Category: World Travel

Dig deep for determination while hiking up a mountain.

Dig deep for determination while hiking up a mountain.

Determination –“The firmness of a purpose.” or “The act of coming to a decision or of fixing or settling a purpose.”

I feel self-determination is what sets you apart from turning your dreams into goals and actually achieving them. We all use our imagination to dream and try to manifest the brightest future based on where we have been, what we know, what we like, the mistakes we don’t want to repeat and setting ourselves up for the brightest future. This in essence creates the ‘magic’ everyone looks for, but so little believe in. Looking at life like a recipe (if you are in to cooking) or even like a formula (if your mind is more logical) there are certain rules and laws to follow to get the desired outcome. For example – it is wise to know that when you put an egg in boiling water it will harden more and more the longer you leave it in there, but in turn pasta will become soft in the same boiling water. For those logical readers – in order to solve certain equations it is worthwhile to know that if you take A- across the = sign it becomes A+.

So where am I going with this?

Let me put it in travel terms. If you ever find yourself in Cape Town area and want to challenge your determination I would suggest that you go hike up a mountain. There are many options and all have a view at the top that will definitely be worth it. To name a few:

1 – Climb Table Mountain,possibly the 8th wonder of the world. There are 2 routes up that you can choose from, depending on your hiking experience. If you don’t have any hiking experience then this is still a great option for you. You will come across kids and elderly people climbing this mountain for their first hike.

2 – Climb Lions Head, it is very close to Table Mountain. You will be able to view Table Mountain from the top of Lions Head and vice versa. On your way up make sure to wonder off the route to find Wolli’s Cave. A hidden gem in the mountain for a well-deserved break or just to breathe in the view and submerge yourself in the now.

3 – Devil’s Peak is the next option. It is said to take about 3 – 4 hours, depending on your walking fitness. You will have a stunning view of Cape Town and surroundings once you reach the top.

So we have determination plus climbing a mountain. Still don’t know how they marry and merge together? Let me shed some light on my experience and why I think these two go hand in hand. If you enjoy the outdoors you will completely understand that sometimes it takes hard work to get to the amazing views, including hiking up a mountain. I climbed Table Mountain twice and the second time around I was completely experiencing myself, body and mind in the present moment, thus I could acknowledge the movies my mind tried to create and allowed my body to experience the climb.

Looking at the mountain on my way there it looks so small and you feel confident that this will be easy enough. Then you arrive and see other people looking confident to do the climb as well and this motivates you even more, because mass consciousness makes you feel a part of something bigger. Then you stand at the foot of the mountain and you look up, for me this was the first time where I felt I had to respect this mountain, because I realised I had quite a journey ahead of me.

Not long after you start to embark on this journey you will feel your heart beat faster, breath becoming swallow, mouth becoming dry and your sweat glands activates to eliminate toxins. This is a normal process for your body, but this is when our minds start to create stories. You go through stages of denial (I haven’t even been hiking for so long, I can’t be tired already), anger (why am I doing this again?), self-sabotage (This is putting a lot of stress on my body, it can’t be good), hopelessness (Am I in the movie – Never ending story? Will I ever reach the top, because this feels like it will go on forever), bargaining (Will it be easier to just turn around now? The view is good enough for me from here), defeat (I can’t do this anymore. Where is the exit portal that will deliver me to the top of the mountain or at my house?).

After all of that, determination makes its way to the surface. When you realize you have come too far to turn around and that the purpose is for you to reach the top. To feel the liberation of climbing all the way to the top. To give yourself a tap on the shoulder and feel proud that you didn’t give up.

The striking view and feeling of accomplishment that resulted from your determination and dedication will be well worth it.

With this realization in mind, I always try to remind myself of the determination it takes when climbing a mountain – the same when I face a difficult task at hand in every day life. If the task feels impossible or too big, I know I might be close to half way or I realize that I am trying to move or carry the mountain instead of climbing it.

For those that don’t like hiking at all, you are still in luck. You can take the cable way up Table Mountain and still enjoy the spectacular view and vibrant energy that place has to offer.

Till next time…

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A journey into solitude and adventure – Betty’s Bay & Surrounding

A journey into solitude and adventure – Betty’s Bay & Surrounding

Solitude?

Solitude can be defined as follows – “the state or situation of being alone”, yet this word has a different meaning to so many people. What does your solitude look like? Who cares? If something feels good and resonates with you then do it. It doesn’t matter if you find solitude in your thoughts, when you are in the shower, going for a walk, on the beach or merely breathing in the moment. A state of solitude can be a perceived reflection of your authentic being, without any influence from anyone else. For me personally there is no better way to spend time with my own thoughts than to take a walk on a beach or to sit in front of the powerful mass of calming water and feel minuscule looking at the vast creation. The ocean has a magical way to depolarise my emotional spikes and wash away the clutter in my mind.

What to do close to Gordons Bay?

If you ever find yourself close to Gordons Bay (out of season) in the Western Cape and you want to go to a hidden beach I would recommend you go to Kogel Bay Beach. If you drive on the R44 Heidelberg Rural towards Pringle Bay, you will find what looks like a lookout post. Park your car there and walk down the hill towards the beach. At first the beach looks rocky and not suitable to relax, but a little bit to the right hand side is an open piece of beach surrounded by mountain rocks for shade. If you are there when it is low tide you will be able to walk around the cliff to discover a small cave on the other side. This is still one of my favourite spots of all time. The combination of ocean, beach, mountains and serene atmosphere is something out of this world. This is a safe location to come alone but also great idea if you want your friends to accompany you.

If you, however, find yourself in the area of Pringle Bay and feel adventurous, then you are in for a treat. Close by is a place called Betty’s Bay. Try not to blink as you drive in, because by the time you open your eyes again you will be on the other side of the town. There are 2 things not to miss. If you want to see penguins in their natural playground, then this is a perfect place to observe how they live, smell and eat outside of an aquarium. They are really happy here even though there is no snow. The cold water is habitual to them and make the living conditions perfect for these cute wonky birds in tuxedos. Fun fact: Penguin fossils were found dating back 60 million years ago, which would suggest that they survived the mass extinction of dinosaurs. Penguins have adapted wings called flippers to help them swim, but cannot fly.

 

If your spirit feels better drenched in adrenalin then treat yourself and go sand boarding on the big dunes. During this experience of walking back up the dune you might ask the question if it is worth it, or why you are doing this again. Don’t worry because the thrill of sliding down the dune at high speed will surely answer that question and make you do it again and again…

 

From my experience this was one of the best ways to let my inner child come out to play. At first I went down with a fearful mind filled with calculated risks of what can go wrong, typically how an adult will assess a situation with the knowledge of everything that can go wrong. Then I allowed my inner child to consume every part of my mind and I enjoyed the experience to the fullest. So this taught me let go of “adulating” at appropriate times, without feeling bad. There is a child within us all, longing for some love and attention. Don’t lock up that sense of adventure we all have. If something scares you then it is even more reason to try it. Fear is over rated and the illusion you create in your own mind is limiting your reality to enjoy the small things. I would encourage you not to be okay with your biggest fears. Why don’t you chase the fulfilment of liberation instead, and face your fears?

If you are concerned about the amount of walking and climbing, reject those thoughts! Your body will be grateful for some activity. Reward your body once in a while, because it does carry you through life every single day. You will be reminded how thankful your body is a few days afterwards, even if it is with stiff legs or hips. Don’t think about it in a bad way! Those muscles were activated and your body was so excited that you used and discovered new parts of yourself that it is improving itself, building stronger and bigger muscles so the next time you use them, they perform even better.

 

In the language of duality these options of activity is indeed the opposite, but you will discover yourself on a deeper level and gain something amazing. Do one, do both or do none. Just don’t forget to have fun.

 

I will be back with more…

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Road Trip to Paarl (South Africa)

Road Trip to Paarl (South Africa)

Road trip?

According to Dictionary.com the meaning of road trip is as follows – “a journey via automobile, sometimes unplanned or impromptu”. More often than not it is the unplanned journeys that become more memorable for us than the planned trips. Usually in the making of these memorable moments you are not even aware that things are not going according to plan. The secret is to drop any expectation you might have.

Too often we have a picture in our mind of how the holiday will turn out and when it turns out to be something different we tend to link it to a negative perception. Don’t mistake my words for saying nothing bad ever happens. I am merely saying it is how you perceive a situation and then handle it at the end of the day. You have to accept the bad with the good to maintain a healthy balance of experience. How would you know you prefer sunny days above rainy ones if you haven’t experienced one in your life? Say you don’t like rainy days, but you get to see a rainbow only on those days, would it be worth it?

On the weather subject, the weather in Western Cape can be very unpredictable like everywhere else. You have the privilege to experience four seasons in one day if you are lucky. So I would advise that you always carry something warm and have an umbrella with you just in case. My next tip would be- don’t be scared of the rain or cold weather. Be a chameleon and open to change your plans if the weather decides to change. The Western Cape is still very beautiful when the sun doesn’t shine.

Pitstops?

Planning a trip to Paarl? Here are some pit stops that are worthwhile. They make the 30 minute trip there longer, but more exciting when coming from Stellenbosch side. The R44 will set you on your way. When you get to the R44 and R101 interchange you will see there is a place called Butterfly World on your right hand side. Do yourself a favour and go and see what it is all about. They have created the perfect conditions for a lot of animals. Birds, butterflies, iguanas, reptiles and even Duiker bucks this way people can experience them in a natural habitat. My favourite memories are when I saw a butterfly emerge out of its cocoon and when the fat squirrel climbed into my handbag to look for food.

 

Getting back onto the road again you will see small brown signs that says spice route and Fairview, be sure not to miss the turnoff to these gems. If you like wine and cheese your will enjoy the authentic atmosphere Fairview has to offer. Not only is it on a beautiful area but the wines as well as the cheese are made on the premises. You can do a wine and cheese tasting that is divinely delicious.  There is also a restaurant with great food if you want to eat something. At the entrance you get to enjoy the amusement of goats being silly and climbing a tower.

Further along that road you will find the Spice Route. It earned a very special place in my heart due to the amazing memories I made there with good friends. The view is breathtaking and it is much more than just a wine farm. You have the option to do a wine tasting and enjoy good conversation. Then there is the option of doing a beer tasting at CBC (Cape Brewing Company) made locally or to do a chocolate tasting at DV Artisan Chocolate. This company started in a garage as a hobby, they transformed home appliances into machines for their chocolate business.

What can I do in Paarl?

Paarl (the gem of the Cape) is most famous for the monument for the Afrikaans language, it’s one of a kind worldwide. Fifteen percent of South African people’s’ mother tongue is Afrikaans and only nine percent of people has English as mother tongue in South Africa. English is however the preferred language spoken to aid good communication and understanding. If you are interested to learn about the history of South Africa, I would recommend you ground your feet there. The history of a place is exactly what it says his story. Thus it is merely someone’s story that involved a lot of people and what they went through. I do like history merely for the fact to become aware of where my roots came from, what resonates with me and how much have changed since then. Change is the only constant they say.

For outdoor entertainment in Paarl you can visit the Paarl Mountain, it is a nature reserve. You will have amazing views and you can partake in activities like hiking, bike trails, picnic and many more.

There are also a lot of historic churches and buildings in Paarl city, open for the public to view. If that is not for you, you can visit KWV wine emporium and enjoy a tour of this company registered in 1918. The other option is always to talk to locals, make friends and they will show you around and advise you to go to their favourite places in Paarl. I found the people in Paarl very humble and friendly. They are all about having a good time and seeing beautiful places.

These are all just ideas for a road trip to Paarl, so do some of it or all of it. It is up to you and how you feel at that very moment. Here’s a few secrets to a fun filled road trip, long or short. Never be in a hurry or set a time to arrive. Don’t be scared to turn off the road to discover something amazing. Follow your gut feeling. Stop and breathe in the view and take a selfie if you feel like it. Be in the present moment.

 

Till next time…

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Explore Stellenbosch with insight of locals and deeper meaning

Explore Stellenbosch with insight of locals and deeper meaning

Stellenbosch 2

Why travel to Stellenbosch?

If you like to plan your holiday as you go or long in advance. You will love reading my blog about Stellenbosch. I lived there for 4 years so I give you a bit of insight what to do there and what places are loved by the locals.

If you find your comfort by being in nature there are really beautiful places to see in and around The Western Cape. I will take you around the places close to my heart for you to create your own experiences and memories.

Stellenbosch is essentialy a student town that thrives when the university is open and becomes a ghost town when it is holiday season. Both extremities are great to experience.

Come get lost on foot and ground yourself in the natural beauty of the outdoor spaces waiting to be explored.

The full article can be found on Travelicious website. Please follow the link http://travelicious.world/explore-stellenbosch-with-insight-of-locals-and-deeper-meaning/

Feel free to share your experiences if your have been there or if you have other places to add, that you feel is worth while seeing.

Until next time…

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