Entries tagged with “Klein Karoo”.


Hayden Quinn 7 Oudtshoorn Ostrich EggLast night’s episode 7 of ‘Hayden Quinn: South Africa‘ was focused on Oudtshoorn, and will attract tourists to the town, now not only known for its Cango Caves and ostriches, but also for the cutest Meerkats!

The episode opened with Hayden sitting in the veld in the Klein Karoo, awaiting the sighting of Meerkat in the Meerkat conservation farm, his guide being Devey of Meerkat Adventures, who looked very Australian with his big leather hat!   The Meerkat are observed on De Zeekoe Guest Farm outside Oudtshoorn, creeping out of their burrows to Hayden Quinn 7 Meerkat Whale Cottagecatch the first rays of sun, to warm up their tummies, to get themselves going to forage for food for the rest of the day, including insects, bugs, and worms.

Hayden went to visit Chef Allister Scharneck of Buffelsdrift Game Lodge outside Oudtshoorn, who taught Hayden how to make an Ostrich Egg Frittata.  The first step was to open the thick ostrich egg shell, which (more…)

Wine Tourism South Africa HandbookMonika Elias of World Focus Media has done a great job over the past ten years in documenting the contribution of the wine routes, and the wine estates on them, to Wine Tourism South Africa, in helping to inform and educate locals as well as tourists about wine in general, and to boost wine sales.  Her 2014 edition of ‘Wine Tourism South Africa’ handbook has just been published , bearing the slogan of ‘sip, stay and play‘!

In her ‘Publisher’s Letter‘, Monika defines Wine Tourism as ‘…in the glass, on the plate, in the bed, around the vines, and for the planet’.  She writes about ‘winery atmospherics’, such as architecture, lighting, sound, temperature, and kinetics, playing an important role in creating a point of difference for wine estates in an increasingly competitive world.  Wine is becoming an increasingly important part of the Tourism experience, and most visitors to Cape Town and the Western Cape will be very likely to visit a wine farm to taste their wines, to eat at a Winelands restaurant, or visit an event linked to wines.

The Handbook evaluates top restaurants on wine estates, using chefs hats (three maximum) to denote how good or not they are;  and evaluates the winelists of the restaurants on the wine estates, by means of wine glasses (three maximum).  A price range indication is also provided for the Winelands restaurants.  The Handbook starts with tourist information and advice about car rental, taxis, trains, parking attendants, banking hours, VAT, the weather, tipping, and more.  It lists the winners of the fifteen categories in the 2013 KLINK Wine Tourism Awards, which received votes from 15000 consumers last year. (more…)

The Sweet Service Award goes to Independent Newspapers, for its educational supplement ‘Your Cape Holiday Guide’, which was inserted into the Cape Times, Cape Argus and Weekend Argus over the December holidays. The 34-page supplement contained good editorial with suggestions for tourists and locals to discover the Cape, including Cape Town (Robben Island, Atlantic Seaboard, Table Mountain, New Year entertainment,  Cape Point, Kirstenbosch, Chapman’s Peak, Simonstown, Hout Bay), Hermanus, the Winelands, Tulbagh, the Klein Karoo, the Swartland, and the Elgin valley.

The Sour Service Award goes to Illyria in the Eikestad Mall, previously a favourite Stellenbosch coffee shop for its stylish decor and good Illy coffee.  I popped in quickly recently, asking for a cappuccino to be made, as I was heading for a concert, saying that I was dashing into Woolworths next door while it was being made.  No coffee had been made when I returned, the waitress Simone saying that I had not paid for the coffee upfront, and that she would have had to pay for the coffee if I had not returned!  She did not ask for payment when I placed the order.  She was very defensive, became rude, and refused to give her name and the contact details for the owners.  Her manager rushed in out of breath, having been called by the waitress, shouting abuse at me for my ‘website’ and what I have written about them (all has been positive so far), and refused to give me her name and the number of the owners. I left to attend the concert at the Conservatorium and put my phone on silent.  A barrage of 11 calls came from one cell number in one hour, which I could not take during the concert, and I was concerned that something terrible had happened.  I called the number immediately after the concert had finished, and listened to two messages that had been left by Ramon, the owner of Manouche restaurant and the co-owner with his sister of Illyria.  Both messages were abusive and threatening.

The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog.  Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at info@whalecottage.com.   Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the www.whalecottage.com website