Leaving Cape Town we set off along what is known as the Garden Route. New leaves on the trees and flowers were bursting forth daily as we travelled.
Erythrina - in South Africa they call this a Coral Tree, but I know it as a Flame Tree
Bauhinia purpurea - orchid tree, butterfly tree
Leucospermum cordifolium - pincushion protea
I didn't realise that there are so many different proteas, and that they come in many different guises. In South Africa this exotic shrub grows wild.
As daylight faded we took a trip on a paddle steamer down Knysna's romantic sea lagoon - on board we enjoyed a local fish dish accompanied by lots of freshly cooked spicey African vegetables and watched the sun slip away
There were clues on the hotel walls in the form of old posters along with black and white photographs as to how vacations must have been during the 1920s. They showed people hunting with rangers, trekking through dense undergrowth in forests with giant trees, or climbing up rugged mountains with ponies and porters.
Every year the southern right whales migrate from their icy feeding grounds off Antarctica to the warmer sheltered bays of this South Western Cape coast where they spend up to five months of the year. The coastal waters teem with these giant mammals, mating, calving and rearing their young, and giving spectacular displays of their elegant water acrobatics.
Weighing in at about 60 tons and estimated to live as long as a 100 years, the southern right whale (Eubalaena australis) has become a major tourist attraction along this part of the South African coast.
My images of these great whales were hopeless - I was not quick enough to catch them breaching - this is a mother and her young one basking. Basking is a huge problem for the southern right whale as they get mowed down and killed by large ships - guidance has now been issued to mariners to avoid waters where they are known to be at certain times of the year.
It's Spring, and the dexterous male weaver bird builds an intricate ball shaped nest. Once completed, the female inspects it, and then deconstructs it ruthlessly if she deems it to be unsatisfactory.
Our journey now returns us to Cape Town via the Stellenbosch wine region.