn't seem right.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 20, 2015, 01:10:11 AM
So much conflicting information out there about Victoria Falls, regarding the visa costs, anyone here been there? If I would fly JNB-LVI and then VFA-JNB how much would I have to pay in Visa fees?

So updating here my own question. For tourists visiting both sides of the falls, you can opt for the KAZA uni-country visa, which allows multiple entry to both countries in a 30 day time span for US$50.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on February 22, 2015, 01:28:39 AM
Any way to get kosher food delivered to jnb airport? Have stop over there on way to cape town.

My wife and I are getting kosher food from http://totallykosher.co.za delivered to JHB on our way to Vic Falls. This company was recommended by a few people ó they are not cheap though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 23, 2015, 10:48:26 AM
Great news for those planning a trip now and looking for options with Marriott points - https://www.marriott.com/hotel-promotions/marriott-rewards-protea-hotels.mi.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 23, 2015, 11:22:49 AM
Great news for those planning a trip now and looking for options with Marriott points - https://www.marriott.com/hotel-promotions/marriott-rewards-protea-hotels.mi.

Hotels are not showing up online gotta PUTPAC. Just booked myself a night in Cape Town with a cert, going rate at hotel was US$298 for the night.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 24, 2015, 10:33:58 PM
My wife and I are getting kosher food from http://totallykosher.co.za delivered to JHB on our way to Vic Falls. This company was recommended by a few people ó they are not cheap though.

Prices? More or less...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on February 24, 2015, 10:35:10 PM
Prices? More or less...

About $25/meal per person. Breakfast is cheaper.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Markus on February 24, 2015, 10:35:38 PM
There's also an additional charge to drop the food off at the airport.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bochur123 on February 24, 2015, 10:41:10 PM
Thanks

I see nandos kosher has a delivery service. Anyone know if they deliver to the airport?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 24, 2015, 11:05:51 PM
Thanks

I see nandos kosher has a delivery service. Anyone know if they deliver to the airport?

If you find out that they do, please write here.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 25, 2015, 12:58:23 AM
OK, so after much consideration of all the options, I'm still really torn. A friend and I are landing in JNB 8AM on Wed and wanna be back in JNB for Shabbos, which gives us 3 Days-ish/2 Nights which like to fill with some sort of 'Safari' type trip.

The possibilities we're considering are:

1) Self-Driving Kruger - This seems like the most authentic way to do it, but I'm a bit apprehensive of doing this without any experience as a first-timer. How would we know where to go? Is it easy to get to/around? We're both fairly street-smart and would probably be fine if we did this, but definitely concerned. How easy or not is the travel to/from JNB? (Flying back and forth isn't really an option because the flights back on Friday arrive too close to Shabbos.) Also, I'm really hoping to get to see a wide range of wildlife including the Big 5. With only 2.5 days, am I selling us short by self-driving? We would still do an arranged night driveDoes anyone have personal experience with this option who would be willing to talk me through a lot of the details? I think that if I would know enough to be comfortable this would be the best option, but in my present standing, this may be better off being saved for a return trip. (Cost: $150 Rental Car + ? Gas + $132 Park Fees ($22pp per day) + $100 Drives (One Day and One Night) + $160 Camp Accommodations (Prefer Private Bathroom) + $120 Food (2 Prepacked Meals @ $10 x 2 People x 3 Days) = TOTAL $700+)

2) Organized Trip Kruger - This option would also allow us the Kruger experience, but without the stress of having to self coordinate it. Nhongo Safaris seems to be well recommended, so I looked into doing a trip through them. For 3 days they want $600pp which includes transfers to/from JNB. I emailed them to find out if they offer cheaper rates if we can't eat the included daily meals, and am waiting to hear back from them. I would say the biggest downside to this option is the cost. (Cost: TOTAL $1200)

3) Private Game Reserve - We would go to Thandeka, because of there kosher food option. On one hand this seems kinda 'hokey' and touristy and almost a cop-out, on the other hand it may afford the most opportunity to see wildlife up close, and the idea of being pampered with hot fresh kosher meals on such a trip is definitely very tempting too. Also, it is only 2 hours from Jo'burg, not 4-5. Thandeka seems to be nice from the pictures, but I haven't seen any first person reports, so don't know for sure. Their pricing is actually lower than I would have expected, which makes me wonder if it is not as nice as would be expected too. Also not sure how to get to/from them, I emailed about airport transfers, waiting for a response. (Cost: TOTAL $870 + Airport Transfers)

4) Pilanesburg - The last option would be to self drive Pilanesburg. This brings many of the same concerns as Option 1, though it seems to be less intimidating for some reason. It's closer to JNB which might allow for more time to see things. I haven't explored this option as much as the others.

We're leaving in two weeks, so it really is time to make a decision soon. I'm curious what y'all have to say. Thoughts?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 25, 2015, 01:05:46 AM
Nhongo Safaris quoted me about $350 for 2 days, with a very small discount for not including meals in the package. Can't see why they would charge an extra $250 for another day, unless you are doing a more inclusive and higher up option. Self driving is according to many the real experience, though with a short amount of time, people recommend to do the tour, because of the higher chance of seeing wildlife with a tour guide. About the fourth option, we nixed it after hearing from most people that there are barely any big cats there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 25, 2015, 12:28:36 PM
OK, so after much consideration of all the options, I'm still really torn. A friend and I are landing in JNB 8AM on Wed and wanna be back in JNB for Shabbos, which gives us 3 Days-ish/2 Nights which like to fill with some sort of 'Safari' type trip.

The possibilities we're considering are:

1) Self-Driving Kruger - This seems like the most authentic way to do it, but I'm a bit apprehensive of doing this without any experience as a first-timer. How would we know where to go? Is it easy to get to/around? We're both fairly street-smart and would probably be fine if we did this, but definitely concerned. How easy or not is the travel to/from JNB? (Flying back and forth isn't really an option because the flights back on Friday arrive too close to Shabbos.) Also, I'm really hoping to get to see a wide range of wildlife including the Big 5. With only 2.5 days, am I selling us short by self-driving? We would still do an arranged night driveDoes anyone have personal experience with this option who would be willing to talk me through a lot of the details? I think that if I would know enough to be comfortable this would be the best option, but in my present standing, this may be better off being saved for a return trip. (Cost: $150 Rental Car + ? Gas + $132 Park Fees ($22pp per day) + $100 Drives (One Day and One Night) + $160 Camp Accommodations (Prefer Private Bathroom) + $120 Food (2 Prepacked Meals @ $10 x 2 People x 3 Days) = TOTAL $700+)

2) Organized Trip Kruger - This option would also allow us the Kruger experience, but without the stress of having to self coordinate it. Nhongo Safaris seems to be well recommended, so I looked into doing a trip through them. For 3 days they want $600pp which includes transfers to/from JNB. I emailed them to find out if they offer cheaper rates if we can't eat the included daily meals, and am waiting to hear back from them. I would say the biggest downside to this option is the cost. (Cost: TOTAL $1200)

3) Private Game Reserve - We would go to Thandeka, because of there kosher food option. On one hand this seems kinda 'hokey' and touristy and almost a cop-out, on the other hand it may afford the most opportunity to see wildlife up close, and the idea of being pampered with hot fresh kosher meals on such a trip is definitely very tempting too. Also, it is only 2 hours from Jo'burg, not 4-5. Thandeka seems to be nice from the pictures, but I haven't seen any first person reports, so don't know for sure. Their pricing is actually lower than I would have expected, which makes me wonder if it is not as nice as would be expected too. Also not sure how to get to/from them, I emailed about airport transfers, waiting for a response. (Cost: TOTAL $870 + Airport Transfers)

4) Pilanesburg - The last option would be to self drive Pilanesburg. This brings many of the same concerns as Option 1, though it seems to be less intimidating for some reason. It's closer to JNB which might allow for more time to see things. I haven't explored this option as much as the others.

We're leaving in two weeks, so it really is time to make a decision soon. I'm curious what y'all have to say. Thoughts?



I think your best option is with  Nhongo.  I wouldnt suggest this if you only had 2 days since its 1/2 day to get there and another to get back but since you have one full day then do it.  Also with a guide you are way more likely to see the good stuff then on your own.  Also driving on the other side of the road  at 85mph on a single lane highway after being up all night from flying sounds horrendous.     
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 25, 2015, 05:24:58 PM
Any one have any thoughts on necessary vaccinations/pills for travel to South Africa (incl. Kruger), and Vic Falls?

Looking here (http://www.passporthealthusa.com) they say that Hep A, Heb B, Typhoid and Yellow Fever vaccines are all musts. Is that being ridiculously over-cautious? Or is that really what people do?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on February 25, 2015, 05:32:14 PM
Any one have any thoughts on necessary vaccinations/pills for travel to South Africa (incl. Kruger), and Vic Falls?

Looking here (http://www.passporthealthusa.com) they say that Hep A, Heb B, Typhoid and Yellow Fever vaccines are all musts. Is that being ridiculously over-cautious? Or is that really what people do?

Same question here. IY"H I am going in June. I plan to be in Capetown and JNB, not really planning on visiting the countryside.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 25, 2015, 05:32:50 PM
Any one have any thoughts on necessary vaccinations/pills for travel to South Africa (incl. Kruger), and Vic Falls?

Looking here (http://www.passporthealthusa.com) they say that Hep A, Heb B, Typhoid and Yellow Fever vaccines are all musts. Is that being ridiculously over-cautious? Or is that really what people do?

Can't speak for the Victoria Falls, but for South Africa, the only thing you need to worry about is malaria if you go to Kruger. Even there, many people don't take anything, but do so at your own risk.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 25, 2015, 07:20:08 PM
Any recommendations for a place to get malaria pills? Local travel clinic I called want's $59 Consultation Fee just to walk in the door.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ual902 on February 25, 2015, 08:33:58 PM
Any recommendations for a place to get malaria pills? Local travel clinic I called want's $59 Consultation Fee just to walk in the door.

You can purchase malaria pills locally in south africa, lonely planet thorntree forums are more knowledgeable on this.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sfera on February 25, 2015, 09:04:17 PM
I'm going to be arriving in JNB at 4pm local time in September. We really want to get to Kruger for a safari but have limited time. We looked into flying but that was going to require taking a flight out the next morning. We really don't want to waste a night in JNB and we're hoping to get out on the safari the next day which might not be possible if we fly the next day. Has anybody made the drive from JNB a to Kruger? How do you think it will be when we start around 430 to 5 PM? We were looking at going to Sabi Sands or possibly staying in Nelspruit area
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 25, 2015, 09:37:04 PM
Any one have any thoughts on necessary vaccinations/pills for travel to South Africa (incl. Kruger), and Vic Falls?

Looking here (http://www.passporthealthusa.com) they say that Hep A, Heb B, Typhoid and Yellow Fever vaccines are all musts. Is that being ridiculously over-cautious? Or is that really what people do?

Kruger is a malaria zone. The Zimbabwe side of victoria falls is a malaria zone as well, though the Victoria Falls area itself it supposedly safe. The Zambia side of Victoria Falls used to have the requirement for yellow fever vaccination before returning to Joburg, that was eliminated a few weeks ago. If you go to Pilanesberg, that is a malaria-free zone.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 25, 2015, 10:12:50 PM
I'm going to be arriving in JNB at 4pm local time in September. We really want to get to Kruger for a safari but have limited time. We looked into flying but that was going to require taking a flight out the next morning. We really don't want to waste a night in JNB and we're hoping to get out on the safari the next day which might not be possible if we fly the next day. Has anybody made the drive from JNB a to Kruger? How do you think it will be when we start around 430 to 5 PM? We were looking at going to Sabi Sands or possibly staying in Nelspruit area

It's not the best drive to take at night, especially being unfamiliar with the roads, coming off a long flight and being tired, etc..

If you stay in Nelspruit, the roads themselves are highway and an ok drive. As you get closer to Kruger, the roads become more sketchy. But again, you'll have to be comfortable driving the other side of the road and driving a single lane highway in unfamiliar territory in the dark.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 26, 2015, 12:07:02 PM
Any one have any thoughts on necessary vaccinations/pills for travel to South Africa (incl. Kruger), and Vic Falls?

Looking here (http://www.passporthealthusa.com) they say that Hep A, Heb B, Typhoid and Yellow Fever vaccines are all musts. Is that being ridiculously over-cautious? Or is that really what people do?

Depending on the season(winter), some people dont take anti-malaria pills for Kruger. I wouldnt risk it if I were you.  Also look into Malarone. The other cheaper stuff has weird side effects on certain people.  Not sure what the cost for Malarone is in SA or whether you need a prescription but keep that in mind too. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: JamesIV on February 26, 2015, 06:12:52 PM
Anyone ever do a Mt Kilimanjaro trip?
Would love to hear about it, I'm dying to climb it
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on February 26, 2015, 06:51:09 PM
My uncle climbed it, and actually met his wife through that trip! He says it was one of the most incredible things he has ever experienced.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: JamesIV on March 08, 2015, 08:31:34 AM
We made the 7:25 Kulula flight in joburg with time to spare. Our flight from Abu Dhabi landed around 5:30
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on March 08, 2015, 08:07:25 PM
Any ideas for getting malaria pills? Anyone done this and care to share?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on March 09, 2015, 12:41:21 AM
Any ideas for getting malaria pills? Anyone done this and care to share?

We got.

We just went to an urgent care center. I booked our tickets on Saturday night. By Sunday night we were over the atlantic, so we had to move quick.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on March 09, 2015, 12:45:40 AM
Any ideas for getting malaria pills? Anyone done this and care to share?
You can get online coupons from http://www.goodrx.com/ they are usually cheaper, just figure out the dosage etc. Then go to CVS...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on March 09, 2015, 12:47:30 AM
Depending on the season(winter), some people dont take anti-malaria pills for Kruger. I wouldnt risk it if I were you.  Also look into Malarone. The other cheaper stuff has weird side effects on certain people.  Not sure what the cost for Malarone is in SA or whether you need a prescription but keep that in mind too.
My wife recently took Lariam with no side effects but Malarone is by far the most popular choice.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on March 09, 2015, 01:00:03 AM
In the US I need a prescription for Malarone, correct? (Seems silly to me if it's taken preventatively! What examination could a doctor do to see if I need to take a preventative medication?!)

Is there any place that would write one without charging me? The travel clinic that I called wanted $60 just to "consult" with me and write the prescription.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on March 09, 2015, 01:22:44 AM
In the US I need a prescription for Malarone, correct? (Seems silly to me if it's taken preventatively! What examination could a doctor do to see if I need to take a preventative medication?!)

Is there any place that would write one without charging me? The travel clinic that I called wanted $60 just to "consult" with me and write the prescription.
Ask your regular doctor to prescribe it for you. I have a friend who is a Dr. and after showing him my ticket etc. he wrote me the prescription. You don't need an examination just sufficient need for it, although I would wonder if perhaps the purpose of an examination would be to make sure you are healthy enough to take the medication.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on March 11, 2015, 12:26:23 PM
We made the 7:25 Kulula flight in joburg with time to spare. Our flight from Abu Dhabi landed around 5:30

Same here. Customs in JNB took under 5 minutes, no questions asked.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on March 12, 2015, 07:43:42 AM
Customs in JNB took under 5 minutes, no questions asked.

+1
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on March 12, 2015, 07:47:56 AM
Same here. Customs in JNB took under 5 minutes, no questions asked.
What about in CPT?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on March 12, 2015, 08:11:53 AM
What about in CPT?

I went to CPT on a domestic flight from JNB. But did customs twice this past week in JNB, and both were the same easy ~5 minutes.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chuchem on May 19, 2015, 06:45:19 AM
Need some help
Planning a last minute trip to capetown. I am landing friday at 08:10 to capetown and leaving again sunday night to the seychelles

Unfortunatly I dont have more time, especially as we want to chill for a few days as well

The must do's is quite clear and I dont need help ( will take it anyway) my question is more about jewish area and shabbes

What nice hotels are within walking distance of jewish area
Were can I eat the meals on shabbes?

Thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 19, 2015, 09:38:21 PM
Need some help
Planning a last minute trip to capetown. I am landing friday at 08:10 to capetown and leaving again sunday night to the seychelles

Unfortunatly I dont have more time, especially as we want to chill for a few days as well

The must do's is quite clear and I dont need help ( will take it anyway) my question is more about jewish area and shabbes

What nice hotels are within walking distance of jewish area
Were can I eat the meals on shabbes?

Thanks

Sea Point and Gardens are both the main jewish communities in CPT. Do you have Marriott points or nights?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: PlatinumGuy on May 20, 2015, 03:40:55 PM
There are no nice hotels within walking distance to the Jewish community. There are many small boutique hotels which are basically villas converted into 10 bedroom hotels.  I don't think there are any communal meals. The main shul is Ohr Sameach in Sea Point.

You can get any cab for a day for around 100 USD IIRC.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chuchem on May 20, 2015, 06:56:35 PM
So tourists have no place in cpt to get shabbes meals. Wow, quite surprised
Will have to find some local in cpt
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on May 21, 2015, 02:14:34 PM
So tourists have no place in cpt to get shabbes meals. Wow, quite surprised
Will have to find some local in cpt
You can go to the Ohr Somaeach shul in Sea Point for kiddush. It is more than enough food for a lunch. It's dairy and great.
I've stayed at the Atlantic Affair Boutique hotel twice over shabbos and it is very comfortable. Splurge ( like $30) for the Penthouse suite which comes with a decent outdoor seating area for reading on Shabbos. It is about 5 minute walk to shul and around the corner from kosher take-outs and restaurants.
You should be able to contact chabbad there for meals as well. Same block as Ohr Somaeach
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: G11600 on May 21, 2015, 03:32:41 PM
Need some help
Planning a last minute trip to capetown. I am landing friday at 08:10 to capetown and leaving again sunday night to the seychelles

Unfortunatly I dont have more time, especially as we want to chill for a few days as well

The must do's is quite clear and I dont need help ( will take it anyway) my question is more about jewish area and shabbes

What nice hotels are within walking distance of jewish area
Were can I eat the meals on shabbes?


Thanks


I stayed at Protea Sea Point a few years ago. Nothing luxurious, but fine and quite cheap. It is also a Marriott category 3. Very close to shuls and they are familiar with Shabbat, have many religious guests.
Kiddush at Ohr Sameach shul (and also others) was great, plenty for lunch - quiches, fish etc. A very nice davening also.

I just noticed that Avron's Place (excellent meat restaurant) offers 'Hotel Dinners' on Friday night and Shabbat lunch. Not sure what that means, you could check with them. See

http://www.avronsplace.co.za/hotel-friday-saturday-meals-2014.pdf
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Emkay on May 29, 2015, 05:38:17 AM
new visa requirements  (http://lufthansaflyer.boardingarea.com/new-requirements-for-south-africa-travel-and-transit/)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chuchem on May 30, 2015, 07:09:38 PM
Any restaurants open moze shabbes? Anything else to do moze shabbes? Since it's winter there I have a lot of time moze

It seems we will be staying in the seaview area. If someone knows someone in the area that could host a couple for a meal, please pm me

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 30, 2015, 11:03:17 PM
Any restaurants open moze shabbes? Anything else to do moze shabbes? Since it's winter there I have a lot of time moze

It seems we will be staying in the seaview area. If someone knows someone in the area that could host a couple for a meal, please pm me



Avron's is usually open Motzei shabbos, send them an email to confirm.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: PlatinumGuy on May 31, 2015, 02:04:54 AM
Avron's is usually open Motzei shabbos, send them an email to confirm.
If they are, you really do need a reservation.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chuchem on May 31, 2015, 03:09:26 AM
Thanks, will email them
What else can I do moze shabbes, thats safe?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on June 01, 2015, 03:56:05 PM
What do people do about kosher food in Kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on June 01, 2015, 03:59:07 PM
What do people do about kosher food in Kruger?

Bring.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on June 01, 2015, 04:22:59 PM
From home or buy in Cape Town or Joburg?
Also, would you recommend flying to Joburg and then connection to Cape Town or flying straight to Cape Town?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on June 01, 2015, 05:27:06 PM
From home or buy in Cape Town or Joburg?
Also, would you recommend flying to Joburg and then connection to Cape Town or flying straight to Cape Town?

Personally, I bought in Joburg. But I suppose you can bring, too.

I don't understand the question. If you're plan is to visit CPT, then it would make sense to fly straight there, unless you needed/wanted to be in JNB for some reason.

CPT to Kruger is not reasonably driveable, FYI.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on June 01, 2015, 05:43:34 PM
What do people do about kosher food in Kruger?

Believe it or not, there is a lot of kosher food available in Kruger! I did a safari there in March, (haven't gotten around to writing a TR yet, but since you asked I'll try to summarize what we did) and was actually quite surprised by what wound up being available to us.

In each rest camp (we stayed in Skukuza, but I'm told this is the same throughout the park) there is a 'General Store' which sells food, utensils, souvenirs, and much more. In this store we found a ton of kosher products with the Beth Din hashgacha, including, milk, cheeses, canned fruits and veggies, snacks, drinks, ice cream, tuna, fresh bread, etc. The store also sold raw fruits, vegetables, eggs.

Not knowing any of this would be available to us, we brought shelf stable Meal Mart meals, tuna, crackers, instant soups, etc from the US, along with Meal Spec style heater pouches. We wound up not eating most of that though, and instead buying fresh veggies from the camp store and cooking them on the fire which we built next to our hut. This is definitely what I would recommend doing.

The other thing which I would recommend, which we couldn't do because of timing, is to arrange with a local butcher in Joburg (assuming that is where you're connecting en route to Kruger) to deliver raw meat products to you at JNB airport. There are fridges at the huts in the camps, and you can buy a grill for relatively cheap price in the camp store. (As an aside, the pricing in the camp store was fairly cheap in general, with USD being as strong as it is, the pricing was comparable to what you'd find in a typical US supermarket, not in a tourist-centric convenience store with a total monopoly!) As I said, we were unable to make such an arrangement with a local butcher because of our quick connection in JNB, but I know someone who did, and could get you the contact information for the butcher shop if you would like.

Let me know if you have any other questions.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: PlatinumGuy on June 01, 2015, 05:50:07 PM
From home or buy in Cape Town or Joburg?
Also, would you recommend flying to Joburg and then connection to Cape Town or flying straight to Cape Town?
Joburg has a brand new Four Seasons
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on June 01, 2015, 05:52:36 PM
Believe it or not, there is a lot of kosher food available in Kruger! I did a safari there in March, (haven't gotten around to writing a TR yet, but since you asked I'll try to summarize what we did) and was actually quite surprised by what wound up being available to us.

In each rest camp (we stayed in Skukuza, but I'm told this is the same throughout the park) there is a 'General Store' which sells food, utensils, souvenirs, and much more. In this store we found a ton of kosher products with the Beth Din hashgacha, including, milk, cheeses, canned fruits and veggies, snacks, drinks, ice cream, tuna, fresh bread, etc. The store also sold raw fruits, vegetables, eggs.

Not knowing any of this would be available to us, we brought shelf stable Meal Mart meals, tuna, crackers, instant soups, etc from the US, along with Meal Spec style heater pouches. We wound up not eating most of that though, and instead buying fresh veggies from the camp store and cooking them on the fire which we built next to our hut. This is definitely what I would recommend doing.

The other thing which I would recommend, which we couldn't do because of timing, is to arrange with a local butcher in Joburg (assuming that is where you're connecting en route to Kruger) to deliver raw meat products to you at JNB airport. There are fridges at the huts in the camps, and you can buy a grill for relatively cheap price in the camp store. (As an aside, the pricing in the camp store was fairly cheap in general, with USD being as strong as it is, the pricing was comparable to what you'd find in a typical US supermarket, not in a tourist-centric convenience store with a total monopoly!) As I said, we were unable to make such an arrangement with a local butcher because of our quick connection in JNB, but I know someone who did, and could get you the contact information for the butcher shop if you would like.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

Great info... though the camp we stayed in most definitely did not have such a lavish kosher spread.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on June 01, 2015, 06:02:48 PM
Great info... though the camp we stayed in most definitely did not have such a lavish kosher spread.

When was this? I can't speak from experience, but when I asked, I was told that all of the stores carry the same product line.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on June 01, 2015, 06:09:39 PM
When was this? I can't speak from experience, but when I asked, I was told that all of the stores carry the same product line.

This was December 2013.

Remember Kruger is about the size of NJ. It's entirely possible different stores carry different items.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on June 01, 2015, 06:12:05 PM
This was December 2013.

Remember Kruger is about the size of NJ. It's entirely possible different stores carry different items.

Of course! I was only asking because when I was there in March 2015, the employees in the store in Skukuza told me that all of the stores carry the same product line.
It's possible that things changed between 12/2013 and 3/2015, and it's possible the lady in Skukuza was just wrong.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: igorek1 on June 15, 2015, 04:30:59 PM
Nice thread. Would anyone be willing to chat on the phone for 15 min or so. I am particularly concerned with kosher food options on safari trips (we world like to book one with a tour company such as nhongosafaris.com)  and would like to know first hand experiences on what to expect. Thank you all who contributed.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on June 15, 2015, 10:14:14 PM
Nice thread. Would anyone be willing to chat on the phone for 15 min or so. I am particularly concerned with kosher food options on safari trips (we world like to book one with a tour company such as nhongosafaris.com)  and would like to know first hand experiences on what to expect. Thank you all who contributed.

Be sure to ask for the R140-160 discount per day, for not taking their food vouchers.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: igorek1 on June 15, 2015, 10:18:13 PM
Be sure to ask for the R140-160 discount per day, for not taking their food vouchers.
What do people eat? I understand that when you are with a tour company you are moving quite a bit and that creates a problem with refrigeration and perishable food. Am I wrong?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on June 17, 2015, 05:05:59 AM
I did my safari through Nhongo, scroll up and take a look at what I wrote about food. If you have more questions, feel free...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on June 24, 2015, 04:54:35 PM
I have an iPhone and would like to get an international sim card. I am traveling to Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and South Africa. Will it work in all locations?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on June 26, 2015, 12:43:10 PM
I have an iPhone and would like to get an international sim card. I am traveling to Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and South Africa. Will it work in all locations?

Zambia and South Africa have free international text and data with t-mobile plan.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Racer7400 on July 13, 2015, 01:03:09 AM
does having rental car status mean anything in south africa? meaning if i want a full size should;d i reserve that or reserve a mid size and upgrade with hertz status? thanx a lot sorry if this has been asked before.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on July 19, 2015, 10:45:22 PM
I was encouraged to post here.
I ate a ton of these:
(http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0522/5177/products/DSC_0172_d6ad05b6-3423-4e56-bc51-ad8a54e06e70_grande.jpeg?v=1421973451)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 20, 2015, 10:51:13 AM
I was encouraged to post here.
I ate a ton of these:
(http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0522/5177/products/DSC_0172_d6ad05b6-3423-4e56-bc51-ad8a54e06e70_grande.jpeg?v=1421973451)

Is that the bar wrapped in rice paper?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on July 20, 2015, 02:56:40 PM
Is that the bar wrapped in rice paper?
Yes. The inner wrapper is edible rice paper.
The outer wrapper that you can see in the pic is plastic.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 21, 2015, 11:18:32 AM
Yes. The inner wrapper is edible rice paper.
The outer wrapper that you can see in the pic is plastic.

Yeh I had it before, they sell it in CH too under the BD hechsher.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 02:17:50 PM
how much time is needed for CPT? to cover all the main attractions etc
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 28, 2015, 03:00:21 PM
I'd say 3 days.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 03:05:07 PM
so Wednesday noon to Sunday morning would enough time? 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 28, 2015, 03:12:35 PM
so Wednesday noon to Sunday morning would enough time? 

Yes. If you want to do shark cage diving you should probably set aside one more day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 03:13:09 PM
have you done it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 28, 2015, 03:15:04 PM
have you done it?

Nope I didn't have an extra day to do it. Was there Tuesday night to Friday morning.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 28, 2015, 03:15:56 PM
so Wednesday noon to Sunday morning would enough time? 

If possible, I think you need 3 weekdays to be safe.

have you done it?

Yep. Pretty exhilarating.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 03:17:30 PM
how much was it? is it worth splurging on this over Kruger etc?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 28, 2015, 03:18:28 PM
how much was it? is it worth splurging on this over Kruger etc?

$100 p/p.

I would not choose one over the other. See video added above.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 28, 2015, 03:19:48 PM
how much was it? is it worth splurging on this over Kruger etc?

Check on groupon to see if there are still any deals for the shark cage diving. When I was there there was a place doing it for $69 all inclusive with transportation and all.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 03:20:45 PM
wow! was that you in the video?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 28, 2015, 03:21:33 PM
Am I crazy for planning sukkos in JNB?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on July 28, 2015, 03:24:42 PM
$100 p/p.

I would not choose one over the other. See video added above.
Wow. That's really cheap.

Insane video.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on July 28, 2015, 03:29:26 PM
wow! was that you in the video?

That's obviously not him in vid.

AJK, do you recommend a shark cage charter? I'm going in Sept.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 28, 2015, 03:38:45 PM
What do you mean by "shark cage charter?" As opposed to what?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: username on July 28, 2015, 07:41:36 PM
Wow.

Insane video.
AKA, "The Open Jaw to Nowhere"
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on July 28, 2015, 08:34:44 PM
Am I crazy for planning sukkos in JNB?
Not crazy at all. JNB is a beautiful community and holy Jews and I am sure it will be geshmak to spend yom tov with them. Should be good weather then too (although Joburg weather is pretty awesome all year round.)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on July 28, 2015, 08:38:16 PM
how much time is needed for CPT? to cover all the main attractions etc
You want to cover everything? I don't know how much time you would need. But I think you can definitely do a LOT in 2 days. I would definitely take a day to drive down south to Boulder Beach and see the penguins.

Needless to say, the main thing you want to make sure to do is the cable car to Table Mountain.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 28, 2015, 09:00:26 PM
Needless to say, the main thing you want to make sure to do is the cable car to Table Mountain.

Or better yet hike up lions head.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 28, 2015, 10:19:21 PM
Or better yet hike up lions head.

Lions Head and Table Mountain can be done on the same day. The next day should be Chapmans Peak Drive and Boulders Beach on the way down to Cape Point. And maybe you can stick in a sunset at Llandudno or another quiet beach.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Freddie on July 28, 2015, 10:48:27 PM
One issue is that CPT can be quite overcast (think YVR for example). To do Table Mountain (and as @Yehuda57 mentioned, Lion's Head) it really should be a clear day or you don't get the breathtaking view. Therefore, you need to be flexible. If you get off the plane and it's clear, go straight to Table Mountain. If it's not clear, be ready to go do something else.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:04:31 AM
One issue is that CPT can be quite overcast (think YVR for example). To do Table Mountain (and as @Yehuda57 mentioned, Lion's Head) it really should be a clear day or you don't get the breathtaking view. Therefore, you need to be flexible. If you get off the plane and it's clear, go straight to Table Mountain. If it's not clear, be ready to go do something else.

And keep in mind about the cable car to go up to TM. When we were there the strangest thing happened, our first full day (Wednesday) was very overcast and cloudy and windy, so we decided to skip TM and do it the next day. Thursday was a beautiful day with the clouds clearing in the afternoon, so we went to hit up the cableway. Well, apparently the cable car does not run if there are winds at the top of the mountain, so Wednesday it was running because though it was cloudy down below it was smooth at the top. When we came on Thursday they said the winds were too powerful so the cableway was closed. We hung around there for half hour, pleading with them to open it up, (it was our only other day there) - and they did a test drive and decided to open it, after initially telling us it is planned to be closed the entire day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 06:14:57 AM
Thanks for all the input. Is it worth getting a car there? It seems like everything is a drive to get to.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 10:19:49 AM
Thanks for all the input. Is it worth getting a car there? It seems like everything is a drive to get to.

If you want to drive the coast, the car would give you a lot of flexibility. Personally we didn't rent a car and we were good. We took the coastal train down to boulders beach for about $2 round trip and it stops at other beach towns along the way. For the rest Cape Town there is an excellent sightseeing Cape Town bus that I would recommend, buy tickets in advance on their website for a better deal.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 10:26:29 AM
You were able to get around to all the CPT attractions with the bus?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 29, 2015, 10:34:03 AM
Definitely would recommend a car. You go when you want, where you want. (Just reserve ahead so you're not struggling like we were when we arrived in CPT over new years.)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 10:41:14 AM
You were able to get around to all the CPT attractions with the bus?

Yes they have a great bus network there with 4 bus routes to choose from all with a great tour. They buses are all frequent, we never waited more than 10 minutes for a bus.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 10:44:36 AM
Okay. Now I think it would make more sense to go to CPT after Sukkos so I can get from Wednesday till either Sunday night or Monday morning then to go Chol Hamoed which would be Wednesday till Sunday morning. Problem is what do I do for Chol Hamoed? Is Victoria Falls and Chobe Safari equivalent to Kruger?cause it would seem more doable with the time constraint.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jj1000 on July 29, 2015, 11:03:36 AM
Anyone know the deal with malaria zones?

Is JNB and CPT the only area not in a malaria zone?

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gaossey on July 29, 2015, 11:06:59 AM
Most of the country is not in a malaria zone. See the map in the link

http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/infectious-diseases-related-to-travel/yellow-fever-malaria-information-by-country/south-africa#seldyfm707

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jj1000 on July 29, 2015, 11:14:41 AM
Most of the country is not in a malaria zone. See the map in the link

http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/infectious-diseases-related-to-travel/yellow-fever-malaria-information-by-country/south-africa#seldyfm707


Thanks for the link.

But speaking practically there is Johannesburg, Cape Town, Kruger, and Victoria Falls to do in SA for a visitor right?

So if someone wants to avoid malaria areas that leave JNB and CPT.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 11:21:09 AM
Okay. Now I think it would make more sense to go to CPT after Sukkos so I can get from Wednesday till either Sunday night or Monday morning then to go Chol Hamoed which would be Wednesday till Sunday morning. Problem is what do I do for Chol Hamoed? Is Victoria Falls and Chobe Safari equivalent to Kruger?cause it would seem more doable with the time constraint.

Would say it is very different than Kruger. Different wildlife up there than what you can see in Kruger. I did it instead of Kruger because of the time constraints that I had only a day and a half, which is in no way enough for a Kruger experience.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 11:23:20 AM
Thanks for the link.

But speaking practically there is Johannesburg, Cape Town, Kruger, and Victoria Falls to do in SA for a visitor right?

So if someone wants to avoid malaria areas that leave JNB and CPT.

Regarding malaria in Vic falls itself it depends who you ask, most people say if u don't venture out to the safari area there is really nothing to worry about. There are plenty other places to hit up there if you are more adventurous, highest bungee near Plettenburg bay, the garden route, horseback riding for a few days in the Lesotho mountains etc.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 11:36:34 AM
Would say it is very different than Kruger. Different wildlife up there than what you can see in Kruger. I did it instead of Kruger because of the time constraints that I had only a day and a half, which is in no way enough for a Kruger experience.
So how much time is necessary for Victoria Falls etc? Also where did you stay there?  Elephant Camp?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jj1000 on July 29, 2015, 11:50:13 AM
Regarding malaria in Vic falls itself it depends who you ask, most people say if u don't venture out to the safari area there is really nothing to worry about. There are plenty other places to hit up there if you are more adventurous, highest bungee near Plettenburg bay, the garden route, horseback riding for a few days in the Lesotho mountains etc.
Any source or that? A family member is going with a infant and their doc told them as long as they stay out of Malaria zones they can go.

I'm debating joining them depending on how limited they are in places to visit...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 29, 2015, 11:53:06 AM
Thanks for the link.

But speaking practically there is Johannesburg, Cape Town, Kruger, and Victoria Falls to do in SA for a visitor right?

So if someone wants to avoid malaria areas that leave JNB and CPT.

The Panoramic Route has many stuning attractions that are very underated.
There are beautiful beachtowns stretching across the whole coastline from Cape Town passed George, Plettenberg Bay and all the way up the South Coast (though I don't think I'd fly in from the US to go specifically to most of them like I would for Cape Town.)
The Drakensberg mountain range is spectacular if you are into hiking.
If you are including outside SA (which you are if you include Victoria Falls) there is Swaziland, Lesotho and even Mozambique.
There are other great sceneic areas and some unique experiences (ostrich riding, highest bungee jumping, diamond mines at Kimberly) as well. You can do 3-4 full weeks in South Africa and not be bored in the slightest.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jj1000 on July 29, 2015, 12:05:50 PM
The Panoramic Route has many stuning attractions that are very underated.
There are beautiful beachtowns stretching across the whole coastline from Cape Town passed George, Plettenberg Bay and all the way up the South Coast (though I don't think I'd fly in from the US to go specifically to most of them like I would for Cape Town.)
The Drakensberg mountain range is spectacular if you are into hiking.
If you are including outside SA (which you are if you include Victoria Falls) there is Swaziland, Lesotho and even Mozambique.
There are other great sceneic areas and some unique experiences (ostrich riding, highest bungee jumping, diamond mines at Kimberly) as well. You can do 3-4 full weeks in South Africa and not be bored in the slightest.

This would be a 7 day trip.

In theory I'd want to do CPT and Victoria Falls, but I may just end up in JNB and CPT, is it worth it for that or go a different time when I can do CPT/Kruger/Victoria Falls?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 29, 2015, 12:16:25 PM
This would be a 7 day trip.

In theory I'd want to do CPT and Victoria Falls, but I may just end up in JNB and CPT, is it worth it for that or go a different time when I can do CPT/Kruger/Victoria Falls?

It's worth going just for CPT. If holding off means you add Kruger and the falls I defintely would (I've never been to the falls), but obviously that all depends on how likely you are to make the trip if you don't grab this oppurtunity.

If you can't do Kruger because of Malaria, what some people would say is the only issue is sleeping in a malaria area, but if you get out of Kruger before dusk, you are fine. So you can self drive the park, get out and sleep in Sabie/Hazyview etc.

Or you can take a day from your time in JNB and do Pilansberg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:18:30 PM
So how much time is necessary for Victoria Falls etc? Also where did you stay there?  Elephant Camp?

For Vic Falls itself you need 2-3 hours on each side, depending on how far the safari activities that you want to do, that would be a factor in how long you would need there. We stayed at the N1 hotel, only about a 20 minute walk from the falls itself, great hotel, would recommend.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:20:26 PM
Any source or that? A family member is going with a infant and their doc told them as long as they stay out of Malaria zones they can go.

I'm debating joining them depending on how limited they are in places to visit...

Ask the locals, most of them will tell you that it is fine over there. We took Malarone pills as an extra precaution but most people said it is not nec. Will all those other definite malaria-free places, SA is a great place to go.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:22:23 PM
This would be a 7 day trip.

In theory I'd want to do CPT and Victoria Falls, but I may just end up in JNB and CPT, is it worth it for that or go a different time when I can do CPT/Kruger/Victoria Falls?

My trip was CPT, JNB and Vic Falls, no time for Kruger though. Had a blast.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:24:43 PM
Or you can take a day from your time in JNB and do Pilansberg.

All the locals there said it doesn't hold a candle compared to Kruger. Hardly any leopard if any, most a lot of elephants and zebra. But if you are going to make it to Vic Falls the best elephant activity should be in Chobe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 29, 2015, 01:29:03 PM
All the locals there said it doesn't hold a candle compared to Kruger.

No doubt. I am a local ;-)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 01:45:09 PM
For Vic Falls itself you need 2-3 hours on each side, depending on how far the safari activities that you want to do, that would be a factor in how long you would need there. We stayed at the N1 hotel, only about a 20 minute walk from the falls itself, great hotel, would recommend.
did you do any safari tours?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 01:49:16 PM
did you do any safari tours?

Didn't have any time for that. We landed in the afternoon on Sunday in Zambia, so we went around that side that day. We then went over the border to our hotel in Zimbabwe, - there is a nice casino there at night too to hang out at, - and the next morning with went around the Zimbabwe side of the falls, and then went to the Zimbabwe airport for our noon flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 01:55:02 PM
How much time would I need to check out the falls and do a safari tour? I won't have time for Kruger.

Checked out the N1 hotel and it looks more like a motel. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 02:52:57 PM
How much time would I need to check out the falls and do a safari tour? I won't have time for Kruger.

Checked out the N1 hotel and it looks more like a motel. 

Was nothing fancy. The price was unbeatable $59 a night, the cheaper places were outdoor hostels with no AC and monkeys climbing in the windows lol :) the decent hotels were all $200+ so this was perfect to just have a place to sleep for one night.

I would say if you would want to do safari you need another half day to full day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 03:15:14 PM
is it worth taking a one way flight to Zambia and for the return fly from Zimbabwe?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on July 29, 2015, 03:18:12 PM
What do you mean by "shark cage charter?" As opposed to what?

I meant tour operator/company.

What was yours called?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on July 29, 2015, 03:25:49 PM
I meant tour operator/company.

What was yours called?

Not sure how else you can go besides for with a tour operator. I wouldn't suggest taking a boat and just jumping in on your own :)

I believe mine was Shark Lady, but because we went last minute (trip was literally planned 24 hours in advance of international flight), and because it was over New Year's, we took whatever operator had availability.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 03:26:27 PM
is it worth taking a one way flight to Zambia and for the return fly from Zimbabwe?

Yes why not? You will visit both sides of the falls.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: enwhycee on July 29, 2015, 03:27:06 PM
Gotcha. Thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 03:33:24 PM
Yes why not? You will visit both sides of the falls.
$$$ unless I can get something worthwhile with points
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 03:37:36 PM
$$$ unless I can get something worthwhile with points

That's how I did it, BA has availability for 4.5k avois on almost every flight when I checked.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 04:05:27 PM
Okay will look into that. Did you have a driver?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 04:20:48 PM
Okay will look into that. Did you have a driver?

We took a cab from LVI to Zambia falls for $20, between the two borders on the bridge there are bike taxis for like $2-3 or u can walk it in 10-15 minutes. From the Zimbabwe border the hotel owner met us there and picked us up drove us around to the hotel and he took us to the casino. Next morning we walked 25 minutes to the Zimbabwe falls, and from there we took a cab to the airport for $25.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 04:43:32 PM
There's no flights for my return...also they have one option at midday for the outbound flight...no early morning flights.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 29, 2015, 04:46:53 PM
If you're doing Victoria Falls, I HIGHLY recommend doing the Livingstone Island Tour on the Zambia side. It is a bit pricy, but was the highlight of our Victoria Falls trip. When we were there (March) the tide was too high for us to be able to do the Devil's Pool Swim, but instead that had us in the water on the other side of the island, about 3' from the edge of the falls. Both the experience and the views were absolutely incredible!

The other thing I would recommend is the Gorge Zip Canopy Tour, it was relatively cheap in comparison to some of the other similar activities (Bridge Swing, Bridge Jump, Etc) and includes several (I think 9 or 11) different zip lines, in a stunning environment.

The guides we had were outstanding for both of these activities.

We stayed in The Kingdom Hotel, which was a solid property - room was clean, bed was comfortable, etc - nothing special in that regard. The staff there though, were excellent. They went far above and beyond. I had twisted my foot earlier in the day and at midnight decided that I absolutely could not sleep without some sort of pain reliever. I went to the front desk and they did not have one, but instead they called several local pharmacies until they were able to find one which had Ibuprofen which was open, and then arranged for a roundtrip taxi to go pick it up. I've stayed in far fancier hotels which did not go to such lengths.

We did 3 days in Kruger, Shabbos in JNB and then Sun/Mon in Vic Falls. I've been meaning to write up a full TR for a long time already, but that hasn't happened yet. In the meantime if you have any more questions, happy to help...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on July 29, 2015, 04:55:23 PM
I'm going in about 3 weeks. Do you think I'll be able to do Devil's Pool?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 29, 2015, 04:56:11 PM
The other thing I would recommend is the Gorge Zip Canopy Tour, it was relatively cheap in comparison to some of the other similar activities (Bridge Swing, Bridge Jump, Etc) and includes several (I think 9 or 11) different zip lines, in a stunning environment.

Where did you do the Canopy Tours zip line? I did one in the Magaliesberg, and while I enjoyed it, it was not as scenic or beautiful as I had hoped.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 04:58:11 PM
There's no flights for my return...also they have one option at midday for the outbound flight...no early morning flights.

If I remember correctly the outbound flights from JNB are both around 11/11:30 and the return flights are around 1:30pm only one roundtrip to each every day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 29, 2015, 05:01:25 PM
I'm going in about 3 weeks. Do you think I'll be able to do Devil's Pool?

September to December is the dry season there which is when they allow people to go in. Maybe contact them and ask them if you can go in earlier, it all depends on the water level.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 29, 2015, 05:13:18 PM
Where did you do the Canopy Tours zip line? I did one in the Magaliesberg, and while I enjoyed it, it was not as scenic or beautiful as I had hoped.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g293761-d4404641-Reviews-Wild_Horizons_Vic_Falls_Canopy_Tour-Victoria_Falls_Matabeleland_North_Province.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 29, 2015, 05:15:37 PM
If I remember correctly the outbound flights from JNB are both around 11/11:30 and the return flights are around 1:30pm only one roundtrip to each every day.

That's all I was able to find as well when we went. Was hoping to do a morning to the falls and an afternoon/evening back in order to get two full days there, but wound up only getting two half days because of the flight schedules.

It seems in general that many of the intra-Africa routes are on a once daily midday r/t.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 29, 2015, 05:24:26 PM
I'm going in about 3 weeks. Do you think I'll be able to do Devil's Pool?

According to this site (http://www.namibia-tours-safaris.com/destinations/victoria-falls/best-time-to-visit-victoria-falls.htm) it seems that the low season has basically already started. This sounds right based on what I remember the guide telling us.

Even if you don't get to do Devil's Pool, AFAIK they will always put you in the water above the falls in some fashion as part of the tour (Only the last two tours of the day - Lunch and High Tea IIRC). We were there in March which is much higher water levels, and still managed to get in the water pretty darn close to the edge - see pic here (https://instagram.com/p/0QZoHfBQyG).

On a different note, if you're going when the water is low, you may want to do the White Water Rafting in the gorge, I heard it it amazing, but unfortunately when we were there the water was much too high for that.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 29, 2015, 07:11:06 PM
If I remember correctly the outbound flights from JNB are both around 11/11:30 and the return flights are around 1:30pm only one roundtrip to each every day.
that really messes up my schedule. The earliest I can get there is Wednesday and don't want to stay there for Shabbos...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 12:43:17 AM
that really messes up my schedule. The earliest I can get there is Wednesday and don't want to stay there for Shabbos...

What time does the Friday flight get back in to JNB? Or maybe look into another airline, there was a budget airline flying from VFA to JNB flyafrica.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 30, 2015, 01:54:44 AM
What time does the Friday flight get back in to JNB? Or maybe look into another airline, there was a budget airline flying from VFA to JNB flyafrica.

IIRC all of the airlines flew about the same time, getting into JNB in the 2:30/3:00 range.

that really messes up my schedule. The earliest I can get there is Wednesday and don't want to stay there for Shabbos...

If it's any consolation, because of these flight schedules we also got stuck doing two half days in VF. Took the Sunday flight there and the Monday flight back. We were able to pack in a ton in that short amount of time, and didn't walk away feeling shortchanged. So if you decide to take the Wed flight there and the Thu flight back, I think you can still get a great Falls experience.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 02:12:18 AM
IIRC all of the airlines flew about the same time, getting into JNB in the 2:30/3:00 range.

If it's any consolation, because of these flight schedules we also got stuck doing two half days in VF. Took the Sunday flight there and the Monday flight back. We were able to pack in a ton in that short amount of time, and didn't walk away feeling shortchanged. So if you decide to take the Wed flight there and the Thu flight back, I think you can still get a great Falls experience.

Yes I felt like we got a ton in our two half days too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 04:15:28 AM
I would like to see Victoria Falls on both sides, devils pool, canopy tours zip line, and Chobe Safari. Am I crazy?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 10:23:35 AM
I would like to see Victoria Falls on both sides, devils pool, canopy tours zip line, and Chobe Safari. Am I crazy?

In two half days yes. Keep in mind the drive alone to chobe is an hour each way. There are some closer not as good safari parks that u can do with less time.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 30, 2015, 11:12:08 AM
I would like to see Victoria Falls on both sides, devils pool, canopy tours zip line, and Chobe Safari. Am I crazy?

The Chobe Safari is the one thing that really takes that out of the range of being plausible. The rest sounds totally doable.

As far as seeing the falls from both sides, when you do Devil's Pool/The Livingstone Island Tour, you are seeing the falls from the Zambia side, so you really don't need to make that it's own stop as well. On the Zimbabwe side, there is an entire park dedicated to seeing the falls, and it can take ~2 hours to really go through it, especially if you're gonna wanna keep stopping to take pix. I didn't realize how extensive it was gonna be, so we had only allotted about a half hour for it and wound up having to rush to make it back to the airport in time for our flight back.

And speaking of the flight back, it's worth noting that VFA is a very small airport, and when we were there it was the same one line with two agents for all of the airlines, with multiple flights to JNB all scheduled for about the same time in the middle of the day. This resulted in a looooong line, and over there having elite status or a premium class itin didn't seem to make a difference to them. So in case you assumed that because it's a tiny airport you can cut it close with your timing, be aware.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 12:00:47 PM
do you think it would make sense to stay another night so i can go to Chobe Safari? which means leave on Friday. im not going to have time to do Kruger....
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on July 30, 2015, 12:48:24 PM
Just a couple of thoughts obout travel to Zim. Forget about those who say you dont need anti-malaria pills. Malaria kills millions of people a year and Vic Falls is in a high malaria zone.  Chobe is great but requires a full day from Vic Falls. You drive to the border(1hour) then go thru passport control and then drive to Chobe and do a boat and driving safari. Definitely worthwhile.  The whitewater rafting is some of the best in the world.  Done it a couple of times and its great. There is also a bunch of other great things to do - helicopter over the falls, bunjy. elephant back safari(didnt do this). There is also some great souvenir shopping opportunities - soapstone etc. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 04:09:12 PM
The Chobe Safari is the one thing that really takes that out of the range of being plausible. The rest sounds totally doable.

As far as seeing the falls from both sides, when you do Devil's Pool/The Livingstone Island Tour, you are seeing the falls from the Zambia side, so you really don't need to make that it's own stop as well. On the Zimbabwe side, there is an entire park dedicated to seeing the falls, and it can take ~2 hours to really go through it, especially if you're gonna wanna keep stopping to take pix. I didn't realize how extensive it was gonna be, so we had only allotted about a half hour for it and wound up having to rush to make it back to the airport in time for our flight back.

And speaking of the flight back, it's worth noting that VFA is a very small airport, and when we were there it was the same one line with two agents for all of the airlines, with multiple flights to JNB all scheduled for about the same time in the middle of the day. This resulted in a looooong line, and over there having elite status or a premium class itin didn't seem to make a difference to them. So in case you assumed that because it's a tiny airport you can cut it close with your timing, be aware.

The Zambia side has plenty of unique view points that should definitely make it a stop of of its own. You can get a lot closer to the falls on that side too. Plus the airport on the Zambia side is world class compared to Victoria falls airport, much more modern and fresh, VFA is just like a small run down house, LVI is a small airport.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 05:25:32 PM
do you think it would make sense to stay another night so i can go to Chobe Safari? which means leave on Friday. im not going to have time to do Kruger....
I found a one way ticket from Vic Falls to JNB for $100. Is it risky with Shabbos flying on a Friday? Is it worth it just to have the extra time to see Chobe Safari?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 05:34:29 PM
I found a one way ticket from Vic Falls to JNB for $100. Is it risky with Shabbos flying on a Friday? Is it worth it just to have the extra time to see Chobe Safari?

Which airline, what time does it arrive and what time is shabbos?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Fan of Dan on July 30, 2015, 05:39:27 PM
I found a one way ticket from Vic Falls to JNB for $100. Is it risky with Shabbos flying on a Friday? Is it worth it just to have the extra time to see Chobe Safari?
Chobe is amazing. However to appreciate it you ideally need a few days. The game is more spread out then in Kruger or the Eastern African parks. You'll see tremendous herds of Elephants and it has really wild feel to it. That being said it's hard to appreciate that without spending a few days in Chobe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 06:42:54 PM
Which airline, what time does it arrive and what time is shabbos?
the price went up to $120. It's with Air Zimbabwe. Arrives at 12:45. Sunset for that day is 5:41.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 06:44:34 PM
Chobe is amazing. However to appreciate it you ideally need a few days. The game is more spread out then in Kruger or the Eastern African parks. You'll see tremendous herds of Elephants and it has really wild feel to it. That being said it's hard to appreciate that without spending a few days in Chobe.
I wish I had more time there. It's the way sukkos falls out this year. I don't have time for Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 06:53:47 PM
the price went up to $120. It's with Air Zimbabwe. Arrives at 12:45. Sunset for that day is 5:41.

I would say 5 hours is good. Is there any way for you to check flight data for this flight online, to see the on time arrival percentage? Worst comes to worse u would even have enough time to take the alternative flight too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on July 30, 2015, 07:10:00 PM
Which alternative flight? They all leave about the same time.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on July 30, 2015, 07:19:36 PM
Which alternative flight? They all leave about the same time.
Not exactly. I see 1:15, 1:55 and 2:40 flights.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 30, 2015, 07:37:18 PM
Which alternative flight? They all leave about the same time.

To go on the South African or BA flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 31, 2015, 09:39:46 AM
Plus the airport on the Zambia side is world class compared to Victoria falls airport, much more modern and fresh, VFA is just like a small run down house, LVI is a small airport.

Yes, agreed. I flew into LVI and out of VFA. LVI is still under construction, and the line for Visa processing upon arrival was INSANELY long because only one of their Uni-Visa machines was working, but the airport definitely has the potential to be nice. VFA is a dump.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 31, 2015, 09:46:56 AM
the price went up to $120. It's with Air Zimbabwe. Arrives at 12:45. Sunset for that day is 5:41.

I would be extremely wary of this. When we were there there was another DDF'er who IIRC was on a Friday Air Zimbabwe flight from VFA and ran into some major problems, he said that the flight was delayed for hours and the customer service was nonexistant -  they wouldn't give him any info and refused to help him in any way. He wound up having to shell out serious cash for another flight so he wasn't stranded for Shabbos.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on July 31, 2015, 10:12:21 AM
I would be extremely wary of this. When we were there there was another DDF'er who IIRC was on a Friday Air Zimbabwe flight from VFA and ran into some major problems, he said that the flight was delayed for hours and the customer service was nonexistant -  they wouldn't give him any info and refused to help him in any way. He wound up having to shell out serious cash for another flight so he wasn't stranded for Shabbos.

Or just use miles, both flights had plenty seats available when I went. Especially the LVI flight there were about 30 people on the entire 737.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on July 31, 2015, 12:09:38 PM
Or just use miles, both flights had plenty seats available when I went. Especially the LVI flight there were about 30 people on the entire 737.

When we were there the BA flights were almost full, both JNB-LVI and VFA-JNB. We were able to snag Avios tickets when booking a month in advance, but they were gone shortly thereafter.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 01, 2015, 03:19:44 PM
There's avios for JNB-LVI but there isn't from ZFA-JNB only business which isn't worth it. Also the flight leaves alot later.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 01, 2015, 09:19:25 PM
There's avios for JNB-LVI but there isn't from ZFA-JNB only business which isn't worth it. Also the flight leaves alot later.

What about from LVI airport for the return?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 02, 2015, 09:11:38 AM
tried that too...only biz.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 02:27:16 AM
Anyone going to Kruger the Week of August 16?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 10:43:11 AM
Anyone going to Kruger the Week of August 16?
Will be there a month later.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on August 06, 2015, 10:43:55 AM
I'll be in Zimbabwe the week of the 16th, Cape Town for Shabbos and then Kruger the following week.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 10:44:14 AM
I wish I had more time there. It's the way sukkos falls out this year. I don't have time for Kruger.
Are you at least going to do the Lion Park? I am there for Sukkos as well.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 06, 2015, 11:38:47 AM
Are you at least going to do the Lion Park? I am there for Sukkos as well.

Lion park cub interaction and feeding the giraffe was fun, otherwise the drive through was boring.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 12:29:11 PM
Lion park cub interaction and feeding the giraffe was fun, otherwise the drive through was boring.
100%, I assume you didn't attempt the cheetah run?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 06, 2015, 01:15:56 PM
100%, I assume you didn't attempt the cheetah run?

No I didn't do that cheetah walk or the lion walk.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 06, 2015, 02:14:01 PM
Are you at least going to do the Lion Park? I am there for Sukkos as well.
I never heard of it..where is it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 06, 2015, 02:28:49 PM
I never heard of it..where is it?

http://www.lion-park.com/home/

On our first day we drove out to the Lion Park, which is probably the biggest "must do" for tourists in Johannesburg. It has different self drive camps where you watch prides of lions from your car, and then you can go into an enclosure to pet and take pictures with lion cubs. The latter is super fun, and if you know anyone who went to SA and has pictures with lions - this is most likely where they did it.

(http://i.imgur.com/DXqAzz7l.jpg)

Itís very difficult for me to find a picture without anyone in it!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 06, 2015, 02:34:48 PM
Cool. I actually did see that but somehow forgot about it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 02:40:01 PM
We have a week to tour and kruger park sounds great, but don't think we need a week, any suggestions of what else to do that doesn't including flying to another place?  Additionally, any suggestions of best tour groups or hotels etc for kruger?  We'll be in joburg for shabbos, ideally a company that picks up from joburg sounds ideal, unless its considerably more expensive.  We don't really want to rent a car as we heard uber is fine there, has anyone used uber there?  Any and all suggestions would be much appreciated.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 06, 2015, 02:52:49 PM
We have a week to tour and kruger park sounds great, but don't think we need a week, any suggestions of what else to do that doesn't including flying to another place?  Additionally, any suggestions of best tour groups or hotels etc for kruger?  We'll be in joburg for shabbos, ideally a company that picks up from joburg sounds ideal, unless its considerably more expensive.  We don't really want to rent a car as we heard uber is fine there, has anyone used uber there?  Any and all suggestions would be much appreciated.

Best way to do Kruger is on your own car rental. Otherwise nhongo safari tour is your best bet.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 02:55:12 PM
Best way to do Kruger is on your own car rental. Otherwise nhongo safari tour is your best bet.

Why is it best to do it on your own? 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 06, 2015, 02:55:58 PM
We have a week to tour and kruger park sounds great, but don't think we need a week, any suggestions of what else to do that doesn't including flying to another place?  Additionally, any suggestions of best tour groups or hotels etc for kruger?  We'll be in joburg for shabbos, ideally a company that picks up from joburg sounds ideal, unless its considerably more expensive.  We don't really want to rent a car as we heard uber is fine there, has anyone used uber there?  Any and all suggestions would be much appreciated.

Uber is indeed fine in JNB, but renting a car can give you more flexibility if you want to venture a bit further out to the Lion Park or the like.

If you rent a car, you can also do some stuff nearer to Kruger which you couldn't do if you were being driven there by a Safari company.

 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 06, 2015, 02:56:54 PM
Why is it best to do it on your own? 

Flexibility, drive whenever u want, on ur own pace, that is how everyone does it there, well marked roads.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 02:58:22 PM
Uber is indeed fine in JNB, but renting a car can give you more flexibility if you want to venture a bit further out to the Lion Park or the like.

If you rent a car, you can also do some stuff nearer to Kruger which you couldn't do if you were being driven there by a Safari company.

Have you rented there before? What was your experience? Did you have to bring any insurance info from here?  We recently went to mexico and it was such a hassle renting a car they wanted to charge us like crazy for more insurance.  If its not a big deal to rent a car and driving is safe, were not opposed.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 06, 2015, 02:58:43 PM
Best way to do Kruger is on your own car rental. Otherwise nhongo safari tour is your best bet.

-1  - depends on your budget. Guided drives are far better than self driving
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 02:59:19 PM
Flexibility, drive whenever u want, on ur own pace, that is how everyone does it there, well marked roads.

There isn't a worry about animals coming to your car?  Also would I need to rent a special kind of vehicle?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 06, 2015, 03:00:58 PM
Have you rented there before? What was your experience? Did you have to bring any insurance info from here?  We recently went to mexico and it was such a hassle renting a car they wanted to charge us like crazy for more insurance.  If its not a big deal to rent a car and driving is safe, were not opposed.

I've rented a bunch of times. Insurance has always been mandatory, they won't take it off no matter what letters you have from your credit card company.

Driving in South Africa is safe - don't run red lights at night. It is a myth and can get you killed like running a red light anywhere else would.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 03:04:19 PM
I've rented a bunch of times. Insurance has always been mandatory, they won't take it off no matter what letters you have from your credit card company.

Driving in South Africa is safe - don't run red lights at night. It is a myth and can get you killed like running a red light anywhere else would.

Yes, thats exactly what ive heard about the red lights.  Thanks for the insurance info.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 06, 2015, 03:07:25 PM
Assuming we rent a car, any suggestions of best kind of car to rent assuming we drive to kruger and any other attraction.  Addtitionally, we plan to be in joburg for 2 shabbosim, would it be worthwhile to spend shabbos in another community?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 03:36:46 PM
We have a week to tour and kruger park sounds great, but don't think we need a week, any suggestions of what else to do that doesn't including flying to another place?  Additionally, any suggestions of best tour groups or hotels etc for kruger?  We'll be in joburg for shabbos, ideally a company that picks up from joburg sounds ideal, unless its considerably more expensive.  We don't really want to rent a car as we heard uber is fine there, has anyone used uber there?  Any and all suggestions would be much appreciated.
Do you like nature? G-ds window and the potholes etc are awesome (personally). The area is very beautiful and great way to break up the trip. Last time I did Kruger was 2 days (day 1 we saw everything) but was lucky. What are your interested and can help us share more ideas.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 03:37:48 PM
Assuming we rent a car, any suggestions of best kind of car to rent assuming we drive to kruger and any other attraction.  Addtitionally, we plan to be in joburg for 2 shabbosim, would it be worthwhile to spend shabbos in another community?
I personally like Chabad of the North Coast as the shul is close to the beach (used to be on the beach) and some good activities in the area (shark diving, Ushaka etc).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 06, 2015, 03:41:50 PM
There isn't a worry about animals coming to your car?  Also would I need to rent a special kind of vehicle?

Thousands of people self-drive Kruger each day, in all different types of vehicles. It is safe. But exercise common sense. Don't get out of your car under ANY circumstances. Keep your doors locked. (Yes, someone got killed a few months ago in the Lion Park when a lion opened an unlocked door.)

Having said that, it is FAR better to have guided drives, especially on your first safari. The guides can spot animals way better than you can, being in the Jeep gives you a much better vantage point to see animals, and they are very knowledgeable about the animals and the area which will make for a much more interesting drive. It's a matter of your budget. When you stay in the park, game drives are often included (sometimes with a choice of a sunset or sunrise drive) the rest of the day you do on your own. The better the resort, the longer the included drives will be.

Another thing to keep in mind - you probably don't want to be doing the drive to or from Kruger at night. Closer to Kruger, the roads are more sketchy.
 
As for what else there is to do in that week - it depends on what kind of activities you are interested in . Perhaps you'd enjoy a two day hike in the Drakensburg, or maybe you'd like a hot air balloon ride over Magaliesberg.  Near Kruger, beginning in Graskop, is the Panoramic Route, with about two days worth of scenic activities. (including the Potholes and G-d's Window mentioned by Cholent)
 
There are numerous communities with the Johannesburg Jewish community, all are very warm and welcoming, and you should have a lot of fun.

The North Coast mentioned above is about a 5-6 hour drive from JNB, and depending on the time of year, it could also be a place to see whales and/or dolphins.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 06, 2015, 03:46:59 PM
Near Kruger, beginning in Graskop, is the Panoramic Route, with about two days worth of scenic activities. (including the Potholes and G-d's Window mentioned by Cholent)
Graskop has an amazing "swing" and also zipline which we really loved. They claim it is the tallest, longest and fastest zipline in the world. I would highly recommend it!
+1 Yehuda for the reminder on the location.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on August 07, 2015, 02:02:14 PM
It looks like you have a week to tour so I would suggest that you self drive on Sunday to someplace near the Panorama route - we stayed in Sabie.  Monday - drive the Panorama route. Include a town  I like that noone mentioned - Pilgrims Rest.  You need to decide if you want to spend the bucks and stay at one of the private game parks that abut Kruger e.g. Elephant Plains. Most people do 1 or 2 nights in the private game parks and then 1 or 2 nights in Kruger.  Probably 3 nights either way.  If and when you go to Kruger and self drive you should make sure to  take the game drives that camps provide. Self drive cant drive after sunset but these tours do and they are great. 
If its Thursday then you can drive through Swaziland and then Friday spend shabbat at the Chabad in Durban in Umhlanga. It depends on the time of year.   
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 09, 2015, 11:21:13 PM
Best way to do Kruger is on your own car rental. Otherwise nhongo safari tour is your best bet.
Did you use Nhongo tours before? What makes them better then anyone else?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 10, 2015, 12:43:25 AM
Did you use Nhongo tours before? What makes them better then anyone else?

They had the best reviews when I searched online, and people on the forums (Yehuda & maybe others) used them.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on August 10, 2015, 12:53:00 AM
Thanks so much
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on August 13, 2015, 01:13:24 PM
Did you use Nhongo tours before? What makes them better then anyone else?

We used Nhongo when we went. There were some minor issues in communications as far as the pick up from JNB, but the safari itself was excellent! Our guide (Mark) was amazing and we saw all of the Big 5 in the first day. I can't stress enough the importance of going on a guided safari as opposed to self-driving if you are there for a shorter trip! The guides can spot an animal far better than you can, and they have access to the radio channels where they all tip each other off to the best sightings.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 13, 2015, 11:54:54 PM
Or just use miles, both flights had plenty seats available when I went. Especially the LVI flight there were about 30 people on the entire 737.
What did you pay in tax? I was just looking and tax was $640 for 2 pax  :-[
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 14, 2015, 12:03:29 AM
What did you pay in tax? I was just looking and tax was $640 for 2 pax  :-[

Our tax was about $100 per person roundtrip. Make sure the BA account had a transfer in past few months to show that rate, otherwise can be significantly higher.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 14, 2015, 12:04:23 AM
Our tax was about $100 per person roundtrip. Make sure the BA account had a transfer in past few months to show that rate, otherwise can be significantly higher.
How long after a transfer should I recheck? I am going right after YK I hope and will transfer 2k UR now stum.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 14, 2015, 12:07:24 AM
How long after a transfer should I recheck? I am going right after YK I hope and will transfer 2k UR now stum.

Shouldn't be too long once the transfer is done. See more here - http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/58675.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 14, 2015, 10:45:57 AM
Shouldn't be too long once the transfer is done. See more here - http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/58675.
+1
Transferred 25k into BA account and tax dropped and also more options opened up. 16k and $176 return trips for two.

Thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on August 14, 2015, 10:47:47 AM
+1
Transferred 25k into BA account and tax dropped and also more options opened up. 16k and $176 return trips for two.

Thanks!

Those taxes sound right for 2.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 16, 2015, 07:39:45 AM
When I looked online it was $44 in taxes one way.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on August 16, 2015, 10:30:40 AM
When I looked online it was $44 in taxes one way.
That is correct. My taxes were x 4 as I did 2 return tickets.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on August 16, 2015, 11:36:26 AM
Return as in round trip. I get it now.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Racer7400 on August 18, 2015, 09:47:15 PM
Added some info to wiki.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on August 28, 2015, 11:04:33 AM
Just returned from an incredible Southern Africa trip. Hope to write up a trip report sometime soon.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on August 28, 2015, 12:20:27 PM
Just returned from an incredible Southern Africa trip. Hope to write up a trip report sometime soon.

Great! Can't wait to read... (Still working on mine from March.)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on September 01, 2015, 01:52:32 PM
Thanks so much everyone for all your help, we had the most amazing time in South Africa.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: E-MAN on September 01, 2015, 04:38:27 PM
Thanks so much everyone for all your help, we had the most amazing time in South Africa.
TR?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on September 01, 2015, 04:58:14 PM
I will I"H post the first installment of my TR tomorrow.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on September 01, 2015, 05:39:47 PM
I will I"H post the first installment of my TR tomorrow.
Thanks. Can't wait!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on September 02, 2015, 11:12:04 AM
Part 1:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.new#new
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on September 02, 2015, 01:46:05 PM
My very informal TR.  We went primarily for work so didn't venture to far.  We did take uber basically everywhere and it was amazing! Super cheap even for really far places.  It came out way cheaper then renting a car and didn't have to get used to driving on the opposite side of the road.

Arrived friday afternoon to joburg and spent a wonderful shabbos with our host in the orchard community.  We davened at the kollel, everyone was so welcoming and friendly, we got invited out for the following shabbos by numerous people. 

Sunday: Lion Park.  It was so fun petting the cub lions and cheetahs, and not really scary, which I thought it would be.   We took the tour and saw the lions and a feeding, which was pretty cool.  We later went to the rooftop market on top of the Rosebank Mall.  A much better place to get souvenirs without being hassled like the regular curio markets.  No one bothers you or trying to pull you to their stand.  It is only open on sundays.

Monday: Work

Tuesday: Work

Wednesday: The elephant sanctuary.  Great fun.  Got to pet, feed, and ride elephants.  Was a great experience.  On our way there we stopped at a curio market, but left quickly as everyone sells the same things and is literally on top of you trying to get you to buy stuff.  I would stay away! Additionally we drove by the dam and water area which was very pretty. 

Thursday: Pilansberg national park and game reserve, definitely the highlight of the trip.  We went with Khakiweed Photographic Safaris which was great.  It was just us and another guy and he provides professional cameras with very big lenses, so we got such amazing pictures, that we couldn't have gotten otherwise.  We saw so many amazing animals but the highlight was seeing a cheetah chase an impala! People rarely ever see such a thing we were told by locals.

We were there for another week but was mostly working.  I did venture out to Standton Mall.  It is a very nice big mall and with the dollar so strong got some great deals.

The most important part of course is the food!  I'll list where we went and my opinion on it, we ate out a lot as it is very cheap to eat out when coming with dollars:
Metzuyan: Most definitely the best food we had there.  Went numerous times and everything was always so great, and service superb.  Strawberry Daiquiri is amazing there!
Next Door: Very good all around
Michelos: Great food great service.  Amazing kahlua shake and ice coffee. 
Nandos: Okay food but TERRIBLE service would never go back.  We waited like 20 minutes just to order and then waited like 45 to pay, never again!
RTG: Very good all around
The Deli Store: Probably my second favorite place after metzuyan.  Food was amazing!
Frangelicas: Very good all around
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on September 02, 2015, 01:50:49 PM
I def have to make another JNB trip just for the food scene and for Kruger. Only went to RTG, and loved it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on September 02, 2015, 01:52:26 PM
We had such an amazing time! I very rarely care to go anywhere but Israel, but South Africa was truly amazing and really can't wait to go back and experience more!!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on September 10, 2015, 04:29:57 PM
Anyone have recent experience with finding an apartment in Cape Town near the Chabad? Also looking for contacts in the area. TIA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on September 10, 2015, 04:30:38 PM
Anyone have recent experience with finding an apartment in Cape Town near the Chabad? Also looking for contacts in the area. TIA

Look on airbnb to be in sea point area.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on September 10, 2015, 04:42:35 PM
I am. I need a place for two weeks and there is nothing nice with reviews. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on September 10, 2015, 04:43:32 PM
I stayed in an excellent hotel if you're interested
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on September 10, 2015, 04:45:58 PM
I am. I need a place for two weeks and there is nothing nice with reviews. 

Friend of mine stayed at Amalfi suites right near chabad, had a great time there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on September 10, 2015, 04:56:26 PM
Friend of mine stayed at Amalfi suites right near chabad, had a great time there.
Thanks. I need some contacts there for meals, as I plan on being there for Sukkos.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on September 10, 2015, 04:56:47 PM
I stayed in an excellent hotel if you're interested
Which?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on September 10, 2015, 04:57:33 PM
The Clarendon. See my pictures at the bottom of this post:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1253920#msg1253920
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on September 10, 2015, 05:03:57 PM
The Clarendon. See my pictures at the bottom of this post:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1253920#msg1253920
Thanks. However for a two week stay it will be pricey...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on October 11, 2015, 01:29:59 PM

Sunday: Lion Park.
What made you choose this over say Lion and Rhino Park?



Wednesday: The elephant sanctuary. This is the one by Hartespeertpot Dam?


We were there for another week but was mostly working.  I did venture out to Standton Mall.  Sandton ;)

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jj1000 on October 11, 2015, 02:00:49 PM
Question: Travel to SA this week with an unvaccinated 7 week old or go another time?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: CholentTheTraveler on October 11, 2015, 02:02:19 PM
Question: Travel to SA this week with an unvaccinated 7 week old or go another time?
As long as you avoid Malaria locations I don't see the issue. South Africa has no Ebola etc. Also depends on where you want to visit. I just got back last week.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on October 11, 2015, 02:58:29 PM


Didn't go to the lion and rhino park because never heard of it and the elephant sanctuary is the one you are referring to.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: robbie on October 11, 2015, 05:31:10 PM
Question: Travel to SA this week with an unvaccinated 7 week old or go another time?
shouldnt be a issue, just stay away from malaria areas.
If you have never been to SA you will love it
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on October 12, 2015, 12:53:50 PM
Question: Travel to SA this week with an unvaccinated 7 week old or go another time?
As long as you avoid Malaria locations I don't see the issue...
shouldnt be a issue, just stay away from malaria areas...

Not sure what you intend to do in SA, but the clear highlight there is a Kruger safari, with Kruger being a malaria zone. It is up to you whether you want to do a watered down trip or would rather wait for another chance to do it right.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on October 12, 2015, 12:55:57 PM
Not sure what you intend to do in SA, but the clear highlight there is a Kruger safari, with Kruger being a malaria zone. It is up to you whether you want to do a watered down trip or would rather wait for another chance to do it right.

-1, CPT would make for a great trip too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yosef_S on October 12, 2015, 01:00:41 PM
Agreed, CPT would make for an excellent trip from what I understand (We didn't make it there), but I still would say that a trip to SA without a safari would not be getting the 'full experience'.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on October 12, 2015, 01:01:18 PM
CPT was amazing, no denying that. However, my favorite part was definitely safari without a doubt.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on October 22, 2015, 02:58:31 PM
Sunday: Lion Park.
What made you choose this over say Lion and Rhino Park?
Didn't go to the lion and rhino park because never heard of it and the elephant sanctuary is the one you are referring to.
IMHO the Rhino Lion Nature Reserve is a different experience then the Lion Park
The Lion Park is a glorifed Zoo that has a part where you can pet the baby lions , feed the giraffe etc,
the Rhino Park (as it's known in JHB) is more of a Game reserve, more animals and species, you also have the Wonder Caves there
Its a bit further out but not much from Glenhazel area
(They do advertise as Animal Creche that seems have a petting zoo for lion tiger and cheetah cubs now )
i haven;t been in 20 years though
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: justaregularguy on October 22, 2015, 08:38:19 PM
CPT was amazing, no denying that. However, my favorite part was definitely safari without a doubt.
when I was there I was told the Kruger needs a few days to see all of it and I doubt you'll be camping w a baby on board. A good Safari is pilaseberg, smaller than krugar(which is the size of Israel) but u could see a lot of animals in one day
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Emkay on October 24, 2015, 01:27:47 PM
new visa requirements  (http://lufthansaflyer.boardingarea.com/new-requirements-for-south-africa-travel-and-transit/)
http://skift.com/2015/10/24/south-africa-revises-visa-rules-in-the-face-of-dropping-tourism-numbers/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on November 15, 2015, 06:39:20 PM
Has anyone spent Shabbos in Camps Bay? Seems there are some nice hotels and a Shul there
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on November 16, 2015, 10:08:12 AM
Has anyone spent Shabbos in Camps Bay? Seems there are some nice hotels and a Shul there
not specifically, but anywhere in Capetown this time of year is hopping
they have a new rabbi there, why not send him an email rabbi@campsbayshul.co.za
seems like a nice chap
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 02:41:42 PM
Debating between how long to spend in SA.

Option 1:

Land CPT at 11:15a on Wednesday. Stay in CPT though Sunday

Sun fly to Kruger.

Tue fly to JNB for an overnight before a 9a flight out Wed morning.

This would give up 7 days on the ground (including the day we land). In reality it's really only 6 activity days if you don't count shabbos.

Option 2:

Land JNB at 8:30p Thu night, spend shabbos in JNB.

Sunday go to Kruger.

Tue/Wed go fly to CPT.

Sunday fly out of CPT at 1p.

This would give up 9 days on the ground (not including the day we land). In reality it's really only 7 activity days if you don't count both shabbosos.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 08, 2015, 02:44:28 PM
Following.

Are you balances flush enough to stay in a hotel the hotel time? If not, maybe do first option.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 02:51:29 PM
Following.

Are you balances flush enough to stay in a hotel the hotel time? If not, maybe do first option.
I have plenty of points for hotels, but many months to get more. It's just 1 more night really. For shabbos we have connections to people in the Jewish communities that we may be able to stay with. I also noticed that many hotels, especially in Kruger, are not points hotels. CMIIW.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 03:11:50 PM
Not including shabbas, you want three days in CPT and three days in Kruger, ideally.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 08, 2015, 03:16:35 PM
Not including shabbas, you want three days in CPT and three days in Kruger, ideally.
Is that just driving around on Safari every day? Anything else to do there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 03:17:53 PM
Is that just driving around on Safari every day? Anything else to do there?

Pretty much.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 03:22:41 PM
Debating between how long to spend in SA.

Option 1:

Land CPT at 11:15a on Wednesday. Stay in CPT though Sunday

Sun fly to Kruger.

Tue fly to JNB for an overnight before a 9a flight out Wed morning.

This would give up 7 days on the ground (including the day we land). In reality it's really only 6 activity days if you don't count shabbos.

Option 2:

Land JNB at 8:30p Thu night, spend shabbos in JNB.

Sunday go to Kruger.

Tue/Wed go fly to CPT.

Sunday fly out of CPT at 1p.

This would give up 9 days on the ground (not including the day we land). In reality it's really only 7 activity days if you don't count both shabbosos.
Option 2
are you going to drive to KNP? or fly?
If you drive (and even if you dont) i would highly recommend you do the Panorama Route for 1 day, It has some of the best sights in SA.
Wed thru sunday in capetown though...... can be done, if you stick to just the "main" attractions
VA waterfront and robben island, Table Mountain and Kirstenbosch , Boulders Bay, Hout Bay market and boat to seal island, Cape Point, Bo Kaap
I would even throw in a trip to Zandwijk http://www.kleinedraken.co.za/ (in beautiful Paarl wine country, unless as an LA boy that bores you)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 03:24:28 PM
Is that just driving around on Safari every day? Anything else to do there?
3 days in the park is a bit much even for an animal lover IMHO
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 03:25:37 PM
Not including shabbas, you want three days in CPT and three days in Kruger, ideally.
So if you had to skimp on CPT or KNP by one day, which one would it be? Or would you chose my Option 2 and spend Sun, Mon Tue in KNP and Wed, Thu, Fri in CPT?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 03:27:04 PM
Option 2
are you going to drive to KNP? or fly?
If you drive (and even if you dont) i would highly recommend you do the Panorama Route for 1 day, It has some of the best sights in SA.
Wed thru sunday in capetown though...... can be done, if you stick to just the "main" attractions
VA waterfront and robben island, Table Mountain and Kirstenbosch , Boulders Bay, Hout Bay market and boat to seal island, Cape Point, Bo Kaap
I would even throw in a trip to Zandwijk http://www.kleinedraken.co.za/ (in beautiful Paarl wine country, unless as an LA boy that bores you)
Wow, that's for the suggestions. I don't know which is better/cheaper, flying or driving. Any tips?

3 days in the park is a bit much even for an animal lover IMHO
I didn't realize that you need that much time there. I figured 2 days would be a lot.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 03:28:01 PM
So if you had to skimp on CPT or KNP by one day, which one would it be? Or would you chose my Option 2 and spend Sun, Mon Tue in KNP and Wed, Thu, Fri in CPT?
Pshara, do the Panorama Route on tues (or if you;r driving down from JNB do it sunday)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 03:31:49 PM
So if you had to skimp on CPT or KNP by one day, which one would it be? Or would you chose my Option 2 and spend Sun, Mon Tue in KNP and Wed, Thu, Fri in CPT?

I'd do a day less in Kruger and one more in CPT, but in no event less than 2 full days in Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 03:40:22 PM
Wow, that's for the suggestions. I don't know which is better/cheaper, flying or driving. Any tips?
I didn't realize that you need that much time there. I figured 2 days would be a lot.
I'd imagine they are similarly priced, not sure about one way rentals though.
They are totally different experiences, you aren;t going to drive from KNP to Capetown (it's beautiful but its 18 hours),
A flight is around $200 RT
SAA is star alliance i'm sure there is some availability
You cant spend a lot of time in KNP but CPT is endless, you could venture out to the different coasts, Hermanus to watch the whales, stellenbosch, Ceres for the orchards  and mountains
Addo Elephant Park
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 08, 2015, 03:54:17 PM
Pshara, do the Panorama Route on tues (or if you;r driving down from JNB do it sunday)

While the Panoramic route is incredible (I've been a big proponent of it n this thread), I'm not sure I'd sacrifice a day in CPT for it - just because of the driving it entails. I'd go with option 2, but Sun/Mon in Kruger, and Tue-Sun in CPT.

You can do stuff in JNB on Friday - it need not be a lost day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:03:10 PM
I'd do a day less in Kruger and one more in CPT, but in no event less than 2 full days in Kruger.
So flying CPT-HDS arriving at 12:30 Sun through Tue night is not enough time?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 04:04:36 PM
So flying CPT-HDS arriving at 12:30 Sun through Tue night is not enough time?

Sounds like you'd have 2 full days: Sun night (night drive), all of Monday (two drives), Tues morn (morning drive).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 08, 2015, 04:07:22 PM
Is the reason for multiple days in Kruger to assume you will not see all on one or two drives?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:07:58 PM
I'd imagine they are similarly priced, not sure about one way rentals though.
They are totally different experiences, you aren;t going to drive from KNP to Capetown (it's beautiful but its 18 hours),
A flight is around $200 RT
SAA is star alliance i'm sure there is some availability
You cant spend a lot of time in KNP but CPT is endless, you could venture out to the different coasts, Hermanus to watch the whales, stellenbosch, Ceres for the orchards  and mountains
Addo Elephant Park
Gmaps says the drive from JNB-KNP is about 4-5 hours, though Gmaps doesn't know where in KNP I'd be going. How long does it take to drive in reality? Which point (about) on the map should I put in as a destination? I know I wouldn't fly HDS-CPT. SAA has the only non-stop which UA has for 17.5k, which seems a bit expensive.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:09:25 PM
Sounds like you'd have 2 full days: Sun night (night drive), all of Monday (two drives), Tues morn (morning drive).
Oh, so that would make sense. Just out of curiosity, does it make sense IYO to drive or fly from JNB, and do you need to rent a car once you get to HDS?

Is the reason for multiple days in Kruger to assume you will not see all on one or two drives?
+1?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 04:16:06 PM
While the Panoramic route is incredible (I've been a big proponent of it n this thread), I'm not sure I'd sacrifice a day in CPT for it - just because of the driving it entails. I'd go with option 2, but Sun/Mon in Kruger, and Tue-Sun in CPT.

You can do stuff in JNB on Friday - it need not be a lost day.
Amen to that last point
I'm not either sure about sacrificing a day in CPT, but i am 50/50 and if you like scenery and driving i'd may lean towards the PR
Nothing like busting down long toms pass with the views of the Drakensberg Escarpment and Lowveld
(or if you;re brave, Mariepskop Pass)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 08, 2015, 04:16:36 PM
Is the reason for multiple days in Kruger to assume you will not see all on one or two drives?

Yes. Safaris are based on luck, more time = more chance to see stuff.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 04:21:44 PM
Took us about five hours to drive from JNB to Kruger.

If you're more risk averse (we nearly did get car jacked), you can take a bus or fly.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 08, 2015, 04:24:38 PM
Took us about five hours to drive from JNB to Kruger.

If you're more risk averse (we nearly did get car jacked), you can take a bus or fly.
I heard it was a police officer you were avoiding.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:24:41 PM
Amen to that last point
I'm not either sure about sacrificing a day in CPT, but i am 50/50 and if you like scenery and driving i'd may lean towards the PR
Nothing like busting down long toms pass with the views of the Drakensberg Escarpment and Lowveld
(or if you;re brave, Mariepskop Pass)
Regarding the PR, we'd have a baby with us. I don't know if that makes it easier or harder (I'd imagine harder), so then maybe we'd just fly.

While the Panoramic route is incredible (I've been a big proponent of it n this thread), I'm not sure I'd sacrifice a day in CPT for it - just because of the driving it entails. I'd go with option 2, but Sun/Mon in Kruger, and Tue-Sun in CPT.

You can do stuff in JNB on Friday - it need not be a lost day.
I know we can do things in JNB on Friday (albeit in the winter). The only problem I have with option 2 is no return flights yet, though the dates are better for me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:25:54 PM
Took us about five hours to drive from JNB to Kruger.

If you're more risk averse (we nearly did get car jacked), you can take a bus or fly.
Yikes! I'm not as risk averse, but with DW and a baby I think a 5 hour car rise may be 1) to risky for her and 2) not as easy with a baby. Also it doesn't sound like you have an opinion on option 1 vs 2, do you?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 04:28:14 PM
I heard it was a police officer you were avoiding.

You heard wrong :P

Was someone who tried to dress up as a police officer.

Biiiiiig difference.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 04:29:13 PM
Yikes! I'm not as risk averse, but with DW and a baby I think a 5 hour car rise may be 1) to risky for her and 2) not as easy with a baby. Also it doesn't sound like you have an opinion on option 1 vs 2, do you?

2 looks tidier to me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 04:32:51 PM
Gmaps says the drive from JNB-KNP is about 4-5 hours, though Gmaps doesn't know where in KNP I'd be going. How long does it take to drive in reality? Which point (about) on the map should I put in as a destination? I know I wouldn't fly HDS-CPT. SAA has the only non-stop which UA has for 17.5k, which seems a bit expensive.
HDS or SZK? if you stay at a fancy place they'll pick you up and take care of the game drives and everything... $$$$. Truthfully for that you;re better off in one of the Game reserves like Sabi-sabi

it's 5 hours to Skukuza (or the main gate), from there you;re own your own. Speed in the park is 50km max btw
You'd have to figure out where you;re staying first, they'd have an address you can use google maps for
why wouldn;t you fly HDS or SZKto CPT? the only other option would be to fly back thru jnb, Shame Comair (BA's local airline) and Kulula doesn;t do that area

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 04:33:43 PM
Yikes! I'm not as risk averse, but with DW and a baby I think a 5 hour car rise may be 1) to risky for her and 2) not as easy with a baby. Also it doesn't sound like you have an opinion on option 1 vs 2, do you?
Wait, you;r going with a baby? have you spoken to the Dr about Malaria ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:35:14 PM
2 looks tidier to me.
Me too. Option 2's flights look like this:

LAX-DXB 4:45pm-7:35pm+1 (overnight in DXB) DXB-JNB 2:40 pm-8:50p. No return flights yet, though hoping for QR/ QR+EY.

Only benefit of Option 1 is all flights are available now.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 04:36:43 PM
Regarding the PR, we'd have a baby with us. I don't know if that makes it easier or harder (I'd imagine harder), so then maybe we'd just fly.
I know we can do things in JNB on Friday (albeit in the winter). The only problem I have with option 2 is no return flights yet, though the dates are better for me.
Who;s winter, when are you going
It's summer there now
and even in the winter it never gets that early (earliest shkia in JNB is 530pm)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:39:01 PM
HDS or SZK? if you stay at a fancy place they'll pick you up and take care of the game drives and everything... $$$$. Truthfully for that you;re better off in one of the Game reserves like Sabi-sabi

it's 5 hours to Skukuza (or the main gate), from there you;re own your own. Speed in the park is 50km max btw
You'd have to figure out where you;re staying first, they'd have an address you can use google maps for
why wouldn;t you fly HDS or SZKto CPT? the only other option would be to fly back thru jnb, Shame Comair (BA's local airline) and Kulula doesn;t do that area
The idea wasn't to spend $$$ at expensive places, though maybe that's the only reasonable option. What do people do who don't stay at those places? Do they just drive around themselves?

Wait, you;r going with a baby? have you spoken to the Dr about Malaria ?
Yeah, we'd be going with a baby, but in winter. I didn't speak to any doctors yet about Malaria, but I was under the impression you didn't need shots to see KNP. Am I way wrong there? Has anyone else here ever brought a baby to KNP?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:40:02 PM
Who;s winter, when are you going
It's summer there now
and even in the winter it never gets that early (earliest shkia in JNB is 530pm)
Their winter, July/August.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 08, 2015, 04:50:51 PM
Winter is not malaria season, but it is still a concern. You don't need shots - you need malaria pills. Though some might say you don't in that season, speak to your doctor.

Kruger can not be done with points. You book accommodation with $$. The more you spend, the better you'll get taken care of. Most basic camps will include at least a guided morning or night drive or both. The rest of the day you drive around yourself. If you stay in the luxury camps, they'll drive you around the entire time, and arrange to pick you up from the airport, etc. There are tours which will drive you from JNB, see upthread for recommendations

The benefit of the guided open-top jeep tours can not be overstated. They spot stuff you wouldn't dream of of seeing, they are treasure troves of information, the morning/night drives are at times you are not allowed to even self drive, and animals are more prevalent then.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 08, 2015, 04:51:49 PM
Winter is not malaria season, but it is still a concern. You don't need shots - you need malaria pills. Though some might say you don't in that season, speak to your doctor.

Kruger can not be done with points. You book accommodation with $$. The more you spend, the better you'll get taken care of. Most basic camps will include at least a guided morning or night drive or both. The rest of the day you drive around yourself. If you stay in the luxury camps, they'll drive you around the entire time, and arrange to pick you up from the airport, etc. There are tours which will drive you from JNB, see upthread for recommendations

The benefit of the guided open-top jeep tours can not be overstated. They spot stuff you wouldn't dream of of seeing, they are treasure troves of information, the morning/night drives are at times you are not allowed to even self drive, and animals are more prevalent then.
Price ranges?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 08, 2015, 04:57:16 PM
Price ranges?

Sorry, I've never done a paid tour. I will say the exchange rate is getting more and more favorable for tourists.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:57:52 PM
Winter is not malaria season, but it is still a concern. You don't need shots - you need malaria pills. Though some might say you don't in that season, speak to your doctor.

Kruger can not be done with points. You book accommodation with $$. The more you spend, the better you'll get taken care of. Most basic camps will include at least a guided morning or night drive or both. The rest of the day you drive around yourself. If you stay in the luxury camps, they'll drive you around the entire time, and arrange to pick you up from the airport, etc. There are tours which will drive you from JNB, see upthread for recommendations

The benefit of the guided open-top jeep tours can not be overstated. They spot stuff you wouldn't dream of of seeing, they are treasure troves of information, the morning/night drives are at times you are not allowed to even self drive, and animals are more prevalent then.
I wonder if Kruger can even be done though a UR portal. For sure  Barclays A+ will work, but I understand your point. I guess I'll speak to a doctor about traveling with a baby. I imagine I'm not the first to want to, though obviously July is way better than Apr or Dec.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 04:58:18 PM
Sorry, I've never done a paid tour. I will say the exchange rate is getting more and more favorable for tourists.
So what did you do when you went, or have you never gone?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 08, 2015, 05:00:54 PM
So what did you do when you went, or have you never gone?

I'm from JNB - always done self drives.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 05:03:00 PM
The idea wasn't to spend $$$ at expensive places, though maybe that's the only reasonable option.
 What do people do who don't stay at those places? Do they just drive around themselves?
Yeah, we'd be going with a baby, but in winter. I didn't speak to any doctors yet about Malaria, but I was under the impression you didn't need shots to see KNP. Am I way wrong there? Has anyone else here ever brought a baby to KNP?
You have lots of options, there are lots of tour guides from everywhere, that work alone (not with a hotel or camp) you could drive yourself, but your chance of seeing something is much lower, KNP is the size of Israel (just to give you an idea)
In the winter there is less of a malaria risk, but you can't afaik give a baby any medicine just put on OFF deep woods and hope for the best and stay indoors sunrise and sunset
This may be another reason to skip the park altogether and go to a game reserve were the risk is even lower (or go to one that doesn;t have a risk at all)
(the highest risk is in the park and game reserves outside have a lower risk not sure why as they are attached to the park like Mala-Mala and sabi sand )
There is Pilansburg (not a fan) a 2 hour drive from JNB and next to sun city which is an option
2 hours further is Madikwe on the Botswana border that some friends of mine rave about, that are not in Malaria country at all
Iv'e brought little kids but never stayed overnight in the park with them and just put on bug spray
i also only did self drives
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 05:39:34 PM
I'm from JNB - always done self drives.
Cool! How successful were you at seeing things, and at what time of the year did you go? If you wen't more than once, which it sounds  like you did, did you have much luck in the winter?

You have lots of options, there are lots of tour guides from everywhere, that work alone (not with a hotel or camp) you could drive yourself, but your chance of seeing something is much lower, KNP is the size of Israel (just to give you an idea)
In the winter there is less of a malaria risk, but you can't afaik give a baby any medicine just put on OFF deep woods and hope for the best and stay indoors sunrise and sunset
This may be another reason to skip the park altogether and go to a game reserve were the risk is even lower (or go to one that doesn;t have a risk at all)
(the highest risk is in the park and game reserves outside have a lower risk not sure why as they are attached to the park like Mala-Mala and sabi sand )
There is Pilansburg (not a fan) a 2 hour drive from JNB and next to sun city which is an option
2 hours further is Madikwe on the Botswana border that some friends of mine rave about, that are not in Malaria country at all
Iv'e brought little kids but never stayed overnight in the park with them and just put on bug spray
i also only did self drives
Wow, I really appreciate you taking the time to write as much as you are. It sounds like there are other options besides KNP for seeing these animals that would be better suited for taking a baby. The game reserves (like Mala Mala) sound like an good idea, but as you said, how is there a lower malaria risk if it's attached to the park? Maybe the Malaria risk is at a different side/area of the park? I mean if KNP is the size of Israel, it would make sense that some areas have a risk while other's don't.

If we went for the Madikwe Game Reserve, would it make sense to fly to GBE (Gaborone, Botswana) instead of driving from JNB? How does it compare to KNP in terms of scenery, animals, etc.? Why don't more people go there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 08, 2015, 06:20:38 PM
Going to Kruger in winter is a great idea (not as good for CPT though).

Winter = less watering holes = more animals.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 06:30:18 PM
Cool! How successful were you at seeing things, and at what time of the year did you go? If you wen't more than once, which it sounds  like you did, did you have much luck in the winter?
Wow, I really appreciate you taking the time to write as much as you are. It sounds like there are other options besides KNP for seeing these animals that would be better suited for taking a baby. The game reserves (like Mala Mala) sound like an good idea, but as you said, how is there a lower malaria risk if it's attached to the park? Maybe the Malaria risk is at a different side/area of the park? I mean if KNP is the size of Israel, it would make sense that some areas have a risk while other's don't.

If we went for the Madikwe Game Reserve, would it make sense to fly to GBE (Gaborone, Botswana) instead of driving from JNB? How does it compare to KNP in terms of scenery, animals, etc.? Why don't more people go there?
best time is the dry season which is the winter https://www.safaribookings.com/kruger/best-time
It's possible that they spray outside the park or do some sort of management of the mosquito, in the park itself, the staff pride themselves on telling you that this is the animals home and the humans needs to respect that (i was told that after getting bitten by a couple massive hornets while at an outhouse at a hide in the middle of nowhere, when i got back to a camp that what i was told, they wouldn't even put up a sign that there might be a hive in the loo... whatever)
Madikwe was never popular until recently, i heard it became also a big luxury getaway place, like the type you'd see in one of these fancy travel and leisure mags and fully stocked, but do your own research
you could fly to Gabarone, i'm not sure about visa's etc. They both drive on the left so it should be fairly simple to go across they charge a tax of R3000 or so ($275?)
If you drive up you can stop see Hartebeesport Dam and Sun City (staying in the lost city used to be a big thing, maybe it still is http://www.suninternational.com/palace/)

I always saw something, not always everytime seeing all of the big 5.
The coolest was after getting stung we saw a huge herd of African Buffalo chilling out, was quite a site. then drove across the crocodile river in flood
i never saw an actual kill, just the aftermath , the guides are usually good at this (maybe they even cause it ...lol)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 06:49:09 PM
Going to Kruger in winter is a great idea (not as good for CPT though).

Winter = less watering holes = more animals.
I'm aware Kurger is best in winter and CPT best in summer, but I'd rather be in CPT off seasons than KNP. Going with a baby will take some more research and consulting a doctor. I still don't know how likely malaria is in winter. Even in sub warm locals like LA (the temperatures in KNP seem similar to LA's winter temps) there aren't any mosquitoes when it's cold out in the mornings.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 06:50:02 PM
best time is the dry season which is the winter https://www.safaribookings.com/kruger/best-time
It's possible that they spray outside the park or do some sort of management of the mosquito, in the park itself, the staff pride themselves on telling you that this is the animals home and the humans needs to respect that (i was told that after getting bitten by a couple massive hornets while at an outhouse at a hide in the middle of nowhere, when i got back to a camp that what i was told, they wouldn't even put up a sign that there might be a hive in the loo... whatever)
Madikwe was never popular until recently, i heard it became also a big luxury getaway place, like the type you'd see in one of these fancy travel and leisure mags and fully stocked, but do your own research
you could fly to Gabarone, i'm not sure about visa's etc. They both drive on the left so it should be fairly simple to go across they charge a tax of R3000 or so ($275?)
If you drive up you can stop see Hartebeesport Dam and Sun City (staying in the lost city used to be a big thing, maybe it still is http://www.suninternational.com/palace/)

I always saw something, not always everytime seeing all of the big 5.
The coolest was after getting stung we saw a huge herd of African Buffalo chilling out, was quite a site. then drove across the crocodile river in flood
i never saw an actual kill, just the aftermath , the guides are usually good at this (maybe they even cause it ...lol)
More research is indeed necessary. I guess I'll stick with Option 2 and just try to find  flights back over the next 8 months. In terms of KNP vs game reserves, I'll have to see.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 08, 2015, 07:38:00 PM
http://www.sa-venues.com/malaria-risk-areas.htm
http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/infectious-diseases-related-to-travel/yellow-fever-malaria-information-by-country/south-africa

this one says no treatment necessary for july aug
http://www.santhnet.co.za/index.php/malaria-advice-for-travellers.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 08, 2015, 07:49:16 PM
http://www.sa-venues.com/malaria-risk-areas.htm
http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/infectious-diseases-related-to-travel/yellow-fever-malaria-information-by-country/south-africa

this one says no treatment necessary for july aug
http://www.santhnet.co.za/index.php/malaria-advice-for-travellers.html
Wow, thanks man! Still need to confirm with a doctor, but that makes me feel better.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 12:07:08 AM
What are the minimum days one is to be in Capetown & Johannesburg as well if not going to Kruger.. TIA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 12:31:27 AM
Data point:

SQ charges 15k OW for SAA flights within SA in Y, 31k in J. I didn't check other regional flights.

AX charges 20k "OW" for SAA flights within SA Y (J wasn't available for the dates I checked). I didn't check other regional flights.
The reason I write that in quotes is because as of now they don't allow OW flights, but a multi-city itinerary (JNB-HDS-CPT for example) is 40k in Y.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on December 09, 2015, 06:40:43 AM
What are the minimum days one is to be in Capetown & Johannesburg as well if not going to Kruger.. TIA

4 days in Cape Town, 2-3 days in Johannesburg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 09:41:28 AM
Data point:

SQ charges 15k OW for SAA flights within SA in Y, 31k in J. I didn't check other regional flights.

AX charges 20k "OW" for SAA flights within SA Y (J wasn't available for the dates I checked). I didn't check other regional flights.
The reason I write that in quotes is because as of now they don't allow OW flights, but a multi-city itinerary (JNB-HDS-CPT for example) is 40k in Y.
any flight in SA would be under 2 hours, and most of the flights are one class IIRC
Look in to BA (comair) for the shorthaul flight
one of the best uses is the JNB-VFA RT
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 09:45:48 AM
any flight in SA would be under 2 hours, and most of the flights are one class IIRC
Look in to BA (comair) for the shorthaul flight
one of the best uses is the JNB-VFA RT
15500 RT in J
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 09:46:52 AM
15500 RT in J
JNB - CPT is 13k in Y (Off season )
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 10:26:51 AM
4 days in Cape Town, 2-3 days in Johannesburg.

2-3 days in JNB is with or without Kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 10:28:25 AM
2-3 days in JNB is with or without Kruger?

Without Kruger you don't *need* any time at all in JNB. If you are skipping Kruger because of malaria, there are other safari options in the way of private game reserves in other areas.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 10:35:24 AM
any flight in SA would be under 2 hours, and most of the flights are one class IIRC
Look in to BA (comair) for the shorthaul flight
one of the best uses is the JNB-VFA RT
True, but HDS is only served by SAA, so flights JNB-HDS-CPT would have to be on SSA. While JNB-HDS is relatively cheap at $126, HDS-CPT is $226, seeing as they only have 1 flight a day and it's 3x farther.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 10:38:37 AM
Without Kruger you don't *need* any time at all in JNB. If you are skipping Kruger because of malaria, there are other safari options in the way of private game reserves in other areas.

I am in the planning stages of something like:
NYC-LHR-CPT-JNB-VFA-JNB-DAR-Arusha-Seronera-Arusha-DAR-JNB-KGL-BRU-NYC

Capetown, Johannesburg, Victoria Falls, Serengheti (migration), Bwindi Gorillas, Belgium & back home.. Something like that.. I wonder if I can figure out all the flights.. Not a cheap trip either but YOLO.. A little concerned about traveling in Rwanda & Uganda but we'll see.. I want to hike to see those Gorillas up close..
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on December 09, 2015, 11:04:10 AM
I am in the planning stages of something like:
NYC-LHR-CPT-JNB-VFA-JNB-DAR-Arusha-Seronera-Arusha-DAR-JNB-KGL-BRU-NYC

Capetown, Johannesburg, Victoria Falls, Serengheti (migration), Bwindi Gorillas, Belgium & back home.. Something like that.. I wonder if I can figure out all the flights.. Not a cheap trip either but YOLO.. A little concerned about traveling in Rwanda & Uganda but we'll see.. I want to hike to see those Gorillas up close..
Sweeeet!!

How much time do you figure this will take?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 11:11:11 AM
I am in the planning stages of something like:
NYC-LHR-CPT-JNB-VFA-JNB-DAR-Arusha-Seronera-Arusha-DAR-JNB-KGL-BRU-NYC

Capetown, Johannesburg, Victoria Falls, Serengheti (migration), Bwindi Gorillas, Belgium & back home.. Something like that.. I wonder if I can figure out all the flights.. Not a cheap trip either but YOLO.. A little concerned about traveling in Rwanda & Uganda but we'll see.. I want to hike to see those Gorillas up close..

Oh man, that's a whole bucket list right there. Enjoy!

You might want to get a touring company to help you put everything together
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 09, 2015, 11:13:25 AM
Oh man, that's a whole bucket list right there. Enjoy!

You might want to get a touring company to help you put everything together
DDF may be almost as good.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 11:16:12 AM
DDF may be almost as good.

Anyone here who has done even close to that?

ETA: I'm not talking about the flights part of it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 11:19:29 AM
Oh man, that's a whole bucket list right there. Enjoy!

You might want to get a touring company to help you put everything together

i've reached out to a few tour companies, little airline companies etc. Going to see if its doable.. I was shocked to see KGL-BRU available every single day like forever on Brussels Air.. A330.. Who flies from Rwanda to Brussels?? Except crazy people like me
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on December 09, 2015, 01:33:36 PM
Wow, thanks man! Still need to confirm with a doctor, but that makes me feel better.
IIRC babies and small children aren't allowed on game drives. Find out before you book. Madikwe is really nice but I would NOT drive there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 01:43:36 PM
IIRC babies and small children aren't allowed on game drives. Find out before you book. Madikwe is really nice but I would NOT drive there.
If babies aren't allowed on game drives, do the hotels/tour companies offer babysitting services?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on December 09, 2015, 01:45:19 PM
I don't know. A friend of mine couldn't do any game drives as a result. However you can do your own drive in a closed vehicle.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 01:46:09 PM
I don't know. A friend of mine couldn't do any game drives as a result. However you can do your own drive in a closed vehicle.
Thanks for the tip! It's definitely something I'd need to look into.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on December 09, 2015, 01:52:04 PM
Thanks for the tip! It's definitely something I'd need to look into.
Leave the kid in JNB for your trip. It's worth splurging on a private game lodge.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 01:53:32 PM
Leave the kid in JNB for your trip. It's worth splurging on a private game lodge.
DW won't leave the (4 month only) kid anywhere.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 02:07:44 PM
Ouch, that's young. You should find private game reserves that will allow the baby on the drives, but how practical will it be? Not sure they'll allow a car seat, and holding a baby for hours at a time while you're trying to catch a glimpse of a leopard up in a tree doesn't sound very enjoyable, not to mention the baby's feeding/nursing schedule which will be interrupted by sunrise and sunset game drives.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on December 09, 2015, 02:09:18 PM
@Yehosua, do you currently have children?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 02:09:32 PM
Ouch, that's young. You should find private game reserves that will allow the baby on the drives, but how practical will it be? Not sure they'll allow a car seat, and holding a baby for hours at a time while you're trying to catch a glimpse of a leopard up in a tree doesn't sound very enjoyable, not to mention the baby's feeding/nursing schedule which will be interrupted by sunrise and sunset game drives.
Ideally it'd be best to have babysitting at the lodge so the baby can just stay behind for the drives. How long are they? I just guessed/assumed they were 2-3 hours. Should I be nervous with a baby that young? Is there any way to see anything with a kid that old, or am I nuts for even thinking about it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 02:13:13 PM
Ideally it'd be best to have babysitting at the lodge so the baby can just stay behind for the drives. How long are they? I just guessed/assumed they were 2-3 hours.

Each drive could be about that long, but you would be going on multiple drives per day. So essentially you would be leaving your baby the entire day, just checking in on him/her periodically.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 02:16:23 PM
Each drive could be about that long, but you would be going on multiple drives per day. So essentially you would be leaving your baby the entire day, just checking in on him/her periodically.
I know it's not ideal to do this with a baby, but we really want to try. I noticed there are some lodges that offer child minding (SA for babysitting I guess), but I don't know for how long. I know DW doesn't want to leave the baby at home, but she may be good leaving him/her for a few hours here and there. From what I understood the middle of the day is open and you can spend time with the baby then; it's the morning and evening game drives that are the only time you'd be away.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on December 09, 2015, 02:23:03 PM
Ouch, that's young. You should find private game reserves that will allow the baby on the drives, but how practical will it be? Not sure they'll allow a car seat, and holding a baby for hours at a time while you're trying to catch a glimpse of a leopard up in a tree doesn't sound very enjoyable, not to mention the baby's feeding/nursing schedule which will be interrupted by sunrise and sunset game drives.
From what I understand they don't allow babies or kids on open vehicle game drives. The game(lions, leopards etc) aren't scared of them and don't view them as one entity with the jeep.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 02:29:06 PM
From what I understand they don't allow babies or kids on open vehicle game drives. The game(lions, leopards etc) aren't scared of them and don't view them as one entity with the jeep.
I agree, that makes sense. The only time I see them allowing kids on a drive is if it's in an enclosed vehicle, but I doubt anyone even offers game drives in enclosed vehicles.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on December 09, 2015, 02:32:26 PM
Whether you take this trip or not, there is no way you will be able to do multiple hour game drives taking your kid along. It's just not feasible.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 02:33:36 PM
Whether you take this trip or not, there is no way you will be able to do multiple hour game drives taking your kid along. It's just not feasible.
I know, that's why

Ideally it'd be best to have babysitting at the lodge so the baby can just stay behind for the drives.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 03:33:22 PM
True, but HDS is only served by SAA, so flights JNB-HDS-CPT would have to be on SSA. While JNB-HDS is relatively cheap at $126, HDS-CPT is $226, seeing as they only have 1 flight a day and it's 3x farther.
there are a few airports that service the Kruger, look into all of them
Skukuza, HDS, NLP and Phalaborwa PHW (only serviced by charter and SAA Airlink)

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 03:34:13 PM
there are a few airports that service the Kruger, look into all of them
Skukuza, HDS, NLP and Phalaborwa PHW (only serviced by charter and SAA Airlink)
Got it, thanks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 03:35:14 PM
Oh man, that's a whole bucket list right there. Enjoy!

You might want to get a touring company to help you put everything together
There is a guy on Trip Advisor that is looking to drive this, maybe you want to hook up http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g312659-i9466-k9048724-Driver_across_Africa_CAN_I-Cape_Town_Central_Western_Cape.html#71062703
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 03:43:16 PM
There is a guy on Trip Advisor that is looking to drive this, maybe you want to hook up http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g312659-i9466-k9048724-Driver_across_Africa_CAN_I-Cape_Town_Central_Western_Cape.html#71062703

There is a frum guy in JNB who was pretty close to giving driving up to Israel a go
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 03:45:38 PM
There is a frum guy in JNB who was pretty close to giving driving up to Israel a go
WTH is the point of that?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 09, 2015, 03:50:42 PM
WTH is the point of that?

WTH is the point of looking at a lion, sitting on a beach, going on a roller coaster, or this (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=52686.0)?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 03:51:12 PM
WTH is the point of that?
was a breslover, need i say more (he was gonna continue on to Uman too
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 03:52:34 PM
was a breslover, need i say more (he was gonna continue on to Uman too
Well that explains it!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 03:53:39 PM
WTH is the point of looking at a lion, sitting on a beach, going on a roller coaster, or this (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=52686.0)?
I wouldn't compare driving across Africa to going on safari. One is safe one is not nearly as safe, if it's even safe at all. Not quite the same as a cross country road trip (in the US).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 04:54:57 PM
there are a few airports that service the Kruger, look into all of them
Skukuza, HDS, NLP and Phalaborwa PHW (only serviced by charter and SAA Airlink)

what about MQP?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 04:57:27 PM
what about MQP?
I assume he meant that too
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 09, 2015, 05:00:17 PM
I assume he meant that too

whats the best/closest airport to enter the park? MQP has an early flight from JNB that gets in at 9:50am so thats pretty convenient. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 09, 2015, 05:01:55 PM
whats the best/closest airport to enter the park? MQP has an early flight from JNB that gets in at 9:50am so thats pretty convenient.
From what I understand each airport offers access to a different area of the park. Depending on where you want to stay you fly into the airport near there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 05:05:00 PM
I assume he meant that too
sorry NLP is MQP (or NLP is the old airport)
they changed the name of everything
Nelspruit Airport is now called Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 09, 2015, 05:05:44 PM
What we knew as Jan Smuts Airport is now Oliver Tambo etc etc
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 10, 2015, 11:15:05 AM
The rand dropped to R15 to the dollar. Your vacations are all getting cheaper by the day!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 11:37:12 AM
If only it stays like that until the summer.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 10, 2015, 11:41:43 AM
15.25 and counting
I was there once when the rand went from 8 to 13 almost overnight,
everything i bought was 40% off
then we got the VAT back on the way out 8)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 10, 2015, 03:08:37 PM
15.25 and counting
I was there once when the rand went from 8 to 13 almost overnight,
everything i bought was 40% off
then we got the VAT back on the way out 8)

wow, now is the time to go!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 10, 2015, 03:11:02 PM
wow, now is the time to go!
Absolutely, nothing like Chanuka in the summer
Climb out of the pool, light menora , have a braai and a castle
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 10, 2015, 03:12:11 PM
Absolutely, nothing like Chanuka in the summer
Climb out of the pool, light menora , have a braai and a castle

if I come its going to be June/July. Thats high season for Sharks vs Seals & Safaris. Hope to see you if I do end up going
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on December 10, 2015, 03:31:01 PM
Absolutely, nothing like Chanuka in the summer
Climb out of the pool, light menora , have a braai and a castle

Oiy, you're killin' me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 10, 2015, 03:33:36 PM
Oiy, you're killin' me.
It's not like the local weather is brutal right now. I still haven't put a coat on.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: MC on December 10, 2015, 03:36:30 PM
It's not like the local weather is brutal right now. I still haven't put a coat on.
Gulp. I'm in my winter coat already.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Marco Polo on December 10, 2015, 03:36:51 PM
Gulp. I'm in my winter coat already.
Well compared to LA...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 10, 2015, 04:19:24 PM
65 degrees in NY over the weekend... we could do the BBQ and beer part
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 04:21:32 PM
65 degrees in NY over the weekend... we could do the BBQ and beer part
Same in PHL. Looking forward to it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 10, 2015, 04:27:05 PM
Same in PHL. Looking forward to it.
yeah, same weather as LA, how often do you see that
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 04:32:31 PM
yeah, same weather as LA, how often do you see that
Not often. I'll be in PHL though, so I don't really care about the weather in LA this weekend.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 10, 2015, 04:48:09 PM
Can someone please explain this??????
 :o :o :o :o :o

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 04:57:12 PM
Can someone please explain this??????
 :o :o :o :o :o
Price mistake?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 10, 2015, 04:59:28 PM
Price mistake?

hot! glitch! Botswana! Hurry! lol
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 05:01:14 PM
hot! glitch! Botswana! Hurry! lol
Lol, but perhaps it's a room without electricity, plumbing, or mosquito netting.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 10, 2015, 05:02:30 PM
Lol, but perhaps it's a room without electricity, plumbing, or mosquito netting.

for $6 you want that too?  ::)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 10, 2015, 05:03:35 PM
for $6 you want that too?  ::)
Also shouldn't that be on the Botswana thread? Technically isn't not SA.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 09:05:33 AM
it's not a necessarily a price mistake, it's tents for backpackers.
average price quoted is between $16 and $25
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 11, 2015, 09:59:01 AM
it's not a necessarily a price mistake, it's tents for backpackers.
average price quoted is between $16 and $25
So exactly what I said: no electricity, plumbing or mosquito netting provided.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 11:05:28 AM
20 years ago that would have been fun, now i'm spoiled
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 11:08:49 AM
ZAR now 16 to the $ and 24+ to the GBP :o
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 11, 2015, 11:14:36 AM
And let it stay that way or get better for the USD until the summer
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 11, 2015, 11:27:50 AM
And let it stay that way or get better for the USD until the summer

Your joy is a country's sorrow
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 11, 2015, 11:29:11 AM
Your joy is a country's sorrow
Well if you put it that way...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 11:33:14 AM
Your joy is a country's sorrow
Zuma fired the Finance minister, so now he has a blank cheque, i cry for the people still there but the ANC are just bringing this on themselves (not that they care)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 11, 2015, 11:41:07 AM
Zuma fired the Finance minister, so now he has a blank cheque, i cry for the people still there but the ANC are just bringing this on themselves (not that they care)

thats a great exchange rate.. do they sell brand name products that I can buy on big discount?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 12:51:11 PM
thats a great exchange rate.. do they sell brand name products that I can buy on big discount?
like what?
i got a liter of Glenlivet for $11
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 11, 2015, 01:22:30 PM
like what?
i got a liter of Glenlivet for $11

iphone? How much is a 750ml jw blue label for example?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 01:25:17 PM
iphone? How much is a 750ml jw blue label for example?
https://www.makro.co.za/liquor/johnnie-walker-/br-blue-label-blended-scotch-whisky-2-glasses-gift-pack-/br-1-x-750ml--179112EA
$130
which I Phone
https://www.makro.co.za/all/iphone/pg1
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Chapshnell on December 11, 2015, 01:32:19 PM
https://www.makro.co.za/liquor/johnnie-walker-/br-blue-label-blended-scotch-whisky-2-glasses-gift-pack-/br-1-x-750ml--179112EA
$130
which I Phone
https://www.makro.co.za/all/iphone/pg1

not cheap. blue label is OK. thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: David Smith on December 11, 2015, 01:38:25 PM
not cheap. blue label is OK. thanks!
You can get Johnny blue for $180 here. That's not incredible.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 11, 2015, 01:41:09 PM
Imports tend to be not as cheap, the real deals are local stuff usually
30% off everything ain;'t bad
and correct none of it is a reason to go by itself
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 12, 2015, 07:46:10 PM
Do you know any private game parks around the KNP that can do kosher.  Maybe they have a kosher braai setup with separate pots etc.
I dont like the idea of the food flown in and microwaved.  My guess is most people bring their own and have the chef prepare it?   

PS I am aware of Royal Malewane.     
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 12, 2015, 09:36:56 PM
Do you know any private game parks around the KNP that can do kosher.  Maybe they have a kosher braai setup with separate pots etc.
I dont like the idea of the food flown in and microwaved.  My guess is most people bring their own and have the chef prepare it?   

PS I am aware of Royal Malewane.   
Maybe as Yoni Issacson from Kosher Safaris  koshersafaris@aksafaris.com
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Srsy on January 14, 2016, 01:19:06 PM
Anyone went to a program in South Africa for Pesach?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 14, 2016, 01:36:03 PM
Anyone went to a program in South Africa for Pesach?
there were guys who went with the Etihad Giltch
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/58632#comment-1212412
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/58632#comment-1212585
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/58632#comment-1242995
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on January 14, 2016, 02:05:21 PM
heres the link to this years program

www.chabadsouthafrica.org/Pesach2016
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 22, 2016, 10:57:57 AM
Has anyone had experience flying to SA with the new unabridged Birth Certificate rules?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 22, 2016, 12:15:06 PM
http://stantgsm.com/view-post/pesach%202016%20beacom%20ilse%20-%20plett/3761
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on January 24, 2016, 08:58:01 PM
Any Safaris that can be done on a day-trip from CPT and are malaria-free?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 24, 2016, 11:37:48 PM
Sanbona Wildlife Reserve
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 25, 2016, 02:12:31 AM
Any Safaris that can be done on a day-trip from CPT and are malaria-free?
CMIIW but I think everything around CPT is malaria-free. It's too far south/west.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: damaxer91 on January 25, 2016, 09:23:21 AM
Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Is it worthwhile?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 25, 2016, 12:54:06 PM
it's not quite a zoo (lion park and the like) and not the Kruger, maybe like pilansberg
combine it with the Winelands and it's amazing
The stark Karoo landscape contrasted with the stunningly lush and beautiful winelands...
and then seeing the big five in their habitat
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 25, 2016, 12:55:37 PM
CMIIW but I think everything around CPT is malaria-free. It's too far south/west.
yes no where near malaria
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: elibeli2 on February 02, 2016, 01:46:35 PM
Does anyone know of any discount codes to the Lost Palace in Sun City?

As well, Looking for a large house in Sea Point, Cape town. Anyone have any experience with that?

TIA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 02, 2016, 01:54:24 PM
Does anyone know of any discount codes to the Lost Palace in Sun City?

As well, Looking for a large house in Sea Point, Cape town. Anyone have any experience with that?

TIA
Airbnb  (https://www.airbnb.com/s/Sea-Point--Cape-Town--Western-Cape--South-Africa?guests=2&checkin=03%2F15%2F2016&checkout=03%2F22%2F2016&ss_id=vuk4qtcu&ss_preload=true&source=bb)looks like they have some places in Sea Point.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: elibeli2 on February 02, 2016, 01:59:00 PM
Airbnb  (https://www.airbnb.com/s/Sea-Point--Cape-Town--Western-Cape--South-Africa?guests=2&checkin=03%2F15%2F2016&checkout=03%2F22%2F2016&ss_id=vuk4qtcu&ss_preload=true&source=bb)looks like they have some places in Sea Point.

Thanks!

I was wondering if anyone had any experience staying with a large Frum family in Sea Point?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 02, 2016, 04:38:08 PM
Does anyone know of any discount codes to the Lost Palace in Sun City?

As well, Looking for a large house in Sea Point, Cape town. Anyone have any experience with that?

TIA
Look locally, there are sometimes great offers advertised to locals
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Srsy on February 03, 2016, 10:13:46 PM
Has anyone went to the Chabad program in South Africa?  Has anyone ever stayed at Bon Hotel Riviera on Vaal?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 09:29:18 AM
Look locally, there are sometimes great offers advertised to locals
also local travel agents (JNB)
as far as Sea Point goes, during December Holidays the place is packed with large Jewish Families, Whats your question
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 04, 2016, 12:18:43 PM
I dont think Sanbona Wildlife Reserve is a day trip. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 12:22:01 PM
I dont think Sanbona Wildlife Reserve is a day trip.
considering that it's a four hour drive each way you may be right, unless you start early and late
iv'e done day trips from JNB to the kruger and thats further
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 04, 2016, 12:33:50 PM
I doubt you could do it in 4 hours either. The google map estimates dont seem to account for traffic etc.    The KNP day trip sounds like a really bad idea. You likely left after dark etc. Good thing you didnt hit something. How was it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 02:36:19 PM
absolutely amazing and crazy
We left really really early, davened by the trout farm and lake at the rest stop
 went thru phalaborwa and out thru either Malelane or Croc Bridge

Saw a massive herd of buffalo, and lots of other game
got bitten by massive wasps?hornets?
crossed the crocodile river in flood stage in a low slung sedan
(they closed the gates behind us at 6pm)
got back to JNB at 11pm
2 drivers
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 02:41:04 PM
I doubt you could do it in 4 hours either. The google map estimates dont seem to account for traffic etc.    The KNP day trip sounds like a really bad idea. You likely left after dark etc. Good thing you didnt hit something. How was it?
We left when the park closed, you cant leave the park after 6. Where would i hit something, on the N1?
I dont think 4 hours is a bad estimate
I've done Beaufort West and Oudtshoorn  in less then 5 and they are much  much further
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2016, 02:41:36 PM
absolutely amazing and crazy
We left really really early, davened by the trout farm and lake at the rest stop
 went thru phalaborwa and out thru either Malelane or Croc Bridge

Saw a massive herd of buffalo, and lots of other game
got bitten by massive wasps?hornets?
crossed the crocodile river in flood stage in a low slung sedan
(they closed the gates behind us at 6pm)
got back to JNB at 11pm
2 drivers
Sounds insane!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 02:42:16 PM
Sounds insane!
try it with the baby!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2016, 02:44:53 PM
try it with the baby!
Hahah! Yeah right! We're going to try to avoid the malaria zone with the baby, though I still have to figure out where we'll actually go, based on what we talked about here a while ago. That and which places are ok with an infant.

Along those lines, I was looking into Airbnb in CPT (Sea Point). There seem to be very cheap rates in the winter (USD33-90/night) but I'm not sure how that would work with a baby either.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 02:45:56 PM
Hahah! Yeah right! We're going to try to avoid the malaria zone with the baby, though I still have to figure out where we'll actually go, based on what we talked about here a while ago. That and which places are ok with an infant.

Along those lines, I was looking into Airbnb in CPT (Sea Point). There seem to be very cheap rates in the winter (USD33-90/night) but I'm not sure how that would work with a baby either.
which part? the fact that you may be in an unheated flat in middle of a southeaster ? yes, they are very cheap in the winter
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 02:50:17 PM
Hahah! Yeah right! We're going to try to avoid the malaria zone with the baby, though I still have to figure out where we'll actually go, based on what we talked about here a while ago. That and which places are ok with an infant.

Along those lines, I was looking into Airbnb in CPT (Sea Point). There seem to be very cheap rates in the winter (USD33-90/night) but I'm not sure how that would work with a baby either.
Protea sea point is 15k marriott a night (if you need shabbos)
Westin by the v&A is nice
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2016, 03:03:58 PM
which part? the fact that you may be in an unheated flat in middle of a southeaster ? yes, they are very cheap in the winter
Do people not have heat there? I know it's be cold (similar to LA winters, so not too bad), but no heat? I didn't even think to look. Where do most people stay when they visit CPT for shabbos? I know about the Westin for during the week, but it doesn't look like it's within the eiruv for shabbos. I'll check out the Marriott.

ETA: For $75/night I'd just pay cash.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 03:10:20 PM
Do people not have heat there? I know it's be cold (similar to LA winters, so not too bad), but no heat? I didn't even think to look. Where do most people stay when they visit CPT for shabbos? I know about the Westin for during the week, but it doesn't look like it's within the eiruv for shabbos. I'll check out the Marriott.

ETA: For $75/night I'd just pay cash.
You will need heat just make sure they have
The Protea is right on the main drag in sea point, not the most amazing hotel but it works,
(iv'e never been there for shabbos)
$75 for an AIRBNB is a nice price
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2016, 03:17:57 PM
You will need heat just make sure they have
The Protea is right on the main drag in sea point, not the most amazing hotel but it works,
(iv'e never been there for shabbos)
$75 for an AIRBNB is a nice price
Seems most hotels in the area aren't that expensive in the winter. There seem to be many places for under $100/night, some as cheap as $52/night. What's the main shul in CPT? Is it The Green & Sea Point Hebrew Congregation on Marais Road?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2016, 04:02:30 PM
Seems most hotels in the area aren't that expensive in the winter. There seem to be many places for under $100/night, some as cheap as $52/night. What's the main shul in CPT? Is it The Green & Sea Point Hebrew Congregation on Marais Road?
or OhrSom
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2016, 04:14:25 PM
or OhrSom
Right. I still have to find out about babies at Airbnb though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: davidch on February 10, 2016, 11:30:03 AM
Hey guys I'm heading to South Africa in about a month and I just heard that you need two empty pages on your passport.
Does anyone have any expireance or info about this
Thanks a lot:-)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 11:34:16 AM
Wow, I just read that minors entering and exiting South Africa need a copy of their birth certificate in addition to their passport, even with both parents present (http://www.dha.gov.za/files/Brochures/Immigrationleaflet.pdf). Has anyone gone recently (since the law was passed in 2014) with a minor without a birth certificate?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 10, 2016, 01:10:04 PM
Wow, I just read that minors entering and exiting South Africa need a copy of their birth certificate in addition to their passport, even with both parents present (http://www.dha.gov.za/files/Brochures/Immigrationleaflet.pdf). Has anyone gone recently (since the law was passed in 2014) with a minor without a birth certificate?
I have been told they're really tough these days as they're trying to crack down on kid trafficking.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 01:11:22 PM
I have been told they're really tough these days as they're trying to crack down on kid trafficking.
How many white kids are trafficed into SA?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 01:47:17 PM
How many white kids are trafficed into SA?
it's what they call in politics an unintended consequense
There is a huge push to change that part of law, everything in SA politics moves at a glacial pace
http://www.msn.com/en-za/lifestyle/travel/sas-visa-rules-in-review-5-key-developments-to-keep-an-eye-on/ar-BBpbfYv?ocid=spartandhp
To be safe i ordered full BC's for everyone that doesn;t yet have
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 01:50:59 PM
Wow, I just read that minors entering and exiting South Africa need a copy of their birth certificate in addition to their passport, even with both parents present (http://www.dha.gov.za/files/Brochures/Immigrationleaflet.pdf). Has anyone gone recently (since the law was passed in 2014) with a minor without a birth certificate?
and yes they are extremely makpid
they'll check you at every point of the journey (once in LA, once in NY, once in Dubai etc. )
Most US birth certificates are what they call full anyway
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 01:59:06 PM
and yes they are extremely makpid
they'll check you at every point of the journey (once in LA, once in NY, once in Dubai etc. )
Most US birth certificates are what they call full anyway
and then this shows up on my feed http://m.news24.com/news24/SouthAfrica/News/unabridged-birth-certificate-travel-rule-scrapped-20160205

not authoritative though
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 02:20:58 PM
and then this shows up on my feed http://m.news24.com/news24/SouthAfrica/News/unabridged-birth-certificate-travel-rule-scrapped-20160205

not authoritative though
Interesting stuff. In terms of the birth certificate thing though, only using the new passports seems to apply specifically to SA passport holders, not foreign (US) passports since the parents' details would not be included. Also we're not stopping in NY, just DXB ;).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 03:25:15 PM
Interesting stuff. In terms of the birth certificate thing though, only using the new passports seems to apply specifically to new SA passport holders, not foreign (US) passports since the parents' details would not be included. Also we're not stopping in NY, just DXB ;).
FTFM
like i said it ain;t over for foreign visitors till they actually get rid of the law

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 03:43:04 PM
FTFM
like i said it ain;t over for foreign visitors till they actually get rid of the law
All true.

New question: When people visit Joburg for shabbos, do they usually stay in Glenhazel or Norwood? There don't seem to be many hotels (besides this (http://www.hotels.com/ho348144/genesis-all-suite-hotel-johannesburg-south-africa/?MGT=3&SYE=3&WOD=4&WOE=7&YGF=14&ZSX=0&q-localised-check-in=07%2F07%2F16&q-localised-check-out=07%2F10%2F16&q-room-0-adults=2&q-room-0-children=0&tab=description) one) around. just a (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10914081?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) few (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/6587695?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) Airbnb (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10502526?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) places, a couple of which appear to be frum people. Do people just get hosted at people's houses?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 03:51:58 PM
All true.

New question: When people visit Joburg for shabbos, do they usually stay in Glenhazel or Norwood? There don't seem to be many hotels (besides this (http://www.hotels.com/ho348144/genesis-all-suite-hotel-johannesburg-south-africa/?MGT=3&SYE=3&WOD=4&WOE=7&YGF=14&ZSX=0&q-localised-check-in=07%2F07%2F16&q-localised-check-out=07%2F10%2F16&q-room-0-adults=2&q-room-0-children=0&tab=description) one) around. just a (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10914081?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) few (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/6587695?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) Airbnb (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10502526?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) places, a couple of which appear to be frum people. Do people just get hosted at people's houses?
I dont know anything about that hotel but that area is smack in the middle of the "north" right by lots of kosher shops
I assume you have to know people to get hosted but South Africans are super friendly and love hosting
(Shabbos in the North is an all day affair)
Glenhazel is where it's at, not much going on in Norwood (although they aren;t that far apart)

The Genesis seems to be in shopping center (or on top of it?) i wonder what the shabbos issues might be, especially due to the security issues in SA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 03:54:00 PM
I dont know anything about that hotel but that area is smack in the middle of the "north" right by lots of kosher shops
I assume you have to know people to get hosted but South Africans are super friendly and love hosting
(Shabbos in the North is an all day affair)
Glenhazel is where it's at, not much going on in Norwood (although they aren;t that far apart)
Where's the "south"? Is it a bigger community?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 04:06:20 PM
Where's the "south"? Is it a bigger community?
LOL not any more
JNB like most communities is "on the move"
what started downtown (wolmrans street) 100+ years ago and moved to the suburbs slowly, Berea Hillbrow, Yoeville and Observatory (the south) were large jewish neighborhoods with many shuls and schools
there is practically no-one left. Hillbrow is a no go zone Yoeville has maybe one minyan left and Observatory has the Yeshiva and R' Kurtsdag's minyan (even that not every week)
Everything is now consolidated in the North (or Sandton which is really much further north but not called the "north")
all the other neighborhoods are dead or dying
Lots of Shluchim manning those empty forts
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 04:08:06 PM
LOL not any more
JNB like most communities is "on the move"
what started downtown (wolmrans street) 100+ years ago and moved to the suburbs slowly, Berea Hillbrow, Yoeville and Observatory (the south) were large jewish neighborhoods with many shuls and schools
there is practically no-one left. Hillbrow is a no go zone Yoeville has maybe one minyan left and Observatory has the Yeshiva and R' Kurtsdag's minyan (even that not every week)
Everything is now consolidated in the North (or Sandton which is really much further north but not called the "north")
all the other neighborhoods are dead or dying
Lots of Shluchim manning those empty forts
Where do visitors usually spend shabbos then? Sandton or Glenhazel? Seems like Glenhazel wins.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 10, 2016, 04:09:54 PM
Glenhazel is where it's at
Meharsha, Sunny Road, OhrSom, yeshiva College
R' Salzer R' Saffer and lots more

here's another choice by the way
http://www.glenhazelbandb.co.za/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 10, 2016, 04:41:28 PM
Glenhazel is where it's at
Meharsha, Sunny Road, OhrSom, yeshiva College
R' Salzer R' Saffer and lots more

here's another choice by the way
http://www.glenhazelbandb.co.za/
Interesting B&B. I'll try to see if we can contact people and try to get set up first though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 16, 2016, 07:01:42 PM
I'm looking more into going to Pilanesberg National Park instead of KNP and wanted to know if 3 nights is enough or too much. Also if I wanted to bring food on my own from Joburg, are there places that will sell travel meals similar to POM?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 16, 2016, 07:15:25 PM
I'm looking more into going to Pilanesberg National Park instead of KNP and wanted to know if 3 nights is enough or too much. Also if I wanted to bring food on my own from Joburg, are there places that will sell travel meals similar to POM?
if it becomes too much head over to Sun City

As far as ready to eat food, hmmm, SA'ens like to Braai, eat canned food, dreiwors and biltong... others literally bring the maid and the china. My guess is either its in the Hypermarket (picknpay) or  Kosher World. you may have to make it up yourself
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 16, 2016, 07:21:53 PM
if it becomes too much head over to Sun City

As far as ready to eat food, hmmm, SA'ens like to Braai, eat canned food, dreiwors and biltong... others literally bring the maid and the china. My guess is either its in the Hypermarket (picknpay) or  Kosher World. you may have to make it up yourself
Cool. I can't say the meat stuff appeals to me much, though if they have places you can pick up prepared food that could work. We could bring a cooler and bring that.

Main reason I'm asking is because I was looking into a tour and the price quoted seems quite high, whereas I found a nice place for $230 USD/night including all meals. I think spending an extra ~$1k for food and a car (which was what I was quoted in the price) seems quite high. Do you think a "tour"/having it arranged is more worth it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 16, 2016, 07:27:01 PM
All true.

New question: When people visit Joburg for shabbos, do they usually stay in Glenhazel or Norwood? There don't seem to be many hotels (besides this (http://www.hotels.com/ho348144/genesis-all-suite-hotel-johannesburg-south-africa/?MGT=3&SYE=3&WOD=4&WOE=7&YGF=14&ZSX=0&q-localised-check-in=07%2F07%2F16&q-localised-check-out=07%2F10%2F16&q-room-0-adults=2&q-room-0-children=0&tab=description) one) around. just a (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10914081?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) few (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/6587695?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) Airbnb (https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10502526?checkin=07%2F07%2F2016&checkout=07%2F10%2F2016&guests=2&s=_17SXbix) places, a couple of which appear to be frum people. Do people just get hosted at people's houses?

When we were there, we stayed at a family friend in Sandton.

Brought along a lot of biltong and meal mart meals.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 16, 2016, 07:32:31 PM
When we were there, we stayed at a family friend in Sandton.

Brought along a lot of biltong and meal mart meals.
Thanks. We're looking into people to stay with. We have neighbors from there, so they may help. That'd be ideal.

Are you being sarcastic about biltong, or did you forget/not know that I don't eat that stuff? That makes sense for you. I guess meal mart meals are doable, though they all look so bad. Buying local stuff may be better.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 16, 2016, 07:33:32 PM
Not being sarcastic, nor did I forget, just saying what we personally did.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 16, 2016, 07:34:32 PM
Not being sarcastic, nor did I forget, just saying what we personally did.
Yeah, I saw you edited that. Sorry about the confusion. You'd vote for that over a "tour"?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on February 16, 2016, 07:41:20 PM
I dunno. Never considered a tour. If you're able to find a good one, with KSMLs, it may work out much better.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 16, 2016, 07:44:45 PM
I dunno. Never considered a tour. If you're able to find a good one, with KSMLs, it may work out much better.
I got a quote which seems high. Seeing as I'd be driving myself and the lodge would be offering the game drives, it's not so much of a tour. Main thing is food, but is food really worth an extra ~$1k for 2 people for 4 lunches, 3 dinners and 3 breakfasts? Doesn't seem like it to me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: davidch on February 17, 2016, 05:26:17 AM
Hey!
Does anyone know if Im flying to South Africa how many empty pages do I need on my passport.
I have two empty (I.e pages 34 and 35)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 09:02:25 AM
2 empty per entry, so if you go to Victoria Falls and then back to SA you need 2 empty pages then too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 10:29:04 AM
I got a quote which seems high. Seeing as I'd be driving myself and the lodge would be offering the game drives, it's not so much of a tour. Main thing is food, but is food really worth an extra ~$1k for 2 people for 4 lunches, 3 dinners and 3 breakfasts? Doesn't seem like it to me.
$1k in dollars, seeing as the rand is really low,   seems rather high, i'm sure you can do better (i dont know of anyone though offhand)
As far as food why dont you PUTPAC Kosher world and see what they have
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 10:40:33 AM
$1k in dollars, seeing as the rand is really low,   seems rather high, i'm sure you can do better (i dont know of anyone though offhand)
As far as food why dont you PUTPAC Kosher world and see what they have
True, that's what I was thinking. I emailed back asking for a detailed breakdown and also mentioned I saw the lodge for ~$230/night. I plan on booking it myself (free cancellation until 1 month out) just in case. I spoke to the lodge itself last night and confirmed that everything is included (meals and game drives) with every rate the sell. We'll see what happens.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 17, 2016, 10:56:19 AM
we have stayed at the Genesis and its is really great and convenient. It comes with breakfast and some of the items are/were from the kosher bakery across the road. Finding a family to host you might be tricky though. Better if you can get an introduction.

3 days in Pilansberg is overkill IMHO. Its good because it close to Joburg and you dont need malaria pills but its not a substitute for Kruger.
We have self catered in Kruger - eazy peazy
What is this tour/lodge etc?  Private game lodges around Kruger cost way more than $230/night. Is this per person?   
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 17, 2016, 10:58:57 AM
3 days in Pilansburg is too much
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 11:10:30 AM
we have stayed at the Genesis and its is really great and convenient. It comes with breakfast and some of the items are/were from the kosher bakery across the road. Finding a family to host you might be tricky though. Better if you can get an introduction.

3 days in Pilansberg is overkill IMHO. Its good because it close to Joburg and you dont need malaria pills but its not a substitute for Kruger.
We have self catered in Kruger - eazy peazy
What is this tour/lodge etc?  Private game lodges around Kruger cost way more than $230/night. Is this per person?
Good to know about the Genesis. I still have to look into the connections we have there to find a place. Also did you get invited out for meals, or did you get takeout and eat in the hotel?

How many days would you recommend in Pilanesburg then? 2? I know it's no substitute for Kruger, but we won't be going to Kruger with a baby because of malaria. Madikwe is an option though. Would you say 3 days there would be overkill? The price I saw ($230) was for 2 people.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 11:10:56 AM
3 days in Pilansburg is too much
So how many would you recommend, or would you recommend driving all the way to Madikwe with a baby?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 11:31:15 AM
So how many would you recommend, or would you recommend driving all the way to Madikwe with a baby?
if you combine Hartebeespoortdam, Sun City and Pilansberg 3 days is fine
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 17, 2016, 11:47:16 AM
So how many would you recommend, or would you recommend driving all the way to Madikwe with a baby?

I have done half day trips to Pilansburg (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg1049828#msg1049828). I would say one night and the better part of two days is more than plenty.

I've never been to Madikwe. Perhaps you could fly to Gabarone? Flights look to be around $180
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on February 17, 2016, 11:55:19 AM
Also on the way to Pilansburg look at the Lesedi cultural village which sounds hokie but was fun and interesting.  Lots of great stuff to do(and eat) in and around Joburg.  What is your itinerary so far?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 12:01:07 PM
I have done half day trips to Pilansburg (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg1049828#msg1049828). I would say one night and the better part of two days is more than plenty.

I've never been to Madikwe. Perhaps you could fly to Gabarone? Flights look to be around $180
Sample itinerary
Leave JNB in AM go to Lion park, for a few hours yeah , maybe Lesedi too
Continue to HartebeespoortDam, take cable car up (handgliding?) ,, snake park, elephant sanctuary
sleep there or in sun city (if you can get the lost city for cheap)
Check out sun city in the AM, probably be too cold for Water park
 ZipLine (http://www.zip2000.com/ longest in the world? not baby friendly ;-)
Go to Pilansberg on a "two"   day tour (its only one night)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:05:10 PM
I have done half day trips to Pilansburg (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg1049828#msg1049828). I would say one night and the better part of two days is more than plenty.

I've never been to Madikwe. Perhaps you could fly to Gabarone? Flights look to be around $180
But do you agree with Dawie that combining it with Hartebeespoortdam and Sun City would be a better idea?

I did look into flying into Gabarone. Flights from JNB-GBE-CPT is about $280 ($180 RT JNB-GBE-JNB), but then we'd need to get to CPT on our own. While it may save a few dollars, it would mean a stop in JNB as opposed to a non-stop flight. And that's all assuming I could convince DW to get on a turbo prop. Oh, and we'd need to pay for the baby since it's an international flight. Do you think it's still worth it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:06:13 PM
Also on the way to Pilansburg look at the Lesedi cultural village which sounds hokie but was fun and interesting.  Lots of great stuff to do(and eat) in and around Joburg.  What is your itinerary so far?
We don't have anything planned now, just want to go to CPT on Wed.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 12:07:11 PM
But do you agree with Dawie that combining it with Hartebeespoortdam and Sun City would be a better idea?

I did look into flying into Gabarone. Flights from JNB-GBE-CPT is about $280 ($180 RT JNB-GBE-JNB), but then we'd need to get to CPT on our own. While it may save a few dollars, it would mean a stop in JNB as opposed to a non-stop flight. And that's all assuming I could convince DW to get on a turbo prop. Oh, and we'd need to pay for the baby since it's an international flight. Do you think it's still worth it?
imho no
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:07:56 PM
Sample itinerary
Leave JNB in AM go to Lion park, for a few hours yeah , maybe Lesedi too
Continue to HartebeespoortDam, take cable car up (handgliding?) ,, snake park, elephant sanctuary
sleep there or in sun city (if you can get the lost city for cheap)
Check out sun city in the AM, probably be too cold for Water park
 ZipLine (http://www.zip2000.com/ longest in the world? not baby friendly ;-)
Go to Pilansberg on a "two"   day tour (its only one night)
That looks interesting. We would like to check out the lion park. You're saying to start on Sun am, spend Sun night in Sun City, and Mon-Tue nights in Pilansburg? Am I missing a night somewhere?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:08:18 PM
imho no
That's what I was thinking and why I didn't look more into it, especially since SAA flies JNB-CPT for $60 which includes a 23kg checked bag and luggage. The discount airlines are cheaper but don't include bags.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 17, 2016, 12:13:50 PM
But do you agree with Dawie that combining it with Hartebeespoortdam and Sun City would be a better idea?
A couple of the activities he mentioned are not doable with kids, though the rest of the itinerary seems fine. I'd rather spend an extra day in CPT.
 
I did look into flying into Gabarone. Flights from JNB-GBE-CPT is about $280 ($180 RT JNB-GBE-JNB), but then we'd need to get to CPT on our own. While it may save a few dollars, it would mean a stop in JNB as opposed to a non-stop flight. And that's all assuming I could convince DW to get on a turbo prop. Oh, and we'd need to pay for the baby since it's an international flight. Do you think it's still worth it?

It's a matter of budget and personal preference. Only you can decide if its worth it. I wouldn't.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:16:02 PM
A couple of the activities he mentioned are not doable with kids, though the rest of the itinerary seems fine. I'd rather spend an extra day in CPT.
 
It's a matter of budget and personal preference. Only you can decide if its worth it. I wouldn't.
We're planning on being in CPT Wed-Sun afternoon. You think it's worth it to fly to CPT on Tue and only spend Thu pm-Tue pm in Joburg including Pilansburg? Since it'll be July, CPT will be colder, rainier than JNB, no?

Fair point about GBE.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 12:26:51 PM
That looks interesting. We would like to check out the lion park. You're saying to start on Sun am, spend Sun night in Sun City, and Mon-Tue nights in Pilansburg? Am I missing a night somewhere?
you only need one night in pilansberg, you could easily make it two so that you slow the pace down a bit (you are traveling with a baby) I think properly planned 3 nights in the region can be perfect and not too boring
you can always shorten to two and be back in JNB for Tues for a nice meal and then straight to CPT Wed morn
Sunday is also a nice time to be in JNB itself like  Rosebank Craft Market (next to they HYatt) although i dont know if they have any kosher restaurants in the mall anymore
if its the first weekend of the month http://www.artistsunderthesun.co.za/

Based on your itinerary it's a tough call. Tues night to CPT or Sunday in JNB..?
Since it's the winter, personally i'd stick to Wed Am to CPT
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:34:41 PM
you only need one night in pilansberg, you could easily make it two so that you slow the pace down a bit (you are traveling with a baby) I think properly planned 3 nights in the region can be perfect and not too boring
you can always shorten to two and be back in JNB for Tues for a nice meal and then straight to CPT Wed morn
Sunday is also a nice time to be in JNB itself like  Rosebank Craft Market (next to they HYatt) although i dont know if they have any kosher restaurants in the mall anymore
if its the first weekend of the month http://www.artistsunderthesun.co.za/

Based on your itinerary it's a tough call. Tues night to CPT or Sunday in JNB..?
Since it's the winter, personally i'd stick to Wed Am to CPT
So maybe it's best to stay on JNB on Sunday night and drive to Pilanesberg Monday morning. Spend Mon and Tue nights there, then drive to JNB and catch an afternoon flight to CPT. If we did that, would we be able to do the lion park on Fri or Sun, or would it be better to do it on the way to Pilansburg/Sun City?

Too bad we won't be there the first weekend of the month.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 12:44:00 PM
 
So maybe it's best to stay on JNB on Sunday night and drive to Pilanesberg Monday morning. Spend Mon and Tue nights there, then drive to JNB and catch an afternoon flight to CPT. If we did that, would we be able to do the lion park on Fri or Sun, or would it be better to do it on the way to Pilansburg/Sun City?
The lion park is (practically) on the way to Pilansberg right off the R512
so if you do some stuff in JNB, then go to Lion park in the afternoon(check closing times) and continue to some Lodge in Hartebeespoort to sleep..? then continue to Pilansberg Monday ...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 12:52:05 PM
The lion park is (practically) on the way to Pilansberg right off the R512
so if you do some stuff in JNB, then go to Lion park in the afternoon(check closing times) and continue to some Lodge in Hartebeespoort to sleep..? then continue to Pilansberg Monday ...
Hmmm. That would mean 1.5 days (Fri, Sun) in Joburg. I assume there are things to do in and around town those days. Let's say I did that and spent Mon-Tue nights in Pilansburg that would mean 4 game drives. Is that too many or too few?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 01:22:41 PM
Hmmm. That would mean 1.5 days (Fri, Sun) in Joburg. I assume there are things to do in and around town those days. Let's say I did that and spent Mon-Tue nights in Pilansburg that would mean 4 game drives. Is that too many or too few?
depends, on if they are offering something different each time
for Pilansberg it sounds like alot (everything is closer together and not as diverse as the Kruger)
does that include a night drive?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:25:20 PM
depends, on if they are offering something different each time
for Pilansberg it sounds like alot (everything is closer together and not as diverse as the Kruger)
does that include a night drive?
It includes an evening, 4-7p, and morning drive each day. If you arrive in the afternoon before 4pm you can go on one that day, then 2 the next day, then one the morning you check out. Seems like that could be overkill if you see animals the first 2 times, but what if you don't see anything on the first 2 or 3? Is that likely?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 01:30:43 PM
It includes an evening, 4-7p, and morning drive each day. If you arrive in the afternoon before 4pm you can go on one that day, then 2 the next day, then one the morning you check out. Seems like that could be overkill if you see animals the first 2 times, but what if you don't see anything on the first 2 or 3? Is that likely?
the guides know where the animals are, especially in the winter
Unless the drive itself is in a different area, offering a different prospective, you will see pretty much the same thing 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 01:34:10 PM
So how many would you recommend, or would you recommend driving all the way to Madikwe with a baby?
DON'T DRIVE TO MADIKWE!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:36:27 PM
DON'T DRIVE TO MADIKWE!
Wow, you have a very strong opinion there. Is it because of the baby or in general and why?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:41:43 PM
the guides know where the animals are, especially in the winter
Unless the drive itself is in a different area, offering a different prospective, you will see pretty much the same thing
So that being the case, 2-3 drives would be worth it. We can do a drive Mon evening and Tuesday morning and drive back to JNB for the night to catch a morning flight to CPT.

That would be:
Thu-Sat nights in JNB
Sun night near the dam
Mon night in Pilandsburg
Tue night in JNB

Does that make sense?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 01:43:01 PM
Wow, you have a very strong opinion there. Is it because of the baby or in general and why?
The drive isn't safe. It is really confusing and includes driving on dirt roads with absolutely no signs etc. I would not recommend it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:44:54 PM
The drive isn't safe. It is really confusing and includes driving on dirt roads with absolutely no signs etc. I would not recommend it.
Wow, that doesn't sound fun at all. Now if they had a private transfer that would be different, but then you get into the baby issue.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 01:45:54 PM
So that being the case, 2-3 drives would be worth it. We can do a drive Mon evening and Tuesday morning and drive back to JNB for the night to catch a morning flight to CPT.

That would be:
Thu-Sat nights in JNB
Sun night near the dam
Mon night in Pilandsburg
Tue night in JNB

Does that make sense?
Looks like a blast
One thing though, totally on what you;re comfortable with on driving at night in the middle of africa
the roads are not like the 405 freeway
not quite the dirt roads, but there can be potholes
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:51:29 PM
Looks like a blast
One thing though, totally on what you;re comfortable with on driving at night in the middle of africa
the roads are not like the 405 freeway
not quite the dirt roads, but there can be potholes
Good point. Let's assume I wouldn't be comfortable driving at night in the middle of nowhere. Sunset is just before 7pm the day I'd be driving, so I figured if we left at like 5pm we could be back in Joburg by dark. Even if we aren't at our hotel, we'd be in the city limits so there would be lights. Does this make sense?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 01:51:52 PM
Wow, that doesn't sound fun at all. Now if they had a private transfer that would be different, but then you get into the baby issue.
You can fly. Don't know the details. From what I heard it's a lot better than Pilansburg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 01:54:14 PM
You can fly. Don't know the details. From what I heard it's a lot better than Pilansburg.
Right, you can fly to GBE in Botswana and drive back. It's on the expensive side, so I don't know if we'll do it. I haven't ruled it out, but I'm leaning towards Pilansburg unless someone has a strong case for Madikwe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 01:55:03 PM
Good point. Let's assume I wouldn't be comfortable driving at night in the middle of nowhere. Sunset is just before 7pm the day I'd be driving, so I figured if we left at like 5pm we could be back in Joburg by dark. Even if we aren't at our hotel, we'd be in the city limits so there would be lights. Does this make sense?
yes
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 02:04:10 PM
Right, you can fly to GBE in Botswana and drive back. It's on the expensive side, so I don't know if we'll do it. I haven't ruled it out, but I'm leaning towards Pilansburg unless someone has a strong case for Madikwe.
Theres a landing strip in Madikwe. I've been told that Pilansburg is like a petting zoo in comparison to Kruger and even Madikwe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 02:14:59 PM
Theres a landing strip in Madikwe. I've been told that Pilansburg is like a petting zoo in comparison to Kruger and even Madikwe.
Ah, so if that's the case I don't mind looking more into Madikwe. What's the airport code there? I know GBE in Botswana, but Madikwe's landing strip isn't even on the map.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 17, 2016, 02:16:09 PM
I've been told that Pilansburg is like a petting zoo in comparison to Kruger and even Madikwe.

That's an unhelpful exaggeration.   
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 02:17:58 PM
It's a private strip operated by Federal Air airlines or something like that. Look on the game reserves in Madikwe websites.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 02:18:43 PM
That's an unhelpful exaggeration.
Probably. It also happens that flights to the airstrip in Madikwe are over $500/person including a baby, so that's totally out of the question. Yehuda25, what's your feelings on Madikwe?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 02:20:17 PM
That's an unhelpful exaggeration.
Im really sorry then. That's how some of the natives described it to me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 02:21:21 PM
Im really sorry then. That's how some of the natives described it to me.
Are you from SA? Have you experienced it personally?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 02:23:55 PM
No I'm not. I haven't been to Pilansburg if I haven't made that clear yet. I have been to Madikwe though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 02:35:10 PM
No I'm not. I haven't been to Pilansburg if I haven't made that clear yet. I have been to Madikwe though.
How did you get to Madikwe? How long/where did you stay? How much did it cost? Were you happy with it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on February 17, 2016, 03:05:08 PM
So how many would you recommend, or would you recommend driving all the way to Madikwe with a baby?

I went to Pilansburg and was great, as we didn't have enough time to go to kruger.  Additionally, I was told that depends on what time of year you go one might be slightly better to find the animals.  Pilansburg was great, but probably wouldn't do more then 2 days there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 03:11:24 PM
I went to Pilansburg and was great, as we didn't have enough time to go to kruger.  Additionally, I was told that depends on what time of year you go one might be slightly better to find the animals.  Pilansburg was great, but probably wouldn't do more then 2 days there.
How many game drives? 1, 2, 3?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 03:15:09 PM
How did you get to Madikwe? How long/where did you stay? How much did it cost? Were you happy with it?
I made the mistake of driving to Madikwe that's why I'm strongly advising against it. I stayed in Motswiri game reserve for two nights (6 game drives). I don't recall the price. However, it was a lot cheaper than Kruger and was booked really last minute. Also the dollar is a lot stronger now than it was then. I really enjoyed it immensely. Accommodations were great. Really good staff etc. There are nicer reserves that looked better but were full. Anything else?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 03:22:29 PM
I made the mistake of driving to Madikwe that's why I'm strongly advising against it. I stayed in Motswiri game reserve for two nights (6 game drives). I don't recall the price. However, it was a lot cheaper than Kruger and was booked really last minute. Also the dollar is a lot stronger now than it was then. I really enjoyed it immensely. Accommodations were great. Really good staff etc. There are nicer reserves that looked better but were full. Anything else?
What did you do for food? Do you remember the approx price? Now it looks like it's about R7600/night for 2 people. Not too cheap (about $490 USD) but maybe it is cheap for the area?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: chani21 on February 17, 2016, 03:23:56 PM
How many game drives? 1, 2, 3?
I only did 1 full day with a guide.  It was comfortable and he gave us professional cameras which was so fun.  However, I wish we would have stayed over and gone the next day as well and done another game drive, it was just so beautiful and amazing.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 03:26:03 PM
That's an unhelpful exaggeration.
+1
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 17, 2016, 03:30:15 PM
I brought along. I bought two frozen meat meals from Moishe's for supper. Bought some pita and lots of cheese for lunch. Breakfast I had some fruits from the reserve. They also had kosher nuts and jam that we ate. As per price it was around $800 for two people for the entire trip.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 03:31:56 PM
I brought along. I bought two frozen meat meals from Moishe's for supper. Bought some pita and lots of cheese for lunch. Breakfast I had some fruits from the reserve. They also had kosher nuts and jam that we ate. As per price it was around $800 for two people for the entire trip.
Did you do self-catering or regular? Now it's closer to $930 for self-catering or $980 for regular. Also if you fly it's still a 2 hour drive from the airport (GBE) not including any time at the border.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 03:55:05 PM
Did you do self-catering or regular? Now it's closer to $930 for self-catering or $980 for regular. Also if you fly it's still a 2 hour drive from the airport (GBE) not including any time at the border.
and you still get to drive on the dirt road
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 04:00:26 PM
and you still get to drive on the dirt road
I'm not against driving on dirt roads (the back side of the RTH in Maui didn't bother me at all), it's more about driving 4.5 hours on dirt roads. As it is, between getting to the airport in JNB 2 hours early, flying 1 hour, renting a car and driving 2 hours, driving is the quicker, cheaper way to go. As nice as Madikwe sounds, I don't think it will work on this trip.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 17, 2016, 04:13:51 PM
I'm not against driving on dirt roads (the back side of the RTH in Maui didn't bother me at all), it's more about driving 4.5 hours on dirt roads. As it is, between getting to the airport in JNB 2 hours early, flying 1 hour, renting a car and driving 2 hours, driving is the quicker, cheaper way to go. As nice as Madikwe sounds, I don't think it will work on this trip.
the road to Madikwe is not dirt, 98% of the roads in any game reserve are dirt
You can see the blacktop on google maps if you'd like. I's not sure which route Phil took, probably the northern route past sun city and pilansburg (which is not a good road past sun city). the route through  Zeerust on the toll road is blacktop straight to the park
might be an issue with the rental car anyway. But your'e not going so it's a moot point 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 17, 2016, 04:15:54 PM
the road to Madikwe is not dirt, 98% of the roads in any game reserve are dirt
You can see the blacktop on google maps if you'd like. I's not sure which route Phil took, probably the northern route past sun city and pilansburg (which is not a good road past sun city). the route through  Zeerust on the toll road is blacktop straight to the park
might be an issue with the rental car anyway. But your'e not going so it's a moot point
Probably not going. Haven't discounted it 100% yet.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 18, 2016, 06:47:03 AM
the road to Madikwe is not dirt, 98% of the roads in any game reserve are dirt
You can see the blacktop on google maps if you'd like. I's not sure which route Phil took, probably the northern route past sun city and pilansburg (which is not a good road past sun city). the route through  Zeerust on the toll road is blacktop straight to the park
might be an issue with the rental car anyway. But your'e not going so it's a moot point
Your right that you CAN get to Madikwe without going on dirt road, however, the GPS routed me that way. It seems that I wasn't the only one who had that issue cause when we finally arrived at Madikwe they apologized for not warning us beforehand not to use the GPS. Dirt road isn't an issue on its own. It is when there are no signs or cell phone reception somewhere in middle of Africa. In addition it's not ever recommended to drive into those villages. That was my experience.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 18, 2016, 06:56:12 AM
I forgot to add. On our way back...equipped with the CORRECT way home...there was a protest African style...big stones across the entire road including any shoulder or grass etc in addition to loads of garbage...and guess what we had to reroute through...you got it...DIRT ROADS! Besides being Friday afternoon...it wasn't fun to state mildly. Police were not of any help. Remember it is Africa.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 18, 2016, 09:12:23 AM
I forgot to add. On our way back...equipped with the CORRECT way home...there was a protest African style...big stones across the entire road including any shoulder or grass etc in addition to loads of garbage...and guess what we had to reroute through...you got it...DIRT ROADS! Besides being Friday afternoon...it wasn't fun to state mildly. Police were not of any help. Remember it is Africa.
we had a similar experience once from the kruger in the Bushbuckridge area, (famous for its protests) and got back in only at candlelighting...... agreed not fun
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 10:45:11 AM
I forgot to add. On our way back...equipped with the CORRECT way home...there was a protest African style...big stones across the entire road including any shoulder or grass etc in addition to loads of garbage...and guess what we had to reroute through...you got it...DIRT ROADS! Besides being Friday afternoon...it wasn't fun to state mildly. Police were not of any help. Remember it is Africa.

we had a similar experience once from the kruger in the Bushbuckridge area, (famous for its protests) and got back in only at candlelighting...... agreed not fun
Thanks guys. You're only strengthening the case not to drive to Madikwe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 18, 2016, 12:04:27 PM
I hope that explains my strong statement. I learned the hard way what it's like to get lost in Africa.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 12:13:54 PM
I hope that explains my strong statement. I learned the hard way what it's like to get lost in Africa.
FWIW I ended up on a dirt road (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=43473.msg867370#msg867370) in central Italy with no cell service and a near empty tank of gas, so I'm familiar with the helplessness feeling. It may have been in Europe, but when you're isolated on a dirt road without gas I don't think it really matters.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 18, 2016, 12:17:01 PM
FWIW I ended up on a dirt road (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=43473.msg867370#msg867370) in central Italy with no cell service and a near empty tank of gas, so I'm familiar with the helplessness feeling. It may have been in Europe, but when you're isolated on a dirt road without gas I don't think it really matters.
In Africa there's danger as well. It is a 3rd world country. Hard to compare the two.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 12:21:08 PM
In Africa there's danger as well. It is a 3rd world country. Hard to compare the two.
If you see anyone on the road. Did you bump into anyone after you took the dirt road detour?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 18, 2016, 01:23:29 PM
If you see anyone on the road. Did you bump into anyone after you took the dirt road detour?
that wouldn;t necessarily be a good thing......
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 01:39:19 PM
that wouldn;t necessarily be a good thing......
If it was people causing trouble or no one I'd take no one, but driving on a deserted dirt road in a dangerous country isn't fun either.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: philbenjoe on February 18, 2016, 03:07:48 PM
Imagine driving on dirt roads with absolutely no cell phone reception/GPS, no street signs or any information at all to figure out where you are...driving through villages that don't feel safe...running out of gas. Then when you finally think you found civilization, you found a police station and NO ONE notices you or wants to help. I even offered money but that didn't help. I tipped someone there who was kind enough to help.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 03:14:09 PM
Imagine driving on dirt roads with absolutely no cell phone reception/GPS, no street signs or any information at all to figure out where you are...driving through villages that don't feel safe...running out of gas. Then when you finally think you found civilization, you found a police station and NO ONE notices you or wants to help. I even offered money but that didn't help. I tipped someone there who was kind enough to help.
I don't believe there's no GPS reception. You may not have had the maps downloaded, but if you're on earth and not at the poles you're covered by GPS. It doesn't sound like a fun proposition, though I did go through it myself as I said, just not the village or police part, so I can sort of imagine it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 18, 2016, 03:47:29 PM
I don't believe there's no GPS reception. You may not have had the maps downloaded, but if you're on earth and not at the poles you're covered by GPS. It doesn't sound like a fun proposition, though I did go through it myself as I said, just not the village or police part, so I can sort of imagine it.
GPS wont help if there are no roads mapped
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 03:49:05 PM
GPS wont help if there are no roads mapped
True. I didn't know that's what he was referring to.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 18, 2016, 03:57:15 PM
True. I didn't know that's what he was referring to.
thyev'e apparently gotten better in that category though
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 18, 2016, 04:18:47 PM
thyev'e apparently gotten better in that category though
"Better" still isn't the same as safe.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 18, 2016, 04:45:01 PM
"Better" still isn't the same as safe.
thats why i'm going...to make sure  ;)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 08, 2016, 04:42:22 PM
Does it make sense to fly out of HLA to CPT instead of JNB? I still haven't booked anything yet, but I'm thinking of staying in Pilanesburg for 2 nights (Mon, Tue) and fly out of HLA on Wed. Flight would be at 2pm for $74.50/person. The other option if to fly from JNB for ~$78.50/person at 11am.

My question is two-fold:

1. Is the extra time in CPT worth the farther drive to JNB?
2. If flying from JNB I'd need to leave early enough that I'd miss the morning game drive, making staying in Pilanesburg Tue night kind of pointless. Would it be worth it to stay in JNB another night just to get the earlier flight?

This is assuming that there either isn't a one way rental fee for the car or that it won't change the price much.

Finally, on a different topic, when you select an infant (under 2) on SAA it charges 10% of the fare (about $8). Does this get the infant a seat? If it doesn't do all infants need seats on domestic flights within SA?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 08, 2016, 05:46:37 PM
Does it make sense to fly out of HLA to CPT instead of JNB? I still haven't booked anything yet, but I'm thinking of staying in Pilanesburg for 2 nights (Mon, Tue) and fly out of HLA on Wed. Flight would be at 2pm for $74.50/person. The other option if to fly from JNB for ~$78.50/person at 11am.

My question is two-fold:

1. Is the extra time in CPT worth the farther drive to JNB?
2. If flying from JNB I'd need to leave early enough that I'd miss the morning game drive, making staying in Pilanesburg Tue night kind of pointless. Would it be worth it to stay in JNB another night just to get the earlier flight?

This is assuming that there either isn't a one way rental fee for the car or that it won't change the price much.

Finally, on a different topic, when you select an infant (under 2) on SAA it charges 10% of the fare (about $8). Does this get the infant a seat? If it doesn't do all infants need seats on domestic flights within SA?
infant doesn;t get a seat
the difference between HLA and JNB is minimal (1/2)from NTY (if you take the toll road...) there maybe traffic to JNB
i'd go back to JNB/HLA for Tues and get an early jump on CPT
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 08, 2016, 05:53:56 PM
infant doesn;t get a seat
the difference between HLA and JNB is minimal (1/2)from NTY (if you take the toll road...) there maybe traffic to JNB
i'd go back to JNB/HLA for Tues and get an early jump on CPT
But do you need to pay for an infant (compared to in the US where you don't)?

So you'd just go from JNB, or does it not matter much? There are obviously more flights from JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 08, 2016, 06:35:28 PM
But do you need to pay for an infant (compared to in the US where you don't)?

So you'd just go from JNB, or does it not matter much? There are obviously more flights from JNB.
since when dont you pay for an lap child ? (is it only int'l? i haven;t flown with a lap child domestically in years)
I'd go to where ever the most convenient flight is
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 08, 2016, 06:38:00 PM
since when dont you pay for an lap child ? (is it only int'l? i haven;t flown with a lap child domestically in years)
I'd go to where ever the most convenient flight is
Yeah, domestically you don't pay for a lap kid.

Even if you're staying in JNB it's just as easy to get to HLA as it is to get to JNB?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 08, 2016, 07:10:33 PM
Yeah, domestically you don't pay for a lap kid.

Even if you're staying in JNB it's just as easy to get to HLA as it is to get to JNB?
Depends where you are
you could stay in Montecassino or somewhere around fourways and be close to HLA
Generally if you want food and a minyan you'll want to be in or around Glenhazel, which is closer to JNB
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 08, 2016, 07:29:00 PM
Depends where you are
you could stay in Montecassino or somewhere around fourways and be close to HLA
Generally if you want food and a minyan you'll want to be in or around Glenhazel, which is closer to JNB
Got it. Once we're going back to JNB anyway, it makes sense to stay in a Jewish area to have both food and minyanim.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 09:49:50 AM
Got it. Once we're going back to JNB anyway, it makes sense to stay in a Jewish area to have both food and minyanim.
Melrose Arch African pride is 20k marriott a night
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 10:37:57 AM
Melrose Arch African pride is 20k marriott a night
Cool! I'll have to get a Marriott card though as I'm out of points there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 10:56:27 AM
Cool! I'll have to get a Marriott card though as I'm out of points there.
there is SPG and Hyatt options (not as close)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 10:59:00 AM
there is SPG and Hyatt options (not as close)
True. Now I'm just looking into where to stay in Sun City or near that dam you mentioned earlier. It looks like it's 1 night in each place: Sun night in Sun City or near the dam, Mon on the game reserve, and Tue back in Joburg. I'm wondering if there's a way to stay in 1 place for more than 1 night. Doesn't seem like it...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 11:52:00 AM
True. Now I'm just looking into where to stay in Sun City or near that dam you mentioned earlier. It looks like it's 1 night in each place: Sun night in Sun City or near the dam, Mon on the game reserve, and Tue back in Joburg. I'm wondering if there's a way to stay in 1 place for more than 1 night. Doesn't seem like it...
you could base yourself in sun city for all three nights but then you limit yourself re: the game drive (access to Pilansberg sunrise and sunset etc . )and drive back to JNB wed morning
i'd stick with the sun night in Lost City, monday night in pilnasberg and tues in the Melrose Arch or Hyatt Rosebank
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 12:05:50 PM
you could base yourself in sun city for all three nights but then you limit yourself re: the game drive (access to Pilansberg sunrise and sunset etc . )and drive back to JNB wed morning
i'd stick with the sun night in Lost City, monday night in pilnasberg and tues in the Melrose Arch or Hyatt Rosebank
That makes sense. What do you make of the Hilton Sandton? I have loads of HH to use and C+P is 16k+R785 (vs the HR for 8k or 4k+R885).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 12:45:15 PM
That makes sense. What do you make of the Hilton Sandton? I have loads of HH to use and C+P is 16k+R785 (vs the HR for 8k or 4k+R885).
close to shuls, Gautrain, Nelson Mandela Square (maybe figure out how to use points for the MIchelanglo... one of the LHW hotels) (another interesting hotel in JNB is the Four Seasons Westcliff, a real old time gem from the colonial days similar to the Belmond Igauzu)
dont know about the food situation in Sandton
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 12:49:07 PM
close to shuls, Gautrain, Nelson Mandela Square (maybe figure out how to use points for the MIchelanglo... one of the LHW hotels) (another interesting hotel in JNB is the Four Seasons Westcliff, a real old time gem from the colonial days similar to the Belmond Igauzu)
dont know about the food situation in Sandton
Right. I may just try to open another Marriott card, use the free cat 4 night at the African Pride, and the 87.5k signup for the Protea Sea Point. Question remains if Chase will give me the card.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 02:55:12 PM
For JNB-CPT, how would you rank the following airlines and why:

Comair (BA)
Kulula (MN)
South African (SA)
Mango (JE)
FlySafair (FE)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 03:16:50 PM
For JNB-CPT, how would you rank the following airlines and why:

Comair (BA)
Kulula (MN)
South African (SA)
Mango (JE)
FlySafair (FE)
Comair is like British Airways (wait it is British Airways)
Kulula is a cross between Spirit and WN - they are into the humour but rate below on most other things
Mango is like frontier (they are sort of SAA's budget step child)
SAA is your standard National Airline, used to be better...
dont know about FE, looks very much like a ryanair knockoff
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 03:42:20 PM
Comair is like British Airways (wait it is British Airways)
Kulula is a cross between Spirit and WN - they are into the humour but rate below on most other things
Mango is like frontier (they are sort of SAA's budget step child)
SAA is your standard National Airline, used to be better...
dont know about FE, looks very much like a ryanair knockoff
Thanks for the breakdown.

Kulula is ~$120 for 2 adults and a lap child (incl a 20kg bag per person including lap kid)
Flysafair is ~$96 for 2 adults and a lap child (plus $15.24 for a 20kg bag, not including lap kid) for a total of $126.50
SAA operated by Mango is ~$166 for 2 adults and a lap child (incl a 23kg bag per person including lap kid)
BA is ~$242 OR 13,650 avios (If Avios are valued at 1.2cpp, then the fare would be $163.80) for 2 adults and a lap child (incl a 23kg bag per person including lap kid)

Based on the above, what would be the best option assuming we don't need more than 40kg checked in and they're not super makpid on the 7kg carry on weight restrictions?

Do SA and BA offer kosher meals on those flights? It doesn't appear so...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on March 09, 2016, 03:43:26 PM
For JNB-CPT, how would you rank the following airlines and why:

Comair (BA)
Kulula (MN)
South African (SA)
Mango (JE)
FlySafair (FE)


On my most recent trip I have flown all of them besides for FE. South African is your standard one, think any of the major American ones. Comair we flew with to Victoria falls and the planes were very old, but empty too. Mango we had a fresh new plane from the smell of it, very pleasant smooth flight from JNB to HLA. And we flew kulula from JNB to CPT which was a really fun flight, younger crowd on the flight. Both Kulula and Mango are nowhere on the league of frontier or spirit, they are much better. Including free drinks, free piece of luggage, free carry on. In fact when I asked if we had to pay for a checked bag, the agent at the counter responded: "what do you think this is, spirit? :)"
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 09, 2016, 03:45:26 PM
On my most recent trip I have flown all of them besides for FE. South African is your standard one, think any of the major American ones. Comair we flew with to Victoria falls and the planes were very old, but empty too. Mango we had a fresh new plane from the smell of it, very pleasant smooth flight from JNB to HLA. And we flew kulula from JNB to CPT which was a really fun flight, younger crowd on the flight. Both Kulula and Mango are nowhere on the league of frontier or spirit, they are much better. Including free drinks, free piece of luggage, free carry on. In fact when I asked if we had to pay for a checked bag, the agent at the counter responded: "what do you think this is, spirit? :)"
Lol, so I'm leaning towards Kulula for that reason. Thanks!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2016, 07:04:05 PM
Lol, so I'm leaning towards Kulula for that reason. Thanks!!
it's a short flight who cares, take the cheapest
Kulula is fine
O. In fact when I asked if we had to pay for a checked bag, the agent at the counter responded: "what do you think this is, spirit? :)"
ALOL
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: davidch on March 10, 2016, 05:28:22 AM
in joburg for the day.
Any ideas of things to do?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 10, 2016, 12:22:57 PM
in joburg for the day.
Any ideas of things to do?

Soweto Tour
Lion Park
Gold Reef City + Helicopter tour
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 10, 2016, 12:27:02 PM
Soweto Tour
Lion Park
Gold Reef City + Helicopter tour
Is a Soweto Tour good with an infant?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 10, 2016, 12:27:57 PM
Is a Soweto Tour good with an infant?

Never done it, not sure
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 10, 2016, 12:28:33 PM
Never done it, not sure
Ok. I guess I'll have to look into it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on March 10, 2016, 01:23:21 PM
Yes it's fine, you're in the car most of the time
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on March 10, 2016, 01:32:55 PM
Is a Soweto Tour good with an infant?

Yes you'll be fine, we walked around town there, and nobody bothered us, besides asking for chips.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 10, 2016, 01:55:07 PM
Yes it's fine, you're in the car most of the time
Your own car or a guide's? I didn't look into it yet.

Yes you'll be fine, we walked around town there, and nobody bothered us, besides asking for chips.
Did you go on your own or with a tour? You can just walk around by yourself?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 10, 2016, 02:28:41 PM
Your own car or a guide's? I didn't look into it yet.
Did you go on your own or with a tour? You can just walk around by yourself?
Guide, dont try it by yourself
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 10, 2016, 02:35:17 PM
Guide, dont try it by yourself
Sounds good to me. How long does it take? Couple hours? Half day? Any recommended guides?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on March 10, 2016, 02:42:26 PM
We had a guide (don't remember who but you can contact Celeste at Celafrica). It took a few hours as was very interesting
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 16, 2016, 05:57:05 PM
Since the Palace of the Lost City in Sun City and the Black Rhino Lodge in Pilanesburg are the same price per night, is there any reason to stay in Sun City itself instead of spending 2 nights in the game reserve?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 16, 2016, 06:54:23 PM
Since the Palace of the Lost City in Sun City and the Black Rhino Lodge in Pilanesburg are the same price per night, is there any reason to stay in Sun City itself instead of spending 2 nights in the game reserve?
each is its own unique experience, Access to both places
I would do a night in each if possible
if you don;t stay in the game lodge you will miss the "night in the park experience, sunset and sunrise game drive (not sure what they offer)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 16, 2016, 06:56:30 PM
each is its own unique experience, Access to both places
I would do a night in each if possible
if you don;t stay in the game lodge you will miss the "night in the park experience, sunset and sunrise game drive (not sure what they offer)
The questions was to stay in the game reserve for 2 night or one night each. Thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 16, 2016, 06:57:42 PM
The questions was to stay in the game reserve for 2 night or one night each. Thanks!
just for the experience i would do one each
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 16, 2016, 07:00:08 PM
just for the experience i would do one each
Does $200 USD/night sound reasonable or is that high?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 16, 2016, 07:02:02 PM
Does $200 USD/night sound reasonable or is that high?
Low for both
thank the rand
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 16, 2016, 07:11:41 PM
Low for both
thank the rand
lol, plus it'll be the middle of winter, presumable low season.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 05, 2016, 03:03:08 PM
In CPT, what's the most centrally located area to stay in NOT for shabbos? I was thinking of staying here (http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/cptnw-protea-hotel-north-wharf-waterfront/) which is located in/near De Waterkant (https://www.google.com/maps/place/Protea+Hotel+North+Wharf+Waterfront/@-33.916571,18.424053,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x5b465838bbb225c9). I read that is a nice area to be in during the week, plus that hotel is the best value for Marriott points in the area.

For shabbos we were thinking of staying at the Protea Sea Point (http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/cptsp-protea-hotel-sea-point/) to be in the eruv, but it's almost not worth it to use points there since the room is only $78 (or 15k points)/night.

The other questions I had is: Is it just worth it to stay in Sea Point the entire time (Wed-Sun) or split it up with 2 nights at each location?

Just for comparison, the Westin is not a good deal on points in July.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on April 05, 2016, 03:10:27 PM
Just for comparison, the Westin is not a good deal on points in July.

Nice hotel, though. Just avoid the hookers.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 05, 2016, 03:12:14 PM
Nice hotel, though. Just avoid the hookers.
I wasn't really considering it, though I have no doubt it's a nice place. Any thoughts on the other other Protea or splitting time?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 05, 2016, 04:38:11 PM
I wasn't really considering it, though I have no doubt it's a nice place. Any thoughts on the other other Protea or splitting time?
LOL
it's only a 15 min drive (w/o traffic) from V&A to Sea point
if being close to davening and food is important just stay  in seapoint
i'd probably still split ;-P

ps the westin is down the block from the Protea by the waterfront
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 05, 2016, 04:52:07 PM
LOL
it's only a 15 min drive (w/o traffic) from V&A to Sea point
if being close to davening and food is important just stay  in seapoint
i'd probably still split ;-P

ps the westin is down the block from the Protea by the waterfront
By V&A do you mean Protea Hotel North Wharf Waterfront (the one I referenced)? In terms of food, it looks like the dairy restaurants are in Gardens anyway, not in Sea Point, so the Protea Hotel North Wharf Waterfront is closer to them anyway. If we do stay there, are many activities walkable, or will we still need to drive?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 05, 2016, 05:30:54 PM
By V&A do you mean Protea Hotel North Wharf Waterfront (the one I referenced)? In terms of food, it looks like the dairy restaurants are in Gardens anyway, not in Sea Point, so the Protea Hotel North Wharf Waterfront is closer to them anyway. If we do stay there, are many activities walkable, or will we still need to drive?
the whole waterfront is walk able (including the boat to Robben island if you are so inclined)
 I havent; been to the Gardens restaurants (not like Sea point has so many choices... the kosher stores (or i should say the stores that have kosher aisles) are mainly in Sea point

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 05, 2016, 05:42:05 PM
the whole waterfront is walk able (including the boat to Robben island if you are so inclined)
 I havent; been to the Gardens restaurants (not like Sea point has so many choices... the kosher stores (or i should say the stores that have kosher aisles) are mainly in Sea point
Good to know. I guess we'll probably stay on the waterfront then for the first half and in Sea Point for the second half. I know there are more kosher options in Sea Point, but I don't care for delis so I'd want dairy. Is Robben Island worth? Is it an all day event? I was thinking about it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 05, 2016, 06:02:10 PM
Good to know. I guess we'll probably stay on the waterfront then for the first half and in Sea Point for the second half. I know there are more kosher options in Sea Point, but I don't care for delis so I'd want dairy. Is Robben Island worth? Is it an all day event? I was thinking about it.
never did it and personally dont care for it,
I did the boat from Hout bay to seal island... what a ride (with a 2 month old baby too) (wife wasn;t impressed {insert devil emoticon})
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 05, 2016, 06:10:22 PM
never did it and personally dont care for it,
I did the boat from Hout bay to seal island... what a ride (with a 2 month old baby too) (wife wasn;t impressed {insert devil emoticon})
What does "what a ride" mean? Bad? Choppy? I'm prone to sea sickness so I would avoid it. We're thinking of going to Cape Point (ride the funicular), Table Mountain (take the cable car), and explore the waterfront. Do you think we'll have time for more from Wednesday at around noon to Sunday morning (with a 1:30pm flight)?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 06, 2016, 10:35:07 AM
What does "what a ride" mean? Bad? Choppy? I'm prone to sea sickness so I would avoid it. We're thinking of going to Cape Point (ride the funicular), Table Mountain (take the cable car), and explore the waterfront. Do you think we'll have time for more from Wednesday at around noon to Sunday morning (with a 1:30pm flight)?
depends on the day, but in July in the south Atlantic.... yes, what a ride means choppy and sea sick
yes,  you should have time for more
Boulder Bay and the penguins is a must (maybe on the way up from Cape Point) shabbos comes in about 530pm
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 06, 2016, 10:50:01 AM
depends on the day, but in July in the south Atlantic.... yes, what a ride means choppy and sea sick
yes,  you should have time for more
Boulder Bay and the penguins is a must (maybe on the way up from Cape Point) shabbos comes in about 530pm
Oh right, I forgot about the penguins. It makes sense to go to Boulder Beach on the way back from Cape Point. I was thinking of going there on Thursday. Wednesday afternoon we'll walk around the waterfont. Friday do Table Mountian and switch hotels. Sunday morning (we'd want to be at the airport by 11:30 to return the car and check in for a 1:30pm flight) will be basically just getting ready to go, maybe walk around Seat Point some more to take the pictures we couldn't take while walking around on Shabbos. Does that make sense? Will we have extra time on Friday? Any recommendations of what to do then?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 06, 2016, 01:42:32 PM
Oh right, I forgot about the penguins. It makes sense to go to Boulder Beach on the way back from Cape Point. I was thinking of going there on Thursday. Wednesday afternoon we'll walk around the waterfont. Friday do Table Mountian and switch hotels. Sunday morning (we'd want to be at the airport by 11:30 to return the car and check in for a 1:30pm flight) will be basically just getting ready to go, maybe walk around Seat Point some more to take the pictures we couldn't take while walking around on Shabbos. Does that make sense? Will we have extra time on Friday? Any recommendations of what to do then?
Possibly extra time on Friday, with table mtn, you may have time for things like the Jewish Museum, Groote Schuur, Bo-Kaap (none of which is a "must" see) (Kirstenbosch wont be in bloom so not nogea)
Keep in mind also that if there is bad weather (a possiblity in July in CPT, that the cable car will be closed) maybe plan on doing it Wed. with friday as an alternate and do VA on friday with some other things. Hout Bay fish market (Mariner's Wharf) perhaps lekovod shabbos
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on April 06, 2016, 01:56:59 PM
Why bother with 2 hotels. just stay in sea point. Its less 10 minutes away.  There is Avrons also I'm pretty sure there is prepared foods at the three grocery stores. The V&A waterfront is not much more than a mall which you can visit for a couple of hours if the weather is bad. In July the weather can be warm and sunny or it can be a howling gale. Have a backup plan.  Keep in mind that weather might be different on the False Bay. I trust you plan on going on the wine route. There are  2 kosher wineries and a cheesery that has kosher cheese. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 06, 2016, 01:58:58 PM
Possibly extra time on Friday, with table mtn, you may have time for things like the Jewish Museum, Groote Schuur, Bo-Kaap (none of which is a "must" see) (Kirstenbosch wont be in bloom so not nogea)
Keep in mind also that if there is bad weather (a possiblity in July in CPT, that the cable car will be closed) maybe plan on doing it Wed. with friday as an alternate and do VA on friday with some other things. Hout Bay fish market (Mariner's Wharf) perhaps lekovod shabbos
Good point about the weather. I do plan on keeping the schedule flexible because of that. I'd switch Wed and Fri in a heartbeat if that's how the weather worked out. I was thinking of the Jewish Museum, but they close early on Friday obviously. I'd have to see about the fish market and the other suggestions. Thanks for them!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 06, 2016, 02:15:18 PM
Why bother with 2 hotels. just stay in sea point. Its less 10 minutes away.  There is Avrons also I'm pretty sure there is prepared foods at the three grocery stores. The V&A waterfront is not much more than a mall which you can visit for a couple of hours if the weather is bad. In July the weather can be warm and sunny or it can be a howling gale. Have a backup plan.  Keep in mind that weather might be different on the False Bay. I trust you plan on going on the wine route. There are  2 kosher wineries and a cheesery that has kosher cheese.
The main reason I was considering 2 hotels is because the one on the waterfront is bigger (a 1 bedroom apt vs a standard room), it's a better deal for points (it's a lot more expensive for cash but the same number of points), and it's in a nice area. There's really nothing to do there besides a mall? I find that hard to believe.

I did hear that there was prepared food at the stores, but we hope to go to the restaurants as well. Plus I'd imagine there's not too much dairy prepared food, and I don't eat meat.

I'm aware the weather may be bad, so we'll have alternate plans just in case.  I found this site: http://www.capetown.travel/blog/entry/100-things-to-do-in-winter. Are there any things that a worth seeing around the bay?

We don't plan on going to the wineries. Neither I nor DW are into wine, so we don't see the point in going. Plus I've been to the wineries in Napa. If we had more time though I'd consider it though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 06, 2016, 04:41:48 PM
The main reason I was considering 2 hotels is because the one on the waterfront is bigger (a 1 bedroom apt vs a standard room), it's a better deal for points (it's a lot more expensive for cash but the same number of points), and it's in a nice area. There's really nothing to do there besides a mall? I find that hard to believe.

I did hear that there was prepared food at the stores, but we hope to go to the restaurants as well. Plus I'd imagine there's not too much dairy prepared food, and I don't eat meat.

I'm aware the weather may be bad, so we'll have alternate plans just in case.  I found this site: http://www.capetown.travel/blog/entry/100-things-to-do-in-winter. Are there any things that a worth seeing around the bay?

We don't plan on going to the wineries. Neither I nor DW are into wine, so we don't see the point in going. Plus I've been to the wineries in Napa. If we had more time though I'd consider it though.
in season the wine route is one of the most beautiful places  in the world, I probably wouldn;t bother in July, i agree with your choice
Thats a great list they put together
some are LOL moments M(j)uizenberg Tour...

49. GORDON'S BAY WINTER WONDERLAND

52. JUMPING SHARKS AKA AIR JAWS
Shark Cages!!

55. BICYCLE TOUR THROUGH A TOWNSHIP- That should be fun, Imagine a bike ride though South Central LA

There should be plenty in the way of Parve and Milky Prepared Food, not CY though in PicknPay and Checkers




Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 06, 2016, 04:44:33 PM
in season the wine route is one of the most beautiful places  in the world, I probably wouldn;t bother in July, i agree with your choice
Thats a great list they put together
some are LOL moments M(j)uizenberg Tour...

49. GORDON'S BAY WINTER WONDERLAND

52. JUMPING SHARKS AKA AIR JAWS
Shark Cages!!

55. BICYCLE TOUR THROUGH A TOWNSHIP- That should be fun, Imagine a bike ride though South Central LA

There should be plenty in the way of Parve and Milky Prepared Food, not CY though in PicknPay and Checkers
I don't do chalav yisrael, so that's fine with me. Good to know though. I can skip a ride through South Central, thank you very much. :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 06, 2016, 04:48:26 PM
I don't do chalav yisrael, so that's fine with me. Good to know though. I can skip a ride through South Central, thank you very much. :)
it's with a guide ...(hopefully armed?)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 06, 2016, 04:52:42 PM
it's with a guide ...(hopefully armed?)
Maybe. Is that what a tour of Soweto is like also?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 06, 2016, 05:48:12 PM
Maybe. Is that what a tour of Soweto is like also?
yes , but not on a bike
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on April 07, 2016, 07:33:38 AM
Westin or V & A hotels (Protea etc.) aren't in a great location, maybe good if your are going to the conference center or have meetings in the Foreshore (ie. downtown).
Sea Point hotels are a better choice and it's great to walk on the promenade all day.  July is cold and wet in CT - can even rain the whole month to consider that in your plans.
Spar, Checkers and Pick N Pay in Sea Point have ready-made milk, parev and meat food including burgers and shwarma at Checkers.
There are 2 Kosher milk places, Riteve (Jewish museum complex) and coffee-time (never been)
Goldies deli (not open at night) is also in Sea Point

The V&A waterfront has some malls, the aquarium, bars and some harbor boat rides.  Nice place to walk around and you can do some clothes shopping.
You can do boulders penguins, seal island (beware, ocean is rough) and Cape Point in 1 day.
If the weather is bad and the cloth (clouds) are on table mountain - consider driving to the top of Signal Hill (that's what locals do) for great city views.  You can also para-glide down to the Sea Point beachfront from there.


Don't forget to keep your receipts for goods to be exported and claim a VAT refund before international check-in at CPT, DUR or JNB airports.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 10:48:49 AM
Westin or V & A hotels (Protea etc.) aren't in a great location, maybe good if your are going to the conference center or have meetings in the Foreshore (ie. downtown).
Sea Point hotels are a better choice and it's great to walk on the promenade all day.  July is cold and wet in CT - can even rain the whole month to consider that in your plans.
Spar, Checkers and Pick N Pay in Sea Point have ready-made milk, parev and meat food including burgers and shwarma at Checkers.
There are 2 Kosher milk places, Riteve (Jewish museum complex) and coffee-time (never been)
Goldies deli (not open at night) is also in Sea Point

The V&A waterfront has some malls, the aquarium, bars and some harbor boat rides.  Nice place to walk around and you can do some clothes shopping.
You can do boulders penguins, seal island (beware, ocean is rough) and Cape Point in 1 day.
If the weather is bad and the cloth (clouds) are on table mountain - consider driving to the top of Signal Hill (that's what locals do) for great city views.  You can also para-glide down to the Sea Point beachfront from there.


Don't forget to keep your receipts for goods to be exported and claim a VAT refund before international check-in at CPT, DUR or JNB airports.
Thanks for your tips. We're well aware that the weather in July may be cold and rainy the whole month, or it could be sunny and warmer. Since we can't go any other time of year, we'll have to make the best of it.

If there's nothing to do at the waterfront, why are so many of the hotels there? They can't all be for business travelers. All the sources I've seen online of neighborhoods to stay in while in Cape Town said De Waterkant is a popular one. Is your recommendation coming from personal experience? Are you from Cape Town?

We'd stay far away from seal island because of the boat ride, since we can see all the seals we want here in LA from dry land. While para-gliding will be out of the question with a baby, thanks for the tip about Signal Hill.

In terms of food, obviously there's a lot in Sea Point. What types of dairy take of food do they have at Checkers, Spars, etc? I don't think I've ever seen dairy take out before?

I haven't booked any hotels yet, but I may still consider just booking 4 nights in Sea Point instead of switching.

We're not usually big souvenir shoppers, but if we did come across something we'd try to get VAT back of course.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 07, 2016, 12:34:53 PM
Thanks for your tips. We're well aware that the weather in July may be cold and rainy the whole month, or it could be sunny and warmer. Since we can't go any other time of year, we'll have to make the best of it.

If there's nothing to do at the waterfront, why are so many of the hotels there? They can't all be for business travelers. All the sources I've seen online of neighborhoods to stay in while in Cape Town said De Waterkant is a popular one. Is your recommendation coming from personal experience? Are you from Cape Town?

We'd stay far away from seal island because of the boat ride, since we can see all the seals we want here in LA from dry land. While para-gliding will be out of the question with a baby, thanks for the tip about Signal Hill.

In terms of food, obviously there's a lot in Sea Point. What types of dairy take of food do they have at Checkers, Spars, etc? I don't think I've ever seen dairy take out before?

I haven't booked any hotels yet, but I may still consider just booking 4 nights in Sea Point instead of switching.

We're not usually big souvenir shoppers, but if we did come across something we'd try to get VAT back of course.
the point you made that the Protea by the waterfront is bigger and nicer (and newer) then the one in sea point still stands
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 12:37:24 PM
the point you made that the Protea by the waterfront is bigger and nicer (and newer) then the one in sea point still stands
True. The argument is now larger, newer, better points value vs "better" location, bad points value (or pay cash), don't have to switch.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on April 07, 2016, 01:16:40 PM
If there's nothing to do at the waterfront, why are so many of the hotels there? They can't all be for business travelers.
Bars, eg Bascule whisky bar has a fantastic selection - similar to the range at the Karl May bar in Dresden, restaurants (not kosher), mall, aquarium, lots of security so very popular at night.
All the sources I've seen online of neighborhoods to stay in while in Cape Town said De Waterkant is a popular one.
It's similar to SOHO or Tribeca, NYC, but nothing there at all, adjacent to some Mosques if you need a place to daven
Is your recommendation coming from personal experience? Are you from Cape Town?
Yes was just there last month, yes 18+ years
What types of dairy take of food do they have at Checkers, Spars, etc? I don't think I've ever seen dairy take out before?
Checkers has: Sandwiches, quiches, fried fish, salads, pizza, lasagne etc.
I haven't booked any hotels yet, but I may still consider just booking 4 nights in Sea Point instead of switching.
The waterfront, Gardens, city etc. is 10 mins drive from Sea Point, not sure why you'd want to stay 2 nights in each place esp. with a baby?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 01:33:23 PM
Bars, eg Bascule whisky bar has a fantastic selection - similar to the range at the Karl May bar in Dresden, restaurants (not kosher), mall, aquarium, lots of security so very popular at night.It's similar to SOHO or Tribeca, NYC, but nothing there at all, adjacent to some Mosques if you need a place to davenYes was just there last month, yes 18+ yearsCheckers has: Sandwiches, quiches, fried fish, salads, pizza, lasagne etc.The waterfront, Gardens, city etc. is 10 mins drive from Sea Point, not sure why you'd want to stay 2 nights in each place esp. with a baby?
Wow, well as a Capetonian  your opinion certainly carries more weight. I hear you on the waterfront area. I'd say similar things about Tribeca, soho in Manhattan. They're nice to visit as a tourist, but not much to do besides walk the streets and people watch. At least de waterkant seems to be prettier, at least from Google street view.

Another wow! I never would have thought that a supermarket would have pizza, quiche or lasagna at a takeout counter. That's right up our alley. Do you know if their pizza is better or worse than Riteve (their site says they do, and all their prices are ridiculously cheap on top of that)?

True, since Sea Point and the waterfront are so close it may just be worth it to stay there and not have to move the baby. It may just mean a poor points booking or paying cash.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 02:00:14 PM
Trying to decide between two times for flights to CPT (from JNB). One lands at 11:20am, the other at 12:10pm. Will taking the earlier flight make any significant difference in terms of being able to potentially go up the cable car on Table Mtn if the weather is clear?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 07, 2016, 02:09:36 PM
Trying to decide between two times for flights to CPT (from JNB). One lands at 11:20am, the other at 12:10pm. Will taking the earlier flight make any significant difference in terms of being able to potentially go up the cable car on Table Mtn if the weather is clear?
Last Car up in July is 4:30 pm
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 02:10:11 PM
Last Car up in July is 4:30 pm
So you're saying to go for the earlier flight or it doesn't make a difference?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 07, 2016, 02:15:31 PM
are you planning to go straight to the mtn or check in first
probably doesn't;t make a whole lot of difference though
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 02:17:58 PM
are you planning to go straight to the mtn or check in first
probably doesn't;t make a whole lot of difference though
Well we'd probably want to go to the hotel to drop of our stuff so we don't have to schlep it around all day, then eat (or pick up) lunch, then go. There's virtually no price difference ($4 total cheaper for the earlier flight), but we'd prefer the later flight if it won't make a difference.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on April 07, 2016, 02:27:09 PM
Another wow! I never would have thought that a supermarket would have pizza, quiche or lasagna at a takeout counter. That's right up our alley. Do you know if their pizza is better or worse than Riteve (their site says they do, and all their prices are ridiculously cheap on top of that)?
There is food made in store and frozen/refrigerated (lasagne etc.) mostly from Norrie Caterers (also the owners of Cafe Riteve).  Didn't compare the pizza but regarding the prices - eating out and paying with strong foreign currency is a huge perk ;-)  Eg. Ribs at Avron's was R190
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 07, 2016, 02:30:45 PM
There is food made in store and frozen/refrigerated (lasagne etc.) mostly from Norrie Caterers (also the owners of Cafe Riteve).  Didn't compare the pizza but regarding the prices - eating out and paying with strong foreign currency is a huge perk ;-)  Eg. Ribs at Avron's was R190
Haha, yup! Any thoughts on the flights?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 08, 2016, 02:51:23 PM
Does anyone have a good Soweto tour to recommend?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 08, 2016, 02:56:40 PM
Does anyone have a good Soweto tour to recommend?

Get a local chauffeur to be your tour guide, most authentic way.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 08, 2016, 03:06:52 PM
Get a local chauffeur to be your tour guide, most authentic way.
Do you have any recommendations?

I was looking at this (http://sowetoguidedtours.co.za/soweto-half-day-tour/) tour which was #8 (https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g312578-d4139166-Reviews-Soweto_Guided_Tours_Day_Tours-Johannesburg_Greater_Johannesburg_Gauteng.html) on TA. At R550/person min 2 people, would a chauffeur be cheaper? Would such a person stop at the same attraction a tour would?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 08, 2016, 03:42:10 PM
Do you have any recommendations?

I was looking at this (http://sowetoguidedtours.co.za/soweto-half-day-tour/) tour which was #8 (https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g312578-d4139166-Reviews-Soweto_Guided_Tours_Day_Tours-Johannesburg_Greater_Johannesburg_Gauteng.html) on TA. At R550/person min 2 people, would a chauffeur be cheaper? Would such a person stop at the same attraction a tour would?

We hired are own person who took us all over for R1000 so about R100 an hour. He took all over that day, lion park, joburg, Soweto and more. We picked him up at the airport in the morning and he stayed with us the whole day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 08, 2016, 03:48:28 PM
We hired are own person who took us all over for R1000 so about R100 an hour. He took all over that day, lion park, joburg, Soweto and more. We picked him up at the airport in the morning and he stayed with us the whole day.
Hmmm, so we're landing at about 9pm Thursday night and were planning on going to Pilanesburg GR on Sunday afternoon. We wanted to do the lion park on Sunday morning on the way. That leaves Friday for a Soweto and Joburg tour, but with shabbos starting at around 5:30pm that week we really will only have a half day.

How long were you in Joburg for? Did you rent a car? We're planning on renting one to drive to the game reserve.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 08, 2016, 04:28:05 PM
Hmmm, so we're landing at about 9pm Thursday night and were planning on going to Pilanesburg GR on Sunday afternoon. We wanted to do the lion park on Sunday morning on the way. That leaves Friday for a Soweto and Joburg tour, but with shabbos starting at around 5:30pm that week we really will only have a half day.

How long were you in Joburg for? Did you rent a car? We're planning on renting one to drive to the game reserve.

We landed about 9am Friday morning in HLA, went straight to Lion Park about 10 minute drive from the airport. From there we drove to Soweto and were there for a few hours, than some late lunch in joburg, and to our host for Shabbos, was in total about 10 hours with our driver.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 08, 2016, 04:32:26 PM
We landed about 9am Friday morning in HLA, went straight to Lion Park about 10 minute drive from the airport. From there we drove to Soweto and were there for a few hours, than some late lunch in joburg, and to our host for Shabbos, was in total about 10 hours with our driver.
You were there in the summer when shabbos was late, so that makes sense. I was thinking on having someone pick us up Friday morning around 9am and drop us back around 3pm. We still don't know where we're staying. but we hope to stay in the Glenhazel area. Did your guy include entrance fees in his price?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 08, 2016, 05:16:39 PM
You were there in the summer when shabbos was late, so that makes sense. I was thinking on having someone pick us up Friday morning around 9am and drop us back around 3pm. We still don't know where we're staying. but we hope to stay in the Glenhazel area. Did your guy include entrance fees in his price?

Nope R1000 was just for him, keep in mind that was less than $100 for a full day of driving.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 08, 2016, 05:51:59 PM
Nope R1000 was just for him, keep in mind that was less than $100 for a full day of driving.
I know, if was a good price.  My concern was that an official tour guide would know more than just a chauffeur driver.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 10, 2016, 07:02:03 PM
Update: Mango now has cheaper flights JNB-CPT for about $40 cheaper total with a flight leaving at 8:10am instead of 10am on Kulula. Is it worth going with Mango over Kulula?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 10, 2016, 07:39:13 PM
Update: Mango now has cheaper flights JNB-CPT for about $40 cheaper total with a flight leaving at 8:10am instead of 10am on Kulula. Is it worth going with Mango over Kulula?

Sure, they're both very good.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 10, 2016, 08:23:49 PM
Sure, they're both very good.
Cool. Now just have to decide if I should go earlier to save the $40.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on April 11, 2016, 03:58:57 AM
Both Mango and Kulula are fine but Kulua (MN) have more flights and are the "low cost" of Comair who have the BA license in RSA.  If there is a MN flight problem you'll often be moved to BA, so more flights and options.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on April 11, 2016, 06:38:15 AM
Both Mango and Kulula are fine but Kulua (MN) have more flights and are the "low cost" of Comair who have the BA license in RSA.  If there is a MN flight problem you'll often be moved to BA, so more flights and options.

And mango is the low cost of SAA.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 11, 2016, 08:57:14 AM
Both Mango and Kulula are fine but Kulua (MN) have more flights and are the "low cost" of Comair who have the BA license in RSA.  If there is a MN flight problem you'll often be moved to BA, so more flights and options.
So you'd recommend Kulula over Mango for a $40 premium?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on April 11, 2016, 09:23:46 AM
And mango is the low cost of SAA.
Indeed
So you'd recommend Kulula over Mango for a $40 premium?
Kulula has been recently "notoriously delayed" per a CPT-JNB frequent flier mate
He also recommended using https://www.travelstart.co.za to compare options.
I have also flown Flysafair, was fine, but without a baby and luggage so can't advise...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 11, 2016, 09:31:18 AM
IndeedKulula has been recently "notoriously delayed" per a CPT-JNB frequent flier mate
He also recommended using https://www.travelstart.co.za to compare options.
I have also flown Flysafair, was fine, but without a baby and luggage so can't advise...
So based on that Mango sounds better. I'll check out the site. Thanks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: AJK on April 11, 2016, 09:56:12 AM
Dude, you're spending entirely too much time decided how you're gonna fly from one city in SA to another. Pick the best price and time and call it a day.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 11, 2016, 10:00:17 AM
Dude, you're spending entirely too much time decided how you're gonna fly from one city in SA to another. Pick the best price and time and call it a day.
LOL! +1
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 11, 2016, 11:19:40 AM
Dude, you're spending entirely too much time decided how you're gonna fly from one city in SA to another. Pick the best price and time and call it a day.
lol, I've decided already and booked the Mango flight. Sorry for annoying you guys.  ;)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on April 12, 2016, 02:15:45 PM
Wiki updated.

Metzuyan has reopened. Was formerly the best meat place in the city.

Added Market Cafe, which is in the Norwood Mall

Added Jozi Blue and So Sushi, both in Glenhazel
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 12, 2016, 02:18:48 PM
Wiki updated.

Metzuyan has reopened. Was formerly the best meat place in the city.

Added Market Cafe, which is in the Norwood Mall

Added Jozi Blue and So Sushi, both in Glenhazel
Thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 12, 2016, 03:49:48 PM
Wiki updated.

Metzuyan has reopened. Was formerly the best meat place in the city.

Added Market Cafe, which is in the Norwood Mall

Added Jozi Blue and So Sushi, both in Glenhazel
are you there now?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on April 12, 2016, 03:50:27 PM
are you there now?
Nope. Going next week
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 12, 2016, 03:51:17 PM
Nope. Going next week
enjoy!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 12, 2016, 03:51:54 PM
Can anyone recommend a personal tour guide for Joburg and Soweto? The companies I contacted that do group tours won't allow kids in car seats (understandably). Looking for a half day tour Friday morning.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on April 12, 2016, 03:52:57 PM
enjoy!
Thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on April 12, 2016, 04:34:14 PM
I also started a map which still needs a lot of work: https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zx7zbxR4ioYk.kX0ppP67EJAw&usp=sharing

If you would like to assist in putting it together, PM me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 12, 2016, 04:39:41 PM
I also started a map which still needs a lot of work: https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zx7zbxR4ioYk.kX0ppP67EJAw&usp=sharing

If you would like to assist in putting it together, PM me.
That's very helpful. Thanks for putting it in the wiki.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on April 12, 2016, 04:40:40 PM
That's very helpful. Do you want to put it in the wiki?

It's there. The wiki is too busy, IMHO
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 12, 2016, 04:42:29 PM
It's there. The wiki is too busy, IMHO
Yeah, I saw that. I agree, but it's better than too empty.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on April 13, 2016, 09:45:13 AM
Yeah, I saw that. I agree, but it's better than too empty.
https://www.facebook.com/haaretzcom/videos/10152862130486341/?fref=nf
ON Cape Jews
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 13, 2016, 10:55:05 AM
https://www.facebook.com/haaretzcom/videos/10152862130486341/?fref=nf
ON Cape Jews
Cool video!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 10, 2016, 06:18:17 PM
I also started a map which still needs a lot of work: https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zx7zbxR4ioYk.kX0ppP67EJAw&usp=sharing

If you would like to assist in putting it together, PM me.
Of all the places listed on the map, which would be your top 2 breakfast places, top non-meat lunch place and top non-meat dinner place? It seems like Next Door is a good dinner place, but I'm unsure about the best bakeries. Is Cafe Corner better for lunch or breakfast? Is Moo-z Brothers a top contender?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 07:47:46 PM
Of all the places listed on the map, which would be your top 2 breakfast places, top non-meat lunch place and top non-meat dinner place? It seems like Next Door is a good dinner place, but I'm unsure about the best bakeries. Is Cafe Corner better for lunch or breakfast? Is Moo-z Brothers a top contender?
I keep chalav Yisroel, so I don't know about Next Door.

I prefer Corner Cafe for breakfast or lunch over Mooz, Market Cafe is in the mix too, though I haven't had a meal there.

There is also frangelicas, though not CY.

Jozi Blue is a great coffee shop, with muffins and croissants, etc.

I don't like mooz as a restaurant at all, but their bakery items and drinks are good.

Shoshana's and Shula's bakeries are both good.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 10, 2016, 08:06:01 PM


I keep chalav Yisroel, so I don't know about Next Door.

I prefer Corner Cafe for breakfast or lunch over Mooz, Market Cafe is in the mix too, though I haven't had a meal there.

There is also frangelicas, though not CY.

Jozi Blue is a great coffee shop, with muffins and croissants, etc.

I don't like mooz as a restaurant at all, but their bakery items and drinks are good.

Shoshana's and Shula's bakeries are both good.
Does Jozi Blue have other breakfast items like eggs or bagels and cream cheese? Where would you recommend for lunch and dinner?

Thanks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 10, 2016, 08:06:34 PM
Is Moo-z Brothers a top contender?

Mooz is more of a grocery store that has a bakery within, decent food and prices.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 08:18:08 PM
Mooz is more of a grocery store that has a bakery within, decent food and prices.
-1 they have the largest menu of all the mentioned places. They have a a nice bakery, and only a handful of grocery items.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 08:24:12 PM
Does Jozi Blue have other breakfast items like eggs or bagels and cream cheese? Where would you recommend for lunch and dinner?

Thanks.
Iirc, jozi blue does not do breakfast.

Between mooz, market and corner cafe, you should be good for breakfast and lunch. Perhaps someone else can weigh in on frangelicas, but I think between them and next door you have dinner covered.

Michelos is ok for lunch/dinner, just stay away from the pizza. As an American, you'll be bitterly disappointed.

All this dairy talk is crazy, we prefer our meat in SA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 10, 2016, 08:26:47 PM
-1 they have the largest menu of all the mentioned places. They have a a nice bakery, and only a handful of grocery items.


Unless I am remembering the wrong place, I remember feeling like walking into a supermarket inside. Could it be a difference grocery next door?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 08:29:18 PM
Unless I am remembering the wrong place, I remember feeling like walking into a supermarket inside. Could it be a difference grocery next door?
Perhaps it had a grocery feel to you because of the way the store is set up. All the restaurant tables are outside.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 10, 2016, 08:58:20 PM
Iirc, jozi blue does not do breakfast.

Between mooz, market and corner cafe, you should be good for breakfast and lunch. Perhaps someone else can weigh in on frangelicas, but I think between them and next door you have dinner covered.
Thanks. Next is figuring out what KosherWorld or another store has in terms of travel (POM-like) meals.

Quote
Michelos is ok for lunch/dinner, just stay away from the pizza. As an American, you'll be bitterly disappointed.
Thanks for the tip.  ;)

Quote
All this dairy talk is crazy, we prefer our meat in SA
I know you do, but as a vegetarian it doesn't really do me much good, now does it?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 09:05:52 PM
Thanks. Next is figuring out what KosherWorld or another store has in terms of travel (POM-like) meals.

I don't believe they have such meals. Feigels does, but I don't know anything about the quality.

I know you do, but as a vegetarian it doesn't really do me much good, now does it?

Oh, I know you are a vegetarian, I'm just thinking poking fun.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 10, 2016, 09:08:28 PM
I don't believe they have such meals. Feigels does, but I don't know anything about the quality.

Oh, I know you are a vegetarian, I'm just thinking poking fun.
So this (http://www.kosherworld.co.za/deliFoods.aspx) isn't the same thing? I don't need anything frozen, just need to pick up some food on the way to Sun City. It can just sit in the car for 2 hours. I'll have to look into Feigels.

ETA: Feigels site, feigels.co.za, is working but all links point to a family planning site.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 10, 2016, 09:11:29 PM
So this (http://www.kosherworld.co.za/deliFoods.aspx) isn't the same thing? I don't need anything frozen, just need to pick up some food on the way to Sun City. It can just sit in the car for 2 hours. I'll have to look into Feigels.
So you know more about kosher world than I do .
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 10, 2016, 09:12:40 PM
So you know more about kosher world than I do .
Well as long as you don't know info to the contrary, I think I'll give them a call tonight and ask.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 11, 2016, 11:29:34 AM
Well as long as you don't know info to the contrary, I think I'll give them a call tonight and ask.
10hr time diff
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 11, 2016, 11:33:42 AM
10hr time diff
9 hours now that we're on DST. I emailed them and someone responded within a few minutes...at 3:15am! He said they do travel meals and someone will call me to discuss items and prices.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 02, 2016, 12:21:21 AM
How is R2100 for a 4 hour private Soweto tour not including entrance fees? I'm looking for any recommendations, even group tours, but most that I've contacted don't accept babies in car seats.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 03, 2016, 01:00:08 PM
How is R2100 for a 4 hour private Soweto tour not including entrance fees? I'm looking for any recommendations, even group tours, but most that I've contacted don't accept babies in car seats.
$130 for four hours with a guide ..... doesn't sound terrible in $'s

http://matzav.com/watch-arnold-schwarzenegger-chased-by-elephant-in-south-africa/
the don't like Californians.......
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 03, 2016, 01:55:49 PM
$130 for four hours with a guide ..... doesn't sound terrible in $'s

http://matzav.com/watch-arnold-schwarzenegger-chased-by-elephant-in-south-africa/
the don't like Californians.......
Lol, I found a place (MoAfrika) that has a private tour for R1895 (~$125) vs the R2100 Catz wanted. MoAfrika will also include museum entrance for that price. They also give the option of joining the group tour for R1400 (R700pp) and allow the baby for free, but for R495 (~$33) I figured a private tour would be better. MoAfrika will also pick us up from where we're staying in Glenhazel for free where Catz won't. Does this make sense?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 03, 2016, 02:36:38 PM
Lol, I found a place (MoAfrika) that has a private tour for R1895 (~$125) vs the R2100 Catz wanted. MoAfrika will also include museum entrance for that price. They also give the option of joining the group tour for R1400 (R700pp) and allow the baby for free, but for R495 (~$33) I figured a private tour would be better. MoAfrika will also pick us up from where we're staying in Glenhazel for free where Catz won't. Does this make sense?
Private tour gives you lotsa flexibility, which can come in handy with the baby
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 03, 2016, 02:41:40 PM
Private tour gives you lotsa flexibility, which can come in handy with the baby
True, they're flexible in the pickup time (9-10am) but they need the driver done by 2pm so he can pick up another tour. The later we leave the less time we have, 4.5 hours max.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 08, 2016, 12:36:00 AM
We hired are own person who took us all over for R1000 so about R100 an hour. He took all over that day, lion park, joburg, Soweto and more. We picked him up at the airport in the morning and he stayed with us the whole day.
Now that I've been researching guides more I really am amazed you got this so cheap. The cheapest I found was R1700 for a private tour for 4.5 hours. R1000 for the day seems really, really cheap.

Iirc, jozi blue does not do breakfast.

Between mooz, market and corner cafe, you should be good for breakfast and lunch. Perhaps someone else can weigh in on frangelicas, but I think between them and next door you have dinner covered.

Michelos is ok for lunch/dinner, just stay away from the pizza. As an American, you'll be bitterly disappointed.

All this dairy talk is crazy, we prefer our meat in SA
Well now that I know where I'm staying I think that breakfast will be at Corner Cafe and places in that area. We're staying on Cross Rd just behind that area, so I can't justify driving to Mooz when Corner Cafe is less than 100m away. For lunch and dinner we'll just drive. Did you end up going to So Sushi? Is it decent? I'm not expecting Shallots or Yakimono quality, but is it good enough for take out at least? Thanks again for the suggestions.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 08, 2016, 12:37:04 AM
Now that I've been researching guides more I really am amazed you got this so cheap. The cheapest I found was R1700 for a private tour for 4.5 hours. R1000 for the day seems really, really cheap.
Well now that I know where I'm staying I think that breakfast will be at Corner Cafe and places in that area. We're staying on Cross Rd just behind that area, so I can't justify driving to Mooz when Corner Cafe is less than 100m away. For lunch and dinner we'll just drive. Did you end up going to So Sushi? Is it decent? I'm not expecting Shallots or Yakimono quality, but is it good enough for take out at least? Thanks again for the suggestions.
Didn't try it
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 08, 2016, 12:38:58 AM
Didn't try it
Oh well. Their prices look really cheap if MeHungry (http://mehungry.co.za/sosushi) is accurate. Thanks for the quick reply.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 08, 2016, 01:17:24 PM
Oh well. Their prices look really cheap if MeHungry (http://mehungry.co.za/sosushi) is accurate. Thanks for the quick reply.
The owner of Mooz died yesterday https://www.facebook.com/Mooz-Brothers-123463654389820/?fref=nf
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 08, 2016, 01:19:24 PM
The owner of Mooz died yesterday https://www.facebook.com/Mooz-Brothers-123463654389820/?fref=nf
BDE
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 08, 2016, 01:20:34 PM
Now that I've been researching guides more I really am amazed you got this so cheap. The cheapest I found was R1700 for a private tour for 4.5 hours. R1000 for the day seems really, really cheap.
Well now that I know where I'm staying I think that breakfast will be at Corner Cafe and places in that area. We're staying on Cross Rd just behind that area, so I can't justify driving to Mooz when Corner Cafe is less than 100m away. For lunch and dinner we'll just drive. Did you end up going to So Sushi? Is it decent? I'm not expecting Shallots or Yakimono quality, but is it good enough for take out at least? Thanks again for the suggestions.
Between Corner Cafe, Michelos and Feigels you wont starve
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 08, 2016, 01:48:14 PM
Between Corner Cafe, Michelos and Feigels you wont starve
I'm sure of that, though I'm hoping the sushi place works out, too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 28, 2016, 01:43:20 PM
Any ideas of a good gift from America we can bring to our hosts in JNB and CPT for shabbos, or does it depend too much on the hosts that it's not worth it and we should just buy something there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on June 28, 2016, 02:20:34 PM
Any ideas of a good gift from America we can bring to our hosts in JNB and CPT for shabbos, or does it depend too much on the hosts that it's not worth it and we should just buy something there?
You can just get something in the states. Better than remembering Friday like I did.....
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 28, 2016, 02:22:21 PM
You can just get something in the states. Better than remembering Friday like I did.....
I'd rather not just bring a random bottle of wine from the US and worrying about it breaking. Just easier to buy it there. I was thinking of something they can't get there that we can.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: shmebeble on June 28, 2016, 02:37:20 PM
I'd rather not just bring a random bottle of wine from the US and worrying about it breaking. Just easier to buy it there. I was thinking of something they can't get there that we can.
huh?
SO I brought nice salad servers from USA. Nothing amazing, but nice metalware. Small and light
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 28, 2016, 03:31:55 PM
Any ideas of a good gift from America we can bring to our hosts in JNB and CPT for shabbos, or does it depend too much on the hosts that it's not worth it and we should just buy something there?

If they keep Chalav Yisroel, good milchik chocolate  - you can get it there, but it is mighty expensive.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 28, 2016, 03:38:53 PM
If they keep Chalav Yisroel, good milchik chocolate  - you can get it there, but it is mighty expensive.
Thanks. I don't know them personally so I don't know.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 28, 2016, 11:34:59 PM
Anyone been to Constitution Hill (https://www.constitutionhill.org.za/site/) (in Joburg)? I was told it was better to go there over the apartheid museum. Any thoughts?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 29, 2016, 12:48:17 PM
Anyone been to Constitution Hill (https://www.constitutionhill.org.za/site/) (in Joburg)? I was told it was better to go there over the apartheid museum. Any thoughts?
not the safest part of town
never really been inside
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 29, 2016, 12:56:49 PM
not the safest part of town
never really been inside
I heard the area improved recently. Have you been to the apartheid museum, and would you recommend it (based on what you can see online about Constitution Hill)?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 29, 2016, 01:11:16 PM
I heard the area improved recently. Have you been to the apartheid museum, and would you recommend it (based on what you can see online about Constitution Hill)?
I haven;t been, i'm thinking of maybe going this time (Apartheid Museum) although it's really depressing type of place
(like yad vshem, 9/11 memorial)
As much as they sound the similar, based on hearing a bit about each, i'd say the the Museum is more of a "canned" show with exhibits and an agenda while Constitution Hill is just raw history with a hodgepodge of sites jumbled together (plus you get see all about the yiddisher communists like my dear neighbor Joe Slovo )
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 29, 2016, 01:20:59 PM
I haven;t been, i'm thinking of maybe going this time (Apartheid Museum) although it's really depressing type of place
(like yad vshem, 9/11 memorial)
As much as they sound the similar, based on hearing a bit about each, i'd say the the Museum is more of a "canned" show with exhibits and an agenda while Constitution Hill is just raw history with a hodgepodge of sites jumbled together (plus you get see all about the yiddisher communists like my dear neighbor Joe Slovo )
We still have time to chose, but those are our two choices. I was leaning toward the museum (albeit depressing) but if Constitution Hill is like Alcatraz (which it looks like), that could be cool too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 29, 2016, 01:23:15 PM
We still have time to chose, but those are our two choices. I was leaning toward the museum (albeit depressing) but if Constitution Hill is like Alcatraz (which it looks like), that could be cool too.
sounds like a good comparison (although iv'e been to neither)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: high end hobo on July 03, 2016, 05:01:53 PM
Anyone here gonna be in SA end of July?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 08, 2016, 08:08:51 AM
(http://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20160708/46671d8053f9f13097b9adb8477c1a6e.jpg)
The current Sosushi menu. Review to come in my TR.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 22, 2016, 01:07:34 AM
View my completed South Africa TR here (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=64252.0).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: beachbachur on August 02, 2016, 05:14:27 PM
Im gonna be in South Africa the end of Aug I only have 1 shabbos I plan on being in Cape Town. Am I missing out on a johanasburg shabbos experience?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on August 02, 2016, 05:24:50 PM
Im gonna be in South Africa the end of Aug I only have 1 shabbos I plan on being in Cape Town. Am I missing out on a johanasburg shabbos experience?
IMHO No
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on August 02, 2016, 05:43:11 PM
Im gonna be in South Africa the end of Aug I only have 1 shabbos I plan on being in Cape Town. Am I missing out on a johanasburg shabbos experience?
I don't think Shabbos in Joburg could be classified as an "experience" as nice as it is. Also keep in mind that some places in CPT have a tendency to go quite late on shabbos day and when shabbos ends around 7p that won't leave you much time to "experience" anything.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: bluesky on August 02, 2016, 06:14:02 PM
Any ideas of a good gift from America we can bring to our hosts in JNB and CPT for shabbos, or does it depend too much on the hosts that it's not worth it and we should just buy something there?
How did you find your hosts?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on August 02, 2016, 06:14:55 PM
How did you find your hosts?
Friends.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on August 02, 2016, 06:38:46 PM
I don't think Shabbos in Joburg could be classified as an "experience" as nice as it is. Also keep in mind that some places in CPT have a tendency to go quite late on shabbos day and when shabbos ends around 7p that won't leave you much time to "experience" anything.
that IS the experience
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on October 22, 2016, 10:38:13 PM
anyone have a travel agent that has been used before and specializes in kosher safari trips?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on October 22, 2016, 11:38:40 PM
anyone have a travel agent that has been used before and specializes in kosher safari trips?
Yoni Issacson
koshersafaris@aksafaris.com
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on October 22, 2016, 11:39:20 PM
Yoni Issacson
koshersafaris@aksafaris.com


Have you dealt with him?
What does a trip cost?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on October 23, 2016, 06:49:05 AM

Have you dealt with him?
What does a trip cost?
I did. He's nice but expensive. Much cheaper to buy POM-like meals and arrange it yourself. Also he only does groups, not 2 people. Read my TR for what we did and how we did it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on October 23, 2016, 08:16:25 AM
I did. He's nice but expensive. Much cheaper to buy POM-like meals and arrange it yourself. Also he only does groups, not 2 people. Read my TR for what we did and how we did it.


OK thanks. Will go over your TR again.

How much did the trip cost you?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on November 08, 2016, 02:14:44 PM
I am traveling to Cape Town and will be there for a week and then in Kruger for 5 days (Total approx. 12 days). What would anyone recommend for Cell Phone service. I have Verizon here.

Does anyone know if I can rent a Sim card from the airport and use it there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on November 08, 2016, 02:15:28 PM
I am traveling to Cape Town and will be there for a week and then in Kruger for 5 days (Total approx. 12 days). What would anyone recommend for Cell Phone service. I have Verizon here.

Does anyone know if I can rent a Sim card from the airport and use it there?
Just get T-Mobile before you leave. Works great in CPT.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on November 08, 2016, 03:15:22 PM
The Wife has it :).

Did TMobile work in Kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on November 08, 2016, 03:16:35 PM
The Wife has it :).

Did TMobile work in Kruger?
I wasn't in Kruger, but if there's cell reception it'll work. It worked everywhere there was cell service in Pilanesburg NP.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on November 08, 2016, 03:18:19 PM
ok good to know.

Question. Did you hire a private driver/tour guide to drive you around CPT?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on November 08, 2016, 04:22:02 PM
I wasn't in Kruger, but if there's cell reception it'll work. It worked everywhere there was cell service in Pilanesburg NP.
http://www.krugerpark.co.za/Maps_of_Kruger_Park-travel/cellphone-map-knp.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on November 08, 2016, 04:34:59 PM
ok good to know.

Question. Did you hire a private driver/tour guide to drive you around CPT?
Feel free to read my TR.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on November 27, 2016, 10:59:10 AM
Does anyone have any recommendations for a Shark Diving Tour company they used? I found many different companies online but would like to use a company that I know for sure someone used and was excellent.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 02:24:26 AM
Anyone have good hotels to stay at kruger or a private game Reserve all inclusive that they recommend?
What about by Victoria Falls?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 01, 2016, 08:45:05 AM
Anyone have good hotels to stay at kruger or a private game Reserve all inclusive that they recommend?
What about by Victoria Falls?
Yes. Black Rhino Game Lodge in Pilanesberg National Park. See my TR for details.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 04:15:59 PM
Yes. Black Rhino Game Lodge in Pilanesberg National Park. See my TR for details.

Thanks. The place looks very nice. were game drives included?
how do you know kashrus about the cereals and milk?
is there a specific reason you went to pilanesberg instead of kruger or it was just closer?
how many days would you recommend to be there?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 01, 2016, 04:24:55 PM
Thanks. The place looks very nice. were game drives included? Yes, 2 per day.
how do you know kashrus about the cereals and milk? They had hashgacha on the packages which the chef was more than happy to show me.
is there a specific reason you went to pilanesberg instead of kruger or it was just closer? We went with an infant and there's no malaria risk in Pilanesburg like there is in Kruger. Babies can't take malaria tablets/shots.
how many days would you recommend to be there? 2 nights, enough for 4 game drives. That's what we did and found other guests spent a similar amount of time there, though 3 and 4 night stays were also common among the people I polled.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 04:29:33 PM


hmm i wonder if kruger is nicer?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 01, 2016, 04:53:16 PM
hmm i wonder if kruger is nicer?

It is. By a lot.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 05:00:21 PM
It is. By a lot.

Any recommendations on accommodations?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 01, 2016, 05:15:09 PM
Any recommendations on accommodations?

Not really. Trip Adviser may be a better bet than this forum for that.

It depends on how much you are willing to spend. You can either go to the park's website and pick something in your range -https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/ - or you can book a private lodge which is pricier, but a more luxury experience.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 01, 2016, 05:16:45 PM
Not really. Trip Adviser may be a better bet than this forum for that.

It depends on how much you are willing to spend. You can either go to the park's website and pick something in your range -https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/ - or you can book a private lodge which is pricier, but a more luxury experience.
Wither way it'll be a lot more expensive than Pilanesburg and often times game drives are not included.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 01, 2016, 05:20:38 PM
Any recommendations on accommodations?
really depends on your price range
You could stay in the Royal Malewane for $3000 a night and have the most amazing trip of your life or Leopard Hills, Lion Sands etc...
Ngala is cheaper but still like $800

maybe Arathusa Safari Lodge

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 01, 2016, 05:25:23 PM
you can get the Protea hotel Kruger Gate for 7500 marriott point a night  :P
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 05:40:55 PM
really depends on your price range
You could stay in the Royal Malewane for $3000 a night and have the most amazing trip of your life or Leopard Hills, Lion Sands etc...
Ngala is cheaper but still like $800

maybe Arathusa Safari Lodge


Lol. Looking in the 300-500ish range
If that's possible?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 05:41:26 PM
you can get the Protea hotel Kruger Gate for 7500 marriott point a night  :P

Just saw that on mms. Would like a nicer place
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 05:44:41 PM
Not really. Trip Adviser may be a better bet than this forum for that.

It depends on how much you are willing to spend. You can either go to the park's website and pick something in your range -https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/ - or you can book a private lodge which is pricier, but a more luxury experience.

If I'm looking to do it right but not crazy What's the range?
Gotta start saving!

Wither way it'll be a lot more expensive than Pilanesburg and often times game drives are not included.

Might have fall back on pilanaburg.
It's like 380 a night in the end of March
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 01, 2016, 05:49:37 PM

Lol. Looking in the 300-500ish range
If that's possible?
i'm sure... what's Arathusa Safari Lodge?

you could also reach out to a booking agent
try http://www.lowveldreservations.com/wcontact.php
Mrs Prinsloo
they have stuff in Mjejane Game Reserves  and Pilansburg that may be in you budget
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on December 01, 2016, 06:04:45 PM
If you are willing to forfeit some amenities, stay in the skukuza rest camp
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 01, 2016, 06:08:35 PM
If you are willing to forfeit some amenities, stay in the skukuza rest camp
Will look into it
i'm sure... what's Arathusa Safari Lodge?

you could also reach out to a booking agent
try http://www.lowveldreservations.com/wcontact.php
Mrs Prinsloo
they have stuff in Mjejane Game Reserves  and Pilansburg that may be in you budget

Thanks. Wanted feedback from ddf on any recommendations over TripAdvisor. Will get in touch with her thx.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on December 01, 2016, 06:15:37 PM
I just checked skukuza's official site and there don't seem to be any reservations open. You can try booking through an agency as a safari/lodging package like I did...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 01, 2016, 06:20:07 PM
Will look into it
Thanks. Wanted feedback from ddf on any recommendations over TripAdvisor. Will get in touch with her thx.
Ponash stayed in kapama http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1260002#msg1260002
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 02, 2016, 03:27:49 AM
Ponash stayed in kapama http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=55289.msg1260002#msg1260002

Ya the dates I'm looking at are expensive.
Something like that just cheaper
I just checked skukuza's official site and there don't seem to be any reservations open. You can try booking through an agency as a safari/lodging package like I did...

The place looks pretty run down and it seems like the charge for everything.
I'd rather get a full package when I book.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: travel722 on December 05, 2016, 04:42:14 AM
Traveling to Cape town, would like to do a shark cage diving tour, anyone have any recommendations regarding which tour operator would be the best choice?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 05, 2016, 03:35:26 PM
we booked our shark dive tour with marine dynamics. supposedly a good outfit but the trip was cancelled 3 days in a row due to the swell.  Be flexible with your plans. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on December 05, 2016, 04:29:00 PM
Traveling to Cape town, would like to do a shark cage diving tour, anyone have any recommendations regarding which tour operator would be the best choice?

I am traveling to CP in 3 weeks and I booked Shark Diving with Great White Shark Tours.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: travel722 on December 06, 2016, 08:27:13 PM
nice. did you see any groupons or the like with this cage diving experience?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 06, 2016, 09:08:06 PM
nice. did you see any groupons or the like with this cage diving experience?
Groupon in South Africa was closed last month
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on December 06, 2016, 11:58:09 PM
I noticed something happened but wasn't sure what exactly it was lol.

I didn't use a Groupon I just inquiries on their website and booked it over email.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on December 20, 2016, 08:39:58 PM
Looking book my trip to SA. Should I start off in JAB/Kruger and after shakos to Capetown or vice versa?
Where should I spend more time? and were am I better of for shabbos?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on December 20, 2016, 09:26:39 PM
Looking book my trip to SA. Should I start off in JAB/Kruger and after shakos to Capetown or vice versa?
Where should I spend more time? and were am I better of for shabbos?

I am going next week and landing in JNB but flying straight to Cape Town. there for 6 nights than doing Kruger. not staying in JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 20, 2016, 09:28:27 PM
Looking book my trip to SA. Should I start off in JAB/Kruger and after shakos to Capetown or vice versa?
Where should I spend more time? and were am I better of for shabbos?

Doesn't really matter which one you do first, Id just schedule it so you have more time in CPT than Kruger. JNB doesn't *need* any time at all, though there are things to do if you do decide to spend time there.

Shabbos - JNB has a far larger Jewish community, but CPT has hotels within walking distance to Shuls, something much harder to find in JNB. CPT will be a much calmer, more relaxed, vacation style Shabbos. If meeting people and seeing other Jewish communities is more your speed, JNB will be a lot of fun.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on December 20, 2016, 10:00:01 PM
Doesn't really matter which one you do first, Id just schedule it so you have more time in CPT than Kruger. JNB doesn't *need* any time at all, though there are things to do if you do decide to spend time there.

Shabbos - JNB has a far larger Jewish community, but CPT has hotels within walking distance to Shuls, something much harder to find in JNB. CPT will be a much calmer, more relaxed, vacation style Shabbos. If meeting people and seeing other Jewish communities is more your speed, JNB will be a lot of fun.
would something like arrive JNB
Tues-Fri Kruger/Victoria
Fri-Thur CPT?
Thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 20, 2016, 10:03:08 PM
would something like arrive JNB
Tues-Fri Kruger/Victoria
Fri-Thur CPT?
Thanks

Sure
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 21, 2016, 01:47:21 AM
I found Cape Town to be overrated, I did the Cape Peninsula, doing the scenic drive down Chapman's Peak and down to Cape Peninsula, and then back up visiting the penguin colony at Boulders. I visited the Giraffe House Wildlife Awareness, http://www.giraffehouse.co.za. I also visited the Two Oceans Aquarium.

I highly prefer the Eastern Cape, which I found to be extremely scenic, and more rewarding than Cape Town.

Driving East, I came to Oudtshoorn http://wikitravel.org/en/Oudtshoorn, and visited the Cango Caverns:
http://www.cango-caves.co.za/adventure.php
http://theplanetd.com/claustrophobia-takes-hold-at-the-cango-caves/

Also, Cango Wildlife Ranch is also worth visiting: http://www.cango.co.za/ -   Lions, cheetahs, lemurs, servals,  plus cage diving with their 4 meter Nile Crocodile.

I went on to Storms River, where I did river tubing, mountain biking, canopy tour, etc. see: http://wikitravel.org/en/Storms_River

I went to the Tsitsikamma National Park: http://wikitravel.org/en/Tsitsikamma_National_Park , where there are very scenic trails such as the Mouth Trail and Viewpoint Trail. The views from the suspension bridges are breathtaking.  Also to be seen, is the Waterfall Trail which is 4 miles return (which is the beginning part of the famous 26 mile Otter Trail that takes 5 days).

Tenikwa Wildlife http://www.tenikwa.co.za is my favourite. One can spend an entire day with their Cheetahs http://tenikwa.com/crazee-cat-day

I also went on the  Harkerville Coast Hiking Trail / Kranshoek Trail -- I didn't do the full 2 day hike, but a strenuous 6 hour hike, very adventurous -  involved lots of scrambling, walking on wooden bridges, ladders, and hanging onto chains....

One can also visit: One can also visit the Addo Elephant National Park. http://wikitravel.org/en/Addo_Elephant_National_Park .
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on December 21, 2016, 02:15:53 AM
I found Cape Town to be overrated, I did the Cape Peninsula, doing the scenic drive down Chapman's Peak and down to Cape Peninsula, and then back up visiting the penguin colony at Boulders. I visited the Giraffe House Wildlife Awareness, http://www.giraffehouse.co.za. I also visited the Two Oceans Aquarium.

I highly prefer the Eastern Cape, which I found to be extremely scenic, and more rewarding than Cape Town.

Driving East, I came to Oudtshoorn http://wikitravel.org/en/Oudtshoorn, and visited the Cango Caverns:
http://www.cango-caves.co.za/adventure.php
http://theplanetd.com/claustrophobia-takes-hold-at-the-cango-caves/

Also, Cango Wildlife Ranch is also worth visiting: http://www.cango.co.za/ -   Lions, cheetahs, lemurs, servals,  plus cage diving with their 4 meter Nile Crocodile.

I went on to Storms River, where I did river tubing, mountain biking, canopy tour, etc. see: http://wikitravel.org/en/Storms_River

I went to the Tsitsikamma National Park: http://wikitravel.org/en/Tsitsikamma_National_Park , where there are very scenic trails such as the Mouth Trail and Viewpoint Trail. The views from the suspension bridges are breathtaking.  Also to be seen, is the Waterfall Trail which is 4 miles return (which is the beginning part of the famous 26 mile Otter Trail that takes 5 days).

Tenikwa Wildlife http://www.tenikwa.co.za is my favourite. One can spend an entire day with their Cheetahs http://tenikwa.com/crazee-cat-day

I also went on the  Harkerville Coast Hiking Trail / Kranshoek Trail -- I didn't do the full 2 day hike, but a strenuous 6 hour hike, very adventurous -  involved lots of scrambling, walking on wooden bridges, ladders, and hanging onto chains....

One can also visit: One can also visit the Addo Elephant National Park. http://wikitravel.org/en/Addo_Elephant_National_Park .
Wow nice!
Time for a TR
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 21, 2016, 02:40:47 AM
I am in Joberg even now at the moment. It was years ago, that I rented a car for a month and went on my solo adventure. And with my 3 months visa running out, I did trips
to Lesotho and Swaziland.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 21, 2016, 02:48:15 AM
And here is my video with the Cheetahs:
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fC8VZCBsz-U
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Luvtotravel on December 21, 2016, 10:52:44 AM
And here is my video with the Cheetahs:
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fC8VZCBsz-U
wow! never knew they were so docile
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 21, 2016, 11:25:10 AM
wow! never knew they were so docile
they've never been in the wild and usually fed very well
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 26, 2016, 06:45:30 AM
For those going to Victoria Falls, good news, the governments of Zimbabwe and Zambia reinstated the KAZA Uni-Visa. For $50 you get unlimited entries to both countries for 30 days. See: http://www.victoriafalls-guide.net/univisa-zimbabwe-zambia.html . Don't miss out Devil's Pool: http://www.devilspool.net (make sure to book in advanced). Whitewater rafting on the mighty Zambezi river is considered one of the best trips in the world. http://www.shearwatervictoriafalls.com/victoria-falls-activities/zambezi-rafting/
http://www.wildhorizons.co.za/zimbabwe-activities/zambezi-white-water-rafting/

Those going to the Kruger: Check out http://www.latestsightings.com - it's a crowd-sourcing website that provides real-time updates on animal sightings in the Kruger National Park.

Also, note, January is the wrong time to visit the Kruger, as it's very hard to spot anything. The vegetation/bushes are the most dense / thick at this time, making visibility very low. Plus, school holidays in South Africa are till January 15th, so the park is over-crowded.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on December 28, 2016, 03:47:12 PM
Im still trying to piece together tickets and was wondering if this would work. (my understanding Shabbos better off in JNB)
CPT-Tuesday-Sunday
Sun-Thur  JNB and Vicotria  or do I need more days or better to do in reverse?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 28, 2016, 04:01:37 PM
Im still trying to piece together tickets and was wondering if this would work. (my understanding Shabbos better off in JNB)
CPT-Tuesday-Sunday
Sun-Thur  JNB and Vicotria  or do I need more days or better to do in reverse?
CPT-Tuesday-Sunday = Shabbos in CPT... not that it's a problem as we said previously its a matter or preference and pros and cons
you "need" 3-4 days in CPT (which you have)
JNB you can skip or do in a day
VFA can be done in 24-48 hours
so you seem to be good all the way around
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on December 28, 2016, 05:31:16 PM
CPT-Tuesday-Sunday = Shabbos in CPT... not that it's a problem as we said previously its a matter or preference and pros and cons
you "need" 3-4 days in CPT (which you have)
JNB you can skip or do in a day
VFA can be done in 24-48 hours
so you seem to be good all the way around
JNB was referring to Kruger
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 28, 2016, 06:31:20 PM
JNB was referring to Kruger
sun thru thursday is more then enough for KNP and VFA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 29, 2016, 03:01:59 AM
JNB was referring to Kruger

If one is in SA for a short trip, I think Kruger should be skipped if you are coming in during the South African Summer months, as there is no guarantee that you will see the big 5 (Lion, Leopard, Elephant, Buffalo and Rhinoceros), or Cheetahs and Wild Dogs.

Best time to go to Kruger for game viewing is during the dry months (SA Winter) June to October. In the Summer months, you can spend a week and not see any predators. In the Summer months, bare in mind that the animals are most active in the early morning and in the late afternoon. (Kruger gates open at 4:30AM in January), and by 9AM it becomes hot that most animals are hiding in the bush, waiting out the heat.

Between May and September, known as the Winter dry season -- it almost never rains. Animals then can be easily spotted by the waterholes and rivers.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on December 29, 2016, 07:57:38 AM
I spent a few days in Kruger in March and saw the big 5 almost every day I was there...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 29, 2016, 10:36:12 AM
I spent a few days in Kruger in March and saw the big 5 almost every day I was there...

That's extremely lucky. Were those sightings on self-drives, or on game drives?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on December 29, 2016, 10:38:19 AM
That's extremely lucky. Were those sightings on self-drives, or on game drives?
With a very experienced tour guide. Very much a game drive. I definitely would not recommend a self drive at that time of year or really ever unless you really do you research.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 29, 2016, 10:50:10 AM
With a very experienced tour guide. Very much a game drive. I definitely would not recommend a self drive at that time of year or really ever unless you really do you research.
self drive in the kruger is fine for the dry months
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on December 29, 2016, 01:17:12 PM
If one is in SA for a short trip, I think Kruger should be skipped if you are coming in during the South African Summer months, as there is no guarantee that you will see the big 5 (Lion, Leopard, Elephant, Buffalo and Rhinoceros), or Cheetahs and Wild Dogs.

Best time to go to Kruger for game viewing is during the dry months (SA Winter) June to October. In the Summer months, you can spend a week and not see any predators. In the Summer months, bare in mind that the animals are most active in the early morning and in the late afternoon. (Kruger gates open at 4:30AM in January), and by 9AM it becomes hot that most animals are hiding in the bush, waiting out the heat.

Between May and September, known as the Winter dry season -- it almost never rains. Animals then can be easily spotted by the waterholes and rivers.
How about Feb?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 29, 2016, 02:37:11 PM
How about Feb?

February is not much different. The wet Summer months are October to April. It's still beautiful, and one can see lots of migrating birds, but one should book game drives, with an experienced guide, as on a self-drive, one has to be extremely lucky to see anything. On a self-drive, you are only allowed to drive on the paved (tarred) roads. The game drives, they are on high 4x4 Safari vehicles, and they go off-road, and the guides have skill in locating the animals.

The game drives cost about 280 ZAR (South African Rand) a person, and you have to have booked accommodation in the park's camps from the previous night, as drives leave before the gates officially open. You can browse the accommodations and the various activities offered at https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger

Do some research which rest camp to stay in, e.g. http://www.fodors.com/community/africa-the-middle-east/any-favorite-kruger-rest-camps.cfm

https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g312618-i9872-Kruger_National_Park.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2016, 03:13:05 PM
IMHO, game drives are ALWAYS recommended, no matter the season, especially for novices.

1) The jeeps are simply higher - you can see more.
2) The Rangers know how to spot animals, for many of them it will almost seems to you like a super power
3) Game viewing times are optimal at dawn and dusk, when the park is closed to self drivers. Game drives will go out at those times.
4) Rangers know where animals hang out. There are websites which help with sightings, but are mostly unreliable. Rangers can track a pride of lions every day and have a pretty good idea of where it can be found.
5) Rangers can be really interesting and informative about the animals, landscape, and local culture. Their job is to give you a good time, and they
6) Driving and searching for animals is not easy to do, especially for a novice.

Game drives are relatively cheap, and most accommodation includes at least one per day anyway. The more luxury the accommodation, the more it will include.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on December 29, 2016, 03:33:54 PM
IMHO, game drives are ALWAYS recommended, no matter the season, especially for novices.

1) The jeeps are simply higher - you can see more.
2) The Rangers know how to spot animals, for many of them it will almost seems to you like a super power
3) Game viewing times are optimal at dawn and dusk, when the park is closed to self drivers. Game drives will go out at those times.
4) Rangers know where animals hang out. There are websites which help with sightings, but are mostly unreliable. Rangers can track a pride of lions every day and have a pretty good idea of where it can be found.
5) Rangers can be really interesting and informative about the animals, landscape, and local culture. Their job is to give you a good time, and they
6) Driving and searching for animals is not easy to do, especially for a novice.

Game drives are relatively cheap, and most accommodation includes at least one per day anyway. The more luxury the accommodation, the more it will include.
After doing some research for a future trip, the above seems to make the most sense to me. I'd say self-drives are very nice for people that can return every now and then and just chill in the park and either see something or not, but if you're flying halfway across the globe to do a safari, you don't want to risk not seeing anything exciting (of course that can also happen with a guide, but the odds are much better).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 29, 2016, 07:54:00 PM
Game drives are relatively cheap, and most accommodation includes at least one per day anyway. The more luxury the accommodation, the more it will include.

Accommodation in Kruger Park camps does not include game drives. Has to be booked separately as an activity on http://www.sanparks.org.

Only private game lodges in the private reserves adjoining the Kruger (Sabi Sand, Timbavati, Manyeleti, etc) which are considered part of the greater Kruger area and share an unfenced boundary with Kruger offer more expensive accommodation with all meals and game drives included.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2016, 08:19:36 PM
Accommodation in Kruger Park camps does not include game drives. Has to be booked separately as an activity on http://www.sanparks.org.

Only private game lodges in the private reserves adjoining the Kruger (Sabi Sand, Timbavati, Manyeleti, etc) which are considered part of the greater Kruger area and share an unfenced boundary with Kruger offer more expensive accommodation with all meals and game drives included.
I stand corrected. Not sure why I had it wrong in my head
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 29, 2016, 08:32:10 PM
Accommodation in Kruger Park camps does not include game drives. Has to be booked separately as an activity on http://www.sanparks.org.

Only private game lodges in the private reserves adjoining the Kruger (Sabi Sand, Timbavati, Manyeleti, etc) which are considered part of the greater Kruger area and share an unfenced boundary with Kruger offer more expensive accommodation with all meals and game drives included.
That's exactly one of the reasons why we went to Pilanesberg instead.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2016, 08:55:10 PM
That's exactly one of the reasons why we went to Pilanesberg instead.
קרוגער'ס זיבורית איז בעסער פון פילאנסבערג'ס עידית
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 29, 2016, 09:47:24 PM
Not a Yiddish speaker, but that wasn't that hard. Lol. Maybe so, but it's way cheaper, more convenient and from the locals I spoke to while there sometimes preferred to Kruger for those reason. They also said they saw more types of animals there than in Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 29, 2016, 10:51:29 PM
Not a Yiddish speaker, but that wasn't that hard. Lol. Maybe so, but it's way cheaper, more convenient and from the locals I spoke to while there sometimes preferred to Kruger for those reason. They also said they saw more types of animals there than in Kruger.
First 2 reasons, sure, the last one? Ummm, no. That's ludicrous,
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 30, 2016, 08:55:14 AM
First 2 reasons, sure, the last one? Ummm, no. That's ludicrous,

There are lots of other great places in South Africa, like St. Lucia Wetland Park, Hluhluwe-iMfolozi NP, Kwandwe, Addo Elephant NP, etc.

How about Etosha National Park in Namibia? One can just spend the days and nights watching hundreds of animals waiting their turn at the floodlit waterholes.

http://safaritalk.net/topic/16953-nothern-namibia-etosha-and-beyond-a-photographers-tale/

Also the 64-km Natureways Mana Pools Shoreline Canoe Camping Safari (Zimbabwe) is on my bucket list:

http://safaritalk.net/topic/16904-innovative-64-km-natureways-mana-pools-shoreline-canoe-camping-safari/
http://safaritalk.net/topic/15504-natureways-70-km-mopane-canoe-trip-sept-4-7-mana-pools-sapi-chewore/
http://safaritalk.net/topic/16914-hot-times-in-mana-pools-with-safarichick-atravelynn/

South Luangwe, Zambia:
http://safaritalk.net/topic/11496-zambia-south-luangwe-august-2013-great-to-be-back-on-safari/

Mashatu & Caprivi:
http://safaritalk.net/topic/13263-mashatu-kgalagadi-to-caprivi-overland-and-a-moremi-mobile-with-masson-safaris-6-weeks-in-southern-africa-2014/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on December 30, 2016, 01:34:59 PM
Saulius - where did you do the game drive in KNP that did off-road. Been on many game drives in different camps but never off-road.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 02, 2017, 05:19:17 AM
Saulius - where did you do the game drive in KNP that did off-road. Been on many game drives in different camps but never off-road.

I guess I was wrong, I only did self-drive in KNP.  I thought the advantage of the game drives in KNP is that they go off-road (other than that the Safari vehicles are high off the ground).  In the private reserves, they do go off-road. In KNP the rule is that they are not allowed to go off-road, unless there is a confirmed sighting (verified by at tracker by foot), and then only in the dry season.

Interesting to note, during the cold Winter mornings, it's a common occurrence for the lions and leopards to be found lying on the paved roads, because the tar surfaces have retained heat / residual warmth from the previous day. (Just like my cat at home prefers to sleep next to the radiator)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 02, 2017, 10:01:16 AM
I guess I was wrong, I only did self-drive in KNP.  I thought the advantage of the game drives in KNP is that they go off-road (other than that the Safari vehicles are high off the ground).  In the private reserves, they do go off-road. In KNP the rule is that they are not allowed to go off-road, unless there is a confirmed sighting (verified by at tracker by foot), and then only in the dry season.

Interesting to note, during the cold Winter mornings, it's a common occurrence for the lions and leopards to be found lying on the paved roads, because the tar surfaces have retained heat / residual warmth from the previous day. (Just like my cat at home prefers to sleep next to the radiator)
The animals like being in the sun even if there's no paved road during the winter which makes them easier to find.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: doogieje on January 05, 2017, 03:10:48 AM
I will be with a friend in PE this weekend. Is there a kosher restaurant or supermarket that i can buy food from for Shabbat?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 05, 2017, 11:33:48 AM
I will be with a friend in PE this weekend. Is there a kosher restaurant or supermarket that i can buy food from for Shabbat?
Call the shul there
i see you asked the question on the facebook page already
Port Elizabeth Hebrew Congregation, United Synagogues
(Eastern Cape)
55 Roosevelt St, Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Tel: 27 41-331-332
Fax: 27 41-333-293
Rabbi E. Zamir
Mikvah: By Appointment.  (041) 373-2353
SAJBD Contact person: Mr Chuck Volpe, +27414026800 / Mobile +27829031522 / chuck@volpes.co.za

there isn't a restaurant (that i'm aware of) but i believe Kosher food can be had in the supermarkets

also try the SAJBD
Port Elizabeth
Contact number: +27 41 402 6800
Contact number: +27 82 903 1522
Email: sajbd@sajbd.org
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 05, 2017, 01:41:21 PM
Call the shul there
i see you asked the question on the facebook page already
Port Elizabeth Hebrew Congregation, United Synagogues
(Eastern Cape)
55 Roosevelt St, Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Tel: 27 41-331-332
Fax: 27 41-333-293
Rabbi E. Zamir
Mikvah: By Appointment.  (041) 373-2353
SAJBD Contact person: Mr Chuck Volpe, +27414026800 / Mobile +27829031522 / chuck@volpes.co.za

there isn't a restaurant (that i'm aware of) but i believe Kosher food can be had in the supermarkets

also try the SAJBD
Port Elizabeth
Contact number: +27 41 402 6800
Contact number: +27 82 903 1522
Email: sajbd@sajbd.org

R. Aryeh Furman took over PE last year. PicknPay and Woolworths supermarkets you should be able to find lots of stuff with the SA Beis Din hechsher, but outside Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Durban it would be only parve products or cholov stam.

There is a butchery  in Johannnesburg that delievers to PE, but you need to order in advanced..
https://www.koshermeat.co.za/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on January 05, 2017, 08:52:16 PM
Does anyone know a travel agent who is familiar with booking flights on South African Airways?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on January 05, 2017, 09:00:58 PM
Does anyone know a travel agent who is familiar with booking flights on South African Airways?

I know a South African based TAs who are - does that help?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on January 05, 2017, 09:23:57 PM
Sure, if they can help me with booking flights on South African Airways. Whats their info?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 06, 2017, 02:44:04 AM
Sure, if they can help me with booking flights on South African Airways. Whats their info?

Why not just book direct with the airline?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 06, 2017, 10:35:28 AM
Why not just book direct with the airline?
because it's not always the best way
especially with SAA

try Premier Tours  
Travel Agency ∑ Center City
Address: 21 S 12th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone:(800) 545-1910
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on January 08, 2017, 05:41:46 PM
How is customs with bringing in ready meals (POM like)?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 08, 2017, 07:52:50 PM
How is customs with bringing in ready meals (POM like)?
they took my cheese once
usually not a problem
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 08, 2017, 07:53:44 PM
they took my cheese once
usually not a problem
There's better cheese (besides mozzarella) there. Why would you even bring?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 08, 2017, 07:57:00 PM
There's better cheese (besides mozzarella) there. Why would you even bring?
cholov yisroel when there wasn;t and it was a big block
and it was for grandma not me
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 08, 2017, 07:57:28 PM
cholov yisroel when there wasn;t and it was a big block
and it was for grandma not me
O
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 10, 2017, 09:37:35 AM
R. Aryeh Furman took over PE last year. PicknPay and Woolworths supermarkets you should be able to find lots of stuff with the SA Beis Din hechsher, but outside Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Durban it would be only parve products or cholov stam.

There is a butchery  in Johannnesburg that delievers to PE, but you need to order in advanced..
https://www.koshermeat.co.za/

I flew in to PE the other day. I found kosher meat at PicknPay in Port Elizabeth in the PicknPay Walmer. 8km from the shul. There is a selection of Nussbaum's cold-cuts and a freezer with selection of frozen chicken and meats under PE hashgacha. I been to other PicknPay supermarkets in PE previously, but didn't see kosher meat, so my previous post was in error.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on January 24, 2017, 01:18:26 PM
Are there any "Joint meals" in CPT? I hate eating a Shabbos meal in hotel room, are there any Community meals in chabad or something like that?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on January 24, 2017, 01:23:12 PM
No regular communal meals. Avron's restaurant does have such meals occasionally but not often. Brit Medrash Morasha have a form http://www.morasha.co.za/visitors/join-a-family-for-shabbat/  to complete and they'll match you up for Shabbat meals.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 24, 2017, 01:46:14 PM
No regular communal meals. Avron's restaurant does have such meals occasionally but not often. Brit Medrash Morasha have a form http://www.morasha.co.za/visitors/join-a-family-for-shabbat/  to complete and they'll match you up for Shabbat meals.
I found Morasha's kiddush to be more than enough for a (dairy) lunch. They had loads of food.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on January 24, 2017, 03:15:17 PM
I found Morasha's kiddush to be more than enough for a (dairy) lunch. They had loads of food.
Did you fill out the visitor form they have on their website prior to going?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 24, 2017, 03:26:27 PM
Did you fill out the visitor form they have on their website prior to going?
Yes, but I ended up getting set up with a friend's friend who goes there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on January 24, 2017, 04:55:21 PM
Brit Medrash Morasha have a form http://www.morasha.co.za/visitors/join-a-family-for-shabbat/  to complete and they'll match you up for Shabbat meals.
Im kinda embarrassed to just go eat at somebody's house. Id rather pay, and join somewhere which I guess they don't have.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on January 24, 2017, 04:56:17 PM
What's the Shabbos/shul  atmosphere in CPT? Black pants/white shirt for Shabbos, or suit etc (I don't want to shlep, yet I don't want to feel out of place either)?
TY
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 24, 2017, 05:17:50 PM
What's the Shabbos/shul  atmosphere in CPT? Black pants/white shirt for Shabbos, or suit etc (I don't want to shlep, yet I don't want to feel out of place either)?
TY
that
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 25, 2017, 02:14:06 AM
What's the Shabbos/shul  atmosphere in CPT? Black pants/white shirt for Shabbos, or suit etc (I don't want to shlep, yet I don't want to feel out of place either)?
TY

You definitely do not need a suit. South Africa atmosphere is very casual.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on January 25, 2017, 02:15:04 AM
+1 esp. in CPT
Drive slower there too
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on January 25, 2017, 02:15:28 AM
You definitely do not need a suit. South Africa atmosphere is very casual.
Though you also won't be out of place in a suit.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 25, 2017, 06:29:05 AM
+1 esp. in CPT
Drive slower there too

Yea, in Cape Town they have cameras with speeding fines, got a text message 2 weeks ago " Dear *licenseplatenumber* exceeded the maximum speed limit at 111km/h with date time and location. Please drive safely.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on January 25, 2017, 06:48:01 AM
No regular communal meals. Avron's restaurant does have such meals occasionally but not often. Brit Medrash Morasha have a form http://www.morasha.co.za/visitors/join-a-family-for-shabbat/  to complete and they'll match you up for Shabbat meals.

Although somebody who comes from yeshivish/heimish circles from a place like Monsey might not feel comfortable by the families they match you, and even davening in the shuls - it's not the crowd one would be used to. Probably Ohr Somayach or Chabad would be the best place to daven in Sea Point (they are right next to each other). All the shuls have a bracha (kiddush in the morning) where you can wash, although Ohr Somayach probably would be the best for a visitor. (Ohr Somayach also has shalosh seudos, where women are also invited, sitting at a separate table.

At any rate, one can stock up at the Checkers supermarket, at the back there is a separate bakery, fish shop, butchery, and Shwarma/Falafel bar. One can easily stock up on challah, rotisserie Chicken, meats, fried fish, etc. for and it's inexpensive. (And don't forget to checkout the freezer with the ice scream.)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on February 14, 2017, 07:22:20 PM
i'll take the quick version
So here goes...

Sunday-Monday:
-JFK-JNB-VFA in J (80k UA PP)
-Zimbabwean side of the falls
-Victoria Falls Safari Lodge (Approx. $300 - Not really worth it IMO)

Tuesday:
-Zambian side of the falls
-LVI-JNB in Y (4k + $44 Avios PP)
-Kosherworld delivered food to airport and picked up SIM
-JNB-MQP in Y (Approx. $80 PP - Should have driven in hindsight)
-Rented car at MQP
-Protea Nelspruit (7.5k Marriott)

Wednesday:
-Entered KNP through Malelane Gate and drove up to Skukuza airport with some detours
-Returned car at SZK
-Transferred to Notten's Bush Camp for 2 nights ($750 per night)

Thursday:
-Notten's Bush Camp

Friday:
-Transfer to SZK after morning game drive
-SZK-CPT in Y (Approx. $250 PP)
-Protea Sea Point for 2 nights (15k Marriott per night)
-Sahbbos food from Goldie's Deli (delivered to hotel)

Shabbos:
-Davend at Chabad, ate at hotel
-Sea Point Promenade

Sunday:
-Transferred to African Pride 15 On Orange Hotel for 2 nights (20k Marriott per night)
-Hout Bay / Chapman's Peak / Cape of Good hope / Cape Point / Boulder's Beach
-Dinner at Avron's Place

Monday:
-Breakfast at Coffee Time
-Table Mountain
-Robben Island
-V&A Waterfront
-Sunset at Signal Hill

Tuesday:
-CPT-JNB-DKR-IAD-LGA in J (80k UA PP)
-10 Hour layover in JNB
-Carlton Center
-Lunch at SoSushi
-Soweto tour
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 14, 2017, 07:29:36 PM
Wow, that certainly was the quick version! Changes of a full TR? I'd love to read it (as I'm sure many others would).  :)

Besides for the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, do you think you would make any changes in hindsight? Spend longer at one place, shorter in another or skip it entirely? Seems like a lot of moving involved for the amount of time you were in Africa.

Did you see a lot of animals in Kruger? Was the Bush Camp you stayed at worth it?

Did you intentionally want to spend shabbos davening at chabad (with other options around) and with meals in your room? Didn't chabad have a brocha after davening for lunch? Was there a reason you didn't go to Morasha just up the block from the Protea (we stayed there too and it was a 2 min walk)?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on February 14, 2017, 08:00:41 PM
So here goes...

Great mini-TR, lots of good memories from there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on February 14, 2017, 08:37:21 PM
Wow, that certainly was the quick version! Changes of a full TR? I'd love to read it (as I'm sure many others would).  :)
Thanks, but I don't think it's going to happen...
Quote
Besides for the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge, do you think you would make any changes in hindsight? Spend longer at one place, shorter in another or skip it entirely? Seems like a lot of moving involved for the amount of time you were in Africa.
I'd say 2 weeks would have been better, but we only had 10 days. I guess removing Victoria Falls would have made for the perfect amount of time for Kruger and would have removed some travel, but I didn't really feel like the trip was rushed.

On a side note; Having visited Iguazu I was expecting a bit more from Vic Falls. IMO, Iguazu beats it on pretty much everything.
Quote
Did you see a lot of animals in Kruger? Was the Bush Camp you stayed at worth it?
"A lot" is relative, but we saw Leopard (on each of the 4 game drives), Elephant, Rhino, Buffalo, Hyena (Even had one in camp at night), Giraffe, Zebra, several types of Impala, Warthog, lots pf beautiful bids, and probably some more I don't recall ATM.

It's obviously a lot of money for the Lodge, but we felt it was worth every penny. While self driving in Kruger is wonderful, when you're short in time, the open top game drives with amazing guides and trackers and the ability to off-road is unbeatable IMO.
Quote
Did you intentionally want to spend shabbos davening at chabad (with other options around) and with meals in your room? Didn't chabad have a brocha after davening for lunch? Was there a reason you didn't go to Morasha just up the block from the Protea (we stayed there too and it was a 2 min walk)?
We don't know anyone in Cape Town and eating at someone's house we don't know isn't our thing.

Chabad is just 2 minutes away from Morasha and I just didn't feel like filling out the visitor form. They did have a kiddush/brocha and we stayed for a bit.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 15, 2017, 10:16:05 AM
So here goes...

Sunday-Monday:
-JFK-JNB-VFA in J (80k UA PP)
-Zimbabwean side of the falls
-Victoria Falls Safari Lodge (Approx. $300 - Not really worth it IMO)

Tuesday:
-Zambian side of the falls
-LVI-JNB in Y (4k + $44 Avios PP)
-Kosherworld delivered food to airport and picked up SIM
-JNB-MQP in Y (Approx. $80 PP - Should have driven in hindsight)
-Rented car at MQP
-Protea Nelspruit (7.5k Marriott)

Wednesday:
-Entered KNP through Malelane Gate and drove up to Skukuza airport with some detours
-Returned car at SZK
-Transferred to Notten's Bush Camp for 2 nights ($750 per night)

Thursday:
-Notten's Bush Camp

Friday:
-Transfer to SZK after morning game drive
-SZK-CPT in Y (Approx. $250 PP)
-Protea Sea Point for 2 nights (15k Marriott per night)
-Sahbbos food from Goldie's Deli (delivered to hotel)

Shabbos:
-Davend at Chabad, ate at hotel
-Sea Point Promenade

Sunday:
-Transferred to African Pride 15 On Orange Hotel for 2 nights (20k Marriott per night)
-Hout Bay / Chapman's Peak / Cape of Good hope / Cape Point / Boulder's Beach
-Dinner at Avron's Place

Monday:
-Breakfast at Coffee Time
-Table Mountain
-Robben Island
-V&A Waterfront
-Sunset at Signal Hill

Tuesday:
-CPT-JNB-DKR-IAD-LGA in J (80k UA PP)
-10 Hour layover in JNB
-Carlton Center
-Lunch at SoSushi
-Soweto tour
O M G wow you absolutely nailed it
alot of planning must have gone into the trip and it looks like you got the full experience
Totally agree about VF Safari lodge, i stay in the Kingdom , not because it's good but because of the location
VF has it's  advantages over Igauzu but i'd take Igauzu any day (Devils Pool, sunset cruise, actual height, gorge, zipline, bungee rafting etc. are some of the advantages)
what did you think of the Protea by KNP ? functional?
Location of the Marriott 15 On Orange Hotel is really good, was it decent?
I'll be handing out this itinerary!! i'm very impressed

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on February 15, 2017, 10:55:41 AM
O M G wow you absolutely nailed it
alot of planning must have gone into the trip and it looks like you got the full experience
Thanks! Indeed I put a LOT of planing into this trip.
Quote
Totally agree about VF Safari lodge, i stay in the Kingdom , not because it's good but because of the location
VF has it's  advantages over Igauzu but i'd take Igauzu any day (Devils Pool, sunset cruise, actual height, gorge, zipline, bungee rafting etc. are some of the advantages)
I hear your points about Vic over Iguazu, but like you said I'd take Iguazu any day. Devil's pool wasn't available now (high season) and sunset cruise didn't seem too exciting to me (We actually took the rafting trip in Iguazu upstream of the falls and it was very nice as we got relatively close to the falls). I'm slightly afraid of heights so no zipline and bungee for me...
Quote
what did you think of the Protea by KNP ? functional?
We were in the Protea in Nelspruit which is your typical 3-3.5 star hotel. The Protea at Kruger gate sounds like a much nicer property and I was actually booked there, but the location made me switch to the one in Nelspruit. It would have meant driving 1.5-2 hours after dark to get to the hotel and also entering the park the next day at the same place where I was returning my car meaning I would drive the same roads twice. Not the end of the world, but I'd rather use that one self drive to cover more ground.
Quote
Location of the Marriott 15 On Orange Hotel is really good, was it decent?
15 On Orange is a very nice modern hotel. Their smallest room is 400+ Sq. Ft. We were upgraded (Marriott Gold) to a deluxe room 750+ Sq. Ft. Excellent point value (6.6k SPG).
Quote
I'll be handing out this itinerary!! i'm very impressed
You do that, and thanks  :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on April 28, 2017, 12:45:49 PM
Can kosherworld prepare for you prepacked meals like pom meals?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on April 28, 2017, 12:48:43 PM
Can kosherworld prepare for you prepacked meals like pom meals?
Yes
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on April 30, 2017, 06:50:40 PM
I will be in Victoria Falls for 1 1/2 days, is it better to do a whole day safari to Chobe or a half day and do the other activities in and around Victoria falls?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 01, 2017, 10:47:11 AM
I will be in Victoria Falls for 1 1/2 days, is it better to do a whole day safari to Chobe or a half day and do the other activities in and around Victoria falls?

Chobe is worth it, but the best time to go is July-September, and game viewing is best at sunset and sunrise times.
Whitewater Rafting on the Zambezi is another activity which you can do.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 01, 2017, 10:54:41 AM
I will be in Victoria Falls for 1 1/2 days, is it better to do a whole day safari to Chobe or a half day and do the other activities in and around Victoria falls?
i'd just stick around VFA
Do both sides of the river
there's more then enough to do around the falls for 1 1/2 days
Chobe is a 2 hour drive from VFA and thats just to the park
most of your time will be just getting there and back
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on May 01, 2017, 11:08:10 AM
i'd just stick around VFA
Do both sides of the river
there's more then enough to do around the falls for 1 1/2 days
Chobe is a 2 hour drive from VFA and thats just to the park
most of your time will be just getting there and back
+1 VF is gorgeous and has plenty to do in the area. I'd recommend the Livingston Island tour, bungee jumping and/or zip line over the falls. If you want to spend a bit more, a helicopter tour is cool too.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 01, 2017, 04:44:22 PM
+1 VF is gorgeous and has plenty to do in the area. I'd recommend the Livingston Island tour, bungee jumping and/or zip line over the falls. If you want to spend a bit more, a helicopter tour is cool too.

Don't miss out on Devil's Pool ! -  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-561261/Is-ultimate-dangerous-infinity-pool-world-The-natural-water-hole-perched-edge-Victoria-Falls.html

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 01, 2017, 05:33:07 PM
Don't miss out on Devil's Pool ! -  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-561261/Is-ultimate-dangerous-infinity-pool-world-The-natural-water-hole-perched-edge-Victoria-Falls.html



Wasn't open when we were there in march.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on May 01, 2017, 05:43:36 PM
Wasn't open when we were there in march.
+1 It's closed for the rainy season. I believe the white water rafting is as well.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 02, 2017, 01:42:25 AM
+1 It's closed for the rainy season. I believe the white water rafting is as well.

As far as whitewater rafting, it's open all year, just in the rainy season only rapids
11 to 23 are rafted.

http://www.zambezirafting.com/livingstone-zambia/zambezi-river-rapid-guide.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: madhatter349 on May 08, 2017, 12:20:01 PM
Any recommendations for a budget/quality trip to kruger national park? A Friend and I will be in Johannesburg for 4 days and we are looking to do a 2 day / 1 night or a 3 day / 2 night in kruger national park.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 08, 2017, 12:34:37 PM
Rent a car and book accomodations at one of the Kruger rest camps. You can book game drives through the park, as well as self-drive.
https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/

Any recommendations for a budget/quality trip to kruger national park? A Friend and I will be in Johannesburg for 4 days and we are looking to do a 2 day / 1 night or a 3 day / 2 night in kruger national park.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: madhatter349 on May 08, 2017, 01:52:28 PM
Rent a car and book accomodations at one of the Kruger rest camps. You can book game drives through the park, as well as self-drive.
https://www.sanparks.org/parks/kruger/

I can surely look into that, thank you for the suggestion. Is there a base camp you recommend staying at, do you recommend if doing 2 nights, do 2 different camps, and do you have a preferred car rental company in Johannesburg?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 08, 2017, 03:23:10 PM
I can surely look into that, thank you for the suggestion. Is there a base camp you recommend staying at, do you recommend if doing 2 nights, do 2 different camps, and do you have a preferred car rental company in Johannesburg?

Well definitely do two nights, and the camps I prefer are Lower Sabie, Skukuza or Tamboti. For such a short trip, be aware it would be a 4-5 hour drive from JNB. You can also fly into the Kruger park, e.g. Nelspruit Airport. If your return departure flight is early, you can stay in e.g. Berg-en-Dal camp. I don't have any preference as far as preferred car rental, I just book whichever one gives the best rate, usually Avis or Hertz. Car rental is fairly cheap, as long as you rent a manual.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: madhatter349 on May 09, 2017, 09:23:38 AM
Well definitely do two nights, and the camps I prefer are Lower Sabie, Skukuza or Tamboti. For such a short trip, be aware it would be a 4-5 hour drive from JNB. You can also fly into the Kruger park, e.g. Nelspruit Airport. If your return departure flight is early, you can stay in e.g. Berg-en-Dal camp. I don't have any preference as far as preferred car rental, I just book whichever one gives the best rate, usually Avis or Hertz. Car rental is fairly cheap, as long as you rent a manual.

Thank You, I Will look into those 3 base camps. Is it possible to book game drives in advanced, which would you recommend?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 09, 2017, 09:46:22 AM
Thank You, I Will look into those 3 base camps. Is it possible to book game drives in advanced, which would you recommend?

You should reserve your accommodations in advance as that sells out fast. As far as game drive, you can also book that in advanced, and the best would be morning and sunset game drives, but you can also self-drive. The advantage of the game drives is that you are in an open safari vehicle; Plus they depart 30 minutes prior to when the camp gates officially open in the morning, and the sunset drive, they can return to the gate well after sunset. (Self-drive, you can only leave when the camp gates open at 6am, and you must be back in the camp at 5:30pm for the month of June). Plus in the safari vehicles, you are higher up, so you have better visibility, professional guide, etc. but other than that, I prefer to drive myself, and often the game drive vehicles are just following me.

http://latestsightings.com/  should be of interest
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on May 09, 2017, 05:20:29 PM
I went on a 3 week Honeymoon to South Africa & Mauritius in January. I was about 3/4 way through an amazing and detailed trip report when of course my computer crashes and I loose everything.

I will be writing up a much more brief TR without all the details but if anyone has any questions at all about Cape Town, Safari, Joburg or Mauritius please DM me. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 09, 2017, 06:14:29 PM
I live in South Africa, and been countless of times in Swaziland, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Ethiopia, Angola, Rwanda, Egypt,  etc, and drove the entire South Africa backward and forwards. Glad to help anybody as well :)

I went on a 3 week Honeymoon to South Africa & Mauritius in January. I was about 3/4 way through an amazing and detailed trip report when of course my computer crashes and I loose everything.

I will be writing up a much more brief TR without all the details but if anyone has any questions at all about Cape Town, Safari, Joburg or Mauritius please DM me.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 09, 2017, 07:10:11 PM
The joys of living in South Africa: You don't have to go to the Kruger to see big 5, we have a big one right here in Johannesburg, the Parktown Prawn - This disgusting cricket is enormous and is fairly common in the gardens in and around Johannesburg. Getting rid of them is torture, they squirt foul black fecal matter & jump over a meter high if they feel threatened. They hiss at you whilst you are trying to kill them. If you flush them down the toilet they crawl back up unscathed.

The other picture is a Green Mamba which I recently took after one of the Jack Russels killed it.  Bite from one of these can cause life-threatening paralysis and can be fatal in as little as 30 minutes.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 09, 2017, 08:45:19 PM
The joys of living in South Africa: You don't have to go to the Kruger to see big 5, we have a big one right here in Johannesburg, the Parktown Prawn - This disgusting cricket is enormous and is fairly common in the gardens in and around Johannesburg. Getting rid of them is torture, they squirt foul black fecal matter & jump over a meter high if they feel threatened. They hiss at you whilst you are trying to kill them. If you flush them down the toilet they crawl back up unscathed.

The other picture is a Green Mamba which I recently took after one of the Jack Russels killed it.  Bite from one of these can cause life-threatening paralysis and can be fatal in as little as 30 minutes.
Posting about the parktown prawn should be a bannable offense.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 10, 2017, 03:38:06 PM
Posting about the parktown prawn should be a bannable offense.

Well, then in Johannesburg there is public enemy #1, the Hadeda Ibis bird that wakes me up every single
morning at 4 am, with its loud deafening annoying HA-HA-HA screech. But all is forgiven, they keep
the parktown prawn population under control by eating them.

http://youtu.be/ErhMjSevu14

http://blog.africageographic.com/africa-geographic-blog/files/2012/06/13-Hadeda-Ibis.mp3
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 10, 2017, 05:49:42 PM
Well, then in Johannesburg there is public enemy #1, the Hadeda Ibis bird that wakes me up every single
morning at 4 am, with its loud deafening annoying HA-HA-HA screech. But all is forgiven, they keep
the parktown prawn population under control by eating them.

http://youtu.be/ErhMjSevu14

http://blog.africageographic.com/africa-geographic-blog/files/2012/06/13-Hadeda-Ibis.mp3
you can have them both
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on May 14, 2017, 10:33:20 AM
Has anyone used City Sighseeing(https://www.citysightseeing.co.za/) to go around Cape Town? If so, would this be better than renting a car to go to the same places offered by this service?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 14, 2017, 10:40:11 AM
Has anyone used City Sighseeing(https://www.citysightseeing.co.za/) to go around Cape Town? If so, would this be better than renting a car to go to the same places offered by this service?
Cars are cheap and driving is very easy in CPT. Just rent a car. It offers far more flexibility and is worth the price.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 14, 2017, 10:54:37 AM
Has anyone used City Sighseeing(https://www.citysightseeing.co.za/) to go around Cape Town? If so, would this be better than renting a car to go to the same places offered by this service?

We used them on our trip to CPT and would recommend. The have buses running every few minutes to all the main places and it's cheap.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on May 14, 2017, 10:57:51 AM
Cars are cheap and driving is very easy in CPT. Just rent a car. It offers far more flexibility and is worth the price.
+1
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 14, 2017, 03:08:55 PM
Cars are cheap and driving is very easy in CPT. Just rent a car. It offers far more flexibility and is worth the price.

Cars are cheap, especially manual transmission. Petrol is a bit over the equivalent of $1 a litter. Bring warm clothing,
it has been extremely cold in Johannesburg and snowing in parts of South Africa. One can go skiing at Afriski www.afriski.net (about 4 hour drive from Joburg).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on May 18, 2017, 10:31:31 AM
If I have the option of both and price isn't an issue, would anyone recommend Madikwe over kruger (private reserve) and why?

Specifically Etali Safari Lodge in Madikwe and Kusudalweni Safari Lodge & Spa in Kruger

TIA
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 18, 2017, 11:48:26 AM
If I have the option of both and price isn't an issue, would anyone recommend Madikwe over kruger (private reserve) and why?

Specifically Etali Safari Lodge in Madikwe and Kusudalweni Safari Lodge & Spa in Kruger

TIA
Malaria
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on May 18, 2017, 03:31:24 PM
If I have the option of both and price isn't an issue, would anyone recommend Madikwe over kruger (private reserve) and why?

Specifically Etali Safari Lodge in Madikwe and Kusudalweni Safari Lodge & Spa in Kruger

TIA
Kusudalweni is in Guernsey reserve which I believe isn't actually open to Kruger, so it boils down to what the specific reserves / lodges have to offer.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 18, 2017, 03:41:04 PM
If I have the option of both and price isn't an issue, would anyone recommend Madikwe over kruger (private reserve) and why?

Specifically Etali Safari Lodge in Madikwe and Kusudalweni Safari Lodge & Spa in Kruger

TIA
Kids can't take malaria pills so going to Kruger with them isn't practical.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 18, 2017, 04:14:23 PM
If I have the option of both and price isn't an issue, would anyone recommend Madikwe over kruger (private reserve) and why?

Specifically Etali Safari Lodge in Madikwe and Kusudalweni Safari Lodge & Spa in Kruger

TIA
What Kusudalweni has also is proximity to places like Blyde river canyon and other attractions
Madikwe is close to nothing ulness you consider Botswana an attraction
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 18, 2017, 04:29:24 PM
The probability of being stung by a Anopheles mosquitoes that carry malaria in the Kruger National Park is at 1 to 24,000, and they are only active at night, in the rainy season. May is the start of the dry Winter season, during which the mosquitoes start to hibernate, and it doesn't rain till the start of the rainy season in the end of October. June till September is outside the malaria risk season, and prophylaxis is not recommended.

One should be more concerned about the crime risk.

Kids can't take malaria pills so going to Kruger with them isn't practical.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on May 18, 2017, 04:40:11 PM
"Amongst the 66 mammal species resident at Madikwe Game Reserve are the imfamous Big 5"

 ;D
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on May 23, 2017, 10:49:17 AM
Thanks all.

We are 2 adults traveling without kids so the malaria pills are not an issue, however we have decided to go with Etali in Madikwe.

Another question, I will be spending Thursday night - Monday in Cape Town, any hotel recommendations? Within walking distance to a shul our economical option is The Hyde Hotel, or luxury is the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel. Non-walking distance is Cape Grace hotel.

Is the Belmond that much nicer than the Hyde, it would be about $1000 more per person for 4 nights?
Has anyone stayed in the Cape Grace hotel? Or any comparable hotel near the V&A Waterfront that I should look into?

Thanks for all replies

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 23, 2017, 11:14:32 AM
If you are staying in Cape Town for Shabbes, you would want to stay in the Sea Point area, if you want to attend a shomer shabbos/observant minyan. Belmond Nelson is not in Sea Point.


Thanks all.

We are 2 adults traveling without kids so the malaria pills are not an issue, however we have decided to go with Etali in Madikwe.

Another question, I will be spending Thursday night - Monday in Cape Town, any hotel recommendations? Within walking distance to a shul our economical option is The Hyde Hotel, or luxury is the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel. Non-walking distance is Cape Grace hotel.

Is the Belmond that much nicer than the Hyde, it would be about $1000 more per person for 4 nights?
Has anyone stayed in the Cape Grace hotel? Or any comparable hotel near the V&A Waterfront that I should look into?

Thanks for all replies


Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 23, 2017, 11:17:15 AM
Thanks all.

We are 2 adults traveling without kids so the malaria pills are not an issue, however we have decided to go with Etali in Madikwe.

Another question, I will be spending Thursday night - Monday in Cape Town, any hotel recommendations? Within walking distance to a shul our economical option is The Hyde Hotel, or luxury is the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel. Non-walking distance is Cape Grace hotel.

Is the Belmond that much nicer than the Hyde, it would be about $1000 more per person for 4 nights?
Has anyone stayed in the Cape Grace hotel? Or any comparable hotel near the V&A Waterfront that I should look into?

Thanks for all replies
We stayed at the Protea Sea Point. While not the nicest, fanciest hotel, it was a great bargain with Marriott points and was a 2 minute walk from Morasha (shul) and the beach. I wouldn't hesitate to go back.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 23, 2017, 11:18:32 AM
We stayed at the Protea Sea Point. While not the nicest, fanciest hotel, it was a great bargain with Marriott points and was a 2 minute walk from Morasha (shul) and the beach. I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

+1 on Protea, comfortable and great deal with points.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on May 23, 2017, 11:47:05 AM
If you are staying in Cape Town for Shabbes, you would want to stay in the Sea Point area, if you want to attend a shomer shabbos/observant minyan. Belmond Nelson is not in Sea Point.



Is there any shul this is walking distance to? I was told that it was within walking distance.

I'm not booking the hotels on my own, I'm working with an agency so points isn't an option here. And we are looking for more luxury, but I was just wondering if the other hotels are worth that much more than the Hyde.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on May 23, 2017, 11:50:08 AM
If you are staying in Cape Town for Shabbes, you would want to stay in the Sea Point area, if you want to attend a shomer shabbos/observant minyan. Belmond Nelson is not in Sea Point.



It's a 5 minute walk to Cape Town Hebrew Congregation, what type of shul is that?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 23, 2017, 12:07:48 PM
The Rav if frum, but the congregants are not, except for a few. They have a program called Friday Night Live, that they can have over 1,000 in attendance, but it's a sea of lights from all the cell phones. Best bet is Ohr Somayach or Chabad in Sea Point.

It's a 5 minute walk to Cape Town Hebrew Congregation, what type of shul is that?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on May 23, 2017, 12:29:35 PM
The Rav if frum, but the congregants are not, except for a few. They have a program called Friday Night Live, that they can have over 1,000 in attendance, but it's a sea of lights from all the cell phones. Best bet is Ohr Somayach or Chabad in Sea Point.
I found Morasha to be fine as well. Modern, but fine. They had a daily minyan as well.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on May 23, 2017, 12:39:56 PM
Is there any shul this is walking distance to? I was told that it was within walking distance.

I'm not booking the hotels on my own, I'm working with an agency so points isn't an option here. And we are looking for more luxury, but I was just wondering if the other hotels are worth that much more than the Hyde.

I stayed in the Clarendon. It's beautiful, they are very aware of Shabbos/Kashrus and it's very close to the shuls
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on May 23, 2017, 12:59:26 PM
I stayed in the Clarendon. It's beautiful, they are very aware of Shabbos/Kashrus and it's very close to the shuls

It's fully booked for my dates :(
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on May 23, 2017, 01:19:42 PM
It's fully booked for my dates :(
Oh well, shame.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on May 24, 2017, 05:00:03 PM
stayed at the President a few times. Very nice especially if you get a ocean view room.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ChikkyMonkey on May 25, 2017, 03:12:11 PM
I am planning a trip in January with 4 kids ages 3-11, would like some advice on places worth visiting. Is kruger for kids my ages a must? or should I just stick with Cape Town and go to one of the private parks nearby?  What else would be fun for young kids?

Any reason to go to Johannesburg? I will arrive Jan 2 and stay til the 10th, any help greatly appreciated! 

Thanks a lot
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on May 25, 2017, 05:18:16 PM
I am planning a trip in January with 4 kids ages 3-11, would like some advice on places worth visiting. Is kruger for kids my ages a must? or should I just stick with Cape Town and go to one of the private parks nearby?  What else would be fun for young kids?

Any reason to go to Johannesburg? I will arrive Jan 2 and stay til the 10th, any help greatly appreciated! 

Thanks a lot
IMHO Kruger is a bad idea for young Kids
#1 Malaria Pills
#2 you can go for hours w/o seeing anything and kids need to be entertained

No real reason to go to JNB (ps they are all in CPT that time of year anyway)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 25, 2017, 05:18:47 PM
I am planning a trip in January with 4 kids ages 3-11, would like some advice on places worth visiting. Is kruger for kids my ages a must? or should I just stick with Cape Town and go to one of the private parks nearby?  What else would be fun for young kids?

Any reason to go to Johannesburg? I will arrive Jan 2 and stay til the 10th, any help greatly appreciated! 

Thanks a lot

If you are going in January, go and enjoy Cape Town, where at least one can enjoy the warm weather and swim in the Indian
Ocean. Kruger in January, afternoon thunderstorms are common, and it's the wet rainy season, and from time to time, it can rain
heavily for days, and you can end up with seeing absolutely nothing. There are some game parks in the Eastern Cape, such as Addo
Elephant Park, Schotia (http://schotiasafaris.co.za), Shamwari-(luxury high end) https://www.shamwari.com, Kragga Kamma game park http://www.kraggakamma.co.za which are in the vicinity of Port Elizabeth. Note: it would be an 8-hour drive from Cape Town or 1-hour flight; to Port Elizabeth airport. One can also fly into George, and the 4.5-hour drive to Port Elizabeth is very scenic.

I highly recommend the Crags Plettenberg area, e.g. https://www.tripadvisor.co.za/Attractions-g1382495-Activities-The_Crags_Plettenberg_Bay_Western_Cape.html and the Storms River Mouth https://www.sanparks.org/parks/garden_route/camps/storms_river/

If one is stuck in the Cape Town area, about 2.5-3 hours away is Sanbona, but it's expensive. http://www.sanbona.com/
There is also Aquila and Inverdoorn, but they are very small, and not recommended/poorly rated -- for these two, you might as well just stay home and go to your local zoo.

No reason to go to Johannesburg, unless one wants to pay me a visit:)

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on June 02, 2017, 11:56:13 AM
We will be in Cape Town on Friday and Shabbat starts about 6PM, would anyone recommend one of these over the other, time-wise and interest wise? We will have a guide, we won't be going alone.

Cape Winelands tour: countryside, kosher wine-tasting, and a few museums. Or:
Table Mountain and City Tour: Historical monuments and areas in CT, Kirtenbosch Botanical Gardens, Greenmarket Square and going up Table Mountain.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 02, 2017, 12:25:06 PM
We will be in Cape Town on Friday and Shabbat starts about 6PM, would anyone recommend one of these over the other, time-wise and interest wise? We will have a guide, we won't be going alone.

Cape Winelands tour: countryside, kosher wine-tasting, and a few museums. Or:
Table Mountain and City Tour: Historical monuments and areas in CT, Kirtenbosch Botanical Gardens, Greenmarket Square and going up Table Mountain.
Not much to do in wine country at this time of the year, but Table Mountain sounds like a good idea.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 02, 2017, 12:27:08 PM
We will be in Cape Town on Friday and Shabbat starts about 6PM, would anyone recommend one of these over the other, time-wise and interest wise? We will have a guide, we won't be going alone.

Cape Winelands tour: countryside, kosher wine-tasting, and a few museums. Or:
Table Mountain and City Tour: Historical monuments and areas in CT, Kirtenbosch Botanical Gardens, Greenmarket Square and going up Table Mountain.
might not me the smartest idea to go to Paarl on a Friday , traffic could be nasty coming back into town
with that said i'd probably still go with the Table mountain idea<
kirstenbosch although gorgeous is not a must
I'd do hout bay seafood market and a seal (Duiker) island tour
Cape Point?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 02, 2017, 12:29:47 PM
might not me the smartest idea to go to Paarl on a Friday , traffic could be nasty coming back into town
with that said i'd probably still go with the Table mountain idea<
kirstenbosch although gorgeous is not a must
I'd do hout bay seafood market and a seal (Duiker) island tour
Cape Point?
Too short of a day to do Cape Point, but I like the idea of going up to Table Mountain. It's the perfect Friday activity.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on June 02, 2017, 12:40:00 PM
Thank you both.

We're arriving the night before and staying in Cape Grace hotel so starting our day very early shouldn't be an issue.
It sounds like the second option would be best thanks so much.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on June 07, 2017, 10:11:22 AM
I stayed in the Clarendon. It's beautiful, they are very aware of Shabbos/Kashrus and it's very close to the shuls

The Clarendon doesn't have a room available, but they do have their "Neptune Apartment" available which is not in the main hotel building. Has anyone stayed there? Any positives or negatives about staying there versus a regular room in the hotel (besides for price)? http://www.clarendon.co.za/bantry-bay-rooms-neptune-apartment.php
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ponash123 on June 07, 2017, 10:52:13 AM
From what I remember, it was right there across the courtyard and basically part of the hotel, just a different entrance.
Doubt it will make any difference.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on June 07, 2017, 02:37:59 PM
Thanks for all the helpful advice everyone. We've decided to stick with the Cape Grace as we're looking to use the spa there and would like to be by the waterfront.

So psyched to have finalized my trip. Flying in August:

Wednesday on EK in F JFK-DXB-CPT (3 hour layover)

Arriving Thursday eve, 3 nights in Cape Grace, Friday doing full day tour, Shabbat, then Sunday departure

Sunday flying CPT-JNB (BA in J for luggage allowance) then Fed Air flight straight into Etali in Madikwe where we'll spend 3 nights. Full kosher kitchen and all meals included.

Return will be JNB-DXB-JFK also on EK in F. 8AM Thursday until 3AM Friday layover in Dubai

Trip report waiting to happen!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 07, 2017, 02:44:15 PM
Thanks for all the helpful advice everyone. We've decided to stick with the Cape Grace as we're looking to use the spa there and would like to be by the waterfront.

So psyched to have finalized my trip. Flying in August:

Wednesday on EK in F JFK-DXB-CPT (3 hour layover)

Arriving Thursday eve, 3 nights in Cape Grace, Friday doing full day tour, Shabbat, then Sunday departure

Sunday flying CPT-JNB (BA in J for luggage allowance) then Fed Air flight straight into Etali in Madikwe where we'll spend 3 nights. Full kosher kitchen and all meals included.

Return will be JNB-DXB-JFK also on EK in F. 8AM Thursday until 3AM Friday layover in Dubai

Trip report waiting to happen!!
Sounds fun! Enjoy.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 07, 2017, 02:46:04 PM
good thing you;re not in Cape Town now...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 07, 2017, 02:48:10 PM
good thing you;re not in Cape Town now...
Huh? Why not?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 07, 2017, 03:40:58 PM
Huh? Why not?
Southeaster
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/move-cars-to-higher-ground-warns-city-of-cape-town-20170607
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/live-cape-storm-20170607
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 07, 2017, 03:50:56 PM
Southeaster
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/move-cars-to-higher-ground-warns-city-of-cape-town-20170607
http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/live-cape-storm-20170607
Wow! They don't get those that often.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 08, 2017, 02:56:04 AM
Wow! They don't get those that often.

https://www.enca.com/south-africa/live-blog-monster-storm-lashes-cape-town
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 12, 2017, 11:54:00 AM
out of curiosity, Is there a place where I can order meals and have them sent to the places I am staying in Vic Falls and Kruger ahead of my arrival?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 12, 2017, 12:02:29 PM
out of curiosity, Is there a place where I can order meals and have them sent to the places I am staying in Vic Falls and Kruger ahead of my arrival?
Yes.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 12, 2017, 12:09:55 PM
Can you PM me the info.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 12, 2017, 12:23:06 PM
Can you PM me the info.
Don't have anything special. I just emailed the supermarket (Kosher World IIRC) and got an email back. It helps a lot if you're on the same time as them so it doesn't take a full day between responses, but that's life.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 12, 2017, 12:40:58 PM
Thx
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on June 12, 2017, 01:03:29 PM
Don't have anything special. I just emailed the supermarket (Kosher World IIRC) and got an email back. It helps a lot if you're on the same time as them so it doesn't take a full day between responses, but that's life.
they will send ahead or you have to pick up in JNB?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 12, 2017, 01:12:44 PM
they will send ahead or you have to pick up in JNB?
I picked up in JNB, but she said she'd send it wherever I needed it within SA. Not sure he'd send it out of the country, though I'd ask her if she would.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 12, 2017, 01:46:06 PM
Only if you would be able to pick it up, or have it delievered to you in the airport in Johannedburg.

out of curiosity, Is there a place where I can order meals and have them sent to the places I am staying in Vic Falls and Kruger ahead of my arrival?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on June 13, 2017, 02:58:41 PM
I believe they'll ship it as needed, but it might be very costly.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 13, 2017, 03:42:01 PM
I believe they'll ship it as needed, but it might be very costly.

It would be costly, as it would have to be done by private courier. South African Post Office (SAPO) is absolutely unreliable. Anything I order from amazon.com never arrives -- the postal workers steal the packages. Not to mention they went on a 4-month strike.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 13, 2017, 03:53:55 PM
It would be costly, as it would have to be done by private courier. South African Post Office (SAPO) is absolutely unreliable. Anything I order from amazon.com never arrives -- the postal workers steal the packages. Not to mention they went on a 4-month strike.
+1000. I was told how people will do anything to avoid the SAPO. I'm quite surprised you used it actually.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 13, 2017, 04:07:37 PM
+1000. I was told how people will do anything to avoid the SAPO. I'm quite surprised you used it actually.

Well, no Amazon Prime here. I have to source everything from the Johannesburg street vendors
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 15, 2017, 07:59:49 PM
Which SA cell phone provider offers the best plans for tourists?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on June 15, 2017, 08:55:10 PM
Which SA cell phone provider offers the best plans for tourists?
SA cell provider? Are you not in the US? Can't you just get T-Mobile? They're the best!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on June 15, 2017, 10:30:22 PM
SA cell provider? Are you not in the US? Can't you just get T-Mobile? They're the best!

+1 perfect service with T-Mobile roaming.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on June 15, 2017, 10:39:23 PM
+1 perfect service with T-Mobile roaming.
+2 I did Kruger and service was a bit spotty, but Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Johannesburg were fine.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 16, 2017, 01:20:57 AM
Which SA cell phone provider offers the best plans for tourists?

http://prepaid-data-sim-card.wikia.com/wiki/South_Africa

Nationwide the best overall coverage is Vodacom, followed by MTN. Check the coverage maps:

http://www.vodacom.co.za/vodacom/coverage-map
http://www.mtn.co.za/pages/coverage-map.aspx

There is also Cell C, they offer unlimited Whatsapp Data Bundle for R12
https://www.cellc.co.za/cellc/coverage-map
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 08:01:29 AM
My parents want to take a trip to South Africa sometime in May 2018. I understand that it's far in advance but wanted to get an idea of the best points to accumulate to get award flights for them. They currently have about 150K UR (with CSR) but could increase that if necessary. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 20, 2017, 09:25:42 AM
If you want non-stop from NYC, you will need 160K total for 2 ppl in Y R/T via United.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 10:09:31 AM
If you want non-stop from NYC, you will need 160K total for 2 ppl in Y R/T via United.
Thanks - now I see that. And for J it would be 320K? Is it lie flat? Is it an award that is really hard to find? I see do see some saver availability around the dates that we're looking at.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 20, 2017, 10:58:47 AM
Thanks - now I see that. And for J it would be 320K? Is it lie flat? Is it an award that is really hard to find? I see do see some saver availability around the dates that we're looking at.

It is lie flat.

You can get that SAA flight with ANA for 104k miles or with other programs cheaper than United: https://www.awardhacker.com/#f=JFK&t=JNB&o=0&c=j&s=0&p=0

Delta has a direct flight from Atlanta, which is much more difficult to get "saver" award. (I've never seen it)
Otherwise you are looking at a stop in Europe, or with AA, a stop in DOH.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on June 20, 2017, 11:01:47 AM
It is lie flat.

You can get that SAA flight with ANA for 104k miles or with other programs cheaper than United: https://www.awardhacker.com/#f=JFK&t=JNB&o=0&c=j&s=0&p=0

Cheapest in J is probably A3. Though both ANA and A3 are not transfer partners with chase.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 11:36:43 AM
You can get that SAA flight with ANA for 104k miles or with other programs cheaper than United: https://www.awardhacker.com/#f=JFK&t=JNB&o=0&c=j&s=0&p=0
Thanks, that's helpful. How likely is it that I will find 2 J saver awards on the non-stop NYC flight? My parents are def the type that want to plan in advance so waiting until a few weeks beforehand won't work.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 20, 2017, 11:38:22 AM
Thanks, that's helpful. How likely is it that I will find 2 J saver awards on the non-stop NYC flight? My parents are def the type that want to plan in advance so waiting until a few weeks beforehand won't work.
I'm not knowledgeable enough about that to give you odds.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 20, 2017, 11:45:10 AM
I booked back in Jan and have looked every fews days and have not seen any J saver awards from NYC on SAA.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 11:51:31 AM
I booked back in Jan and have looked every fews days and have not seen any J saver awards from NYC on SAA.
You booked J or Y?

So if I ever see J open up then I need to jump on them. Based on awardhacker it seems that transferring UR to Singapore is my cheapest option (assuming I only have UR to work with). Is the transfer instant?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 20, 2017, 12:06:28 PM
Booked in Y. Yes, If you see J jump on it. I don't recall if SQ is instant, I know I've had to wait some time in the past until it showed up.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 12:14:24 PM
Booked in Y. Yes, If you see J jump on it. I don't recall if SQ is instant, I know I've had to wait some time in the past until it showed up.
So you're checking to see if J opens up and you'll upgrade? Is that a simple process that you can do online without any fees or do you need to call in?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: ajs625 on June 20, 2017, 12:31:37 PM
Yes, I am looking for J. On UA you can do it online for SQ you will need to PUTPAC as partner awards cannot be booked online.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 20, 2017, 12:36:04 PM
So you're checking to see if J opens up and you'll upgrade? Is that a simple process that you can do online without any fees or do you need to call in?

On United I believe there is a change fee.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 20, 2017, 12:59:04 PM
On United I believe there is a change fee.
Cost?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 20, 2017, 01:19:25 PM
Cost?
https://www.united.com/web/en-US/content/mileageplus/awards/travel/ticketing.aspx
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on June 26, 2017, 03:22:08 PM
What's the best sim card for calling and 4g?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 26, 2017, 03:40:53 PM
What's the best sim card for calling and 4g?

MTN or Vodacom.  We have 4g LTE since 2012.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on June 26, 2017, 03:42:55 PM
MTN or Vodacom.  We have 4g LTE since 2012.
thanks, is there calling in kruger? Is it possible to forward an American phone number to a SA phone number?

I just saw this website. Is it reliable?

http://prepaid-data-sim-card.wikia.com/wiki/South_Africa
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on June 26, 2017, 03:48:22 PM
thanks, is there calling in kruger? Is it possible to forward an American phone number to a SA phone number?

I just saw this website. Is it reliable?

http://prepaid-data-sim-card.wikia.com/wiki/South_Africa
I had t-mobile roaming in Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 26, 2017, 04:14:40 PM
thanks, is there calling in kruger? Is it possible to forward an American phone number to a SA phone number?

I just saw this website. Is it reliable?

http://prepaid-data-sim-card.wikia.com/wiki/South_Africa

Yes, this website is very reliable. I posted it on the forums, and use it often.

Kruger does have cell reception in the rest camps. Vodacom has the best coverage, but 3G only in the main rest camps area.
http://www.krugerpark.co.za/Maps_of_Kruger_Park-travel/cellphone-map-knp.html

As far as forwarding a US number, you can use http://www.callcentric.com/ -  You can get yourself a free NY phone number https://www.callcentric.com/dids/free_phone_number , use a non-US address, else they will charge you a mandatory E-911 fee each month.
Then configure it to forward that number to your South African mobile. Their forwarding rate is $0.0495 per minute. 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on June 26, 2017, 04:18:31 PM
Yes, this website is very reliable. I posted it on the forums, and use it often.

Kruger does have cell reception in the rest camps. Vodacom has the best coverage, but 3G only in the main rest camps area.
http://www.krugerpark.co.za/Maps_of_Kruger_Park-travel/cellphone-map-knp.html

As far as forwarding a US number, you can use http://www.callcentric.com/ -  You can get yourself a free NY phone number https://www.callcentric.com/dids/free_phone_number , use a non-US address, else they will charge you a mandatory E-911 fee each month.
Then configure it to forward that number to your South African mobile. Their forwarding rate is $0.0495 per minute.

Awesome thx
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: dvol on June 27, 2017, 03:01:38 PM
Any recommendations for duffel bags? I plan on using 1 regular suitcase that FedAir will store for me until my return to JNB, but need a duffel for my 3 days in the reserve.

The following are the restrictions from FedAir:

Bags must be soft on all sides similar to that of a duffel bag. No cases with hard sides are allowed.
Maximum check in luggage weight allowed is 20kg/44lbs
Carry-on luggage is restricted to one piece weighing a maximum of 5kg/11lbs
Suggested luggage size is 40cm/16 inches wide x 30cm/12 inches high x 60cm/24 inches long
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 28, 2017, 03:48:48 PM
Any recommendations for duffel bags? I plan on using 1 regular suitcase that FedAir will store for me until my return to JNB, but need a duffel for my 3 days in the reserve.

The following are the restrictions from FedAir:

Bags must be soft on all sides similar to that of a duffel bag. No cases with hard sides are allowed.
Maximum check in luggage weight allowed is 20kg/44lbs
Carry-on luggage is restricted to one piece weighing a maximum of 5kg/11lbs
Suggested luggage size is 40cm/16 inches wide x 30cm/12 inches high x 60cm/24 inches long

I have 3 duffel bags from A. Saks. I particularly use them, as they are light weight - as other suitcases just eat up my luggage allowance.

https://www.overstock.com/Luggage-Bags/A.Saks-25-inch-Expandable-Wheeled-Upright-Duffel-Bag/3440015/product.html?refccid=PLMYNW53NBY243COHMWVAB6HWI&searchidx=4&keywords=&refinement=brand:Asaks|
https://www.overstock.com/Asaks,/brand,/results.html
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on June 28, 2017, 04:15:09 PM
Meanwhile, I am in Zambia for the past week, and a Zambian dude approached me in the supermarket and offered me rough diamonds from Angola. He tells me "I can trust you with a sample, I can give you a sample rough one or the cut and polished one already."

Now, I know absolutely nothing about diamonds, other than that there is such a thing as Kimberley Process certificates and blood diamonds. I wouldn't take a risk either way, but anyways I messaged my friend in the industry, and he replies, "We don't do rough. I would NOT get involved in any way. Makes no difference what guy says. You can get arrested and thrown in jail. You can get in big trouble for even touching a diamond. People can be looking at videos. Stay away. Rob banks if you must."

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on June 28, 2017, 06:05:15 PM
Meanwhile, I am in Zambia for the past week, and a Zambian dude approached me in the supermarket and offered me rough diamonds from Angola. He tells me "I can trust you with a sample, I can give you a sample rough one or the cut and polished one already."

Now, I know absolutely nothing about diamonds, other than that there is such a thing as Kimberley Process certificates and blood diamonds. I wouldn't take a risk either way, but anyways I messaged my friend in the industry, and he replies, "We don't do rough. I would NOT get involved in any way. Makes no difference what guy says. You can get arrested and thrown in jail. You can get in big trouble for even touching a diamond. People can be looking at videos. Stay away. Rob banks if you must."
What?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on June 28, 2017, 07:03:04 PM
Meanwhile, I am in Zambia for the past week, and a Zambian dude approached me in the supermarket and offered me rough diamonds from Angola. He tells me "I can trust you with a sample, I can give you a sample rough one or the cut and polished one already."

Now, I know absolutely nothing about diamonds, other than that there is such a thing as Kimberley Process certificates and blood diamonds. I wouldn't take a risk either way, but anyways I messaged my friend in the industry, and he replies, "We don't do rough. I would NOT get involved in any way. Makes no difference what guy says. You can get arrested and thrown in jail. You can get in big trouble for even touching a diamond. People can be looking at videos. Stay away. Rob banks if you must."
"Rob banks if you must" is sound advice which can apply to many other DDF threads these days.

Shared the story in the "Best of DDF" thread
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on July 02, 2017, 02:30:09 AM
Has anyone ever flown cemair?
Do they charge for luggage?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 02, 2017, 07:45:47 AM
Has anyone ever flown cemair?
Do they charge for luggage?

http://www.flycemair.co.za/general/extras_and_info.php#baggage

Each route has a certain amount of Checked luggage which is allowed free of charge. Excess baggage is charged ar R25.00 per kilo if pre-booked.  e.g. to Cape Town or Plett it's up to 21kg per person, and if you are an international passenger, you get another 10kg, as long as you have proof of international arrival or departure within 3 days of Cemair flight.

CemAir is very reliable and their service is very good.  Just many of their routes are on a turboprop Bombardier Dash 8 or Beechcraft 1900.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on July 02, 2017, 08:08:39 AM
http://www.flycemair.co.za/general/extras_and_info.php#baggage

Each route has a certain amount of Checked luggage which is allowed free of charge. Excess baggage is charged ar R25.00 per kilo if pre-booked.  e.g. to Cape Town or Plett it's up to 21kg per person, and if you are an international passenger, you get another 10kg, as long as you have proof of international arrival or departure within 3 days of Cemair flight.

CemAir is very reliable and their service is very good.  Just many of their routes are on a turboprop Bombardier Dash 8 or Beechcraft 1900.

Ya jnb-hds I think it's on a dash 8.
Thx
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on July 05, 2017, 01:22:36 PM
Any recommendations for duffel bags? I plan on using 1 regular suitcase that FedAir will store for me until my return to JNB, but need a duffel for my 3 days in the reserve.

The following are the restrictions from FedAir:

Bags must be soft on all sides similar to that of a duffel bag. No cases with hard sides are allowed.
Maximum check in luggage weight allowed is 20kg/44lbs
Carry-on luggage is restricted to one piece weighing a maximum of 5kg/11lbs
Suggested luggage size is 40cm/16 inches wide x 30cm/12 inches high x 60cm/24 inches long
https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_1_16?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=samsonite+tote+a+ton&sprefix=samsonite+tote+a%2Caps%2CNaN&crid=1RIH6BD1QGC3P
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Ergel on July 06, 2017, 12:46:30 AM
Thanks moish!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 06, 2017, 04:01:15 PM
I just wanted to share, if anybody is going down to Livingstone, Zambia or Victoria Falls. I just did a side trip to Chobe National Park. To get there, I took a shared taxi to the Kazungula Border crossing from Livingstone. Cost 40 Zambian Kwacha (about $4.50 USD), taking about 45 minutes for the 62km ride. Then a 5-minute motorized pontoon ferry across the 500-meter wide Zambezi river to Kasane, Botswana border post, at no cost. Then a 10 minute shared taxi to Kasane city center for 4 Botswanan Pula (about $.40 cents). I used a Safari Company based in Kasane, 5km from the park gate, by name of Big Sam Hubber. (http://bigsamhubber.co.bw) They charge 230 Botswanan Pula ($22) for a 3-hour game drive, and then another 200 Botswanan Pula ($19) for a few hour boat cruise on the Chobe River. (There is also a 70 Botswanan/$7  park fee per day). On the game drive, I saw tons of elephants, hippos, crocodiles, 4 lions, a black mamba, large herds of zebra, impala, wildebeest, giraffe, tsessebe, buffalo, dozens of species of birds, etc. Although the variety of species is not as much as in the Kruger, I did see more in a few hours than spending a week in Kruger. Definitely worth flying to Livingstone from Johannesburg, only 4,000 Avios points.

There are dozens of companies out from Livingstone or Victoria Falls that offer this trip for $180 - but I did it for under $60 per person!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on July 06, 2017, 04:51:00 PM
I just wanted to share, if anybody is going down to Livingstone, Zambia or Victoria Falls. I just did a side trip to Chobe National Park. To get there, I took a shared taxi to the Kazungula Border crossing from Livingstone. Cost 40 Zambian Kwacha (about $4.50 USD), taking about 45 minutes for the 62km ride. Then a 5-minute motorized pontoon ferry across the 500-meter wide Zambezi river to Kasane, Botswana border post, at no cost. Then a 10 minute shared taxi to Kasane city center for 4 Botswanan Pula (about $.40 cents). I used a Safari Company based in Kasane, 5km from the park gate, by name of Big Sam Hubber. (http://bigsamhubber.co.bw) They charge 230 Botswanan Pula ($22) for a 3-hour game drive, and then another 200 Botswanan Pula ($19) for a few hour boat cruise on the Chobe River. (There is also a 70 Botswanan/$7  park fee per day). On the game drive, I saw tons of elephants, hippos, crocodiles, 4 lions, a black mamba, large herds of zebra, impala, wildebeest, giraffe, tsessebe, buffalo, dozens of species of birds, etc. Although the variety of species is not as much as in the Kruger, I did see more in a few hours than spending a week in Kruger. Definitely worth flying to Livingstone from Johannesburg, only 4,000 Avios points.

There are dozens of companies out from Livingstone or Victoria Falls that offer this trip for $180 - but I did it for under $60 per person!
Wow! I did fly to Victoria Falls, and did  Livingstone. Didn't realize this.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 06, 2017, 05:12:40 PM
Wow! I did fly to Victoria Falls, and did  Livingstone. Didn't realize this.

Yes, there are also shared taxis from the Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe side to Kazungula border post / Kasane with Botswana. Going through Zimbabwe, the advantage is that there is no river/ferry crossing, and the border post is opened till 8 pm, while the border with Kazungula, Zambia closes at 6 pm. Although, a bridge between Botswana and Zambia is currently being constructed at a cost of 260 million dollars, and is supposed to be completed next year in 2018. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kazungula_Bridge

For those who are not South African, you can get a Kaza Univisa on arrival to Zambia or Zimbabwe (for most Western nationalities) for $50, that gives you a 30-day multiple entry visa valid for both Zambia & Zimbabwe. Visa is valid as long as you remain in the two countries, although you are allowed free entry into Botswana via Kazungula border, as long as you return to Zambia or Zimbabwe on the same day. Else, you have to get separate single or double entry visas for Zambia & Zimbabwe or buy a Univisa again. Note, Botswana just started (June 1st) charging tourists a $30 entry fee.

Hope to return in a few months to Victoria Falls, when the water level will be lower, so I can go rafting and do Devil's Pool. http://www.roamingaroundtheworld.com/how-to-visit-devils-pool-victoria-falls/

I also went to Namibia, visiting the Etosha National Park, and to Angola. There is this tribe there called the Himba people. Shocking to drive around, and see women go around totally topless, and even in the supermarkets...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moish on July 07, 2017, 03:38:49 AM
There is this tribe there called the Himba people. Shocking to drive around, and see women go around totally topless, and even in the supermarkets...
You can also see that in the south of France, where there's this tribe called the French
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on July 09, 2017, 05:22:34 PM
JNB-NYC RT Direct on SAA
and NYC- JNB RT on Expedia.nz for NZ$600+ ($440 USD)
dates in  Nov- April including Pesach!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on July 09, 2017, 05:36:08 PM
JNB-NYC RT Direct on SAA
and NYC- JNB RT on Expedia.nz for NZ$600+ ($440 USD)
dates in  Nov- April including Pesach!

Sample date $547 USD direct
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 09, 2017, 05:52:16 PM
Sample date $547 USD direct
Great deal. Create a new thread
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on July 09, 2017, 05:54:14 PM
Great deal. Create a new thread
didn't purposely
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on July 10, 2017, 02:10:18 AM
JNB-NYC RT Direct on SAA
and NYC- JNB RT on Expedia.nz for NZ$600+ ($440 USD)
dates in  Nov- April including Pesach!

Wow that's amazing
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 11, 2017, 04:34:35 AM
JNB-NYC RT Direct on SAA
and NYC- JNB RT on Expedia.nz for NZ$600+ ($440 USD)
dates in  Nov- April including Pesach!

Thanks Dawie, I booked a few weekend trips from Johannesburg to NY for myself. Hope, I will be able to manage such a long flight in economy though.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on July 11, 2017, 12:14:59 PM
   Saulius  - how did you get the Angola visa?  Caprivi?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 11, 2017, 01:32:17 PM
   Saulius  - how did you get the Angola visa?  Caprivi?

Just apply at your local Angolan consulate. Also easy to get a transit visa on way to/from DRC.  Two passport photos, $100, a copy of yellow fever certificate. I have also been in Ruacana, Namibia, where you can exit Namibia, and legally venture a few hundred meters into Angolan territory without a visa.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruacana_Falls
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on July 11, 2017, 02:17:27 PM
Just apply at your local Angolan consulate. Also easy to get a transit visa on way to/from DRC.  Two passport photos, $100, a copy of yellow fever certificate. I have also been in Ruacana, Namibia, where you can exit Namibia, and legally venture a few hundred meters into Angolan territory without a visa.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruacana_Falls
now that looks like a place to add to the bucket list
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 11, 2017, 02:55:27 PM
now that looks like a place to add to the bucket list

If you go to Ruacana, schedule it for the rainy season - preferably between February and May. The water volume is quite different each day, depending how much is diverted, but best is on a Sunday. Unfortunately, water is being diverted to the hydroelectric dam. The hydroelectric power station is also worth visiting, but you do have to call in advance to schedule a tour.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruacana_Power_Station

To the left side of the falls, there is a walkway down to the river, through a power station that was destroyed in the Angolan civil war. The site is in a state of disrepair with broken rails and steps.  The walk back up the stairs is extremely exhausting.

I stayed there in a lodge, called Ruacana Eha Lodge. They have bungalows with air conditioning.

I also visited a Himba village a few kilometers away: 
  The Himba people are found in Northern Namibia and also on the other side in Angola.

Etosha National Park is 400km away, but not worth it in the rainy season.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 17, 2017, 09:41:21 AM
Can't believe it just found 2 biz seats from nyc=>jnb=>cpt on 5/1.

FYI there appears to still be some biz award inventory left for that flight.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on July 17, 2017, 10:36:19 AM
Can't believe it just found 2 biz seats from nyc=>jnb=>cpt on 5/1.

FYI there appears to still be some biz award inventory left for that flight.
Good for you!

Though it's not that unusual.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 17, 2017, 10:45:18 AM
Good for you!

Though it's not that unusual.
This much in advance? I'm dealing with ppl that wanted to book by mid aug latest for may trip lol.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on July 17, 2017, 10:48:27 AM
This much in advance? I'm dealing with ppl that wanted to book by mid aug latest for may trip lol.
Ah. Not sure about close in vs. far out.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on July 25, 2017, 11:11:10 AM
kosher food in Kruger park?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 25, 2017, 11:22:22 AM
kosher food in Kruger park?
None. Bring from Joburg.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on July 25, 2017, 12:00:18 PM
kosher food in Kruger park?

If you Stay at Kings Camp in the Timbavati Reserve they have a Kosher Kitchen and they will bring all kosher food from Jburg along with a Mashgiach who will watch everything. The best Safari out there for kosher travelers, but its very pricey.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 12:27:02 PM
How do I get from Kruger park to JNB for flight home?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 25, 2017, 12:35:03 PM
How do I get from Kruger park to JNB for flight home?
Well you can walk...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 12:40:09 PM
Well you can walk...
I'll pass
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 01:13:38 PM
How do I get from Kruger park to JNB for flight home?

Fly? Drive? How are you getting to Kruger?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on July 25, 2017, 01:21:48 PM
How do I get from Kruger park to JNB for flight home?
There are car services, but make sure you use the right one. I had it all taken care of through the tour company I used.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on July 25, 2017, 01:24:45 PM
kosher food in Kruger park?
Yes! Depends what you want. Most of the camps in Kruger have a general store. These stores carry lots of common items baring hechsherim from Cape Town and Joburg. I personally stayed in Skukuza, and there was kosher cheese, milk, snacks. There was fresh produce, beer, and soft drinks as well.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 01:38:01 PM
Fly? Drive? How are you getting to Kruger?
My parents are going with family friends that are originally from there so they are taking care of the itinerary in SA, I'm just dealing with flights. They are flying into CPT, staying there for a week, then going to kruger park for a week and flying out of JNB. I'm sure their family friend can take care of a car service if that's the best option.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 25, 2017, 01:43:15 PM
My parents are going with family friends that are originally from there so they are taking care of the itinerary in SA, I'm just dealing with flights. They are flying into CPT, staying there for a week, then going to kruger park for a week and flying out of JNB. I'm sure their family friend can take care of a car service if that's the best option.
Their quickest option is a flight directly to JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 01:46:33 PM
Their quickest option is a flight directly to JNB.
Flying out of which airport? Does SAA have a flight? If possible would want to book both flights on same reservation so that they don't have to deal with their bags (assuming that SAA will automatically transfer their bags to their JNB => NYC flight).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on July 25, 2017, 01:49:21 PM
Flying out of which airport? Does SAA have a flight? If possible would want to book both flights on same reservation so that they don't have to deal with their bags (assuming that SAA will automatically transfer their bags to their JNB => NYC flight).
There are a few airports in the Kruger area, depending on where you're staying.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 01:56:10 PM
Flying out of which airport? Does SAA have a flight? If possible would want to book both flights on same reservation so that they don't have to deal with their bags (assuming that SAA will automatically transfer their bags to their JNB => NYC flight).

Yes, SAA has flights to Skukuza & Phalaborwa. They have more frequent flights to Nelspruit (MQP) which requires a shuttle to get to Kruger (just under 90 minutes from the southern gates)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on July 25, 2017, 02:27:39 PM
Yes! Depends what you want. Most of the camps in Kruger have a general store. These stores carry lots of common items baring hechsherim from Cape Town and Joburg. I personally stayed in Skukuza, and there was kosher cheese, milk, snacks. There was fresh produce, beer, and soft drinks as well.

thats amazing, thank you. we r staying in skukuza as well.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on July 25, 2017, 02:30:53 PM
thats amazing, thank you. we r staying in skukuza as well.
That's awesome! Just keep in mind, it's not CY
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 02:46:19 PM
The South African Hechsher is very reliable (I have familial bias, but check with a hashgacha you trust, they'll confirm.) Dairy is not Chalav Yisrael unless specifically noted. CY products are available in stores in JNB and CPT. Almost every item certified by them carries has the stamp on the package, so you need not carry a guide or list with you (as in other countries or in South Africa in years gone by).

Wherever you are you should be able to find similar products to what you can find in American convenience stores.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on July 25, 2017, 03:01:33 PM
Has anyone here flown SA J from JFK before?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 03:10:15 PM
Yes, SAA has flights to Skukuza & Phalaborwa. They have more frequent flights to Nelspruit (MQP) which requires a shuttle to get to Kruger (just under 90 minutes from the southern gates)
They're flying out of skukuza. ITA only shows SAA flights. Is that all that's available?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 03:11:14 PM
Has anyone here flown SA J from JFK before?
I've flown to jfk
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 03:12:58 PM
They're flying out of skukuza. ITA only shows SAA flights. Is that all that's available?

I don't know anything besides what I see online, and that looks to be the case.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 25, 2017, 03:14:42 PM
If possible would want to book both flights on same reservation so that they don't have to deal with their bags (assuming that SAA will automatically transfer their bags to their JNB => NYC flight).
Anybody have experience with this? If I'm booking SZK => JNB => NYC flight will the bags be transferred automatically?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 25, 2017, 05:17:50 PM
Anybody have experience with this? If I'm booking SZK => JNB => NYC flight will the bags be transferred automatically?

If both legs are on the same e-ticket, then the bags are transferred automatically.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on July 25, 2017, 05:24:30 PM
Has anyone here flown SA J from JFK before?

Only flew J from London before. However, from JFK I saw this trip review: https://thepointsguy.com/2016/11/south-african-a340-flight-review/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on July 25, 2017, 05:34:32 PM
Has anyone here flown SA J from JFK before?
@YankyDoodle did.

I know because I booked him and his DW with his UA miles and an excursionist perk in J RT :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 25, 2017, 05:57:04 PM
Anybody have experience with this? If I'm booking SZK => JNB => NYC flight will the bags be transferred automatically?

They should. Doing the reverse, they'd be tagged through, but you'd have to collect your bags and clear customs in JNB.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on July 25, 2017, 06:05:54 PM
Has anyone here flown SA J from JFK before?
I have. I'm assuming there's a follow up question  :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on July 26, 2017, 02:56:48 PM
I have. I'm assuming there's a follow up question  :)
Yes, how did you find availability!? :P
@YankyDoodle did.

I know because I booked him and his DW with his UA miles and an excursionist perk in J RT :)
Nice! Any tips to finding avail?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on July 26, 2017, 02:58:03 PM
Yes, how did you find availability!? :PNice! Any tips to finding avail?
Opened close-in.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 26, 2017, 03:00:14 PM
Opened close-in.
Was he booked into economy beforehand? If so, what was cost to change?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on July 26, 2017, 03:01:18 PM
Was he booked into economy beforehand? If so, what was cost to change?
Booked JFK-JNB-CPT J, CPT-JNB J//JNB-JFK Y.
They switched from Y to J for the return in middle of the trip for free after a few HUCAs.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on July 26, 2017, 03:03:58 PM
Booked JFK-JNB-CPT J, CPT-JNB J//JNB-JFK Y.
They switched from Y to J for the return in middle of the trip for free after a few HUCAs.
Thanks. So there was J availability for the first leg when you searched? Could be lucky for those dates or perhaps they've gotten stingier.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 26, 2017, 03:04:57 PM
Booked JFK-JNB-CPT J, CPT-JNB J//JNB-JFK Y.
They switched from Y to J for the return in middle of the trip for free after a few HUCAs.
No change fee at all? Was that due to the fact that CPT-JNB was J?

My parents want to book JNB-JFK asap but there's only Y availability. Want to make sure there's still a possibility to upgrade to J in the slight chance that something opens up.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dan on July 26, 2017, 03:06:29 PM
No change fee at all? Was that due to the fact that CPT-JNB was J?

My parents want to book JNB-JFK asap but there's only Y availability. Want to make sure there's still a possibility to upgrade to J in the slight chance that something opens up.
There should be a $125 fee, but some agents will waive it if the only thing you're doing is a class of service change.
YMMV.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on July 26, 2017, 03:07:21 PM
Thanks. So there was J availability for the first leg when you searched? Could be lucky for those dates or perhaps they've gotten stingier.
2 seats in J seem to be hard to come by. I have only seen availability in the middle of the week.  I was looking for seats for next May but I also checked close-in and availability was still scarce.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on July 26, 2017, 03:15:42 PM
There should be a $125 fee, but some agents will waive it if the only thing you're doing is a class of service change.
YMMV.

IM(extremely limited)E, this is actually a benefit of regular UA reps rather than the callback center.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on July 26, 2017, 03:20:10 PM
It would also be helpful if I could get UA.com to stop glitching and actually only show me dates that have non-stop availability.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on July 26, 2017, 04:29:39 PM
Yes, how did you find availability!? :P
By searching :P

Booked about a month out.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on July 27, 2017, 09:11:37 AM
By searching :P

Booked about a month out.
Thanks for the dp.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on August 02, 2017, 07:01:11 PM
hi, what's that insulated 24 hrs cooling bag Dan suggest to buy for travel ?
thanks
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: @Yehuda on August 02, 2017, 08:41:32 PM
hi, what's that insulated 24 hrs cooling bag Dan suggest to buy for travel ?
thanks
Polar bear cooler.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on August 03, 2017, 06:10:17 AM
Thank you !
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on August 03, 2017, 06:14:41 AM
Can we bring meat, deli to SA? What about homemade frozen food ( eg. schnitzel ) ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on August 03, 2017, 08:58:30 AM
Can we bring meat, deli to SA? What about homemade frozen food ( eg. schnitzel ) ?
It's so cheap, just buy there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 03, 2017, 09:31:59 AM
It's so cheap, just buy there.
And better
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on August 03, 2017, 09:37:39 AM
we r going from airport straight to Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on August 03, 2017, 09:38:26 AM
we r going from airport straight to Kruger.
You can stop for a few minutes in the Jewish area, or have them meet you at the airport.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 03, 2017, 10:42:14 AM
we r going from airport straight to Kruger.

Technically, you aren't allowed to bring it in (I would not have know, I just searched now). However, customs is not tightly enforced. IME, I get stopped whenever I have a box, but have never been stopped with just suitcases. BUT, if you do get stopped and get stuck with a hard headed dude on a power trip, ain't nothing gonna help you. South Africa is a mixed first/third world country, and many "officials" you deal with will be, shall we say, "intellectually challenged," incompetent and uncompromising. Some try bribery, but that can backfire.

An Uber from the airport to Moshe's, Kosher World, or another Kosher store will cost ~$15 and take about 15-20 minutes each way.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on August 03, 2017, 11:24:02 AM
or have them meet you at the airport.
What we did. Worked out perfectly.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on August 03, 2017, 11:39:43 AM
we r going from airport straight to Kruger.
I have kosherworld and the deli store meeting me at jnb airport.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: boruchy on August 03, 2017, 08:45:13 PM
how did u warm it up ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on August 04, 2017, 01:03:34 AM
Technically, you aren't allowed to bring it in (I would not have know, I just searched now). However, customs is not tightly enforced. IME, I get stopped whenever I have a box, but have never been stopped with just suitcases. BUT, if you do get stopped and get stuck with a hard headed dude on a power trip, ain't nothing gonna help you. South Africa is a mixed first/third world country, and many "officials" you deal with will be, shall we say, "intellectually challenged," incompetent and uncompromising. Some try bribery, but that can backfire.

An Uber from the airport to Moshe's, Kosher World, or another Kosher store will cost ~$15 and take about 15-20 minutes each way.

I once declared to customs a few laptops that I brought in not so long ago. The customs guy was writing the amounts on his hand, and then after calculating the total due, he just let me go, because I only had US dollars, and they only accept Rand.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 04, 2017, 01:06:06 AM
I once declared to customs a few laptops that I brought in not so long ago. The customs guy was writing the amounts on his hand, and then after calculating the total due, he just let me go, because I only had US dollars, and they only accept Rand.
My brother had 2 iPads in his bag. He pulled up the apple website on his phone and showed the customs official the price for an iPod shuffle and they let him go on his merry way.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on August 04, 2017, 01:16:48 AM
My brother had 2 iPads in his bag. He pulled up the apple website on his phone and showed the customs official the price for an iPod shuffle and they let him go on his merry way.

And to get stopped by customs in JNB is extremely rare. Just don't get hijacked.... http://ewn.co.za/2017/05/16/more-details-on-hijacking-near-or-tambo-airport
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on August 04, 2017, 12:23:36 PM
we r going from airport straight to Kruger.

I landed in JNB from Mauritius and the minute we landed we called Nandos Kosher Chicken and placed an order for them to deliver to the airport. They only charged like $10 the most to deliver.

They met us outside and we went straight through security again. was a breeze and the food was amazing!!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on August 18, 2017, 10:46:51 AM
Just want to confirm some info that I gathered via google searches:

NYC => JNB => CPT on 1 PNR via SA. Being on 1 PNR doesn't help, still need to collect bags and drop them off again for the domestic leg.

SZK => JNB => NYC on 2 PNR via SA. If it was on 1 PNR then they could check bags all the way through. May be able to get an agent to check all the way through. Any datapoints?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on August 18, 2017, 11:20:13 AM
Just want to confirm some info that I gathered via google searches:

NYC => JNB => CPT on 1 PNR via SA. Being on 1 PNR doesn't help, still need to collect bags and drop them off again for the domestic leg.

SZK => JNB => NYC on 2 PNR via SA. If it was on 1 PNR then they could check bags through all the way through. May be able to get an agent to check all the way through. Any datapoints?

Makes sense as when you initially arrive, you have to clear immigration and customs in JNB and then transfer to the domestic flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on August 18, 2017, 11:38:55 AM
Just want to confirm some info that I gathered via google searches:

NYC => JNB => CPT on 1 PNR via SA. Being on 1 PNR doesn't help, still need to collect bags and drop them off again for the domestic leg.

SZK => JNB => NYC on 2 PNR via SA. If it was on 1 PNR then they could check bags all the way through. May be able to get an agent to check all the way through. Any datapoints?

No specific data points, but like Saulius said, you have to clear customs in JNB, though you do not have to "check in", you just have to do a bag drop. The same as arriving at your first port of entry in the US.

As for #2, I didn't do it from SZK, but I had a flight JNB>LHR>FRA>ORD>OMA on 3 different airlines and 2 PNRs and they checked everything though
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on August 18, 2017, 12:13:06 PM
No specific data points, but like Saulius said, you have to clear customs in JNB, though you do not have to "check in", you just have to do a bag drop. The same as arriving at your first port of entry in the US.

As for #2, I didn't do it from SZK, but I had a flight JNB>LHR>FRA>ORD>OMA on 3 different airlines and 2 PNRs and they checked everything though
I think with #2 he was asking because it's a domestic connection. On our CPT-DOH-AUH-JFK-LAX flights on 3 different airlines we also checked everything in at the beginning and picked it up once in LAX, but both our flights were international first, not domestic.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on August 19, 2017, 01:35:46 PM
No specific data points, but like Saulius said, you have to clear customs in JNB, though you do not have to "check in", you just have to do a bag drop. The same as arriving at your first port of entry in the US.

As for #2, I didn't do it from SZK, but I had a flight JNB>LHR>FRA>ORD>OMA on 3 different airlines and 2 PNRs and they checked everything though

Furthermore, if one is flying Ethiopian Airlines (ET849) - from Addis Ababa, the flight makes a stop in Johannesburg and continues on to Cape Town. I flew on their business class price mistake from Brussels back in January 2016, for 530Ä, (they were very extremely mad at me at check-in). So those flying on to Cape Town do not disembark in JNB, and then on arrival at CPT are treated as international passengers. Ethiopian is nice as if stopover in Addis Ababa is between 8 and 24 hours, and an earlier connection is not available, they provide a free hotel.

Btw, does anybody know how strict SAA is with carry-on luggage weight from JFK to JNB? Says 8kg online, need to bring back a hundred kgs of seforim.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on August 19, 2017, 11:09:23 PM


Btw, does anybody know how strict SAA is with carry-on luggage weight from JFK to JNB? Says 8kg online, need to bring back a hundred kgs of seforim.
They didn't weigh our carry-ons, though we were in J.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: davidmal on September 06, 2017, 02:57:49 PM
Meanwhile, I am in Zambia for the past week, and a Zambian dude approached me in the supermarket and offered me rough diamonds from Angola. He tells me "I can trust you with a sample, I can give you a sample rough one or the cut and polished one already."

Now, I know absolutely nothing about diamonds, other than that there is such a thing as Kimberley Process certificates and blood diamonds. I wouldn't take a risk either way, but anyways I messaged my friend in the industry, and he replies, "We don't do rough. I would NOT get involved in any way. Makes no difference what guy says. You can get arrested and thrown in jail. You can get in big trouble for even touching a diamond. People can be looking at videos. Stay away. Rob banks if you must."


My factory sales guy got thrown in jail for a few months! no reason!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: koplonko on December 05, 2017, 12:17:04 PM
i will be visiting south africa for a bit over a month. can anyone share ideas regarding phone service? is there a decent prepaid sim that i can use to make local (south african) calls and send SMS?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on December 05, 2017, 12:19:55 PM
i will be visiting south africa for a bit over a month. can anyone share ideas regarding phone service? is there a decent prepaid sim that i can use to make local (south african) calls and send SMS?
Vodacom
http://www.vodacom.co.za/vodacom/shopping/data/prepaid-data
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: koplonko on December 05, 2017, 02:39:31 PM
is that my best option? are there other companies?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on December 05, 2017, 02:44:57 PM
is that my best option? are there other companies?
T-mobile from home.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on December 05, 2017, 02:50:14 PM
is that my best option? are there other companies?

There are other companies, but I don't think they will be cheaper than Vodacom. It is significantly cheaper for a South African resident to buy a sim and plan than a tourist, if you know someone there that is willing to go into a store and buy one for you.

T-mobile from home.

Yup, and you can call with Whatsapp which is very popular there.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on December 20, 2017, 07:25:59 AM
i will be visiting south africa for a bit over a month. can anyone share ideas regarding phone service? is there a decent prepaid sim that i can use to make local (south african) calls and send SMS?

I go to SA very often and use a Telkom Sim, it also roams to the MTN network, however the coverage isn't good in rural areas (I have heard, haven't had a problem).  Bought the Sim at Woolworths in JNB airport, sometimes they run out. Otherwise can be bought in most Checkers, Shoprite, Pick n Pay and Pep stores.  Get the cheap, 1 Rand (may be 5 now) Sim and get R100 airtime, via the app get free-mee 1GB bundle.  I don't use the phone for calls, usually use Whatsapp (free via this bundle) or Skype.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on December 21, 2017, 10:19:33 AM
2 seats in J seem to be hard to come by. I have only seen availability in the middle of the week.  I was looking for seats for next May but I also checked close-in and availability was still scarce.
Was able to upgrade 1 seat to I (which is what I assume you guys are calling J). Still need to work on the other seat. Worst case scenario they may be willing to cancel the Y ticket and book 1 ticket in J with $$ (/amex bp). What is the average J price for JNB => JFK? The flight is in may if that matters...
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 21, 2017, 04:49:23 PM
Was able to upgrade 1 seat to I (which is what I assume you guys are calling J). Still need to work on the other seat. Worst case scenario they may be willing to cancel the Y ticket and book 1 ticket in J with $$ (/amex bp). What is the average J price for JNB => JFK? The flight is in may if that matters...

You can get cheap J from Maputo (Mozambique) with TAP Air Portugal with a stopover in Lisbon to either MIA or EWR.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on December 21, 2017, 05:53:54 PM
You can get cheap J from Maputo (Mozambique) with TAP Air Portugal with a stopover in Lisbon to either MIA or EWR.
Parents aren't interested in stopover. Its jnb=> jfk or bust.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 22, 2017, 02:27:28 AM
Parents aren't interested in stopover. Its jnb=> jfk or bust.

J class on SAA is not so impressive. If flying SAA economy on A340-600, check out seat 73D, no seat in front of it, so you get plenty of leg room.

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on December 22, 2017, 07:09:25 AM
J class on SAA is not so impressive. If flying SAA economy on A340-600, check out seat 73D, no seat in front of it, so you get plenty of leg room.
They want to have lie flat on such a long flight.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: koplonko on December 25, 2017, 03:50:49 PM
any ideas of a driver with big van/mini bus that can hold 15 people, that is available for day trips?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on December 25, 2017, 04:22:19 PM
any ideas of a driver with big van/mini bus that can hold 15 people, that is available for day trips?

Your best bet would be to subscribe to the JJCF (Johannesburg Jewish Community Forum) mailing list and ask on there. http://www.jjcf.info/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Moshesinger21 on January 05, 2018, 11:59:01 AM
Iíll be going to South Africa (JNB to Kruger to CPT) with my wife and kids (age 6,4,2). Any ideas or advice on where to go or what to see would be great. None of us have ever been there before. We have tickets for early may. Thanks!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 05, 2018, 12:32:01 PM
Iíll be going to South Africa (JNB to Kruger to CPT) with my wife and kids (age 6,4,2). Any ideas or advice on where to go or what to see would be great. None of us have ever been there before. We have tickets for early may. Thanks!
see this upthread for some ideas
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3986.msg1678936#msg1678936

dont know about going to Kruger with little kids for two reasons- Malaria and Boredom
My little ones liked the Lion and Rhino Park in the Kromdraai (near Johannesburg)
Gonna be on the cool side (at least nights wil be ) in May
especially in CPT

Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: jomaster28 on January 05, 2018, 02:06:14 PM
Iíll be going to South Africa (JNB to Kruger to CPT) with my wife and kids (age 6,4,2). Any ideas or advice on where to go or what to see would be great. None of us have ever been there before. We have tickets for early may. Thanks!

Read the Trip Reports and Wiki
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on January 15, 2018, 02:36:21 PM
http://www.secretflying.com/posts/johannesburg-south-africa-new-york-usa-659-usd-roundtrip/

Qatar Airways
also East Coast USA - JNB- Europe (MAD, ATH LHR) for $500

HT SF
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on February 04, 2018, 10:12:47 AM
I booked RT tickets for my parents JFK <=> JNB on SAA. Do they need the CCs used for booking?

It seems that delta would require the cc for this flight https://thepointsguy.com/2016/09/tip-flying-delta-to-africa-remember-credit-card/
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 04, 2018, 10:46:56 AM
I booked RT tickets for my parents JFK <=> JNB on SAA. Do they need the CCs used for booking?

It seems that delta would require the cc for this flight https://thepointsguy.com/2016/09/tip-flying-delta-to-africa-remember-credit-card/
Never been asked that ime, flown that route more than a dozen times (mostly not on my cc).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2018, 10:52:14 AM
I booked RT tickets for my parents JFK <=> JNB on SAA. Do they need the CCs used for booking?

It seems that delta would require the cc for this flight https://thepointsguy.com/2016/09/tip-flying-delta-to-africa-remember-credit-card/
Never been asked that ime, flown that route more than a dozen times (mostly not on my cc).
never been asked but you can use this just in case
http://beta.flysaa.com/za/de/Documents/paymentAndTicketing/en_credit_card_auth_form.pdf
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 04, 2018, 10:57:39 AM
never been asked but you can use this just in case
http://beta.flysaa.com/za/de/Documents/paymentAndTicketing/en_credit_card_auth_form.pdf
Cool. That's good to have. If a rule exists, no matter how asinine, you never know when a SAA agent (or any south african company) will whip it out to make trouble.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2018, 11:00:49 AM
Cool. That's good to have. If a rule exists, no matter how asinine, you never know when a SAA agent (or any south african company) will whip it out to make trouble.
ja, when flying to SA we take a bloody binder full of rubbish just in case.....
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 04, 2018, 11:02:37 AM
ja, when flying to SA we take a bloody binder full of rubbish just in case.....
It's like shidduchim, "and here is my daughter's 1st grade report card..."
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on February 04, 2018, 11:54:55 AM
Cool. That's good to have. If a rule exists, no matter how asinine, you never know when a SAA agent (or any south african company) will whip it out to make trouble.
Yeah but you have to fax the info beforehand. Seems like a lot of work to do beforehand for the 1% chance (and my booking actually used 3 separate CCs lol).
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2018, 12:32:13 PM
Yeah but you have to fax the info beforehand. Seems like a lot of work to do beforehand for the 1% chance (and my booking actually used 3 separate CCs lol).
Although in my experience, we were only asked for my daughter's birth certificate with me left the country. No one asked us anything when we arrived. They almost didn't want to let us leave, but realized the stupidity and keeping us there if they shouldn't have let us in the first place, so they let us go and just told us to bring it next time.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2018, 01:27:06 PM
Yeah but you have to fax the info beforehand. Seems like a lot of work to do beforehand for the 1% chance (and my booking actually used 3 separate CCs lol).
you possibly already did when you purchased the ticket
now you are just bring this as proof
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on February 04, 2018, 01:36:45 PM
Although in my experience, we were only asked for my daughter's birth certificate with me left the country. No one asked us anything when we arrived. They almost didn't want to let us leave, but realized the stupidity and keeping us there if they shouldn't have let us in the first place, so they let us go and just told us to bring it next time.
You are lucky they didn't ask for the birth certificate when you arrived. They can and have stopped people from entering the country without it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Geshmak25 on February 04, 2018, 01:45:50 PM
you possibly already did when you purchased the ticket
now you are just bring this as proof
What do you mean? I didn't fill out this info when I purchased the ticket and I am sure that my parents will not want to carry around the 3 CCs, 2 of which have been subsequently cancelled.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on February 04, 2018, 01:58:29 PM
What do you mean? I didn't fill out this info when I purchased the ticket and I am sure that my parents will not want to carry around the 3 CCs, 2 of which have been subsequently cancelled.
they dont know that
you are just using this as proof
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 04, 2018, 02:43:19 PM
You are lucky they didn't ask for the birth certificate when you arrived. They can and have stopped people from entering the country without it.
Oh we had it. We were just not asked for it.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Joe4007 on February 08, 2018, 12:27:59 PM
Looks like a couple of nice / commonly used (here) Marriott hotels are going up in category:

- African Pride 15 On Orange Hotel - Going from 5 to 6
- Protea Hotel Cape Town Sea Point - Going from 3 to 4
- Protea Hotel Kruger Gate - Going from 1 to 2
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 08, 2018, 12:31:50 PM
Looks like a couple of nice / commonly used (here) Marriott hotels are going up in category:

- African Pride 15 On Orange Hotel - Going from 5 to 6
- Protea Hotel Cape Town Sea Point - Going from 3 to 4
- Protea Hotel Kruger Gate - Going from 1 to 2
I know. Shame that. The Sea Point Protea was a real find: not only close to shul and restaurants (kosher food), but it was also right on the beach.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on February 15, 2018, 05:06:48 AM
I know. Shame that. The Sea Point Protea was a real find: not only close to shul and restaurants (kosher food), but it was also right on the beach.

Agree with location re: shuls and kosher restaturants but it's on the main road and noisy. Rooms are small and "new lobby" doesn't have more than a few seats just a large central table with some office chairs
Wouldn't go back unless I have to use Marriott points AND stay in Sea Point
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moisheyb on February 15, 2018, 07:40:31 AM
Agree with location re: shuls and kosher restaturants but it's on the main road and noisy. Rooms are small and "new lobby" doesn't have more than a few seats just a large central table with some office chairs
Wouldn't go back unless I have to use Marriott points AND stay in Sea Point

The junior suite  is pretty good and luxury suite is very nice.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on February 15, 2018, 09:17:04 AM
Agree with location re: shuls and kosher restaturants but it's on the main road and noisy. Rooms are small and "new lobby" doesn't have more than a few seats just a large central table with some office chairs
Wouldn't go back unless I have to use Marriott points AND stay in Sea Point
All fair points, except it wasn't noisy and we didn't have another choice. Where would you stay? Somewhere farther away?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Moshe123 on March 04, 2018, 02:01:21 PM
Oy vey.

http://www.sajr.co.za/news-and-articles/2018/03/01/stan-pete-s-kosher-licence-revoked

http://m.bhol.co.il/article.aspx?id=130973&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=link&utm_content=im&utm_campaign=article_in_bhol#
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 04, 2018, 02:46:23 PM
Oy vey.

http://www.sajr.co.za/news-and-articles/2018/03/01/stan-pete-s-kosher-licence-revoked

http://m.bhol.co.il/article.aspx?id=130973&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=link&utm_content=im&utm_campaign=article_in_bhol#
OMG that is major
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 08, 2018, 11:07:42 AM
OMG that is major
&feature=youtu.be&mc_cid=bc04fa8c2e&mc_eid=31592aacf4

Beth Din Statement
https://mailchi.mp/uos/beth-din-statement?e=1034411907
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Boruch999 on March 08, 2018, 01:23:50 PM
I am not a kashrus professional.  But I would have thought that a mashgiach employed by the business, especially if the owner is not shomer torah umitzvos, is not up to standard.  The primary defense against this type of thing is the mashgiach checking the contents of the freezer and refrigerator against the delivery invoices. It does not seem that that was done here, and in fact would be hard for a mashgiach who answers to the proprietor to do effectively.

@moko ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on March 08, 2018, 03:52:49 PM
I am not a kashrus professional.  But I would have thought that a mashgiach employed by the business, especially if the owner is not shomer torah umitzvos, is not up to standard.  The primary defense against this type of thing is the mashgiach checking the contents of the freezer and refrigerator against the delivery invoices. It does not seem that that was done here, and in fact would be hard for a mashgiach who answers to the proprietor to do effectively.

@moko ?


Exactly, that's the way it is in most of the world. Plus, the mashgichim should be employed by the Beis Din, and not by the business, and they should be highly knowledgeable, qualified, and competent. The mashgichim should be the only ones with the keys to the freezer.  It's not the first time it happened in Johannesburg.

But, South Africa is a country filled with widespread corruption from the bottom up.


 
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: as2 on March 08, 2018, 04:35:49 PM
I am not a kashrus professional.  But I would have thought that a mashgiach employed by the business, especially if the owner is not shomer torah umitzvos, is not up to standard.  The primary defense against this type of thing is the mashgiach checking the contents of the freezer and refrigerator against the delivery invoices. It does not seem that that was done here, and in fact would be hard for a mashgiach who answers to the proprietor to do effectively.

@moko ?
In Chicago, most mashgichim are employed by the business, not the kashrus organization.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moko on March 08, 2018, 05:52:16 PM

Exactly, that's the way it is in most of the world. Plus, the mashgichim should be employed by the Beis Din, and not by the business, and they should be highly knowledgeable, qualified, and competent. The mashgichim should be the only ones with the keys to the freezer.
I'll address a couple of things.
1. The on-site Mashgiach in Israel is referred to as a ne'eman Kashrut and in London a shomer Kashrut. The reason is he is not the Mashgiach but rather the on-site employee who is believed for Kashrus purposes. The Mashgiach is the person who  checks up on the Mashgichim 1,2 or even 3 times per week. Some places even have daily checks. That said, when I was in tbe field I was a firm believer that a Mashgiach or ne'eman Kashrut must be employed by the hashgacha. Now in my administrative position, I understand why that can be extremely difficult.
1. If a client is delinquent in payment you still have to pay the Mashgiach. The community won't be very forgiving if you pull hashgacha for financial reasons.
2.clients are looking to cut costs and like to give a Mashgiach other work. We are ok with that (and sometimes even encourage it) as long as it doesn't interfere in his hashgacha tasks. The clients feel they can can only ask one of their own employees to do such work.
3. When I pay Mashgichim directly, I have to upcharge the hourly rate by at least 30% to cover all the insurances, bookkeeping, fica , etc. Very often it's cheaper for a mom and pop restaurant to pay the Mashgiach directly.
I still believe in paying by Mashgichim from the hashgacha but the only way to do it is to demand an average of 2 months wages in escrow and the average wages paid upfront every week in order to make payroll.  I have yet to find a client willing to do this.
Regarding locks, I have found that no matter what some who's not supposed to have it, always ends up with the key or combination.
We use single use zip tie seals that the Mashgichim sign and date in Hebrew.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moko on March 08, 2018, 05:55:47 PM
In Chicago, North America most mashgichim are employed by the business, not the kashrus organization.
our organization is unique and most of our Mashgichim are employed by us. That said i can be very difficult to make payroll when clients are late on payment. You need to have upwards of $500000 in the account at any time to ensure the smooth running of the organization.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 08, 2018, 06:56:45 PM

Exactly, that's the way it is in most of the world. Plus, the mashgichim should be employed by the Beis Din, and not by the business, and they should be highly knowledgeable, qualified, and competent. The mashgichim should be the only ones with the keys to the freezer.  It's not the first time it happened in Johannesburg.

But, South Africa is a country filled with widespread corruption from the bottom up.
whats the point of posting that video, pray tell?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 08, 2018, 08:10:57 PM

The mashgichim should be the only ones with the keys to the freezer. 

It is that way in South Africa. Only the Mashgiach had the key to the fridge and freezer. The treif chickens were brought in with the mashgiach on premises, after he had unlocked the freezer.
It's not the first time it happened in Johannesburg.
Are you referring to the cheese from 20 years ago? That was uncovered because of discrepancies with invoices, which you implied they don't check.

But, South Africa is a country filled with widespread corruption from the bottom up.
If you are implying that the UOS is corrupt, that's quite a serious charge. If you want to say they are incompetent, on the heels of this story it would be hard to argue. But to accuse them of corruption on a public forum demands evidence.

The Kashrus department has always impressed observers from outside hechsherim. AFAIK, every single one who provides a hechsher on African products relies entirely on the UOS hechsher. This is an awful story, but similar stories have occurred in other parts of the world under fine hechsherim. While lessons can and will be learned, I don't think this is an indictment on the Beis Din or the kashrus dept.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 09, 2018, 10:00:44 AM
[Stating things eloquently] seems to be Yehuda57's job around here :)
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on March 09, 2018, 10:04:10 AM
It is that way in South Africa. Only the Mashgiach had the key to the fridge and freezer. The treif chickens were brought in with the mashgiach on premises, after he had unlocked the freezer.Are you referring to the cheese from 20 years ago? That was uncovered because of discrepancies with invoices, which you implied they don't check.
If you are implying that the UOS is corrupt, that's quite a serious charge. If you want to say they are incompetent, on the heels of this story it would be hard to argue. But to accuse them of corruption on a public forum demands evidence.

The Kashrus department has always impressed observers from outside hechsherim. AFAIK, every single one who provides a hechsher on African products relies entirely on the UOS hechsher. This is an awful story, but similar stories have occurred in other parts of the world under fine hechsherim. While lessons can and will be learned, I don't think this is an indictment on the Beis Din or the kashrus dept.

It could be that only the mashgiach had the keys to fridge and freezer, but the question is was it ever left opened? Was the mashgiach always attentive, pro-active, and on-premises (mashgiach temidi) - or was he also running errands and making deliveries during the day?

Now as far as the forensics, they should be able to tell, i.e. kosher meat cuts come from forequarter cuts, treif comes from hindquarter cuts. One can easily differentiate as long big cuts can only come from the treif hindquarters. One can tell shechita slaughtered birds apart, as they have a different cut at the neck flap, plus the wing tip is cut off. The skin appearance and texture is different because of the salting, and the kosher de-feathering process is different, as kosher chickens cannot be soaked in hot water to open up the pores.

I meant to say that South Africa is a corrupt country, where corruption is rampant and part of everyday life, starting from high up, in every organisation in the government. See a list: http://www.reddit.com/r/southafrica/comments/7hqia1/quick_corruption_overview    Economist described SA: "Contracts are awarded through bribes and connections; ruling-party members murder each other over lucrative government jobs; crooks operate with impunity." And unfortunately, in such an environment and society, corruption seeps down everywhere in the business world.

The Beis Din consists of very qualified and well-respected choshove dayanim, and as you wrote: "The Kashrus department has always impressed observers from outside hechsherim." -- That particularly pertains to the shechita under the Beis Din - which I agree, it is the best operation in the world.  However, they have issues to fix -- and in South Africa, it's a challenge, and I hope they will be able to fix everything without getting Zumafied.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 09, 2018, 11:15:00 AM
It could be that only the mashgiach had the keys to fridge and freezer, but the question is was it ever left opened? Was the mashgiach always attentive, pro-active, and on-premises (mashgiach temidi) - or was he also running errands and making deliveries during the day?
I don't believe a mashgiach is allowed to make deliveries. S/he has to remain on premises the entire time the kitchen is open. They are, of course, left open the entire time. I'm fairly certain the treif chickens were never brought into a fridge or freezer, they were brought in straight to the prep area.
Now as far as the forensics, they should be able to tell, i.e. kosher meat cuts come from forequarter cuts, treif comes from hindquarter cuts. One can easily differentiate as long big cuts can only come from the treif hindquarters. One can tell shechita slaughtered birds apart, as they have a different cut at the neck flap, plus the wing tip is cut off. The skin appearance and texture is different because of the salting, and the kosher de-feathering process is different, as kosher chickens cannot be soaked in hot water to open up the pores.
That's exactly how this was uncovered.

I meant to say that South Africa is a corrupt country, where corruption is rampant and part of everyday life, starting from high up, in every organisation in the government. See a list: http://www.reddit.com/r/southafrica/comments/7hqia1/quick_corruption_overview    Economist described SA: "Contracts are awarded through bribes and connections; ruling-party members murder each other over lucrative government jobs; crooks operate with impunity." And unfortunately, in such an environment and society, corruption seeps down everywhere in the business world.
That's fair.

The Beis Din consists of very qualified and well-respected choshove dayanim, and as you wrote: "The Kashrus department has always impressed observers from outside hechsherim." -- That particularly pertains to the shechita under the Beis Din - which I agree, it is the best operation in the world.  However, they have issues to fix -- and in South Africa, it's a challenge, and I hope they will be able to fix everything without getting Zumafied.
Agree 100%
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: moko on March 09, 2018, 03:18:06 PM
If this case is as I understand it, it could happen anywhere. My understanding is that it was caught right away and was dealt with immediately. If my Mashgiach had his back turned and then turned around to discover they tried sneaking in non kosher product, I would also probably terminate hashgacha even if the product was never used.
We had a story in Boston where a Mashgiach called in sick and the proprietor called to notify us at 9am. I told him I'm on my way to open for him and would find a replacement for that day. I got there a half hour later to find he broke the seals on the walk-ins and cooking equipment and had started to prepare to cook. We took the teudah off and asked if he wanted to discuss how to move forward the next day. He started getting mad and that was the end of his hashgacha.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: PlatinumGuy on March 10, 2018, 02:19:07 PM
The Beis Din consists of very qualified and well-respected choshove dayanim, and as you wrote: "The Kashrus department has always impressed observers from outside hechsherim." -- That particularly pertains to the shechita under the Beis Din - which I agree, it is the best operation in the world.  However, they have issues to fix -- and in South Africa, it's a challenge, and I hope they will be able to fix everything without getting Zumafied.
Says who?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 10, 2018, 09:02:19 PM
Says who?
I don't know that it is the best in the world, or even close, but there are rabonim who have been brought down to inspect the shechita who now make a point of eating mehadrin commission meat from South Africa wherever available.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 10, 2018, 10:19:01 PM
Says who?
R moshe Heinemann for one
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sh18 on March 14, 2018, 09:37:15 AM
Iím going to Africa next week and from my reasrch it seems like that down south the animals are more  Condense at this time of the year so I think Iím gonna be staying in hazyview for three days any recommendations which gate to go in from ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 14, 2018, 10:07:48 AM
Iím going to Africa next week and from my reasrch it seems like that down south the animals are more  Condense at this time of the year so I think Iím gonna be staying in hazyview for three days any recommendations which gate to go in from ?
More info needed. Which gate where?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 14, 2018, 10:22:44 AM
More info needed. Which gate where?
Hazyview = Krugerpark
the answer would be Numbi or Kruger
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on March 14, 2018, 10:52:03 AM
Hazyview = Krugerpark
the answer would be Numbi or Kruger

Phabeni would be the closest.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sh18 on March 14, 2018, 11:00:10 AM
Is there any difference which gate I go in from. Also any specific recommendations about self driving. Since Iím traveling with my son I planned on doing Kruger self drive in a closed vehicle (doctors recommendations) and the following week in Pilanesberg in a open vehicle. Any thought on this ?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehuda57 on March 14, 2018, 11:41:11 AM


Is there any difference which gate I go in from. Also any specific recommendations about self driving. Since Iím traveling with my son I planned on doing Kruger self drive in a closed vehicle (doctors recommendations) and the following week in Pilanesberg in a open vehicle. Any thought on this ?

Doing pilansberg after Kruger is like eating a cube of overcooked beef stew after a filet mignon.

Not sure how much time you are spending in pilansberg, but 3 days in Kruger, plus extra in pilansberg is probably overkill. Maybe use some of the time in hazyview to see the views and waterfalls on the panoramic route.

As for the gate of entry, I don't think it makes much of a difference. I'd probably just go for the closest gate to your hotel, and drive as far as you can. Say, enter through numbi and exit at Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sh18 on March 14, 2018, 01:09:30 PM
Iím looking into Pilanesberg for the open Safari your experience some our doctor told us not to take our son in a open car in Kruger (malaria). We do plan on doing the panoramic drive and blyde canyon on the way to Kruger.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: gsquared on March 19, 2018, 03:20:26 PM
i trust you will be taking anti-malaria meds in Kruger. There is no way that keeping the windows closed will do much especially since mossies mainly come out at dawn and dusk.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Sh18 on March 26, 2018, 12:32:50 PM
https://www.monkeysanctuary.co.za Highly recommended
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Dawie on March 26, 2018, 12:36:00 PM
https://www.monkeysanctuary.co.za Highly recommended
no trip report?
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: cdlaz on March 27, 2018, 05:49:35 AM
Where would you stay? Somewhere farther away?

Radisson Blu le Vendome is almost always cheaper. Quieter, great lobby, bars, business center, staff know about Shabbat, free parking (Protea has limited pay), closer to the beach, actual sea view (Protea is partial), much more attentive staff

The above is based on being in Sea Point almost once a month
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yehoshua on March 27, 2018, 09:03:39 AM
Radisson Blu le Vendome is almost always cheaper. Quieter, great lobby, bars, business center, staff know about Shabbat, free parking (Protea has limited pay), closer to the beach, actual sea view (Protea is partial), much more attentive staff

The above is based on being in Sea Point almost once a month
Nice, that was my first choice too, but I had Marriott points and none for Radisson. Only downside is it's slightly farther from Morasha, but during nice weather it's no big deal.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Wizmanison on May 27, 2018, 02:04:26 AM
Hello! So I booked flights to South Africa on SA Airways earlier this week that leaves June 5th, which only leaves me with so much time to plan. I read through every TR, this entire thread, and countless other blogs and forums, as well as speaking to several people who have visited or live in SA and came up with this preliminary itinerary. I thought it would be easier to put it in a Calendar and post a picture of it but if not I would gladly type it up and send that in instead.

(https://i.imgur.com/8rm1YBH.gif) (https://imgur.com/a/njMPg9d)

As time of posting this, absolutely nothing is booked except for my flight from LAX-JFK and JFK-JNB. 

I was hoping to get peoples advice before proceeding with any bookings! I also had a list of questions or ideas that I would like to hear peoples thoughts on. Appreciate all those that contributed to this thread already and I hope to add more with my TR and information I compiled from my readings!

- I understand that the general advice is to use T-Mobile for service in SA but since my provider is AT&T how should I go about it?

- Arriving in JNB on Wednesday. Since there is not much to do in JNB I thought it might be best to see VF and return to JNB for shabbat.
    - Could not find any availability on BAÖSo I guess redeeming through the UR portal/cash is my only option?
    - which side should I land on/leave from?
    - will I be able to do Chobe, visit both sides, and what other activities can/should I do?

- Seems there is not much to do in JNB besides restaurants and Lion ParkÖ Am I missing something?
    - Has anyone stayed at the Genesis - all suite- hotel?

- What is the drive from JNB to Kruger like if I wanted to do the panoramic route?
    - How long will it take? Will I need to stop off somewhere?
    - Might not be worth it to pay for Safari if I intend to do panoramic route as it would take up nearly all day not allowing me to take advantage of game drivesÖ Perhaps I should spend the night in a hotel near the reserve and then go in the morning

- Will likely book the Motswari Game Reserve as they have good reviews, someone from DDF said they enjoyed it, and I can use UR for the stay!
    - Itís around 47k UR a night ($715 but with 1.5 it comes out to that). But, it comes out to like $500 a night on other sites, not through the chase portal :(.

- Considering spending 3 nights at this reserve and then self driving Kruger on the 4th day, while staying at a random or Protea hotel or perhaps a camp inside the park. Or is 3 nights on the reserve enough?

-  I would then take a flight to either CPT or fly to George or Port Elizabeth and drive the scenic route to CPT.
    - Any thoughts or advice on the drive or is it skippable?

- I would spend shabbat  and then a day or two after that trying to go through the seemingly endless list of things to do/see in CPT.

- And then fly to either Seychelles or Mauritius for 3/4 days
    - Any advice on which is better?! As well as what to do or where to stay?

- Considering extending this trip and flying somewhere else for like a 4-5 day period after SEZ/MRU to either Israel, some part of Europe, or anywhere else someone can convince me to visit!
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: yitzyul on May 27, 2018, 02:45:13 AM
1) SIm cards and airtime are very cheap I would just purchase one at the Airport. If dts is important such as gps then Tmobile is worthless there
2) No difference which side you fly. I would recommend flying to one and leaving from the other. I walked the falls on both sides in 1/2 day. hotels are better in Zim and stay one close to falls so you can walk everywhere. Make sure to buy the unlimited visa so you can go back and forth.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Yaalili on May 27, 2018, 07:43:12 AM
In JNB you also have Soweto, fun for few hours.
Title: Re: South Africa Master Thread
Post by: Saulius on May 27, 2018, 10:10:24 AM
In JNB you also have Soweto, fun for few hours.

Why schlep to Soweto, one can do a tour of Hillbrow, CBD (Central Business District), and Alexandra Township.

Also, worth a visit is the Museum of Military History, situated next to the Johannesburg Zoo. Lots of WW I and II fighter planes,
like the only surviving Me 262B-1 Night fighter (Nachtjšger) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_African_National_Museum_of_Military_History

SAB World of Beer tour with Beer Tasting: http://www.worldofbeer.co.za/pages/visit

Also, there is the Kromdraai