Lion Photo by Arno & LouiseNot five meters from my tent the resident King of the African Bush roared again. I reached for my torch, flicked it on and looked around my tented abode, thinking of an exit strategy. The big male lion rubbed himself against my tent for the next thirty minutes before wandering into the dark night. The next day, after a delicious farm-style breakfast, I headed to Bushman Sands for 18 holes on their Gary Player-designed golf track. That evening, I took a boat cruise on a nearby dam, and then headed back to my tented lodge for a fireside dinner. This, ladies and gentleman, is my work! A warm greeting from sunny South Africa! It is my pleasure to be contributing to Golf Teaching Pro magazine, and I look forward to sharing the best our country has to offer with you on a regular basis. South Africa is blessed with natural beauty and is famous for Cape Town, the Kruger National Park, and, of course, Nelson Mandela! Added to this, we have great weather (year round), sunny skies, warm oceans and friendly people. World-class hotels, incredible safari lodges and game reserves are to be found throughout the country. As a tour operator serving the international market, I have seen that our golf courses are less well-known than our other, more famous attractions. It is my aim to highlight the country’s top golf destinations and best-kept secrets to you over the months to come. As I write this article, Sun City (the country’s main golf destination) is preparing to host the Nedbank Golf Challenge – previously referred to as The Million Dollar Challenge. It is being marketed as ‘Africa’s Major’ and the field includes Hunter Mahan, Henrik Stenson, Nick Watney, and Tim Clark. At the same time, the country is gripped with FIFA 2010 Soccer World Cup fever. Golfing tours can be tailor-made to suite different traveler’s pockets as well as tastes, and South Africa is a good destination for the US market, as one dollar tends to buy you 7-8 rands (South African currency). Itineraries can include a Big 5 Safari mixed with a trip to Cape Town, the Winelands, a cultural tour, and a great golf track. The tented Lodge I mentioned above is Gorah Elephant Camp, my favourite Safari destination – you can have a look at the website at http://www.hunterhotels.com/gorahelephantcamp/ and Bushman Sands can be viewed at http://www.riverhotels.co.za/bushmans/. The boat cruise and golf track can be viewed in the gallery link. Please feel free to e-mail me on ron.mackenzie@neoafrica.com.
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