Adventurer Zakie Odendaal rests her weary feet at Dempsey’s Guest House.

Adventurer Zakie Odendaal rests her weary feet at Dempsey’s Guest House.

This brave warrior woman, adventurer Zakie Odendaal, arrived on our driveway recently to put her feet up at Dempsey’s Guest House and to recharge her battery for the next leg of her solo walk along the SA Coastline. YES, she is walking the entire South African coastline on her own, along the beaches and as close to the coastline as possible. She started her journey at Alexander Bay in September 2016 and her goal is to reach Kosi Bay, northern most part of KwaZulu-Natal, by June 2017. She is already ahead of schedule! Travelling with a tent, some good walking sticks and a few supplies, her backpack is lead-like. She trudges 7kms per hour, averaging 50kms per day.

Zakie is a freelance photographer who has had this dream for many years to walk the SA coastline, a tough personal challenge, unaided and without sponsorships. Along this walk she has given deep thought to future walks and adventures, she is considering future sponsorships so that she can raise funds to assist projects to empower and improve the lives of poverty-stricken children.

We asked her what the highlights have been along this walk so far. “The kindness of people” she replied with a beaming smile “along with magnificent nature surrounding me at every step and turn.”

And your lowlights Zakie? Without hesitation she answered: “That would definitely be negative people!”

We wished her well and dropped her off at Bluewater Bay Beach. She was quick to start walking and we watched as she powered on into the pumping east wind. Within minutes she was a mere dot on the horizon, heading for Sunday’s River and later the dunefields of Alexandria, the largest dunefields in the southern hemisphere. Our wish for you Zakie as you close in on your challenge is firm sand for solid footing, mild beautiful weather and the continued kindness of people.

Follow Zakie and her adventures on Facebook and Twitter:-

Facebook:- https://www.facebook.com/Zakie-Odendaal-Adventurer-1650708985257756/

Twitter handle:- @OdendaalZakie

We have a dream…to be passengers in a helicopter flying over the SA Coastline. A couple of months would do it. Just saying, in case a mad helicopter pilot and a crazy photographer with generous sponsors… are listening:)

zakie ready for east coast trek

Zakie ready for east coast trek

 

quick comfort check and she's off

Quick comfort check and she’s off

 

bluewater bay start

Bluewater Bay start

 

typical dramatic landscape of sa coastline

Typical dramatic landscape of SA coastline

 

adventurer zakie odendaal solo walk sa coastline

Adventurer Zakie Odendaal, solo walk SA Coastline

 

ready, set, go

Ready, set, go

 

zakie soaking in the beauty of the sa coastline

Zakie soaking in the beauty of the SA coastline

 

zakie's night space-tight

Zakie’s night space-tight

The consideration of our international guests.

The consideration of our international guests.

We appreciate their consideration.

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SA Country Life featuring Raggy Charters and PE Bottlenose Dolphin Capital of the World.

SA Country Life featuring Raggy Charters and PE Bottlenose Dolphin Capital of the World.

Turn to page 36 of the December 2016 issue of SA Country Life magazine to find Keri Harvey’s article on Port Elizabeth, the Bottlenose Dolphin Capital of the World. She takes an exciting trip with skipper Lloyd Edwards, of Raggy Charters to St. Croix Island in Algoa Bay, to do some whale and dolphin-watching. Thank you to SA Country Life for highlighting our bay and all the natural treasures within it.

Previous posts of ours on Raggy Charters and bottlenose dolphins:-

http://dempseys.co.za/the-bottlenose-dolphin-reigns-in-algoa-bay/        http://dempseys.co.za/three-in-one-new-tour-from-raggy-charters-port-Elizabeth/

Port Elizabeth features again in S.A. Country Life mag.

port elizabeth, the bottlenose dolphin capital of the world

Port Elizabeth, the Bottlenose Dolphin Capital of the World

lloyd edwards of raggy charters, pe

Lloyd Edwards of Raggy Charters, PE

south african country life magazine december 2016

South African Country Life Magazine December 2016

Remembering Madiba’s shirt.

Remembering Madiba’s shirt.

It is common for people to hold onto items of clothing of loved ones who have passed. In Port Elizabeth, art students at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University have taken this a step further by creating and erecting their own version of that special piece of clothing that will be a permanent reminder of our beloved Nelson Mandela. Their sculpture is called “The Madiba Shirt” and is comfortably perched in the Beyers Naudé Garden of Contemplation at the university. The sculpture is intended to be a constant and inspirational reminder of the values of NMMU and Madiba. The Madiba Shirt is the first phase of a public art project at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. The metal frame of the Madiba Shirt has an intricate wirework that suspends individually made ceramic tiles. Letters on the the tiles spell words: ubuntu, unity, diversity, integrity, excellence. Shirt dimensions:- 3m height, 2.2m width and 1.4m depth.

A large shirt for a large man.

The sculpture was conceived by artists Mary Duker and Bianca Whitehead of the Art department of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University with the support from NMMU Arts and Culture.  Jonathan van der Walt managed the design, production and installation of the aluminium wire element of the project. The frame was constructed by Roland Luders and his team at R & R Aesthetics, Bianca Whitehead and the ceramic students made and installed the ceramics, The Wire Team consisted of Amos Ragophala, Michelle D’Urbano, Isso Jafta, Sarel Venter and Jonathan van der Walt.  The sculpture was unveiled in October 2015.      Info taken from:-https://www.facebook.com/jonathanvdwaltartist/

The Madiba Shirt Story:-

The Madiba Shirt was a creation for Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999, the first to be elected in a fully representative democratic election. In 1994, the designer Desre Buirski gave a gift of a hand-printed batik shirt to Nelson Mandela’s body guard, with a note saying “Thank you for everything you have done and the sacrifices you have made for our beloved country”. Mr. Mandela wore the shirt the next day to the dress rehearsal for the opening of Parliament and was photographed on the front page of a local newspaper. Desre Buirski subsequently designed many printed, embroidered and over 150 hand-painted silk shirts for South Africa’s beloved Madiba, which he wore on the world stage, becoming a global style as well as political icon. The style of ‘The Madiba Shirt’ evolved as Mr. Mandela requested various shirts throughout his time as President.

Taken from:http://www.presidential.co.za/brands/presidential-shirt/madiba-shirt-story.html

a close up of the ceramic tiles

A close up of the ceramic tiles

The base of the madiba shirt sculpture

The base of The Madiba Shirt sculpture

Madiba Shirt at nmmu

Madiba Shirt at NMMU

back view of madiba shirt sculpture

Back view of Madiba Shirt sculpture

the madiba shirt sculpture aptly expresses the stature of mandela

The Madiba Shirt sculpture aptly expresses the stature of Mandela

 

 

 

 

Jonathan van der Walt and team

Jonathan van der Walt and team

The Bottlenose dolphin reigns in Algoa Bay.

The Bottlenose dolphin reigns in Algoa Bay.

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Last week we attended Raggy Charters’ launch of Algoa Bay being the Bottlenose dolphin capital of the world. The venue was The Algoa Bay Yacht Club, always providing great views of the yacht basin and harbour, superb ambience and good food from The Chartroom Restaurant. Raggy Charters runs whale and dolphin-watching tours. Owner Lloyd Edwards, who is also Chairperson of the Baywatch Marine Conservation confirmed that our special Algoa Bay hosts the largest schools of Bottlenose dolphins in the world. For almost 20 years Lloyd has been monitoring the location of these dolphins along with the size of their pods. Since the Raggy tours started in 1997, dolphins have been sighted on 90% of their tours, they have been spotted on the past 28 cruises in a row. Marine biologists at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University have recently completed their study confirming that approximately 30 000 bottlenose dolphins use Algoa Bay. We look forward to the launch of a Dolphin Festival hopefully to coincide with Marine Month in October.

Dr. Lorien Pichegru, Algoa Bay Hope Spot chairperson and leading marine life researcher in SA said Algoa Bay is home to more than half of the world’s African penguin population. She said that sustainable econmic growth in Nelson Mandela Bay, could be promoted by blending blue economy and tourism through initiatives such as this one.

On the subject of the African penguin, SAMREC is Port Elizabeth’s marine bird rehabilitation and education centre situated in the Cape Recife Nature Reserve; their main aim is to rescue and rehabilitate sick and injured seabirds, particularly the critically endangered African Penguin.

 

Take a look at our post on the new ‘3 in 1’ tour on offer by Raggy Charters:- http://dempseys.co.za/three-in-one-new-tour-from-raggy-charters-port-elizabeth/

Also our share of Lloyd Edwards in the SA Country Life mag:- http://dempseys.co.za/port-elizabeth-features-again-in-sa-country-life-mag/

And this magnificent book on SA coasts; Lloyd and Lorien are contributors:- http://dempseys.co.za/magnificent-book-of-our-south-african-coasts/

 

The Chartroom Restaurant is open to all ABYC members, the general public and also for corporate bookings and evening functions. Open for lunch and dinner from Tuesdays to Sundays.

Phone 041 585 2893 or 072 462 2676.  Large groups, small conferences and all other celebrations are also catered for.

The Chartroom has an interesting and varied menu, ranging from kiddies meals to pub lunches to steaks and seafood, fresh from the ocean.

The Chartroom also caters to a host of birthday parties and weddings.

Members get to use the facility at no charge. Non Members are encouraged to support the ABYC Community Sailing Program.

 

Sources: PE Herald and Port Elizabeth Express newspapers, Algoa Bay Hope Spot, SAMREC, Baywatch Marine Conservation.

raggy charters poster displayed in our office at dempsey's gh

Raggy Charters poster displayed in our office at Dempsey’s GH

algoa bay: bottlenose dolphin capital of the world

Algoa Bay: Bottlenose dolphin capital of the world

 

 

It’s always good to see PE featured in the SA Country Life mag.

It’s always good to see PE featured in the SA Country Life mag.

It’s always good to see Port Elizabeth featuring in the SA Country Life Magazine. This time in the March issue, the Back to Earth Night Market is being advertised on the Country Markets page. The Back to Earth Night Market is held on the first Wednesday evening of each month at The Old Grey Club, Port Elizabeth. The Back to Earth Country Market is held at the Old Cash Store on the last Sunday of each month.

Find market details on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Back-to-Earth-Night-Market

https://www.facebook.com/Back-to-Earth-Country-Market

 

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Port Elizabeth is abuzz with ships.

Port Elizabeth is abuzz with ships.

The luxurious cruise ships that have been gracefully entering and exiting our port have been upstaged a little by the SA Navy ships docked for “The Armed Forces Week” taking place in Port Elizabeth 13th-21st Feb 2016. These navy ships, along with a submarine, were open to the public over the weekend and scores of eager visitors queued in the baking sun for their turn to board, view and explore. We watched from afar. It is thrilling to witness an event of this magnitude taking place in our city. It is exciting to see cruise ship after cruise ship offload thousands of tourists who are bursting to take in all the wonderful experiences we have on offer in and around our city. We love PE.

BUT…a mini war exercise is scheduled for Sunday. We do not support this. We are deeply concerned about the impact this exercise will have on our environment, on the land and in the ocean. We look forward to an update on information from the environmental warriors.

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Proud contributor to “Absolutely Awesome South Africa” publication.

Proud contributor to “Absolutely Awesome South Africa” publication.

We received a special, surprise delivery this week of a beautiful book, “Absolutely Awesome South Africa.” A lovely note inside from author Derryn Campbell thanking us for our contribution to her latest edition. And what is our contribution? A little photograph of an up and coming entrepreneur in Morgan Bay, Eastern Cape. We’d spotted him selling breads and tuck shop goodies straight from his supermarket shopping trolley (with registration plate!) and captured his innovative spirit! Sometime later we shared the photograph on a Facebook page called “Africa, this is why I live here.” Derryn spotted our photo there and asked for our permission to use it in her new book. We said, “Of course you may use it as long as there is mention of Dempsey’s Guest House!” And so she did. Thank you Derryn Campbell, we are thrilled to be featured in your fabulous book “Absolutely Awesome South Africa.”
This book is an entertaining compilation on South Africa, packed full of fun, facts and trivia. With completely new content and design on every page, it is full of South African humour, history and interesting facts. The vibrant and colourful pages of “Absolutely Awesome South Africa” capture the heart and the soul of this magnificent country.

The story of “Awesome South Africa” taken from her website: http://www.awesomesouthafrica.co.za/  started when this fun and colourful coffee table book was launched in 2010. Derryn Campbell offers us this wonderfully eclectic and informative insight into all that is South African. The book has delighted South Africans around the world and has sold over 55 000 copies. Derryn has subsequently published an updated Second Edition of “Awesome South Africa” as well as the guidebook “Living in South Africa” which she co-authored with Regina Gräff. Derryn has launched the latest book in the series titled “Absolutely Awesome South Africa.”

Awesome South Africa was one of six South African books shortlisted for the 2011 Nielsen Booksellers’ choice Award. The Booksellers’ Choice Award is chosen and presented by the South African book trade in recognition of outstanding contribution to the industry. It is awarded to the book that booksellers across South Africa have most enjoyed reading, selling or promoting over the past year.

Leaving behind a successful corporate career in management, Derryn followed a vision to encourage South Africans to positively influence the future of their country and has brightened the hearts and outlook of thousands of people around the world. In 2007, Derryn, together with Di Smith, co-founded Awesome SA, a non-profit movement that not only interacts with South Africans to create awareness about their country, but also facilitates initiatives to deliver positive outcomes.

a whole new meaning to morgan bay shopping!

A whole new meaning to Morgan Bay shopping!

Beautifully packaged surprise parcel

Beautifully packaged surprise parcel

that special note from author derryn campbell

That special note from author Derryn Campbell

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Cheerful entrepreneur at morgan bay, we are sorry we didn't ask his name

Cheerful entrepreneur Morgan Bay, we are sorry we didn’t ask his name

our photo in absolutely awesome south africa

013Our photo in Absolutely Awesome South Africa

Magnificent book of our South African Coasts.

Magnificent book of our South African Coasts.

This magnificent book “South African Coasts – A celebration of our seas and shores” can be bought online on www.sst.org.za or at SAMREC. The proceeds of the book go to educating our children about the sea. It includes information on Hope Spots. This info taken from Raggy Charters’ website. www.raggycharters.co.za

What are Hope Spots?

Mission Blue defines Hope Spots as special conservation areas that are critical to the health of the ocean — Earth’s blue heart. Some of these Hope Spots are already formally protected, while others still need protection. About 12 % of the land around the world is now under some form of protection (as national parks, world heritage sites, monuments, etc.), while less than three percent of the ocean is protected in any way. Mission Blue is committed to changing this. Networks of Hope Spots maintain biodiversity, provide a carbon sink, generate life-giving oxygen, preserve critical habitat and allow low-impact activities like ecotourism to thrive. They are good for the ocean, which means they are good for us. By engaging governments, businesses, schools, research organizations, universities, civil society and the media, Mission Blue hopes to effect significant changes so that future generations can thrive on a healthy planet, with a healthy ocean.

Port Elizabeth’s Algoa Bay is a Hope Spot. http://www.nmbt.co.za/algoa_bay_hope_spot.html

 

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Three-in-one new tour from Raggy Charters, Port Elizabeth.

Three-in-one new tour from Raggy Charters, Port Elizabeth.

0090080007006010Here’s a nice new tour combo on offer from “Raggy Charters”:

Head off on an exhilarating boat cruise to St. Croix Island in Algoa Bay to see the largest breeding colony of African penguins in the world. After that it’s off to SAMREC, Port Elizabeth’s marine bird and rehabilitation centre in Summerstrand. Finish the day off with a visit to The Bayworld Museum, Snake Park and Oceanarium in Humewood.

For more information on The Penguin Patrol and to book, visit: http://www.raggycharters.co.za/page/penguin_patrol

About Raggy Charters, in their own words, from their website: http://www.raggycharters.co.za

“As far as we are aware we are the oldest marine eco tour company combined with a conservation project in Africa – since 1992. We are owner run and managed and use the volunteer system to assist in our tours and projects. We specialise in taking tourists, photographers, corporate office party groups, TV crews and marine wildlife enthusiasts on ocean safaris to watch the whales, dolphins, penguins and other natural wonders of Algoa Bay. Our wildlife and whale watching boat cruises possibly cover the longest distance of any ocean safari along the South African coast, lasting for 3-4 hours and covering 50km. This provides guests with a better chance of seeing the full array of marine wildlife Algoa Bay has to offer. Port Elizabeth is a hidden gem in South Africa for whale watching, and other wildlife viewing. With seasonal visits from Southern right whales, humpback whales, and indo-pacific humpback dolphins. We have the largest breeding colony of African penguins in the world right on our doorstep. As well as our other resident species including bottlenose dolphins, common dolphins, bryde’s whales, Cape gannets and more. All year round we at Raggy Charters can offer guests some great wildlife viewing experiences in our secret and undisturbed bay.”

Lloyd’s wife Dr Lorien Pichegru has been studying the breeding success of African Penguins in Algoa Bay for the past six years, to determine whether competition with purse-seine fisheries has caused the decline in African penguin numbers. Lorien gained her PhD at the University of Strasbourg, France, in 2008 and is currently a research associate at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology (click here for a list of her publications). Part of the study involves closing a 20km radius around St Croix Island to fishing by purse seiners who target one of the penguins prey items, the sardine. It has been found that even this small Marine Protected Area around the colony helps dramatically. Click here for more information about the research being conducted on the African penguin.

Dr Pichegru says: “My research focuses on seabirds foraging ecology and life history traits in relation to prey availability and local competition with industrial fisheries, using animal-borne miniaturized recorders, such as GPS recorders combined with pressure sensors, cameras, etc. taped on adults breeding small chicks to determine the at-sea behaviour of several species of seabirds breeding in South Africa, endemic to the region and threatened with extinction.”

See Dempsey’s Blog on Raggy Charters’ feature in the SA Country Life magazine: http://dempseys.co.za/port-elizabeth-features-again-in-sa-country-life-mag