Traveling from Stellenbosch to Overberg in South Africa, is an incredibly beautiful scenic drive, row after row of vineyards to rolling hills filled with Fynbos to coastal towns to forests to more vineyards.
Driving away from Hermanus which is the Whale watching capital of the world, towards the farming community which consists of Wheat and Granola. You will notice the Blue Crane’s which is South Africa’s national bird grazing on the fields. They are also listed vulnerable on the IUCN due to illegal trade, power line collisions, poisonings and habitat loss. From the side of the road I used my Sigma 150 – 500 lens was able to capture some really cool photographs of the wheat fields and Blue Cranes. Once you look at the design elements within the frame you will be able to capture some exquisite photos.
Fernkloof Nature Reserve is a short drive from Hermanus and has various walks for all people of different fitness levels. You don’t have to travel far to capture Orange-Breasted Sunbird or the Cape Sugarbird sitting on Fynbos. Fynbos is a natural shrubs that consists of flowers and trees too numerous to mention. If you are interested I would suggest you get a Fynbos eco guide which is available from most bookshops. It’s a great place to use your macro lens to get really close to the Fynbos. Just be respectful of mother nature in the process.
Hemel and Aarde (Heaven and Earth) valley is near Hermanus and boasts hundreds of producers and labels. Contact the wine producers directly concerning tasting and times and ask them if you can take some photos of the wine cellars and vineyards. The week that I was there the weather did pose a problem, you are in the Cape and you can experience quite a few different seasons in a day. Come prepared especially if you are hauling camera gear around.
Hermanus boasts loads of places to stay which will suite everyone’s pocket. The Two Oceans Hermanus Whale Festival, – land based whale watching starts on 3 October to the 6 October 2014. Which is the only enviro-arts festival in South Africa
http://www.whalefestival.co.za Hermanus has a Whale reserve along its coastline so you should have quite a few opportunities to see the Whales from June to November.
I was really surprised as how much this area of South Africa had to offer, especially with regards to Overberg. My biggest problem when I was there was the weather, so be prepared.