March 2015 South Africa travel blog

Cango Caves in the Little Karoo

Cango Caves

Safari Ostrich Farm -Small brain!

More ostriches

Qualifying as certified ostrich rider!


We have stayed in lovely hotels on our trip, and the elegant old colonial hotel in Oudtshoorn last night was no exception, but now that we have arrived in Kysna, we are at another one of the Protea Hotels. Each one is completely different from the other and reflects the area where the hotel is situated. This one is right on the huge lagoon which drains into the Indian Ocean, so has a very maritime flavour.

After breakfast we boarded our bus and were taken to the Cango Caves located in the mountain range on the northern side of the Little Karoo semi desert area. These caves are about six miles long, but only one mile is open to tourists. We saw huge chambers with the most beautiful formations and colours, with great curtains of stalactites and stalagmites ringing the walls. I'm happy to report that, thanks to the sensitivity of our wonderful guide, Beverly, I managed to do the whole tour. She made sure I knew how to get out if I needed to. Hopefully this is one step towards kicking this claustrophobia thing.

Next we were off by bus to the Safari Ostrich Farm, a massive ostrich-rearing operation also in the Little Karoo, and it was here that Peggy had the courage to ride an ostrich, and what an experience that was! First the poor guy had a hood place over his head to calm him before I got on his back, but when they took the hood off, he took of like he shot from a gun. I hung onto that hge bird's shoulders (wings) for all I was worth. I had to lean way back to stay atop him. I was the first one to get to try it and I'm pretty sure if I'd seen someone else do it I might not have been so brave. So now I have a certificate to prove I have successfully ridden an ostrich. Will look good on my resume. Here are a whole bunch of ostrich facts:

Their brains weigh 40g so while they are cute, they are not the sharpest knives in the drawer.

When fully grown can weigh 95 - 120 kg.

Can live to be 60 yrs old in the wild.

We had a nice seafood dinner at the Ocean Basket in the waterfront in Knysna.

The males legs turn bright red when he is ready to mate.. Nice to be given a warning!

Can run 80kph for 3km. The only animal faster is a cheetah.

Ostrich, like goats, will eat anything including baby shoes, spoons and even washing.



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