For some reason a gin and tonic (aka a G&T) has been known to be the safari goer’s drink of choice. It never seems to go out of fashion, and looking into our blog archives, it is a topic we certainly love talking about, so much so that it was also a major theme in our recent New Year’s Eve Party. I assumed this was the case due to the refreshing aspect of a gin and tonic when you’re parched in the African heat, and of course due to its excellent pairing with a blood-orange sunset and exquisite wildlife sightings. However, there is more to the origin of a gin and tonic, and it turns out that this safari beverage is actually not as random as I had thought. This commonly drunk sundowner is a tradition supposedly brought across by the British Army, and a beverage particularly loved by none other than Winston Churchill himself.
“The gin and tonic has saved more Englishmen’s lives, and minds, than all the doctors in the Empire” ~ Winston Churchill
Not only was this drink delicious but it also tended to be a pleasant mosquito repellent due to the added quinine in tonic; a classic two birds with one stone scenario. Tonic, originally made to prevent malaria, paired well with gin, which was supplied to the soldiers as a ration, and so began the never ending era of gin and tonic. Overtime this resulted in this sundowner preference, a “Bush G&T”, which we drink today.
The taste of a G&T is also dramatically changed by the location in which you choose to drink it. It’s for this reason that I advise you sip on a delicious gin and tonic at the following spots at Londolozi:
1. From Your Private Deck
All five camps at Londolozi have suites with private wooden decks overlooking the – currently lush – Sand River. This is one of the best spots to sip on a gin and tonic at Londolozi. Supplied in your suite’s mini bar, help yourself to a refreshing G&T, get comfortable next to your plunge pool and soak up the exclusivity and panoramic views of the iconic African bush.
2. With Your Camp Manager
Each camp at Londolozi has a main deck which extends out above the river, allowing for yet another spot with spectacular views of the area as well as the wildlife that inhabits the riverbanks. Who you drink one with can also influence the taste. And so I would recommend having a gin and tonic with your Camp Manager, who will not only be great company but can also pour you the delicious beverage. You might even spot a couple of elephants from this vantage point.
3. Camp Hop
Each camp at Londolozi has its own unique stamp, whether it be its decor, atmosphere or view. It is due to this that I would encourage a “camp hop” whereby you visit a new deck for a change of scenery, and potentially a new gin and tonic combination.
4. And, Of Course, On The Hood Of A Land Rover
This needs no explanation, other than the fact that this is simply the best place to have a G&T! Your ranger will no doubt have many beautiful locations around the reserve to park the Land Rover, no day is ever the same at Londolozi, and so your ranger’s pick as well as the weather will determine a unique G&T atmosphere.
Cheers to a quenching drink for summer, a pleasant mosquito repellent and a drink which can be enjoyed even more when drunk in the bush.
Our previous blogs for more gin reads :