18 April 2009

Safari Grub.

With heavy hearts, we left Cape Town. We'd had such an amazing time and really enjoyed being in Cape Tow, but were definitely looking forward to the safari part of our vacation!

Off we went, a short flight on a very small plane to Port Elizabeth and then an hour or so drive to the Lalibela Game Reserve. Wow! We couldn't believe how beautiful the grounds were and how amazingly nice the people were when we arrived. We checked in and then headed off in a van to our Tree Tops lodge which was about 15-20 minutes away.

What a beautiful lodge! We arrived just in time to have a brief tour of the lodge and our rooms, and the off to a light lunch. Which was just what we wanted.

The spread was amazing. Meats, cheeses, salads, eggs, tomatoes, breads, etc. It was delicious. It wasn't too filling (and little did we know that the meals were just going to get bigger from there!!!), and after our lunch, we ordered some drinks and went to sit by the pool.

After a brief afternoon tea, we headed off on our first safari. I won't go into too much detail, but it was absolutely spectacular. The night got very cold, but the stars were awe-inspiring and a night sky that I will never ever forget. As we huddled in our blankets, we made our way back to the lodge to be greeted with steaming cups of coffee and Amarula. Yum!!!

Then off to dinner... my plate looks unappetizing (as buffet plates often do, I think), but the food was amazing...

Here are the individual things... First up, the cold dishes!

Beets. I didn't try these but heard they were delicious...

Very creamy potato salad.

Veggies, olives and a little sharp cheese.

Bread, which was unbelievably good.

Then the hot dishes...

Zukes! (The ranger told us that they get lots of squash for free, so there's always a ton of squash on the menu at Lalibela!)

And absolutely fantastic oven roasted squash. It was really really amazing.

And peppery potatoes.

And a beautiful chicken pot pie. This is the white blob on the edge of my completed plate...

And that is impala cooked in a style very very similar to chicken fried steak! The sauce in the middle was a very thick caramelized onion sauce. It was really delicious but not photogenic in the slightest!

All in all, and amazing first full dinner. The lodge is incredibly relaxing. It's eat, relax, look at animals, relax, eat, relax, eat, look at animals, and so on and so on. Over the course of a couple of days, you definitely chill out. And gain a few pounds. But it's so worth it!

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