South Africa is a place I have been returning to every year – for the last 20 years! Time in the bush has a way of making the rest of the world  seem a little less important just for a while. We have entered their world and it is truly a humbling experience.

When I am not in the African bush I am reading about it and wishing I were there.

In the bush, stopping for a morning coffee means a mochachocarula – equal parts coffee, hot chocolate and of course Amarula! I easily recreate this at home as well. 

I took this picture of our favorite leopard Dewane (Dayone) whom we have seen each year for the past 12 years in the Sabi Sand. He has been a force to reckon with, but as happens in the wild, a younger leopard, Ravenscourt, is taking over his territory. We sat with him for quite a while this day and I took this picture of him partially hidden behind a tree.  

Our travels to Southern Africa have given us an appreciation of the complex red blends to be found in the vineyards north of Cape Town. We are fortunate that some fine labels are finding their way to the US. When on safari we enjoy a variety of local wines pared with truly exceptional cuisine: kudu filets, oxtail stew, impala carpaccio, and locally grown vegetables. The chef is always happy to share recipes to sustain us until our next visit.

The best ending to a full day of game drives – sundowners! I am missing those magnificent South African skies but am looking forward to enjoying them once again.

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Christine at Esplanade Travel planned our recent trip which found us traveling to four very different and fascinating regions in Chile. The trip was absolutely beautiful, memorable and so suited to our specific interests! We have had the pleasure of working multiple times with travel consultants at Esplanade Travel and they continue to amaze us with the itineraries they develop and their close working contacts in other countries that always result in worry-free travel for us. We tend to stay in multiple areas with multiple connections and with the expertise in planning at Esplanade all of our reservations, contacts, pick-ups and drop-offs occur seamlessly. Our travels started in Santiago before heading south to the Lakes District, further south to Torres del Paine in Patagonia, then west to Easter Island. All of the lodges we stayed in were so comfortable with gorgeous views, the guides were super knowledgeable about the cultural and natural history of every location we visited, and the food was fantastic! On Easter Island our native guide, Sabrina, was able to provide us with her intimate knowledge, passed down to her from her ancestors, of the history and culture of the Rapa Nui people. I highly recommend Esplanade Travel to everyone, and I guarantee we will be contacting them to assist us with our next great adventure!

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