Whilst you may be dreaming of sinking your toes into sandy white beaches in Mauritius, or sipping cocktails with friends in New York City, it’s time we as South Africans start embracing, and more passionately adopting, the saying “local is lekker” when it comes to our travelling habits! Whether it’s a trip to our favourite bush lodge, sea-side hotel, or mountain resort, supporting your local tourist destination has become a top travel priority, especially of late.
Not sure where to go? Well, thanks to Ignition TV’s newest show, Wild in SA, you won’t have to think too hard about it, plus they’ll take you on an adventure before you’ve even packed your bags.
Wild in SA is a travel and adventure show, covering all of the wonders that South Africa has to offer. In each episode presenters Tumelo Maketekete and Michelle D aim for an amazing destination – a special, out of the ordinary experience, and you, the viewer, get to go along for the ride too. Each episode takes them on a whirlwind journey as they visit interesting people and places in specific areas all around our magnificent country.
In each episode, two mountain passes are featured: a gravel one, and a tar version. What captivated the audiences is that the directors mostly steered clear of the more mainstream, well-known passes, and instead featured some lesser-travelled routes. Each episode also contains a short insert on “how to survive in the wild” on an adventure, showcasing different scenarios such as, if you run out of fuel, or what would happen if your vehicle picks up a mechanical issue. Survival specialist Ian van der Vyfer shares tips like how to start a fire with your vehicle’s battery, and much more.
Michelle D, better known as one of the contestants on the first ever season of The Bachelor SA captivates audiences with her vivacious and fun-loving attitude. She grew up on stage from a young age and was behind the camera. From TV presenting jobs, to modelling, Michelle was born to be in the spotlight.
The show is set across the country, and takes the cast and crew to various destinations in South Africa, many of which people may not even know.
“Viewers should tune in because you are going to see destinations you would not necessarily have seen or heard of before. The places we go to are really unique and amazing. With all that is happening in South Africa and the world with Covid-19, I think (in fact, I believe) we should all focus a little more local and that includes our travel habits. Maybe instead of looking for the next island or international holiday, we should look at rediscovering and supporting our people and our country’s beautiful tourism resources.” says Michelle.
Despite airing in August, the show was filmed and edited during what one would call one of the toughest times South Africa has had to face over the years. Michelle and her team describe filming during the lockdown and being a “fortunate” affair. With permits and social distancing measures in place, they set out to capture parts of South Africa at its quietest.
“We got to see the country when the land itself was at such peace. It was a surreal experience to leave lockdown in Gauteng – all the rules, and fear and news, and and and… and to get lost in our country. There was one trip where we were travelling through the Free State and I was in awe. The Free State has never looked so beautiful to me. There were golden fields no matter which way you looked – and whilst driving in the car, we were the only people for miles to see. Not another car, truck, tractor in sight. It was breathtaking. There were some challenges though – quite a few travel and tourist destinations and activities were closed due to Covid-19, so ideas and the concept we had envisioned had to be changed or postponed. So yes, challenging – but so worth it at the end of the day.” Michelle D adds.
Unscripted, real and raw. It is not just a travel show, as they have so cleverly incorporated elements of cars, survival, and adventure with a twist. With 8-episodes making up season one, their aim is to get people to fall in love with South African travel once again.
“With Covid-19 and what is happening not just globally but specifically in our country, I personally am hoping that the audience will fall back in love with South Africa and spend some holiday time locally in the upcoming months and years. Now more than ever it is so important to support locals – and that includes our small towns and beautiful tourist destinations.” Michelle D adds.
Catch all the excitement in the first episode, which airs on Saturday 15th August at 08h00, on Ignition TV, DStv channel 189 (@ignitiontv)
Repeats through the week:
Saturday: 08h00; Sunday: 14h30; Monday: 20h00; Tuesday: 17h00; Wednesday: 14h00; Thursday: 12h00 and Friday: 04h00.