Sive was born with itchy feet - wanderlust should be her middle name. At the first opportunity for independent travel following university, she headed off on a one-way ticket to North Africa. That year quickly turned into five, as Sive travelled around the globe; with longer stints living and working in the Middle East, Japan and the USA. It was no surprise that on returning home, she developed her career in long-haul travel.
During her 20 years' experience in the industry, Sive has worked with both independent tour operators and global travel brands.
Having rediscovered her love for Africa when she migrated to Mahlatini a few years ago, Sive has found her perfect job...with plenty of opportunities to work through her extensive African travel wishlist.
In my youth, I hitch-hiked across Tibet, using every conceivable form of transport - buses, yaks, jeeps. The scenery was absolutely stunning throughout the journey, but the best part was sharing the most amazing experiences with locals, despite having no common language. My favourite travel memories are usually centred on the people, reminding me that a smile is the universal language of happiness.
I'd heartily recommend the trip I recently took across Kenya. Whilst I stayed within the one country, I had stops in three very distinct regions - Samburu, Laikipia, Masai Mara. The connections were easy; no more than a one-hour light air transfer between each. However, the landscapes, and even the game viewing and indigenous peoples, were so diverse it felt like I'd travelled from one side of the world to the other.
Ellerman House - an iconic Cape Town property and stunningly beautiful. It houses the most amazing art collection - a mix of old classics with contemporary art in an elegant space. As for the wine cellar, it was an art installation in itself. Don't get me started on the wine sampling...!
Unquestionably the rhino - it is staggering to think they have endured for nearly 20 million years, and unfathomable to think of a world without them. I'll never forget my first up close and personal encounter with a baby orphan rhino - it played like a puppy and totally stole my heart. I'm so proud of Mahlatini's long-term partnership with Save the Rhino and glad that we can play our part in the battle to protect this amazing species.
After over 20 years in the industry, I love that every day in Mahlatini is a school day. I love learning more about the unique African ecosystems, particularly how each living species is connected, from the littlest dung beetle to the mighty rhino.
I've several, but most of them have been on familiarisation trips in Africa - that first-hand knowledge is crucial to ensure I can design my clients the perfect trip. A stand-out moment was in the Kruger when we had a very curious male lion stalk and encircle our game vehicle. He was literally only three feet away! I was totally transfixed by the depth of his eyes and I swear I held my breath for ten or so minutes until he finally strolled away.
"Can I please rate higher than 5? Thank you so so much Sive. This trip wouldn't have been so memorable without your help and advice. Thank you for all the efforts you took to make our honeymoon so special."
"Brilliant communication! Sive answered all my questions straight away and addressed any concerns. Everything was so perfectly planned and easy to follow. I would heartily recommend Mahlatini, and Sive specifically, to friends planning a trip. Thank you a million times over for looking after us!!!!"
"As I've told Sive many times, the way our trip was planned and organised is what made us feel so reassured and so comfortable about booking our first luxury safari. I had full trust in her, she has been a friendly and reassuring presence throughout the whole booking process. She definitely convinced us to book our next safari with Mahlatini. A huge thank you from the Legrand family."
"Amazing, so caring and honest; Sive spent an incredible amount of time with us planning and answering all of our probably painful questions and concerns. She was great - we're recommending to family and friends for sure! "