Thursday, 29 August 2013

Winter 2013 Newsletter

Wow, it’s almost spring. This winter really did not feel like winter. It feels like winter outside at the moment, but after the great weather we had last week and after spending almost a month in the scorching heat of the US it really felt like winter was shorter than other years. 

Another reason why it never felt like winter is that it never got QUIET! The tours have been running week in and week out without stop since our peak summer season. Normally this time of year we are ready to get going again after a good hibernation. This year we have not had time for a hibernation - our winter season was 50% busier than last year!

The spring flowers have arrived on Route 62 and along the West Coast and the whales have come all the way from the South Pole to spend spring here in South Africa.


Can you see the whale tail??

Earthstompers Does America
We spent about a month in the US visiting family and promoting Earthstompers to our ever growing American market. Americans are now second behind the Germans as Earthstompers' biggest market - they have even passed the Brits! We went to see a few new agents and did some training for existing agents. The Americans are really impressed with our products and we are expecting a lot of growth still to come from the American market, especially with the Rand being so weak against the US Dollar. It is such great value for money for Americans to travel to South Africa.

We had some good fun in the US, but one thing is for sure, once you leave South Africa you appreciate it so much more. We are so fortunate to live in such a beautiful country with such stunning people, great food, awesome scenery, wonderful climate and a laid back and relaxed feel. It made me realize again how much we have to offer in South Africa and what great service providers we are. Technologically we are way behind the US, but in service they can learn a lot from us down here at the Southern Tip of Africa.

Mandela Day
We recently celebrated Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday on 18 July (Mandela Day). Mandela Day is about taking 67 minutes and spending it in service, commemorating the 67 years Nelson Mandela spent fighting for human rights.

The Earthstompers tour group was on their way from Plettenberg Bay to Addo and joined forces with Stormsriver Adventures to spend their 67 minutes in Stormsriver Village with the kids from Stormsriver Primary handing out stationary and snacks. Our guests had a blast, but more importantly the children loved it and there were plenty of smiles to go around!

South African Youth Travel Confederation (SAYTC) Annual Conference
This year's SAYTC annual general meeting was held in Soweto, and what an event!  It was so much fun, great speakers, great parties, dancing the night away to reggae tunes, bringing back 1995 Rugby world cup memories with a live performance by PJ Powers, lots of “networking”, Soweto bicycle tour and plenty of laughter and good times! We would just like to thank Deborah, Tara, and Gavin from SAYTC and Lebo and Maria from Lebo's Soweto Backpackers for all their hard work and dedication in making this such a big success! Soweto is really a must see for tourists and South Africans alike.

Earthstompers is Turning 8!
Look out for Earthstompers 8th birthday celebration in January 2014! Can you believe it? We’ve been operating tours along the Garden Route and Addo since 2006!  We’ve decided instead of having a big party in the middle of peak season to spend our money wisely and donate a tree to Greenpop for every client joining our weekly Garden Route and Addo Adventure Tour in January. This is our way of thanking South Africa and its communities for allowing us to host foreign guests in this beautiful country.

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