The two places I miss after leaving the Rainbow Nation

I left my birthplace of South Africa many years ago. From the vast expanses of both inner and outer surroundings, to the quaint and laid-back life of the Cinque Terre. It was a choice of love: Not for a man but for a place: Monterosso! Since then a new place has entered my heart, but at that time I was madly in love. I have been back to South Africa very often as “My Africa” calls me back to a different, but never lost, way of life.

Great spaces of Africa

Umhlanga Rocks

A never-ending beach that stretches as far as the eye can see. Waves, rocks and the smell of sea that exists only here. Known as one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world and offering superb accommodation. Never a dull moment. From swimming in the warm Indian ocean to long walks on the beach or the lively and scenic promenade. Stop for breakfast or high tea at the luxurious Oyster Box Hotel with it’s colonial vibe and wonderful view of the lighthouse. Let’s not forget the importance of shopping! The village offers many small and original shops and is a short walk from the beach and luxury hotels. Along the way you are sure to pass the pavement sellers with their colorful handmade crafts.

Umhlanga Rocks golden beach

Phinda Private Game Reserve

The Bush. How can one not miss the South African bush? The smell , the sounds and the beauty of the flora and fauna that surrounds you. At Phinda you find all these emotions except that instead of “living it rough” as one is supposed to do in the wild, here you are in the lap of luxury. Morning drives with sunrise snacks, afternoon drives with sunset drinks, and I cannot describe the elation of seeing low lights in the distance and driving up to a perfectly set up dining area. Immersed in the bush and lit only by candles and the unique South African star filled sky. The staff is friendly and the rangers do their utmost to ensure that the drives are exciting and interesting. The atmosphere of the luxury lodges is calm and eco-friendly. This whole experience is magical and makes you realize that the South African bush is God’s earthly paradise.

Phinda glass chalet


Maybe it was actually all that space that drove me to seek the cozy and unpretentious atmosphere of the Cinque Terre. At that time it was still not on the map and we could all enjoy the fishing town it still was.

View of Cinque Terre

Anna Moggia is Owner of Boutique Hotel Zenana.

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