My Travelling Life

Lauren Beukes is drawn to tourist attractions that are as strange as her novels

'The Shining Girls' author recommends finding the hidden 'strangenesses' in the places you go - and has the perfect tool to do it

13 October 2019 - 00:00 By Elizabeth Sleith

The most remote place I've ever been to is Antarctica. It had been a life-long dream and in March I tagged along with some academic friends who were going to a conference in Ushuaia, Argentina, and had arranged a trip to the peninsula. It was hella expensive - $9,000 (R136,200) to share a two-bedroom berth on a 100-passenger ship for nine days - but so worth every cent, every second. After two days roiling across the Drake Passage, I cried when I stepped out on deck to see this landscape of white mountains sunk into the coal-black sea with vivid slashes of blue ice.

The first holiday I remember as a child was going to Umngazi River Bungalows in the Eastern Cape, running wild round the grounds, golden beaches and wilderness, and Santa water-skiing across the lagoon to bring us our presents. It had its perils too. My dad stood on a scorpion fish and was deathly ill...

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