Sunday, 27 April 2014

Oudtshoorn, South Africa - aka ostrich country

Oudtshoorn is famous ostrich land in South Africa, so the only reason I guess why tourists stop here. We stayed at De Opstal, the address that was descried on our itinerary from Trailfinders as being “on road R328 towards the Cango Caves, 14km outside Oudtshoorn”, which is  about as useful as a chocolate teapot.

Outdshoorn - home of these long legged ugly birds!!!

But it was a quaint lodge with private rooms and balconies overlooking the hillside, with a real homely farm house feel to it. Plus there were little glass jars of homemade cookies dotted about everywhere!    

our room 

cute country feel to the lodge

It was also conveniently located to the ostrich farms. There are loads of theses farms that are sprinkled about in the area, I don’t think you need to go to a particular one, I reckon they are all pretty much the same.

ostrich pate - sounds rank, tastes great!

I did think on the drive to see these massive birds that ostriches aren’t really my thing, so why were we visiting? But it’s one of those tourist things you get sucked up into. It’s actually really interesting though and without sounding like an ostrich weirdo we learnt a lot at the farm.

Did you know that the thing we think is their knee, is actually their ankle therefore they are constantly walking on tippy toes. Plus they only have two toes. They do have 19 vertebrate in their neck, which means it can bend in all sorts of directions, bit like a vacuum cleaner pipe.

the shells are 3mm thick

each ostrich egg is  equivalent  to 24 chicken  eggs -
that's hell of an omelette!!!

At the farm, you’ll be given a tour plus an insight into the bird’s life, given all sorts of facts (see above), plus you’ll get to ‘play’ with the birds. I got to cuddle one, the Boy got some weird attack that they dubbed a massage and I actually got to ride one!!!!

I really don't see how this is a massage?!

If you want (and are less than 80kg) you can jockey your very own ostrich! You are led by the experts so don’t think I just hopped on to their back, and with a “yee-ha” was galloping about the joint. Even with two experts holding you and the bird as it runs around, I was not a graceful jockey – I didn’t realise how fast it would move, especially with having to lean back so far, so I was just clinging on to its wings for dear life!!!

females are grey, only the males are the classic black n white

You also have the opportunity to stand on the eggs, proving that it can actually be done. Each egg can take up to 150kg so only the clinically obese may need not apply for this activity.

You are driving through Oudtshoorn and not planning on stopping there, take a trip to the  farms, as it  only takes an  hour  or so!!

X x X 

read part one of Cape Town here
read part two of Cape Town hereread about our  amazing hotel in Camps Bay here

read about the winelands here

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