Tag Archives: boat

South Africa and Mauritius Itinerary

10 Dec

Are you interested in traveling to South Africa and Mauritius?  Well, check out my 2 week itinerary!

Day 1:  Depart for Cape Town.

Day 2:  Arrive in Cape Town.  Hotel:  An African Villa.  Transportation from airport provided by Discovery Tours.

Day 3:  Cape Point morning tour with Hylton Ross (penguins, Cape of Good Hope).  Lunch at V&A waterfront (in particular, the market).  City & Table Mountain afternoon tour with Hylton Ross of Cape Town including Table Mountain, Camps Bay, City Hall, a market, and Malay quarter.  Dinner at V&A Waterfront.



Day 4:  Great White Shark cage diving with Great White Shark Tours.  4:10am pick up.  Returned to Cape Town around 3pm.  Dinner near hotel – Sawadee (Thai food).


Day 5:  All day wine tour with lunch through Wine Flies.


Day 6:  All day Cape Town cultural and Robben Island tour through Hylton Ross.  Visited District Six Museum, Langa Township, and Robben Island.  Dinner at Raj in Camps Bay.


Day 7:  Depart Cape Town for Kapama Game Reserve.   Hotel:  Kapama Karula.  Afternoon game drive.


Day 8:  Morning elephant-backed safari.  Afternoon game drive.


Day 9:  Morning game drive.  4+ hours at the spa.  Afternoon game drive.


Day 10:  Morning game drive.  Afternoon depart for Johannesburg.  Hotel:  D’Oreale Grande Peermont.


Day 11:  Depart Johannesburg for Mauritius.  Hotel:  Sugar Beach Resort.


Day 12:  Beach day.


Day 13:  Beach day.


Day 14:  Catamaran – snorkeling, see dolphins, visit an island and lunch.


Day 15:  Beach day.


Day 16:  Depart Mauritius.  Return home.   7 hour layover in Johannesburg was spent exploring airport shops, lunch at City Lodge Hotel, and working out at Phela Live Wellness Centre.

Day 17:  Arrive home.


Our Honeymoon to South Africa and Mauritius

2 Dec


I created a video of our honeymoon to give you an idea of what can be done in two weeks in South Africa and Mauritius.   Soon I will be posting our itinerary and more detailed information about each of the locations.  Stay tuned to CourtneyMara.com!

Chicago DOs and DON’Ts by Andrea

5 Mar

In the past year I have spent three separate weeks in Chicago for business.  There are plenty of things to do and see in Chicago and here are a few of the DOs and DON’Ts that I experienced (after working hours of course):

  • DO go to the top of the Willis Tower.  You probably know it as the Sears Tower; you probably didn’t know that they renamed it the Willis Tower in 2009, but don’t worry it is still really cool!  A few co-workers and I ventured to the top one evening after work to stand on “the ledge” which is a glass box that hangs off the side of the building.  If you aren’t scared of heights then it is a really neat experience being 103 stories over the city.  You will see a beautiful view of Chicago and Lake Michigan. DON’T go at night if you can help it; the daytime view looks much better than the nighttime view.  Tickets are reasonable, costing an adult $17.50 and a child $11.00.
  • DO take an architecture boat tour at dusk.  This is my biggest DO.  I had no idea Chicago was known for its architecture, but I learned quickly that just about every building in the city has a story.  The boat is equipped with a bar and a tour guide which is all you need for a fabulous evening in Chicago!  DON’T go in the winter, you will probably freeze; we went in July and it was beautiful.  The guide will tell you all about the history of the buildings, about the great Chicago fire, and the reason why the river current was reversed (bet you didn’t know it was).  The boat tour was around $30 and well worth the money!
  • If you can get a group together, I believe you need at least 10 people, DO take a tour of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.  Unfortunately they don’t allow photography so I can’t show you how cool it was to observe the trading floors in action.  CME is one of the oldest active trading floors in the world and, as electronic trading continues to evolve, it may be one of the last.  It’s definitely something unique to see!
  • DO take a walk around downtown and see what you find, there are lots of different things to see and you may even get lucky and run into a visiting piece of art, like the huge Marilyn Monroe statue that was visiting in July 2011 (see picture below).
  • Make sure you stop by the Chicago Times building.  On the front of the building there are various rocks from historical places, there is even one from the Great Wall of China.  Just another unique thing that you can see in Chicago!
  • As far as eating goes, there are plenty of good places to grab some grub.  Being a New Yorker, Chicago deep dish pizza didn’t leave a lasting impression on me so DO try deep dish but DON’T set your expectations too high.
  • I would recommend that you DO eat at Maggiano’s.  Although it is a chain Italian restaurant, Chicago is the original location and the food is amazing.  I’ve eaten at one of its other locations and the Chicago location was much better!
  • DON’T look for happy hour bar specials in Chicago.  Illinois has a “happy hour law” that prohibits happy hour specials.  Trust me, it’s a real thing just google it!
  • DO eat at Carson’s!  They have amazing barbeque ribs and I hear the steaks are good too.  Not to mention they give you a bib, how can you go wrong with a bib?

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