I love camping, whether I’m in a motorhome, caravan or tent. One of my favourite little chaps is a mix of a trailer, a tent and a caravan – the Skipper Tent Trailer.
Last year, I towed the Model T from its home in Park Rynie in KZN to the Mozambique border. Now I was on a mission to explore the coast south of Durban. I had been upgraded to the Oyster LTX, the top model in the Skipper range; and for the tow vehicle, I had another favourite: a six-speed Ford Everest XLS 2.2L 6MT 4WD.
This area of Kwazulu-Natal is known as the Hibiscus Coast, and there is a host of caravan parks dotted along the coastline. The south coast is a camper’s dream, since the warm climate provides all-year-round good weather. Even in winter, the days are generally sunny.
I collected the Oyster from the Kerkhof family at their factory in Park Rynie, before heading down to my first campsite at the Fairhills Caravan Park near Ramsgate. The park is situated in the rolling hills of the semi-tropical coastal swamp forest that is typically found in this part of the southern KZN coast.
Because of the hilly nature of this area, the caravan park has a large camping area at the bottom of a small valley, whilst the other sites are on two contoured levels up from the large lower camping area.
I clocked in at small shop and reception, where owner Stephen Goodhead and his management – Flip and Tilla de Wet – had boerewors sizzling on a small braai outside the wooden cabin. Friendly folk, these Natalians: within minutes I was tucking into a juicy boerie roll with Wellington Sweet Chilli Sauce dripping down my front.
That was okay, I let it drip; I had just flown in from the freezing Cape with snow on my home mountains, and the clothes in my suitcase were more suited for the Cape winter. So, the first thing I had done before heading to Fairhills was to rush down to the store in Margate for a couple of pairs of trainer black “rugby” shorts, T-shirts and a pair of sloffies.
Okay… the Hibiscus Coast winter might be mild, but it does occasionally get cold, so throw in a pair of longs and a warm top or two. That’s all you’ll ever need.