Monday, 25 October 2010

Mauritius Day 9, and our last day of this adventure.

The day started off having to pack our bags, and get ourselves ready for our flight back to Australia.
There was an area where our bags could be left, and after having some more beach/pool time, we could shower and freshen up before we headed off to the airport.
This morning, kids club offered water skiing on boards, Cameron wasn't keen, but Alexander wanted to try.

We spent the rest of the morning at the beach.
After lunch, we spent our last few hours relaxing, and then were picked up at 3.45pm to head to the airport, for our next adventures in Australia.

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Mauritius Day 8

Another lazy day of alternating from the beach to the pool.  The kids had fun on the beach paddle boats, and small sailboats just off the shore.  They played with the kids from kids club, so we didn't see them much at all!

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Mauritius Day 7

No more scuba diving for Phil.  To avoid decompression sickness, you need to have at least 12 hours between your last scuba dive and your next flight.

This morning we had a wake up call booked for 5.45 am, which was a huge shock for all of us, after enjoying many days of sleep ins.
We caught a shuttle bus down to Black River  (1 hour 15 minutes drive) for the day to swim with the dolphins.

We got on a boat, and headed out to search for some dolphins.  We found pods of spinners and bottle-nose dolphins and we were able to swim with them for quite awhile.  They were very happy for us to be near them, and seemed not to be afraid of aggressive.

The photo below shows just how close the dolphins got to us, the fin right near Phil's head.

After our swim and snorkel we got back in to the boat and headed to L'lle aus Benitiers, (a small island off the coast of Mauritius.  We had a wonderful lunch, and then spent the afternoon swimming, wandering around the lagoon and the kids spent their time making another sand castle empire.

It was a brilliant day, and we headed back to the hotel for an early dinner, and an early night

Friday, 22 October 2010

Mauritius, Day 5 & 6

Totally getting the hang of alternating time at beach and then beside the pool.  Whilst Phil goes off to scuba dive in the morning, Nicole finds a beach lounge to read and the kids go off with their new found friends at kids club.
Phil's dive on day 6 was to the Lost Anchor, (30 metres deep).  I think if the scuba diving becomes a common hobby for Phil, he is going to invest in an underwater camera.  The site is a huge anchor, which has incredible coral and sea fans all over it.  There were lots of different fish to be seen, stone fish, scorpion fish,   porcupine fish, pelagic fish and globe fish.

Hardly any photos to be taken, we have hardly moved.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Mauritius Day 4

Phil had an early dive this morning to Holt Rock 25m, water temperature 24 degrees. Perfect!
Phil loved this dive, the area has massive blocks of granite boulders covered in coral.  The marine life was fantastic, trigger fish, parrotfish, clownfish, snapper, squirrel fish and moray eels.  

The kids met up with Amy, Jessica and Brooke from kids club and spent the day playing on the beach and at the pool.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Mauritius Day 3

Phil had his first dive at Mauritius at Emily Wreck.  He really enjoyed the  experience. The wreck is about 25 meters deep, and the barge, Emily was sunk here in 1981.  There were lots of surgeon fish, red crabs, moray eels and spangled emperor fish to see. 

The kids took themselves off  to kids club, met some other children on holidays. They got on a boat, and went over to another beach for a play and swim.  

We met back by the pool for lunch at Le Frangipanier restaurant, and the afternoon was spent beside the pool reading.

We got back to our hotel room to find this on our bed, and it seemed such a shame to have to disturb it.

Monday, 18 October 2010

Mauritius Day 2

We moved to a different part of the beach today, and spent a lot of time in the rock pools, looking for crabs, starfish and other marine creatures.  Today we remembered lunch, and dined at the Navigator. We sat outside and had a great view of the ocean.

An early dinner, and plenty of serious competitive games of UNO whilst listening 
to a local band provided by the hotel for entertainment.

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Mauritius Day 1

With a 2 hour time forward time difference, we woke up at a reasonable time and decided to have a relaxing day at the beach. The kids spent time making sandcastles and entire villages as they often do when given an entire beach to create.  We were so relaxed, we totally forgot about lunch, and missed the buffet.  Instead we had pancakes at afternoon tea time instead. 

Friday, 15 October 2010

Johannesburg to Mauritius

An early start to the day, with the habit of early starts for safari drives, Cameron was awake and ready to go at 5.20am!

Peter took us to his friend, Warren's home, to see his amazing aviaries.  Warren has an incredible property, and is a huge bird enthusiast.  the kids were super impressed by the birds.

These owlets were a huge favourite, so fluffy!

Sadly today was our last day on the continent of Africa, we will certainly be back.  We had the most amazing time, and we have been won over by South Africa!

We drove the hire car back to the airport, checked in and waited for our next flight, Maurtius, for some rest time on the beach. 
The flight was non eventful and we had a 1 hour 15 minute shuttle bus trip up North to our hotel, 
Le Canonnier, checked in, and went straight to bed.

Safari Day 8: Exeter River Lodge, and drive back to Johannesburg

Our final Safari drive on our trip.
We saw lots of the same animals, the highlight was seeing a dazzle of zebras and actually hearing them communicate.  We were shocked, we had never heard zebras calling out before, and certainly was not expecting the noise that came out of their mouths.

We also saw Impala, Guinea Fowl, slender mongoose, blue horn wax bill, hooded vultures, emerald spotten wood doves, buffalo, red bill oxpecker, dragonflies, cape glossy starling, greenback heron, wildebeast, brown snake eagle, red horn bill, bearded woodpecker, kudu, fork tail drongo, vervet monkeys pied kingfisher, battalier, African jacana, orange breasted bushshrike , whitebakc vultures, European bee eater, red breasted swallows, bush buck, nyala, little bee eater and duiker.

After lunch we said goodbye to our wonderful hosts at Exeter, and drove back to Johannesburg to stay with Mary and Peter.
We had the 12 kilometers to drive back to the Sabi Sands gates, and Nicole was nervous about driving in the "normal car", knowing those 4 lions were right at the gate with their buffalo. 
Doors were locked, and windows were tightly wound up.
However we had nothing to worry about, less than 48 hours since the lions had killed the buffalo, they had eaten as much as they could from the buffalo carcass, and the next animals on the food chain were having a turn.

We had a brilliant evening a delicious Braai (Afrikaans for barbeque), and the kids were fascinated with Peter's incredible telescope which gave us brilliant detail of the moon