Extreme Nature Tours & Travel Services Reviews
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Extreme Nature Tours has evolved into Extreme Nature Tours Travel Services, offering a range of services including free travel information and advice, route planning and accommodation search and reservations.
5 April 2011
We have just launched our new SA Travel website .... www.toursinsa.com
10 February 2011
Well, we are all back from our trip and ensconced behind our desks at work again with happy memories and sun tans!!
I just wanted to thank you once more for the wonderful experience you created for us at Jozini dam. It was definitely a highlight. Your organization and preparation was great, and so too your knowledge of the water. It was also a pleasure being in your company, both on and off the water. Best of luck with your plans for growing your business.
I attach a foto of the fish Michael landed whilst fishing off the boat McFire (also foto) out of Richards Bay. The skipper first thought it was a striped marlin with its bill broken off, then a wahoo, then a ... Only after we got back were some old timers able to identify it as a short billed spearfish (apparently very rarely caught), weighing just over 22kg's. It turns out that the official record for the species along the north coast is less than that. The fish was caught Monday. Other than a missed strike, and another big fish which Paul had on long enough for us to have brought in all the other lines but which then dropped the hook (supposedly a big marlin that actually damaged the lure and frayed the leader to the lure - we believe the fish struck then had line wrapped around its bill without actually being hooked), we caught nothing on Tuesday.
All the best to you. Hopefully we will cross paths again in future.
If you want a ranger who knows Hluhluwe Umfolozi Park like the back of his hand as your personal wildlife guide who better than Charl Koen? However, if you also enjoy watching birds, then you’ve struck gold. By the way, he is also very knowledgeable about butterflies, plants and their indigenous medicinal uses and many other subjects related to nature.
We used Charl as guide for just over a week in November 2008. He was consistently competent, good-humoured, modest and adaptable. Thanks to him we were alone and close up to a pride of six lions early one morning in Hluhluwe. Thanks to him we saw and identified well over a hundred species of birds (and this in spite of the main motivation for the trip being animal watching!). We could have seen far more birds, but the view and changing light from our Hilltop camp cabin was so beautiful that late afternoon we preferred to sit on the terrace while Charl prepared the braai backstage.
Charl appears to know the whole St Lucia wetland area very well and took us to many isolated and beautiful places, including sand tracks through protected areas that we would never have found on our own. One memorable afternoon we drove for three and a half hours and only saw one car (and that was parked!). The few children that we saw ran out to wave and call out, so unused were they to seeing white people. Charl’s fluent Zulu was everywhere greeted with surprise and happy smiles and certainly made a huge difference to our relationship with local people. At the end of our drive we stayed at a basic camp overlooking one of the Kosi Bay lakes and a short distance from the beach where we saw a turtle lay her eggs. We had the camp and the beach to ourselves!
Perhaps one of the most important qualities in a guide is trust and we would trust Charl with our lives; when you are with him, in whatever situation, you always feel safe.
By the way, for the non-guided part of our holiday, Charl’s company, Extreme Nature Tours, arranged accommodation and all transfers between sites, both in South Africa and Mozambique. All worked like clockwork, which is not always the way in Africa. This avoided all the hassle of renting a car and left us free to look elsewhere than at the road.
On our last day Charl himself took us to the airport. Our goodbyes were tinged with sadness, as we had become good friends during our time together.
If you are planning a wildlife tour to Kwazulu, whether or not you are birders, then I can strongly recommend Charl. If any-one doubts the authenticity of this recommendation, please feel free to contact email@example.com . I speak English French and Spanish. By the way, if you think we are young adventurous types, I am 61 and Nathalie is 42.