Close

Delete Collection?

Are you sure you want to delete this collection permanently?

Close

Delete Collection?

Are you sure you want to delete this collection permanently?

Everyone has a Story to Tell and an Experience to Share!

Let’s Start Writing
1a4fd804-f694-4093-bf91-4ceff3c395f6

Wonderfully Weird and Fantastical Travel Tales — Sacred White Lion Encounter

Each month we post a travel tale from people from around the world. Gina Baksa relates her up-close encounter with the magical white lions in South Africa.

#
Image Credit: White Lion Protection Trust

 

Like a lover’s caress, the rhythmic pulse of South Africa is intoxicating. Once under your skin, her visceral warmth, energy and wildness remains forever in your senses and your heart.

My first visit to the country was earlier this year and I still feel her heartbeat. A life-changing inner and outer journey that took me to Johannesburg and the Kruger National Park, via the White Lions of Timbavati to the breath-taking scenery in and around Cape Town and along the Cape Coast.

The view from Table Mountain, diving with sharks, glamping at Ngala reserve, the Avatar-like scenery at Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens and a moving visit to Robben Island – all were outstanding. Yet the absolute highlight was a 3-day visit to Tsau! – home of the sacred White Lions of Timbavati and headquarters of the Global White Lion Trust founded by conservationist Linda Tucker and her husband Jason Turner.

The Timbavati region lies in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa – an hour’s flight west of Johannesburg – and borders the immense Kruger National Park. Located on the fabled Nilotic meridian (line of First Time and river of gold) and so linked to the Giza Pyramids and other sacred sites in Africa, this region bestows a powerful transformative energy to all who visit her.

The white lions originate from this magical land and are regarded as sacred throughout Africa, especially for the local Shangaan people of the Timbavati who believe these majestic beings have been sent by God to protect humanity at a time of crisis on Earth. They consider the white lions to be Star Lions – messengers from the Sirius constellation. In fact, the word ‘Timbavati’ means ‘falling down of a star’ in Zulu – these beings truly are interstellar in origin.

Today, there are less than 13 white lions in their original habitat, but countless numbers have been bred across the world, mostly for petting zoos and circuses, and for the despicable canned hunting industry. And despite enormous international pressure, they are still not protected by national or international law.

Linda Tucker’s Life-Changing Experience

After a profoundly life-changing encounter with a pride of lions in the bush – where she and her party were rescued at night by sangoma (medicine woman) Maria Khosa – Linda returned to the world of advertising, but felt compelled to revisit to Africa a few years later, determined to track down the woman who’d saved her life. Her encounter with Maria Khosa, chronicled in her books Mystery of the White Lions and Saving the White Lions, led to her being recognised by Maria as ‘Keeper of the White Lions’. As a result, Linda has dedicated her life to saving these incredible beings. Powerful meetings with Zulu shaman Credo Mutwa further amplified her intuition and her knowing that her life’s purpose was to save the white lions from extinction and re-introduce them to the land of their birth – the sacred Timbavati.

Together with her partner and fellow lion ecologist Jason Turner, the couple re-introduced the first white lion to its natural habitat – on their 2500 acres of bushland in Timbavati. Here a pride of white lions live and hunt – protected from poachers and canned hunters.

#

 

My Own Magical Experience

My four-day group visit to the Tsau! conservancy was an incredible adventure in consciousness and a dream made manifest. Seeing the majestic white lions in their natural habitat and in such close proximity was awe inspiring. We stayed at Camp Unicorn, in traditional rondawels.

#
Image Credit: Gina Baksa

 

Arriving mid-afternoon, our first drive at magical dusk richly rewarded us with an encounter between tawny lioness Tswalu, calling to her friend Cleopatra, who was then living on a neighbouring property. Meeting each other at the fence every day, the lionesses primal need for company overpowering both their natural instincts. For Cleopatra the instinct to stay with her pride and for Tswalu the instinct not to bring another female into the Tsau! family of white lions. Happily the two lionesses were reunited last month, with Cleo now resident at Tsau!

As Tsalu approached our vehicle, my heart leapt into my throat. Majestic, powerful – neither words adequately describe the sheer magnificence of this powerful predator. And the deep love I felt for her as she drew near. Advised not to maintain eye contact for long, I looked into her piercing blue eyes for a second or two, before lowering them, in complete reverence. So much more than a ‘lion’ this star being and her tribe are emphatically from another realm. I felt honoured, exhilarated and incredibly grateful to experience her greatness; her all-seeing, all-knowing presence that she gifted us with.

Later, we followed male lion Zukhara along the path as he met his brother Matsieng, rubbing their heads together in greeting. A truly beautiful sight, the lions in this pride are so tactile and loving with each other. Monitered twice a day – they wear radio-tracking collars – signals are picked up by the rangers using GPS. Not only does this make tracking easier, it also safeguards the lions against poachers – an ever-present threat.

Hearing the white lions roar during a rosy-fingered dawn, however, can be a terrifying sound – especially for the first time. It creates a primal urge to run – even when you rationally know you are safe. Most lions’ roars are followed by 15 or so huffs, but the white lions huff around 30 times. Their resonant calls a reminder to allow our own voice and our own truth to come from deep within us.

#

Image Credit: White Lion Protection Trust

 

On the night of the peregrine moon – when the lunar planet comes closest to Earth – we gathered around the intoxicating fire pit, silent with our own thoughts and visions. Sleep was welcome after a long day; dreams deep and vivid. Lions came to me with messages for my present and my future.

We stayed in comfortable rondavels (round houses) and food was delicious and plentiful, shared around a long dinner table open to the camp.

Each dawn before the day’s drive, we were greeted by a palpable vibration of sounds and smells; pregnant with possibility. Africa is completely life-affirming. She demands your attention. And she demands you inhabit your body. Fully.

We were blessed to share Camp Unicorn with Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s daughter Mpho Tutu, who accompanied us to an incredible dance performance at a local school, funded by the Global White Lion Trust. Her striking speech: “We are all learners” resounded around the sun-baked schoolyard as the children were acknowledged – as powerful souls in their own right and as potential future leaders.

#
Image Credit: Gina Baksa

 

I’ve never experienced such love as those children gave us. We high-five each other as the music from their songs dance in the almost-dusk air. They have very little according to the Western idea of wealth, but their eyes show their souls are rich beyond measure. What fierce leonine pride they showed us of their birthright. Their right to be here. To be seen and heard.

A short drive to nearby Mufanyani cultural centre gave us the chance to join tribal dancers by the roaring fire, eat Mopani worms and have our bones read by Sarah – Maria Khosa’s sister – herself a revered Sangoma. The in and out breath of Africa; the smell of the earth: rich and lustrous, enveloped me in an embrace like no earthly Mother. It was the Mother – our Mother – who held me close during my time in South Africa.

#
Photo Credit: Gina Baksa

 

Soft dusk, orange sky oozed across the limitless sky each evening, the roar of the lions a reminder of our past – and perhaps of our future. Africa grounded me. She helped me lovingly inhabit my body again. She helped me reconnect to the source of my power, my being. And she reconnected me to my brothers and sisters from Sirius – the star lions.

A trip to the white lions at Tsau! is life-changing and enchanting. A return to love, your visit will be a profound homecoming. An inner and outer journey re-connecting you to Source, to your Self, and above all to Nature and the country’s spectacular wildlife and landscapes. If you are hearing that call now, go! In the words of the Shangaan: ‘Inkomo Shinene’ – thank you very much South Africa.

#

Image Credit: White Lion Protection Trust

 

Further Reading

Lynda Tucker’s books Mystery of the White Lions (2001) and Saving the White Lions (2013) http://www.amazon.com/Linda-Tucker/e/B001HCU73U

Global White Lion Protection Trust: whiteliontrust.org

Link to 360-degree photo of Camp Unicorn: http://360.io/SW7FF3

Linda Tucker’s presentation to the South African Parliament: https://whitelions.org/2019/02/12/linda-tuckers-presentation-to-parliament-5-6th-february-2019/

Link to Archbishop Tutu’s prayer for the wild lions. http://www.earth-heal.com/videos/viewvideo/3235/prayer-for-lions-with-archbishop-tutu.html

Gina Baksa is a writer and intuitive guide and coach. She is leading a spiritual pilgrimage to Egypt in November. Email her at gina_baksa@hotmail.com for intuitive readings and information on coaching and cacao-sharing ceremonies. Website under construction: www.ginabaksa.com


Related Articles

It is almost time again. Blue Monday. So-called the most depressing day of the year. People would feel sad on this day for all sorts of reasons. We have lost sight of the good intentions, the salary is still waiting for us, the merry Christmas is the daily grind back ... Go on and on. How often do we hear: " January takes so long ".

Once. It is a long, gray and cold month. We are all secretly ready for vacation. A sunny vacation. Voyage Nomad have listed three sunny winter destinations that will certainly make you warmer!


CURACAO

It is about 9 hours flying to sunny Curacao, where you can enjoy an average temperature of 28.5 ° C for 8 hours a day! Cooling off in the sea is difficult, with a sea water temperature of 27 ° C. Want to sunbathe? Then go for the most beautiful beaches to the Kleine Knip and Grote Knip. On both beaches you really get a Bounty feeling! White sand, an azure blue sea and background music from the rippling waves ... Do you like quiet beaches? Then go to Kleine Knip. There are few to no facilities here and it is quieter.

Of course a small road trip in Curacao cannot be missed. Because yes, you also have the best holiday on the small island with a rental car at your doorstep! A nice route is that from Willemstad to Westpunt. Along the way you will not only come across beautiful beaches, but also a number of special nature parks. And near Sint Willibrordus you can spot flamingos. How fun!


GRAN CANARIA

Only 4.5 hours of flying and you get off in the warm Gran Canaria. The average temperature during the winter months is 21.3 ° C. Want to swim? With a little luck, that is still possible.

Are you on vacation with your loved one? Then a visit to Playa de Amadores, the beach of loved ones, should not be missed. The yellow gold beach is on a wide bay with crystal clear water. Finish the afternoon with a nice glass of wine or a tasty cocktail? Behind the beach you will find various restaurants and bars. A nice market is held twice a week near the beach in Puerto de Mogan. Also nice to spend an afternoon strolling.


FLORIDA

It takes about 13 hours to fly to Miami. Quite a long piece, but afterwards you can fully enjoy the winter sun! During the day it is a nice 22 ° C in Florida, the sea water is around 23 degrees and you can enjoy no less than 7 hours of sunshine every day.

Florida certainly belongs in this list of winter sun destinations. It might not be a destination where you can only sunbathe on the beach, but you can optimally enjoy a pleasant temperature during road tripping. So you can visit Miami, then to Orlando and of course not to forget: The Florida Keys. And yes, you can of course enjoy sunbathing, boat trips or snorkeling.

Are you the types who don’t wish to spend much on your vacation and still want to enjoy the holiday to the best, soaking up what all the place has to offer? Well, if yes, then the list is surely going to help you. Come, take a look:

Rishikesh, Uttarakhand

The “Yoga Capital of World” is also one of the favourite hippie spots and one place which can be explored even when you are travelling on a tight budget. Situated just about 250 km from Delhi, Rishikesh is well-connected via train and road including the state transport and private buses. In case, you are planning to travel by train to this holy city, it would be a good idea to check for IRCTC seat availability with fare and timings across different trains for a hassle-free experience.

Mcleodganj, Himachal Pradesh

If you live in the capital city or around it and looking for a nice vacation place where you don’t have to shell out much, then Mcleodganj would be one of the best bets. While the hotel tariffs can between INR 300 to 400 per day if you wish to stay at Dharamkot or Naddi, you can also explore the town without spending much. Some of the famous attractions of this pretty hill resort are Dal Lake, Tibet Museum, St. John in the Wilderness and the Cricket Stadium at Dharamsala among others. When here, don’t forget to indulge in some yummy local dishes for that complete experience.

Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu

Situated just about 80km from Trivandrum, Kanyakumari is a place which offers that much needed quietude and solitude from the chaotic city life. The most famous attraction of Kanyakumari is the Vivekananda Rock Memorial which attracts loads of tourists every day. With a number of good budget accommodation options, ranging from INR 800 per day and easy accessibility from Trivandrum via road and rail, the city is definitely one of the best choices if you are planning for a budget holiday. In case, you wish to take a train journey, it would be a goodbidea to check details train berth availability and seat availability prior to your bookings.

Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

The holy city of Varanasi is another good option for budget travellers and that explains why it is one of the most favourite destinations for backpackers. There is a lot to explore and learn when you are here. For instance, you can take a lesson or two in meditation, Indian classical music or yoga- the choice is yours. Food, stay and transportation costs in Varanasi are very cheap and you can get a hotel room at INR 300 per day and the city is also well-connected via road and rail to almost all major cities in India. If you are planning to take a Delhi-Varanasi train, we suggest you to check with Indian Railways Enquiry for relevant details.

So, what are you thinking now? Plan your bags and happy travel.

PropellerAds PropellerAds

Reference Image
Close