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About Your Tourist Guide: Mariana Delport


Mariana Delport

Hi, I'm Mariana Delport. I was 'born and bred' on a fruit and wine farm high up against the Witzenberg and Winterhoek Mountains of the picturesque Tulbagh valley. As a young child living on the farm, I became aware of the beauty of nature.

Especially the Cape fynbos, Renosterveld and the few remaining patches of Afro-Montane forests, together with the birds, butterflies, reptiles and other creatures, large and small, dependent on these eco-systems, fascinate me.

I made a study of the natural history of the Western Cape, and am a member of, among others, the Cape Bird Club, Tygerberg Bird Club, Botanical Society of SA, Indigenous Bulb Society of SA, Field Guides' Association of SA, Vernacular Architecture Society of SA and the Friends of the SA Museum. I actively participate in various birding and Natural Heritage Site monitoring projects.

I am a DEAT registered tourist guide, and invite you to come and share in my enthusiasm and knowledge of the Western Cape. A German speaking DEAT registered tourist guide is also available, on request.


Qualifications & Memberships

  • Registered DEAT Tourist Guide
  • Member of The Cape Tourist Guides' Association (CTGA)
  • In possesion of a Professional Driving Permit
  • Valid First Aid Certificate

 
Eco-Information on the Western Cape, South Africa.
The Succulent Karoo is one of 25 internationally recognised biodiversity hotspots, and the only arid hotspot in the world. Succulent Karoo has the highest number of plant species of any semi-arid area, many of which are rare and endangered, and has the richest succulent flora in the world.

Semi-desert climatic conditions prevail, with less than 250mm of rainfall per year that falls predominantly in winter. Vegetation is sparse, dominated by dwarf scrubs of which most have succulent leaves. The most common of its succulent, or fleshy leaved plants are mesembs (Mesembryanthemaceae), commonly known as 'vygies'.

There are more than 2 000 different species of mesembs in South Africa, of which many occur in the Western Cape. Other succulent families include the Aloes, Haworthias, Crassulas, Euphorbias and Stapeliads. The Succulent Karoo is also very rich in geophytes, with spectacular displays in spring.