Photos from my trip to South Africa


Greg H. - RCI Travel and Destination NewsHere are some of the photos I took while on my trip.  Comments are welcome!













We rented a car and drove through Kruger National Park. It was an amazing experience - we got up close and personal with elephants, rhinos, monkeys, hippos, lions, zebras and so many other amazing animals. Only in Kruger would you have to yield to elephants crossing the road!

We rented a car and drove through Kruger National Park.


Flowering Jacaranda trees and old mining town charm in Pilgrim's Rest. 

Flowering Jacaranda trees and old mining town charm in Pilgrim's Rest.


Tucked in the mountains, we happened upon this unique geological waterfall formation known as Bourkes Luck Potholes. There's nothing better than dipping your toes in cold pools of water on a hot and sunny African day!

Tucked in the mountains, we happened upon this unique geological waterfall formation known as Bourkes Luck Potholes.


Here's my wife overlooking Blyde River Canyon, the second largest canyon in Africa, and home to some amazing panoramic views!

Here's my wife overlooking Blyde River Canyon, the second largest canyon in Africa, and home to some amazing panoramic views!


Shark-diving off the coast of Gansbaai, South Africa. One of the greatest experiences in the world. You will never be so excited and so frightened all at the same time.

Shark-diving off the coast of Gansbaai, South Africa. One of the greatest experiences in the world. You will never be so excited and so frightened all at the same time.


The famous Table Mountain as seen from the Cape Town Waterfront.  We did eventually climb the mountain, but let's just say I'm glad we took the cable car back down…

The famous Table Mountain as seen from the Cape Town Waterfront.  We did eventually climb the mountain, but let's just say I'm glad we took the cable car back down…


My wife and I visiting the world's cutest little penguins at Boulder's Beach. If your spouse or child always asks "Can I take one home?" then stay as far away from here as possible.

My wife and I visiting the world's cutest little penguins at Boulder's Beach. If your spouse or child always asks "Can I take one home?" then stay as far away from here as possible.


Enjoying the hurricane-force winds of Cape Point, one of the most beautiful spots in South Africa!

Enjoying the hurricane-force winds of Cape Point, one of the most beautiful spots in South Africa!


Wine and cheese tasting in Franschhoek, South Africa. With three great wine regions (Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek) within one or two hour's drive of Cape Town, South Africa is a prime destination for oenophiles (or in this case, wannabe oenophiles).

Wine and cheese tasting in Franschhoek, South Africa. With three great wine regions (Stellenbosch, Paarl and Franschhoek) within one or two hour's drive of Cape Town, South Africa is a prime destination for oenophiles (or in this case, wannabe oenophiles).


You can find beautiful Cape Dutch architecture preserved throughout Cape Town and the surrounding area.

You can find beautiful Cape Dutch architecture preserved throughout Cape Town and the surrounding area.


Lions spotted on an evening safari at a private game reserve near Kruger National Park. Definitely a must-do activity while you're in South Africa!

Lions spotted on an evening safari at a private game reserve near Kruger National Park. Definitely a must-do activity while you're in South Africa!
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Seeking the Elusive Leopard… One South African Safari at a Time!


Greg H. - RCI Travel and Destination NewsA few weeks before embarking on a 10-day journey through South Africa, my wife and I were at dinner with a friend.  He spent a summer tracking leopards in Kruger National Park (located in Northeastern South Africa), but even after a couple months, he never saw the elusive creature.  We made it our personal mission to find one and bring back a photo.

Our adventure began in Cape Town and right away we were swept by the excitement!  We hiked the majestic Table Mountain, visited penguins at Boulders Beach, witnessed the magic of Cape Point, and savored the wines of Stellenbosch.  And before we knew it we were on safari in Kruger, face to face with the animals.  After two days in the park, we saw elephants and giraffes, wildebeest and buffalo, rhinos and lions… but the leopards… oh those elusive leopards… there were none to be found.  We heard rumors of them being spotted, we saw maps of their recent locations, but we never saw them with our own eyes!

Our mission was lost, but our overall trip was a huge success! It was by far the most memorable vacation in the most beautiful country we have ever been to.  Best part of all is that now we have a reason to go back, friend in tow, to find that elusive leopard!

This week on the RCI blog, we’ll be sharing photos and stories from RCI subscribing members who also visited South Africa (although I don’t know if any of them have ever spotted a leopard in Kruger National Park!). I’ll even be showing you photos I took while I was there. Be sure to check back!

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RCI Platinum® Membership…May just be the biggest “no brainer” in Vacation Exchange today!


Greg H. - RCI Travel and Destination NewsBoth RCI® Weeks and RCI Points® subscribing members now have the ability to upgrade their standard RCI membership to RCI Platinum membership.  Of course, I’m sure the first thing that probably comes to mind is “How much does it cost?” and “Is it worth it for me?” At only $55 USD per year, you shouldn’t have to think twice about an RCI Platinum membership. Here’s why:  the membership offers a wide array of great exchange and lifestyle benefits that can more than help offset the cost of the upgrade and simultaneously add value to your RCI membership.

For example, as an RCI Platinum member, let’s say you book two Extra VacationsSM getaways or combine deposits twice; you would earn $50 USD in Platinum Rebates that are automatically credited to your RCI account.  That would almost cover your entire RCI Platinum membership cost right there.  Plus, with discounts of up to 50% off dining, golf, ski, and more, you’re bound to find great savings around where you live or travel.  The savings you make here could surpass the cost of your upgrade.

However, in my opinion, it’s the non-monetary benefits that mean the most, but often go unnoticed. Take Unit Upgrades, for example. This means you can choose to be automatically upgraded from a 1 bedroom unit to a 2 bedroom unit if, within two weeks of check-in for your exchange vacation, a larger unit is available at that resort.  Booking a larger unit on your own typically requires more Deposit Trading Power or Points, but with RCI Platinum membership, an upgrade to a larger unit is complimentary.  It’s kind of like being upgraded to first class on an airplane. There’s also Priority Access which allows RCI Platinum members to be among the first to access specially-acquired Exchange vacations in cities like Chicago, San Diego and Miami.  Staying a week in one of these cities could easily cost thousands of dollars, but with RCI Platinum membership, it’s just the cost of a standard exchange.

To discover more about the RCI Platinum membership or to upgrade, call your RCI Vacation Guide today. Have you upgraded to RCI Platinum membership already? If so, please comment below and let us know what you like the most.

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Provincetown Getaway – A Weekend at the Tip of the Cape!


Greg H. - RCI Travel and Destination NewsYou never realize how long Cape Cod is until you go all the way to the end of the peninsula, but it’s worth the journey.  After a six hour drive from New Jersey, my wife and I finally arrived in the relaxing and colorful seaside community of Provincetown.  It was a gorgeous Fourth of July weekend and the town was full of life!

We stayed right outside of town at the Eastwood at Provincetown and everything was in walking distance – art galleries, ice cream parlors, beautiful gardens and the famous Lobster Pot (mmm… delicious lobster bisque).  We took an incredible whale watching tour and then spent time relaxing on one of the many sandy shorelines.  Of course, the best part of all was watching fireworks from the pier – a spectacle that one can never forget, especially after enjoying the perfect seafood meal at Fanizzi’s By the Sea.

All that, and we were only there for a few days.  Getting away and making the most of a long weekend is my favorite way to feel rejuvenated.  You know what else is great?  Knowing that another summer weekend is only a few more days away!

Come back to the RCI Blog this week…we’ll be sharing photos and stories from RCI subscribing members who took vacations in July, most of them over the Fourth of July weekend. And if you have a photo or story to share about a July 4th weekend getaway, you can do it here. We may share your story on our blog for other members to see!

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Hidden Treasures and Outdoor Pleasures in Shenandoah Valley


Greg H. - RCI Travel and Destination NewsBefore moving to New Jersey, I spent six years living on the east coast of Virginia and thought I had seen it all.  Then a last-minute weeklong trip to Massanutten showed me a whole other side of Virginia that I was completely missing and one that I soon won’t forget.

Coming from the hustle and bustle of the New York City metro area, an escape to the serenity of western Virginia sounded refreshing.  As I drove through the valley on the way to our resort, called The Summit at Massanutten, I couldn’t imagine what I’d been missing all these years.  Well the truth is… plenty.  The drive through Shenandoah National Park is surprisingly dramatic in its sheer height and beauty.  Hiking trails abound and little foot traffic gives the feeling that the waterfalls are yours alone.  Nearby wineries are rustic and unfussy, offering simple, yet refined vintages in the most peaceful of settings.  And the soulful Southern cuisine was a pleasant reminder of everything I missed about Virginia.

My week in Shenandoah Valley was full of surprises – good surprises. I enjoyed every winding road, every mom and pop restaurant, every moment that brought me closer to that serenity I was seeking.  Every time I think about that trip, a smile comes across my face because I’m already thinking about my next trip to Virginia and I know exactly where I’m going.

This week on the RCI blog we’ll be sharing photos and stories from RCI subscribing members. Be sure to check back! And if you can’t wait, take a look at this video of Massanutten Resorts, an RCI affiliated resort in the Shenandoah Valley.


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