Tag Archives: tourism

Relaxed Dining Experience – Europa Restaurant Florida Road

Europa restaurant
Europa restaurant

If you were to ask me to share with you one of my favourite restaurants at the moment I will tell you one word Europa. I could tell you what you would expect me to say about any other restaurant – that they offer great Italian and other continental cuisine, imported coffees, delicious delights and so on…but that is not what I fell in love with.

Europa restaurant
Europa restaurant

Europa restaurant offers a relaxed atmosphere where patrons love to gather and enjoy a good meal and conversation. The environment is relaxed and comfortable, with a harmonious relationship between design and ambiance. To explain it lightly – it’s like chilling at home with friends except you are catered for and surrounded by people who feel at home.

Europa restaurant
Europa restaurant

Europa has managed to do something many restaurants fail to accomplish in my opinion, and that is to create a space that offers a service and aesthetics that allows the customer to enjoy the experience and vibe of the place.

Europa restaurant
Europa restaurant

Ofcourse there are other great places out there for one to choose from, but for a chilled day out over good food and service with colleagues or friends, I would recommend a meal or two at Europa restaurant on florida road, Morningside.


Healing the body and mind through the spiritual

The eyes are said to be the window into the soul, how much do you think you can tell about a persons wellbeing and state of mind? You might not notice much by merely looking at someone, but you may through interaction with friends, colleagues and family. The busy lives that we lead in this day and age make it easy to get entangled in the day to day activities and ignore the bodies barometer and stress signals that sometimes are the source of ailment. Tension can bring about mental and physical fatigue that can lead to ailments that erode away at our quality of life.

peepsouth decided to chat to Preshana Bhimma a therapist and transformational coach at the Soul Sanctuary to get an idea of how one can manage stress.

Preshana Bhimma, Transformational Coach at the Soul Sanctuary

peepsouth: Who is Preshana Bhimma?

Preshana: I am a self conscious being who is inlove with people and the environment we interact with on a daily basis. I am inspired by people and the elements that bring about harmonious relations between the self and the environment.

peepsouth: How can stress affect a person?

Preshana: I believe a troubled spirit can give rise to a troubled mind and body which can bring about tension and stress, leading to a diminishing sense of self and surrounding. People can underestimate the factors that lead to psychological and physical ailments.

peepsouth: What is it that you do?

Preshana: I strive to help people come to the realisation of the self and awareness of their environment by helping them to create an environment where people can fall inlove with themselves.

peepsouth: How did you come to be at the Soul Sanctuary?

Preshana: It has been a vision and dream of mine for over 10 years, I have prayed and meditated over it and asked God to bless me with a ready made space where I can come in and start practicing and help people by focusing on energies. I am thankful and greateful to be here.

peepsouth: Where would you say you gain your source of strength?

Preshana: I have done alot of soul searching and spiritual growth over the years, I have had to grow as a person and be at peace with myself which puts me in a better position to help others find their soul sanctuary. I draw my strength from the love of people, travel and the open sea.

What are the stress signals that one should look out for:

  • Discomfort
  • Chronic headaches
  • Anxiety / depression
  • Lower back pain
  • Insomnia
  • Hormonal imbalance

what steps can one take to manage the signs of stress:

  • Attending a facilities workshop on stress management
  • Anger management
  • Meditation *can include prayer
  • Counseling

Preshana also offers the following:

  • Transformational coaching
  • Bio-Energetic stress test
  • Colour therapy facilitation

The above therapies help in screening of the mind and body, clears scatter tension and anxiety, analysis of your aura etc. and helps bring back balance and control of ones life.

The Soul Sanctuary offers a lovely bundle of services that focus on healing the body, mind and soul.

Here are other services available:

  • Hypnotherapist
  • Practitioner of touch energy healing
  • Hot stone therapist
  • Thai beauty and massage
  • Om Shanti Chrystal Cove
  • XEF – Gourmet food and delectable deserts , where you can also enjoy coffee, art and music
The XEF gourmet foods, coffee and dessets
The XEF gourmet foods, coffee and desserts
The Soul Sanctuary
The Soul Sanctuary
The Chrystal Cove
The Chrystal Cove
Hot Stone Therapy and Thai Massage
Hot Stone Therapy and Thai Massage

The Rainbow Nation – South Africa

South Africa is fairly new to democracy unlike its counter parts in Africa, yet it is said to be the most westernised country in Africa. As a South African I never paid attention to this fact until it was pointed out to me by my fellow African man. This got me thinking, why is a young democracy the most saturated. Colonialism obviously had a huge influence on the urbanisation and westernisation of native South Africans. European colonial origin can be dated back to America, UK, Greece and Rome.

To my knowledge the process of influence began with the voyage of discovery, colonisation, conquest and exploitation of Spain and Portugal: it continued with the rise of the Dutch East India Company, and the creation and expansion of the British and french colonial empires. Due to the reach of these empires, Western institutions expanded throughout the world, even after decolonisation these institutions persisted.

My focus here is not on what was but on what is, and that is a diverse and rich culture. On the streets of South Africa you will notice a western trend and South African township style. By western trend I mean the influence on the South African youth is a reflection of visual, print and social media. There is a mix of eclectic, chic, dated, contemporary and video vixen style of dressing. It is not just about style but about what defines the individual, I am inclined to say a person who is passionate about their ‘art’ “yes art” becomes a sort of brand. An individual who loves rap will treat it like an art, follow popular trends from celebrities from dressing, swagger, gesture, dance, slang and even write music or be involved in rap battles.
A great platform to witness this is a social event preferably a party scene where you can witness the different looks and behaviour.

South African restaurants have more of an obvious western culture by this I mean, as an African country one would expect to find a traditional menu or part thereof this is not the case. As a result when you attend a black function for example a family function the menu will have a large western influence. One thing I can tell you where there is no compromise is the slaughtering of an animal for meat this might be a cow, lamb or goat. Which is cooked outside on a three-legged pot in an open wood fire, the meat from this is absolutely manufique. It is the highlight of the entire event, every part of the animal is consumed including intestines and hooves it is accompanied by dumplings a sought of bread but its consistency is wet/sticky where as bread dough is dry and should not stick.

Here is a recipe you can try: Note the dough should be a bit sticky not dry.

Dumplings and Lamb Stew Recipe
Serves: 5-6
For Dumplings:
575ml (2¼ cup) cake flour
250ml (1 cup) warm water
5ml (1tsp) instant dry yeast
5ml salt
10ml (2 tsp) sugar
For Stew:
1 onion, chopped
25ml cooking oil
± 500g stewing lamb, trimmed and cubed
2 tsp (10ml) salt
4 black pepper cons
50 ml chutney
4 carrots, chopped
4-6 baby potatoes, peeled
1 stock cube
75ml split peas
2ml crushed chilli
2.5ml medium curry powder
5ml fresh parsley, chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
5m1 worcestershire sauce
  1. Sift all the dry ingredients into a bowl.
  2. Add water and knead.  Do not add more water if it looks dry, just continue kneading until combined.
  3. Cover the dough and let it rest at a warm place for about 30-45 minutes.
  4. Make round balls the size of a golf ball.
  1. Heat the oil in a big saucepan, throw in the onions.
  2. Add the lamb pieces stirring with a wooden spoon to lightly brown.
  3. Add the spices, chutney, split peas and herbs.
  4. Dissolve the stock cube in 500ml warm water and add to the stew. Simmer at low heat for 15-20 minutes.
  5. Add the potatoes, carrots and neatly place the balls on top of the stew.  Simmer for 30 minutes.
You can replace the lamb with mutton or beef and adjust your water and cooking times accordingly

Even with these obvious trends I do not know if I have answered my initial question of how in a young democracy can westernisation be so ingrained. Maybe I can attribute it to the large influx into the cities during urbanisation and the apartheid era that saw many South Africans abandon their rural homes to work in the cities to sustain their families back home in the rural area. This gave rise to broken families and children that grew up without a mother or father to parent them and instill culture and tradition in them. This gave rise to an erosion of culture and tradition which lead to the future generations to identify with that which surrounded and influenced their daily lives.

 Westernisation as such is not a bad thing its a diversity and an intertwining of cultures. The loss of one culture to another is unacceptable but the coexistence of more than one culture makes for a rainbow nation, which is what South Africa is.

The Obama’s visit to Robben Island is profound as Nelson Mandela lay in a critical but stable state

Nelson Mandela and Walter Sisulu on Robben Island in 1966
“During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to the struggle of the African people.  I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination.  I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities.  It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.” These are the words spoken by Nelson Mandela an anti-apartheid regime fighter who was imprisoned on Robben Island, Cape Town, South Africa for 18 years of his 27 year imprisonment. This Nobel laureate and former president of South Africa is currently critically ill but in a stable condition in hospital. His words are resounding and profound now more then ever.
During the apartheid era of racial segregation and the oppression of black, Indian and coloured people in South Africa, Robben Island was used for the Isolation of mainly political prisoners by the Dutch settlers as a maximum security prison from 1961 to 1991. The medium security Prison for criminal prisoners was closed in 1996. Former president Kgalema Motlante and president Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma were among the political prisoners imprisoned on Robben Island.
President-Obama-on-Robben Island
President Obama and the first family’s recent visit to South Africa during the critical period for South African’s as tata Nelson Mandela’s fate is vulnarable and unkown marks a poignant reminder; of all that former president Nelson Mandela stands for and represents not only to South Africa but the rest of the world.
The Obama family visited Robben Island and toured around lead by Ahmed Kathrada an 83 year old former inmate and anti-apartheid activist
“On behalf of our family, we’re deeply humbled to stand where men of such courage faced down injustice and refused to yield. The world is grateful for the heroes of Robben Island, who remind us that no shackles or cells can match the strength of the human spirit,” Obama wrote in the guest book in the courtyard.
Obama had visited Robben Island when he was a U.S senator. This is the first time obama is visiting South Africa as the first black American president.
US President Barack Obama and his family have toured Robben Island
Michelle Obama shared her heartfelt thoughts on her tour of Robben Island on her blog the FLOTUS Travel Journal where she narrates her spiritual and impacting journey of Robben Island.“So today, as we toured the island, I couldn’t help but think about how this place must have shaped these leaders. Put yourself in their shoes – all they were doing was fighting to ensure that people in South Africa would be treated equally, no matter what the colour of their skin. And for that, they wound up confined on this remote island, far removed from the world they so desperately hoped to change”.
“It was amazing to see Mandela’ s cell, a tiny room – about 6 feet wide – where he spent 18 of the 27 years he was in prison. He slept on a thin mat on the floor, and when he stretched out to sleep at night, his toes touched one wall, while his head grazed the other. The walls were two feet thick with no decorations, and he was given a bucket to use as a toilet”.
“Yet despite these conditions, Mandela and his fellow prisoners never lost hope. As Mandela once said, “Prison – far from breaking our spirits – made us more determined to continue with the battle until victory was won”. They did their best to get an education while in prison – they read as many books as they could, and some prisoners even got university degrees through correspondence courses. They vigorously debated philosophy, politics, and the direction of the anti-Apartheid movement. They stood up to mistreatment by the prison guards. And they found ways to communicate in secret, such as stuffing notes inside tennis balls that they would pass along during recreation periods”.
Nelson Mandela has set an example and paved the way for many to follow. His struggle for freedom from oppression for the South African people might have been won but it is not over. The youth of South Africa have been given a pedestal and a world platform from which to be the voice and instrument of change. Now it is time for the youth to become the catalysts for change.
List of former prisoners held at Robben Island
·         Autshumato, one of the first activists against colonialism
·         Dennis Brutus, former activist and poet
·         Patrick Chamusso, former activist of the African National Congress
·         Laloo Chiba, former accused at Little Rivonia Trial
·         Jerry Ekandjo, Namibian politician
·         Nceba Faku, former Metro Mayor of Port Elizabeth
·         Petrus Iilonga, Namibian trade unionist, activist and politician
·         Ahmed Kathrada, former Rivonia Trialist and long-serving prisoner
·         Langalibalele, one of the first Activists against colonialism
·         Mosiuoa Lekota, imprisoned in 1974, President and Leader of the Congress of the People
·         Mac Maharaj, former accused at Little Rivonia Trial
·         Makana, one of the activists against colonialism
·         Nelson Mandela, African National Congress leader and former President of South Africa (first black president)
·         Gamzo Mandierd, activist
·         Jeff Masemola, the first prisoner sentenced to life imprisonment in the apartheid era
·         Amos Masondo, former Mayor of Johannesburg
·         Michael Matsobane, leader of Young African Religious Movement. Sentenced at Bethal in 1979; released by PW Botha in 1987.
·         Chief Maqoma, former chief who died on the island in 1873
·         Govan Mbeki, father of former President of South Africa Thabo Mbeki. Govan was sentenced to life in 1963 but was released from Robben Island in 1987 by PW Botha
·         Wilton Mkwayi, former accused at Little Rivonia Trial
·         Murphy MorobeSoweto Uprising student leader
·         Sayed Adurohman Moturu, the Muslim Iman who was exiled on the island and died there in 1754
·         Griffiths Mxenge, a South African Lawyer and member of the African National Congress
·         Billy Nair, former Rivonia Trialist and ANC/SACP leader
·         M. D. Naidoo, a South African lawyer and member of the African National Congress
·         John ya Otto Nankudhu, Namibian liberation fighter[17]
·         John Nkosi Serving life but released by PW Botha in 1987
·         Nongqawuse, the Xhosa prophetess responsible for the Cattle Killing
·         Maqana Nxele, former Xhosa prophet who drowned while trying to escape
·         John Nyathi Pokela, co-founder and former chairman of the PAC
·         Joe Seremane, current chairperson of the Democratic Alliance.
·         Tokyo Sexwale, businessman and aspirant leader of the African National Congress
·         Gaus ShikombaNamibian politician
·         Walter Sisulu, former ANC Activist
·         Robert Sobukwe, former leader of the PAC
·         Andimba Toivo ya ToivoNamibian politician
·         Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa and leader of the African National Congress
·         Achmad Cassiem
·         Setsiba Paul Mohohlo, former APLA unit commander

The Durban City Hall


The Durban City Hall is an impressive and historic site that is a must see when visiting Durban, it’s in the middle of the city centre and exudes an allegorical character.
The Durban City Hall is a great classical historical site that has stood the test of time. This marvelous structure originally erected as a town hall, stands gracefully as the epitome of the Durban city centre. This flamboyant neo-Baroque style architecture houses the city’s municipal chambers, the city’s public library, auditorium, the Durban Art Gallery and the Natural Science Museum.

This robust Durban City Hall was the second built, the first town hall having been utilised as the Durban Post office. The rapid expansion of Durban in the late 1800’s warranted a bigger city hall to be built necessitating a move from the small town hall.

In the year 1903 the then town council invited architects to submit designs for the new town hall. Stanley G. Hudson submitted the winning design which was inspired by or rather a replica of the city of Belfast’s City Hall in Northern Ireland.

Mayor Ellis Brown played a great role in convincing leaders that building the city hall was the right thing to do. Construction of the Durban City Hall took a period of five consecutive progressive years and a budget of £300 000. In april 12, 1910 the colonial structure was complete and would stand as one of Durban’s great landmarks and heritage.

“One of the finest things in South Africa” was how mayor Ellis Brown described the town hall about six months before construction began. The Durban City Hall has certainly proved itself to be a fine structure with its bold designs and sculptors.
The Durban City Hall is but one of many great landmarks that can be found in and around the Durban CBD. A tour of the Durban city is one that is rich in sites, culture, heritage and history.