Alpine Garden Society

01386 554790
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12 -27 JANUARY 2011
Cost: expected to be in the region of £2100 excluding international flights.
We are delighted to offer a repeat of the very successful tour that we ran in 2009.
South Africa is justifiably famous for the spring flowers of the Cape and Namaqualand. But it has many other botanically interesting areas waiting to be explored and this tour gives the opportunity to see the flora of the summer rainfall regions in the East of the country.
Cameron and Rhoda McMaster have led a number of botanical tours to the Eastern Cape. Cameron also wrote the article on this region that appeared in the September 2006 South African Special Edition of the Alpine Gardener.
This tour will coincide with the peak flowering time in mid-January. The tour will commence in Port Elizabeth on 12th January 2011.   

The maximum size of the group will be 12 people. This will allow the party to visit many special destinations well off the usual tourist routes, staying mostly on farms and in small villages so as to be right in the countryside.  Each day hikes or 4X4 excursions to areas that would not normally be accessible to ordinary tourists form part of the itinerary.  Visits to San Rock Shelters and rock art sites as well as game viewing in private reserves form important additions to the botanical experience. 

There are a number of major vegetation types in the East Cape from Valley Thicket and Karroo/Namib vegetation to Alpine grassland and Sub-Tropical coastal flora.  The tours comprise a round trip of 16 days, starting and ending Port Elizabeth.  During this time all the vegetation types are sampled and clients are shown all the specialties in the Eastern Cape, including many rare endemics.  Succulents, Geophytes including the Clivias and Cycads are some of the more interesting flora to be seen and guided hikes through Alpine flora, Afromontane forest and Subtropical coastal bush are highlights.

The East Cape not only has spectacular flowers but a wide variety of habitats and magnificent scenery.
At this stage, please send expressions of interest to Kim Matthews at the AGS Centre.


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