Colour Scents:Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden

A visit to Cape Town is not complete without a visit to the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. Set in a 36-hectare site on the eastern slopes of Table Mountain, it certainly lives up to its reputation as a wonderful showcase for South Africa’s indigenous flora.

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Kirstenbosch was established in 1913 to promote, conserve and display the extraordinarily rich and diverse flora of southern Africa. Over 7000 species of indigenous plants are found here, including many rare and threatened species. In addition, there’s also a rich collection of bulbs, alpines and ferns.

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In 2004, Kirstenbosch as part of the Cape Floral Kingdom, became the first botanic garden in the world to be included as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Nature and flower lovers will no doubt be blown away by this place. The are a number of stunning themed gardens connected by hidden trails that offer little surprises at each turning. There is a lovely wooden tree canopy walkway giving breathtaking views of the rich and colourful landscape, with the majestic Table Mountain standing as a backdrop.

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Inside the Visitors’ Centre entrance and at the main lawn is a bust of Nelson Mandela standing next to a pepper-bark tree (Warburgia salutaris). The bust was sculpted by John Francis Gardner, who gifted it to Kirstenbosch to commemorate Mandela’s planting of the tree during his visit on 21 August 1996.

It portrays Nelson Mandela during the pivotal years of his presidency and captures his radiance and generous spirit for which he is so well known.

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Strelitzia reginae ‘Mandela’s Gold’ is a rare, yellow form of the crane flower and famous orange bird of paradise. This spectacular flower has flaring, yellow petals and a blue tongue reminiscent of a crested tropical bird. The grey-green leaves can grow to a height of about 1.5 metres and the large bird-like flowers stand above the foliage on the tips of long, sturdy stalks during winter and spring.

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Schoolgirls waiting excitedly to begin their excursion of Kirstenbosch.

Too bad that we were given only an hour-and-a-half to roam around – which was hardly enough time at all, considering that six of us spent about half an hour going round in circles, trying to find the right path that would lead us to our meeting point at the second entrance to Kirstenbosch. Nevertheless, it was a morning well-spent in a very tiny corner of the African continent where for a while, everything was peaceful, balanced and beautiful.

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Close Encounters of the Koala Kind

Mention the word ‘koala’ to me and the first image that comes to mind is a cute, furry grey animal with a white stomach and no tail, found in souvenir shops, wildlife magazines and at best, in an Aussie zoo! Yes, I’ve caught glimpses of koalas in the wild. However, those sightings were not only rare, but difficult to spot as koalas usually sit high up in eucalyptus branches.

Driver: Look, there’s one up there!

Me: Where? Where?

Driver: See the big tree in the middle? (Duh???) She’s right there.

Me: I see only lots of trees. Where? 

Driver: It’s a bit dark but you can still see her. Up there. Look, she’s moving now.

Me: Where? Where?

Everyone else: Yes, there she is! Aww! That’s so cute! 

Me: Where? Where?

Driver: That’s all, folks. The koala’s gone!

I had never really seen a koala in its natural habitat until I visited the Koala Conservation Centre in Phillip Island. The Centre plays host to a special koala breeding programme, ensuring it remains a key player in the conservation of these iconic animals.

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The unique treetop boardwalks in a eucalypt woodland area gives visitors the chance to see how these amazing creatures live as they would in the wild. Even while strolling, two or three koalas could be seen relaxing in the trees directly above me.

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IMG_4782aIt was super exciting to see them face-to-face. Never in my life had I come this close to a koala. This fella was like on a branch five feet away from me and I could literally touch him if I leaned forward and stretched out my hand.

I was half expecting the koala to move away but instead, he moved even nearer towards me, bringing the both of us to eye level by his sheer weight on the branch. We just stared at each other for around a minute, waiting to see the other’s next move. It was perfect timing for a photograph (or selfie) but I didn’t want to scare him off with a lens in front of my face. That was a very special moment for me and one which I will never forget.

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Certain stretches of the wooden boardwalk have more koala poo than others, indicating that koalas have their favourite spots to hang out. When walking along this part of the bridge, you need to be on your toes (pardon the pun) to avoid stepping on koala poo and keep looking upwards occasionally to make sure that no koala does its toilet business on you!

I have to admit that I’ve never ever seen a koala walk on the ground before! It was specially thrilling to see this cute fella casually climbing down the tree trunk and sitting on a log for a quick rest…

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…before making his way under the boardwalk where I was standing. He appeared on the other side and proceeded to climb up another tree! How I wished I had videotaped the scene but I was so excited to see the koala on the ground that I couldn’t think straight!

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Kennett River situated along the coastal bushland between Lorne and Apollo Bay on the Great Ocean Road is one of the best places in Australia to see koalas in the wild. This area is home to hundreds of colonies that live in both the forests and more urbanised areas. You are practically guaranteed close koala sightings if you drive up the Grey River Road. Here, they can be found in trees surrounding the houses, in peoples’ gardens, relaxing on someone’s balcony and occasionally crossing the road!

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Hearing this catchy tune on the way back to Melbourne, “Please Don’t Call Me a Koala Bear‘ by Don Spencer, sealed the end of a thoroughly enjoyable day with the koalas!

Please Don’t Call Me a Koala Bear

I’m a koala not a bear
And I don’t think it’s fair
The way that people always add a word that isn’t there
I’m a marsupial and proud of it
And there can be no doubt of it
I’m closer to a kangaroo than I am to a bear
 
So please don’t call me a koala bear
Coz I’m not a bear at all
Please don’t call me a koala bear
It’s driving me up the wall
If your name was Tom
And everyone called you Dick
Perhaps you’d understand why I’m sick, sick, sick
I’m simply a koala
And I want the name to stick
 
So please don’t call me a koala bear
I live here in Australia
In a eucalyptus tree
I’m as cuddly, cute and charming
as an animal can be
I don’t understand fair dinkum
How anyone could think them
Grizzly bears and polar bears
Are anything like me
So please dont call me a koala bear
Coz I’m not a bear at all
Please don’t call me a koala bear
It’s driving me up the wall
If your name was Tom
And everyone called you Dick
Perhaps you’d understand why I’m sick, sick, sick
I’m simply a koala
And I want the name to stick
So please don’t call me a koala bear

 

Sand, Sea, Surf – Forrest Caves

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To be honest, you’re not likely to go ga-ga at the mention of Phillip Island’s Forrest Caves, unless you have a passion for surfing. There are three exposed beaches on this 1.3 km of coastline with extensive rocks, reefs and bluffs around. These waves have strong rips with a number of breaks over the reefs. Breaking the waves, flipping the board, turtle roll! You can realise all these moves here!

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A 45-minute return walk along some large sand dunes will bring you to Forrest Caves. These are large sea caverns in the rock carved by the unceasing erosive action of the waves. The caves become exposed and are accessible only during low tide.

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Forrest Caves carpark viewed from the wooden steps.
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First view of the ocean from the viewing platform.

You get to see some beautiful colours on this walk – the red stained tuff rocks, grey boulders, green tussock grass, the blue sky, white waves and golden sands. Best of all, the whole beach was deserted. What a special way to be spending my last few hours in Phillip Island!

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Approaching the sea caves at low tide.

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Along the Boardwalk – The Nobbies, Phillip Island

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The Nobbies is actually the more popular name for Point Grant, located at the western tip of Phillip Island. In addition to boasting of panoramic ocean views and dramatic sea bluffs, the Nobbies is home to one of the largest fur seal colonies in Australia. It’s not quite certain as to how the Nobbies got its name. Perhaps it was from the domes at the end of the point, or from the rocks that protrude from the water like knobs when the tide reaches a certain level.

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Unlike Cape Woolamai where the hike can be quite challenging, the one-kilometre walk around the Nobbies is a relaxing one via a series of wooden boardwalks and stairs that wind around the edge of the cliffs, offering uninterrupted views of fiery waves and white water crashing against the rocks.

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The Nobbies showcases nature at its best. There are many native birds and wildlife in the surrounding area, and they turn up at the most unexpected moments. If you are thinking of coming here, consider bringing along a pair of binoculars. We spotted quite a number of wallabies hopping about, and admiring us while we admired them. Elsewhere, there were Grey Geese wandering about with their goslings. It’s amazing to think that little penguins land here and climb the cliffs to their burrows every night. We spotted many man-made burrows and even spied little penguins inside some of them.

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After crossing a level stretch of the boardwalk, we arrived at a viewing platform for the Nobbies Blowhole. There is a 12-metre-deep sea cave just below the boardwalk. When smashed by a strong wave, the blowhole returns fire with a mist of air and water that sprays out of the hole. It was mesmerising to watch this phenomenon from the safety of the platform.

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There is a sign along the boardwalk to explain how this force of nature works. Those with a physics bias will appreciate this additional information.

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1. A large wave enters the blowhole.
2. The wave fills the tunnel from floor to ceiling, compressing air against the rear wall.
3. The wave hits the rear wall and rebounds, its speed increased by the explosive force of the compressed air. This creates a jet spray from the tunnel entrance.

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Are those white streaks caused by seals, dolphins or whales?

The plus point about the rugged scenery of the Nobbies is that there are no entrance charges for the the pram-friendly boardwalk. Free. Now that’s a word I rarely hear these days! Don’t forget your jacket and scarf as it can get very cold especially if you are visiting during winter and spring.

Phillip Island:Chasing Dawn

It’s not often that I get the chance to catch the sunrise in a beach setting. So very early the next morning, I forced myself out of the warm bedcovers, grabbed my jacket, camera and torchlight and used a shortcut to Cowes beach. The entire neighbourhood was still in slumber as I walked right to the end of the street. I made my way across the grass and into some bushes and trees that hid a narrow trail until I came to a flight of wooden stairs leading straight to the beach. As I made my way through the foliage, I could hear the distinctive calls of birds and insects as well as movements and cracking branches coming from the trees above me. This is what I love about Phillip Island. You get to really experience close encounters with wildlife in their natural habitat.

At that very early hour, I was the only person on the deserted beach. The sand was still wet and soft under my feet, forming little pools of water with every step forward. In the distance, I could make out the dim flicker of lights from the town and the black silhouette of trees against an emerging gold sky. I gazed at the waves ebbing lazily in their silver blue-grey coat and waited. A flock of seagulls kept me company as I watched the sky perform an elegant dance ritual of colours in blue, purple, pink, red and orange.

I felt as if I was in a huge open air concert hall and the light extravaganza was for my eyes only. What a humbling feeling!

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All too soon, the magic of the moments came to an abrupt end. The sun’s golden rays had appeared surreptitiously but quickly, casting its light over the landscape and staking its claim on a new day.

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Cruising Along Katherine Gorge, Nitmiluk National Park

IMG_4182aJust a 70-minute drive away from Edith Falls is one of Australia’s most spectacular outback regions – Katherine Gorge or as the local indigenous Jawoyn people call it – Nitmiluk National Park.

Frankly, I had envisioned the gorge to be something like Maguk (Barramundi Gorge) where the hike is long and strenuous across most parts. My fears, however, proved unfounded. You can’t just walk in and out of Katherine Gorge. You either take a cruise or canoe.

All tours in the region are operated by Nitmiluk Tours that offers 2-hour and half-day safari gorge cruises, canoeing, hiking, helicopter rides and accommodation within the National Park. You can buy your tickets at the Nitmiluk Visitor Centre located at the entrance to the jetty, and then make your way down the ramp and hop into a boat or canoe.

IMG_4183aNitmiluk Gorge is made up of 13 separate waterways that wind along a 12 kilometres stretch of ancient rock with heights extending to more than 70 metres. Sculpted from sandstone over 20 million years ago by the Katherine River, it is open all year round, and features some of the most stunning gorge scenery in Northern Territory – raging waterfalls, rocks and boulders, breathtaking cliff views of Jawoyn country, pockets of rainforest along streams, water holes, bushland and a myriad of lizards, insects, birds including freshwater crocodiles!

IMG_4192bThese thirteen gorges are actually sections of one massive gorge that become separated by rock bars and boulders when the water level drops during the dry season. Conversely, when the water level rises during the rainy season, rivers, rapids and waterfalls develop and flow down the escarpment. Therefore, accessibility into the upper reaches of the gorge by boat and canoe depends very much on the water level.

The cruise I went in took me as far as the Second Gorge. The guide gave a good account of the local Jawoyn culture, the make up of the gorge, and some of the plants and wildlife that inhabit the area. It was not long before we came across a freshwater crocodile camouflaged underneath a rock along the bank.

At reaching the end of the First Gorge, we had to get off the boat and make a 400-metre walk across rocky terrain before getting into another boat that would take us to the Second Gorge.

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This crossover with its uneven surfaces can become quite tricky. Those with restricted mobility do not need to hike all the way to the Second Gorge. There are benches and rocks at the crossover to sit down and take in the views while waiting for the rest to return.

Here are some views that opened up as we made our way to the Second Gorge.

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Making our way down the steps to the Second Gorge.

The Second Gorge is even more stunning than the first one. Every turn of the winding river provides another visual masterpiece of near vertical bedrock plunging straight down into the blue-green waters of the expansive Nitmiluk Gorge. 

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I felt a sense of deja vu when cruising along the Second Gorge. The place looked strangely familiar and I couldn’t recall where I had seen a similar scenery. And then it struck me! I was cruising along the same route that was used in the filming of the Australian horror crocodile movie, “Rogue”.

Rogue (2007) is about an idyllic wildlife cruise that disintegrates into terror when a party of tourists are stalked by a massive man-eating crocodile. The movie was shot in Yellow Water at Kakadu National Park, with additional scenes in Nitmiluk Gorge. You can watch the trailer here.

All too soon, two hours seemed to whiz by. It would have been very nice to have been able to stay back for the sunset. Sadly, time did not permit. We were soon back inside the coach, making a stop at Emerald Springs for dinner, before embarking on the last leg of the long journey back to Darwin.

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A last look at Nitmiluk National Park.

No Place Like Katherine – Edith Falls (Leliyn)

Edith Falls, also known by its Aboriginal name Leliyn, is a picturesque collection of dazzling waterfalls that crash down the surrounding cliff sides and into the one large plunge pool. Surrounded by lush vegetation and a quirky array of wildlife, Edith Falls is a popular recreation spot for visitors on the look out for the Top End’s mesmerising outback scenery.

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The falls are located about a one hour drive north from Katherine in Northern Territory, and is a must-visit attraction if you’re headed for the Katherine region.

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The falls are named after the Edith River which runs through the Nitmiluk National Park. It is a thriving habitat for plants and animals, whilst the rock pools offer cool respite from the hot Australian outback.

In addition to the waterfalls and rock pools, the landscape surrounding Edith Falls is carved with numerous hiking trails which are popular with more active travellers. There are plenty of scenic bushwalking routes for exploring, as well as a handful of secluded spots with grassy sites and ample shade for picnics and relaxation.

Hot shower facilities are available and there is a kiosk for buying food and drinks.

Edith Falls can be visited at anytime of the year, but it’s best to experience it during the dry season between May and September. The rainy season might be less crowded, but there’s a chance you might not get to swim in the pools – one of the main highlights of the trip.

It was a lovely start to the morning. I got to try crocodile meat for the first time during lunch, and then we  were back on the road again, headed for Katherine Gorge.

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4WD to Kakadu – Picnic Lunch at Angbangbang Billabong (#53)

It took a couple of hours to finally get out of the dirt road from Jim Jim and head northwards to view the rock art in Nourlangie. We made a stopover for lunch at Angbangbang Billabong, one of Kakadu’s most attractive billabongs. Here, you get to see a large variety of wetland waterbirds, water lilies, as well as Burrunggui (Nourlangie Rock) making for a stunning backdrop.

There’s an easy 2.5 km walk around the billabong but as the track is so close to the water, you need to be wary of saltwater crocodiles.

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The long ride had made us very hungry. We set up our picnic goodies on one of the shaded park benches and made sandwiches topped with bacon, ham and leftover kangaroo meat from the previous night’s campfire dinner. The day was very hot, and we were glad to have a bit of a stretch, take selfies and enjoy the view.

A Splashing Time at Buley Rockhole, Litchfield National Park, Australia

Another great place to unwind and chill out is Buley Rockhole in Litchfield National Park. Buley Rockhole is a series of rock pools that cascade downstream to a larger rock pool at the bottom. The whole place is surrounded by Aussie bush, small rapids, waterfalls and lush greenery.

The rock pools are great for swimming and some are even deep enough for diving. I was content to just sit in the water and enjoy the invigorating sensation of cool water running all over my body.

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Picnic at Wangi Falls, Litchfield National Park, Australia

If you are looking for a short getaway from the heat of the Northern Territory, then Wangi Falls might be just the place for you.

Situated 80 kilometers south of Darwin inside Litchfield National Park, the waterfall descends from a height of 84 metres (276 ft) above sea level via a series of segmented tiers.

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The great thing about Wangi Falls is that you don’t need to go very far to reach it. It’s just a short walk from the parking area through a shady forest that is ideal as a picnic ground. You can either swim in the clear waters of the plunge pool or watch the water of the two falls cascade over the rocky escarpments as they make their way down.

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It’s accessibility also means that Wangi Falls attracts lots of visitors. However, as long as you’re not there to escape from the crowd, you’ll probably appreciate the beautiful surrounds and impressive waterfalls. The area is wide enough for everyone to enjoy their own “space”. There’s even a viewing platform to take that “must-have” photograph of the falls, and a nice boardwalk for exploring the wildlife in the area.

There are also a number of walking tracks, including a three-kilometre track starting at the Wangi plunge pool, that takes you right to the top of the escarpment and back down to the base of the falls.

Wangi Falls is open all year round, but is sometimes closed for swimming, especially between October and March when rainfall is heavy. The rise in water levels resulting in strong and dangerous currents, together with the possibility of crocodiles finding their way into the area, makes swimming dangerous. Ironically, it is also during this wet season when the fast-flowing water from the falls are at their most spectacular, making for great photography.

Darwin: Close Encounters With Crocs

I finally made it to Darwin in July this year, fulfilling my long-time goal of visiting Northern Territory’s (NT) national parks at some point during my lifetime. My first stop was the Adelaide River. This river is well-known for its high concentration of saltwater crocodiles, along with other wildlife including sea eagles, whistling kites and black flying foxes. The crocodiles are a protected species here. Getting onboard the Spectacular Jumping Crocodile Cruise gave me the chance for a close-up view of these elusive reptiles in their natural habitat from the safety of a boat.

 

IMG_3576aJust an hour’s drive from Darwin city, this 75-minute cruise is manned by a very experienced and knowledgeable all-girl crew. We were well-briefed on crocodile safety during the boat ride and the skipper kept us entertained with crocodile anecdotes, preferred lifestyle and eating habits!

Before going on this trip, I had no idea about how intelligent these creatures are. My previous experience with crocodiles was limited to seeing them in the zoo – eyes shut and motionless in the shallow concrete pond. I’ve also spent many nail-biting moments watching movies where crocodiles took centrestage – Lake Placid, Alligator, Rogue, Crocodile Dundee, Primeval, Dinocroc, etc.

However,  it’s just not the same as seeing these creatures up close in their natural surroundings.

I was thrilled to get a seat at the front of the small boat, right next to where the bait catcher dangled raw meat from a pole, while dipping it in and out of the water to attract the crocodiles. Everyone was fidgeting with excitement when we saw our first crocodile making its way towards the boat. With its eyes never leaving the bait, it started to move in towards the meat. After getting very close to the bait, it began to position itself upright, with about one-third of its body out of the water. Then, with a powerful whip of its tail, it jumped out of the water, mouth wide open, teeth bared and snapped at the meat! It all happened in a split second, so you can imagine the gore and horror if that prey happened to be you! Yikes!

While we could see only one crocodile jumping out of the water and chomping down the meat at any one time, we were told that there are actually many crocodiles swimming underneath the water. The smaller crocs prefer to keep their distance, allowing the bigger and more dominant ones to have a go at the bait.

 

IMG_3766aAfter four or five crocodiles had demonstrated their jumping prowess, I heard loud noises approaching me from above. It was the whistling kites’ turn to be fed – birds of prey swooping at lightning speed and grabbing the leftover scraps of meat thrown in the air. These feathered scavengers were so quick with their catch that not a single scrap was allowed to fall into the water. By the time I adjusted my shutter speed to catch the action on camera, it was all over!

Crocodile Safety Guidelines

5628381366_de45dc3d76_bThe danger of a crocodile attack is ever present and real in NT. Crocodile warning signs are plentiful. My scheduled visit to a waterfall was cancelled because a swimmer had spotted a crocodile in the waterhole a week earlier and the whole place had to be closed!

The safety guidelines below tell us that crocodiles are astute hunters, and crocodile warning signs must be taken very seriously. 

  • First, observe warning signs. These signs warn of the very real risks in and around the water. Anywhere with signs means that the risk is greatest in those areas.
  • Don’t assume it’s safe to swim if there is no sign! Treat any body of water in crocodilian habitat as potentially dangerous.
  • Stay away from the water’s edge. The closer to the water, the higher the risk of a crocodile attack.

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  • Do not wade in shallow water. 
  • Never stand on logs or similar overhanging near the water. Australian saltwater crocodiles can jump to attack! Never turn your back, always face the water.
  • Do not lean over the water from boats, overhanging banks or trees. Some species are known to launch their entire body length out of the water to catch their prey.
  • Avoid predictable activities at the water’s edge. Crocodiles hunt effectively by learning routines and patterns by their prey. They are fast learners.
  • Don’t clean fish near the water, or throw fish scraps in the water. Be careful when launching boats. Don’t dangle your arms or legs over the side of the boat.
  • Don’t feed crocodiles. It increases the risk of being attacked, whether deliberate or not.
  • Don’t leave food scraps around. Food attracts predators and scavengers, including crocodiles.
  • Avoid areas of crocodilian activity. If you see slide marks, drag marks or fattened vegetation, stay clear of that area as there is a good chance that a crocodile is not far away.
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    Crocodiles attack out of deep, still or muddy waters, where they can’t be seen.

    Avoid places where native animals or cattle drink. That’s exactly where a lazy crocodile would be waiting for an opportunity to attack. Saltwater crocodiles are opportunists when it comes to hunting. They stalk their prey, hide under water and wait. A crocodile you can see is less dangerous than one you can’t see.

  • Be wary during the breeding and nesting season – Crocodiles become more active and aggressive during September to May. The warmer weather also allows the cold-blooded reptiles to move faster.
  • Be particularly vigilant at night time during the warmer months, when crocodilian activity levels are at their highest.

This crocodile cruise was definitely one of the highlights of my trip to NT!

Ta Prohm – Walking On Nature’s Green Carpet (#45)

Huge trees tower above Ta Prohm, their leaves filtering the sunlight, providing welcome shade and casting a greenish luminance over the carpet of lichens, moss and creeping plants.

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Angkor – Behind the Scenes (#39)

Did I fail to mention in my last post on Angkor that there are no toilet facilities in the temple grounds itself? Angkor’s public toilet is found a short distance away from the food stalls located across the road from Angkor Temple. You need to produce your Angkor Pass to use the facilities.

If you didn’t visit Angkor’s public toilet, you wouldn’t even know that there is a beautiful lotus lake just behind it, with lotus flowers growing everywhere! I even got to watch three Cambodian workers doing their morning chores of clearing the plants.

Sometimes, we find gems in the most unexpected places!

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Gilded Garden (#24)

It pays to go off the beaten path if you’re going to Sungai Rengit. This well-paved coastal road has natural views on both sides and there is not much traffic. The best part about driving along these countryside lanes is that you can pull up to the side of the road at any time and take as many photos as you wish.

CountrysideCollage

New Life Sprouting from the Water (#5)

Photographed from the window of a restaurant on stilts. Plant life growing from the waters of the Selidi Besar River in Johor, Malaysia.

Sirmoine’s Secret Garden (#4)

Sirmione is an attractive lakeside town on the shores of Lake Garda in the Lombardy region, Italy. While walking around, I came across this beautiful garden. No one was around and the gate was wide open. I let myself in and went click, click, click!

Moth Was Here

The first thing that caught my eye when I went down for breakfast this morning was the dark silhouette of a giant moth from behind the transparent window curtains.

I went outside to the car porch to take a closer look, and lo and behold!..there was Moth, perched comfortably at the left corner of my tinted window sill, admiring his own reflection on the darkened glass.

Moth was a giant! I’ve not seen any moth this big before. I rushed inside to get my camera. You must understand that moth sightings don’t occur very often, and especially not right in front of my doorstep!

By the time I changed lenses, Moth had already made his way to the next window.

Moths are not generally liked compared to butterflies. I think it must be because of their dark, sombre colours, and the “grandmother” tales surrounding them. When I was a little girl, I was told that when people die, they sometimes come back as moths to be with their loved ones. The moth could make its appearance as quickly as three days after a loved one’s death. This is because the dead person is still between the threshold of life and death and does not know that he has already died. (If you’ve watched that movie, “Sixth Sense”, you’ll know what I mean!) I have heard stories where the moth sits for days on the pillow or in the bedroom of the deceased person.

My sisters and I were told not to catch or kill a moth even if it came inside the house.  In this respect, I can recall two or three occasions when we just had to put up with having a moth in the house – flying around in the living room, sitting on top of the TV, resting on the ceiling of the dining room, playing hide-and-seek in the bedroom…but showing no desire at all to fly out into the sunshine, despite our keeping all doors and windows wide open! I used to cover my face with the blanket for fear that the moth would land on my face while I was sleeping.

Anyway, back to the present. I must admit that after seeing Moth, the next thought that came to my mind was, “Has anyone close to me passed away recently?” In the end, I think Moth must have lost his way and ended up in the wrong house!

By afternoon, Moth was gone, but I still managed to get a picture of our short time together!

Moth and Me
While photographing Moth, I saw my own image in the tinted window and decided that this was the right time to take a picture of Moth and me together!
 
 
 
 
Moth
My dear, I was never your butterfly,
 I was simply a moth who wished she was beautiful.
 
 

– by Sierra Elizabeth

Dec 23, 2012