Heading north along the N1, the road curved inland to a dryer environment. Pretty soon, palm trees were replaced by southern Africa’s most intriguing tree, the Baobab tree.
Good memories came up again from my visit to Madagascar. Pink Floyd was cranking through my stereo when I got pulled over for speeding. Clearly, I wasn’t paying attention, but this maze of signs isn’t easy to follow. The police officer was extremely friendly, chatting whilst filling out paperwork.
I took the opportunity for a few photos of Baobab trees. So cool.
I was camping at ‘Dona Soraya’ resort/campground, around 10 km’s further south of Vilankulo city.
A little bit elevated from the beach, one gets a good view over the bay towards the nearby islands of the Bazaruto Archipelago. Soraya herself was the first professional black ballet dancer some years back. Swiss partner Peter helped to build this tranquil accommodation with usual African difficulties.
I got up for sunrise next morning, another glorious day.
Calm waters over clear waters and deserted beaches.
A few locals walked the low waters.
Baobab trees lined up with palm trees along the shore, what a place!
Simply stunning. Next door neighbours Mandy and Patrick have a horse farm, offering outings on horseback to and along the beach.
Who wouldn’t want to do that? Riding along a remote beach, passing dhows and palm trees, overlooking clear waters to distant islands? Peter took me over to the stables and introduced me to staff.
Some horses were tied on running lines to exercise and feed on hay.
Some healthy and pretty horses, as far as I can tell.
One stallion was quite interested in a newly arrived mare. If he could, he would have whistled.
Mandy and Patrick used to have this horse farm in Zimbabwe. Things changed quickly after Mugabe’s military regime took over. Their farm was one of the first farms to be violently attacked. They escaped in hairy conditions, taking 140 horses with them over the border to Mozambique. A published book (140 horses) about the whole expedition explains all circumstances and situations. Quite a scary thought. Things can change quickly here in Africa.
An English couple on honeymoon booked a ride on the beach side, and I was able to trot along on a white stallion called Texas.
Ernaldo was our handling guide, as I hadn’t been on a horse for 40 Years.
He also carried my OM-D to keep it safe, just in case things go ‘giddy up’. Yeeehhaa.
Zoe from California was looking after the English couple,
whilst Svenja from Norway was my guide. Taking photos on a horse sure isn’t easy.
Movement and turning in to the right angle and exact position was challenging. Weather conditions weren’t great either as it was too sunny in the west and dark and grey clouds were looming southeast.
I fell behind quickly as I was quite busy taking photos of, and with my young Norwegian guide. Dhows, beach, and horses!
What a combination.
Svenja took a few shots of me as well.
We had a couple of gallops, or in my case trotting sessions along the beach. Wearing crocs might not have been the best option. But it sure was fun. We rode up inland through the thick bush for a while, before returning back to the beach.
These horses really like water, don’t mind the salt. A great outing with lots of laughter and chatting.
The really outstanding thing about this horse farm is, that they teach young kids on horses.
Riding without a saddle, instructing Mandy gave the kids several tasks. Boxing, diving, hip swings,
laying on the horse, touching the backside or
riding backward. Really nice to watch the smile on most kids,
some were a bit uncertain.