Over the years we have had numerous overseas visitors come out to South Africa to join the South African Healey members on our National Tours.
In 2010 Brian and Carole Drab from Canada joined us for the e'Goali Tour around the Gauteng area. In 2018 , Brian and Carole once again joined us as well as Knud and Birgit Kaerslund from Denmark and Richard Horwood from Australia for the Gauteng Tour.
Anyone who has a Healey from anywhere in the world is welcome to join our tours and experience the beauty of of our country and our Healeys.
Below are articles written by the three overseas participants on their experiences on the 2018 plus another on Brian and Carole's visit in 2010.
Knud and Birgit Kaerslund from Denmark joined us on our 2018 Tour. This is an article submitted about the 2018 Tour
Healey Gauteng Tour 2018 – South Africa.
We saw the invitation to participate on the tour in the news mail from AH-Spares in the beginning of July. Thank you very much for inviting overseas participants. Birgit and I had never been to South Africa before and we thought that the invitation was interesting, not at least the possibility of having a Healey to drive for the tour.
We contacted the club to get further information and after some days we got a mail from John with information and price for participating. John told us that it was maybe not possible that they could offer us a Healey to drive, but we would be welcome to participate in a rental car.
We decided to participate and to make a trip to South Africa starting with the Healey Tour and after that we would go on to safari for some days and then follow the garden route down to Cape Town. We had it all arranged with a travel agency and started from Denmark on the 7th September.
The sticker our Denmark guests had on their hire car
We were a little concerned about safety on travelling on our own in South Africa. Looking on the foreign ministry departments webpage we should really take care in South Africa. We flew to Johannesburg, where we arrived late in the night on the 7th September. John had arranged that we could drive together with Thys and Wilma from Johannesburg to Gariep Dam. We were very happy for that and Thys an Wilma met up at our hotel on the 8th September in the morning. After we had our rental car we was ready to depart for the drive to Gariep Dam.
We had to get used to drive in the ”wrong” side of the road in a right hand drive car. The traffic in Johannesburg was not so heavy on a Saturday morning so it wasn’t a big problem. Soon we were out of Johannesburg heading south on the N1 following Thys and Wilmas black Healey at 100 – 120 km/h. We had no problems but at a time between Kroonstad and Bloemfontein the Healey started to loose power and did’nt sound right in the engine. Thys decided to try to get to Bloemfontein and we agreed that we should just go on to Gariep Dam.
We made a stop at a petrol station near Bloemfontein and there we met the rest of the group of Healeys from the Johannesburg area. We had the opportunity to greet some of the guys and after a rest and a cup of coffee we went on to Gariep Dam where the Healey tour should stay for the first 3 days.
When arriving in Gariep Dam we were welcomed by Jenny and John, got a nice goody bag and the keys for our cabin for the next days. After we got accommodated we went to the welcome dinner at the resort and had the opportunity to meet all the participants in the tour. The participants from the Cape Town area and from the Garden rout area had problems with snow and sleet getting to Gariep Dam. Not just what we from Denmark was expecting in South Africa. The nights and the mornings in Gariep Dam was rather cold, even with ice on the cars in the morning. We had just left a very hot and sunny summer in Denmark, best summer in the last 100 years.
The tour and what we did on the tour is described fully on your website,http://www.austinhealeytours.co.za We can just say that we had some great days together with South African Healey guys. We saw places in South Africa we would never have seen as normal tourists. We enjoyed the tour and the companionship with you Healey guys. We got a warm welcome and enjoyed the relaxed way of Healey life in your club. We met great friends and we will be happy to come back another time.
Especially the rat and the rose award we enjoyed. It was good fun and always interesting to know who had deserved the award for the day. Another good thing was the seating of the participants at some of the dinners. It is a good way to mix people and you get to know more different people in that way.
One thing we didn’t really understood was that South African Healeys never drive without their top on. The weather on the tour was very fine for driving topless Healeys, dry and not too hot, but we never saw any of the cars without their top. In Denmark we think all of the Healeys would have been topless in these conditions.
After the tour we went on to Port Elisabeth, was on safari for 3 days. After that we went to St. Francis bay, Knysna, Calitzdorp and finally Cape Town for the last 3 days.
We enjoyed South African hospitality, we enjoyed beautiful landscapes and areas. We had no bad experiences and we will be happy to visit your country again.
All the best wishes to the participants on the tour and to South African Healey drivers.
Birgit and Knud Kaerslund, Denmark.