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Category ArchiveTable Mountain

Professional Tour Guide

Michael Wilcox is an all round adventurer with years of experience in the outdoor space.

His introduction to hiking and the love for nature happened at the early age of five when he started joining his father on fishing trips to the coastal regions of the Cape of Good Hope section within the Table Mountain National Park.  This included hiking through the fynbos to reach fishing spots at the water’s edge.  He remembers playing in the rock pools of the intertidal zones as well as catching “klip vissies” (small rock fish) there.

In later years he went on to join a swimming club, become a water polo player and a lifeguard.  The aquatic activities further expanded his love for the ocean. In fact, he spent over 25 years of his life volunteering as a beach lifeguard along the False Bay coast, as well as volunteering as a crew leader on the Cape Town Helicopter Surf Rescue service.

Soon after getting married, Michael and his wife Bridget embarked on an extended backpacking venture across Europe and the Middle East. Over time the two of them have been fortunate to travel to and experience 23 different countries around the world.

It is this love for nature, the outdoors, hiking and travel that made for perfect ingredients to become a Cultural Guide, an Overnight Off Trail Mountain and Adventure Guide, and to register a Tour Operator business called Tusk Adventures & Tours.

Here are some of Michael’s achievements over the years:

  • Special interest in Fynbos (indigenous vegetation of the Western Cape province)
  • Special interest in the indigenous seasonal flowers of the Cape West Coast and adjacent interior, Cederberg, Namaqualand and the Northern Cape
  • Special interest in coastal regions and intertidal zones
  • Special interest in KhoiKhoi and San culture
  • Special interest in San Rock Art (cave paintings)
  • Special interest in politics, colonial and apartheid history
  • Special interest in shipwrecks and lighthouses
  • A registered Regional/Provincial Cultural Tourist guide:-
    (Northern Cape, Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Kwazulu-Natal, Mpumalanga)
  • A registered National Overnight Off Trail Adventure Mountain and Wilderness Trekking guide
  • Certified by the Cape Wine Academy
  • Member of the Cape Tourist Guides Association
  • An experienced hiker, mountaineer and adventurer (over 40 years)
  • Hiked in Lesotho, Spain, Portugal, Scotland, Israel, France, Greece, Switzerland, Germany, Namibia, Mozambique, Australia and all over South Africa.
  • A trained Wilderness First Aid responder
  • Experienced Rescue Mountaineer
  • Responder at Delta Search And Rescue
  • Responder for the Western Cape Wilderness Search And Rescue (WSAR)
  • Volunteers  alongside members of the Western Cape Department of Health
    Emergency Medical Services, Helicopter Rescue, Technical Rope Rescue, Off Road Rescue,
    K9 Search And Rescue, Sea Rescue and other emergency crews
  • Trained on the International Emergency ICS (Incident Command System)
  • A trained volunteer Tourism Trauma Support Worker
  • Certified category C freshwater and marine offshore boat skipper
  • Founder, co-ordinator and guide at ECO Mates Environmental Outreach Project
  • Volunteer Safety Patroller at Table Mountain National Park
    (SANParks)
  • Volunteer guide at Table Mountain National Park (SANParks)
  • Holder of a Professional Driving Permit (PrDP)
  • Representative at the Table Mountain National Park (SANParks)
    – Park Forum
  • Ad Hoc safety officer and rescue mountaineer with Wilderness
    Logistical Support Services at outdoor, hiking and trail running events
  • A weekly studio guest on a Cape Town Radio station talking about “The Great Outdoors”
  • Volunteered as a duty beach lifeguard for more than twenty five years
  • Past squad leader at the Cape Town Sea & Surf Helicopter Rescue
    service (approx 10 years)
  • Past member of Western Province Lifesaving elite helicopter response team
  • Past Climbing Convener of Cape Province Mountain Club
  • Past Safety Officer at the Table Mountain Hiking Challenge
  • Past Chairperson of the Hikers Network
  • Past coordinator at the Hikers Network Rescue unit
  • Past manager at SafetyMountain Tracking
  • Past safety advisor and guide at The President’s Award Youth Empowerment program
  • Past convener for Lion’s Alert Disaster Response
    (Lion’s Club of Kirstenbosch)
  • Past member of City of Cape Town municipality
    Disaster Risk Management unit
  • Past Captain at Alpha Surf Lifesaving Club
  • Past Equipment Officer at Alpha Surf Lifesaving Club
  • Past competitor for Western Province Surf Lifesaving Union team
  • Holder of numerous competitive lifesaving and rescue awards

 

Be out and be safe

 

 

 

 

Castle of Good Hope Walking Tour

Castle of Good Hope

Construction of this building commenced in 1666 by Zacharias Wagenaar, who was the second commander of the Cape. It the the oldest building in Southern Africa which is still in everyday use.

You will have a chance to enjoy a memorable experience by visiting old jail cells, a swimming pool, guard houses, canons, old games from the period of the 1st Dutch occupation, Cape Malay museum, Torture Chamber, Nelson Mandela diaries and letters, audio-visual displays, the history of the “Armed Struggle”, apartheid, uprisings and much more.

This is a very good educational travel through time.

Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens Walking Tour

 Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens
“Fun by nature . . . we’ll take you there”

*Child friendly*

Itinerary:-

  • Indigenous vegetation
  • Trees, flowers, and plants
  • Fresh floral displays
  • Khoikhoi (indigenous people of the Cape)
  • Dinosaur and Cycad Garden
  • Table Mountain National Park
  • Braille Trail
  • Desert display 
  • Conservatory
  • Baobab tree
  • Bonsais
  • Prehistoric fossils
  • Nelson Mandela display
  • Sculptures and other art displays
  • Elevated bridge walkway
  • Beautiful views
  • Photographer’s paradise
  • Natural water springs
  • Birdlife
  • Other interesting information & more

The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Gardens is a natural wonder situated adjacent to the Table Mountain National Park.
Here, evidence was found to support the fact that the area was inhabited by Stone Age man more than 2000 years before Europeans first discovered this land. The area was also part of the Khoikhoi’s pastoral land before the Dutch East India Company decided to set up a refreshment station in the Cape.

Many indigenous plants and trees can be found here. The general term for the naturally occurring plant life in the Western Cape is called fynbos (fine bush).
This indigenous vegetation consists of four main families.


The walking tour will include many hidden gems that one can only enjoy and appreciate with a knowledgeable Tourist Guide.

(This tour does require one to pay an entrance fee at the gardens)

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We are ready to welcome you!

Cape Town on Foot

Historical Tour of Cape Town
“Secret places . . . we’ll take you there”

 

 

Itinerary:-

  • Places of interest
  • Khoisan history (indigenous people of the Cape)
  • Slave history
  • Buildings
  • Architecture
  • Statues
  • Streets
  • Works of art
  • Ruins
  • Artefacts
  • Plants and flowers
  • People
  • Cultural heritage
  • Public squares and open spaces
  • Apartheid
  • Churches
  • National monuments
  • Sites of significance
  • Memorials and more

 

Join us for a historical overview of Cape Town.

Learn about the indigenous Khoisan people and their lifestyle prior to colonisation.

We’ll touch on how and why the Cape of Good Hope came about. Going on to be the first Europeans to reach our shores. From the Portuguese to the first and second Dutch periods, to the first and second British periods, to the Apartheid era, and finally the New Democratic South Africa.

We’ll start the tour at Greenmarket Square, then move on to St. Georges Mall (which is like the Las Ramblas in Barcelona Spain).

You’ll get to learn and see how the naturally available rock was used in the construction of buildings and other features.

Since Cape Town was the first place in Southern Africa to be developed into a city, most of the old buildings were the first of its kind in the African Sub continent. Like the first, Government, hospital, church, police station, fire station, banks, cathedral, jail and many more other buildings.

We touch on the Flower Market and how it came about.

Visit the ruins of the oldest structure that was built by Europeans in Southern Africa.

See artefacts that were unearthed during the construction of modern buildings, and how first world influences can be seen in the architecture of structures and buildings as well.

The British influence is quite apparent in the streets, and even see where the reigning Queen Elizabeth II of England celebrated her 21st birthday.

We will learn about the Castle of Good Hope, the oldest building (still in use) in Southern Africa. Guests will get a sense of what life in the settlement of the Cape was like, almost 400 years ago.

The dark side of the Cape Colony has to be the system of slavery. And likewise, the dark side of South Africa has to be the system of apartheid.  You’ll have an opportunity to learn more about how these practices impacted the Khoisan and the mixed race people of this region. 

The influence of leaders like Nelson Mandela was able to achieve the birth of the New South Africa whereby freedom for all is possible.  As a result, the country could open up to the world and this includes welcoming millions of visitors to our beautiful city year after year.

The tour finishes back at Greenmarket Square where one can enjoy refreshments at one of the many restaurants there.

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This tour is ideal for:
Visitors
Locals
School excursions
Youth groups
Clubs and organisations
Family and friends