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Unravel Surf Travel in Kwazulu-Natal

In May 2017 I spent two weeks in beautiful Kwazulu-Natal photographing Unravel Surf Travel Surf Trip with a group of Russian trevellers.

It was the third time that we returned to KwaZulu-Natal for a Surf Trip and for the third year in a row we traveled with a group of clients, all eager to learn surfing while exploring the natural beauty of Southern Africa.  Enjoy the photo highlights of the trip.

Unravel Surf Travel organizes surf trips in South Africa and Mozambique.
More information at http://www.unravelsurftravel.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.

 

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography.www.yourfotostory.com

Have you seen Montenegro like this?

Montenegro is a beautiful country, full of colour, warmth and hospitality. Montenegro is one of the former Yugoslavian countries, situated on the shores of Adriatic sea. It could be described as: Mountains, sea, bright colours and warm people.

Myself and my mother travelled to Montenegro in July, one of the hottest months of summer. We chose a winding Bay of Kotor as our home for the next 10 days. I was excited like a little girl, literally glued to the window, when I saw the views of the bay while descending. We stepped out of the airplane into the heat of + 40 C and I knew this is going to be good!

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

The Bay of Kotor is about 28 km long, cutting through the Dinaric Alps and has a shoreline of 107 km. In other words, you can drive alone the seaside for hours and you will be awarded with the most picturesque views of the turquoise water and lush mountains. If you are visiting Montenegro, rent a car and go explore all these beautiful roads. That was exactly what we did: almost every day we travelled to a new town of Montenegro to learn its history, unravel its beauty and meet new people.

Kotor.

Old town of Kotor have seen action from Roman Empire, Republic of Venice, and both world wars. A walk through the old town of Kotor makes you travel in time. So much happened in this city walls. Well, the town itself and the bay actually are World Heritage sites and protected by UNESCO.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

JZH_9489Lovcen Mountains.

Lovcen Mountain views left me speechless. It was was the most special experience of the whole trip. Twisting mountain road brought us to the top of the world 🙂 We went there specifically during the sunset hours to experience it in its full beauty. The road is a bit scary at times, but so worth the ride. There is a zip-slide for adventurous ones on the way as well as a very nice restaurant on the way back to enjoy the sunset meal.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Perast.

Perast is another cosy town of Kotor Bay, famous for close proximity of two islets of Saint Goerge and Our Lady of the Rocks. We visited Perast on the 22 of July in order to witness  a beautiful celebration. A string of boats from Perast sailed in procession to the tiny island of Gospa od Škrpjela, or ‘Our Lady of the Rocks’, which sits in the waters of the Bay of Kotor.
The legend goes that, once upon a time, sailors from Perast found a picture of the Virgin Mary and the Christ-child here in 1452. There after, the townsfolk vowed that every time a ship returned safely from a voyage, a new rock would be dropped on the site. Over time, their efforts created this tiny island, and a beautiful church was erected in honour of Our Lady.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Turquoise water.

Adriatic sea has has an amazing colour – a mix of light blue and green. Kotor is a very deep bay, its deepest part is approximately 60 meters. The unique feature of the sea floor is that it gets deep very close to the shore. That is how big ships and cruise liners are able to travel into the bay. Despite its depth, the water is extremely clear, and very inviting. Yummy I would say.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Bosnia and Hercegovina

One day we decided to travel to a neighboring country of Bosnia and Hercegovina. Interesting change of scenery compared to Mediterranean views of Montenegro. Its raw rocky mountain beauty strikes you the moment you pass the border control. We traveled to Trebinje, southernmost town of Hercegovina, located on the shores of Trebisnjica river. Town presented itself as a mixture of old Ottoman, Soviet and Serbian feel.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Montenegro vibes

For a Russian, it was very special to experience the culture and people of Montenegro. Majority of people speak Serbian, which is very similar to the Russian language. We spoke Russian to locals and they replied in Serbian, two different languages, but we understood each other perfectly.  It really felt like home. Even the customs officer told me at the border “Russia is sestra (sister) and Montenegro is a bratko (brother)”.  People are very friendly and laid back. There is no rush at all, I mean at all.

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

Jenya Zhivaleva Photography. Your Foto Story

 Jenya Zhivaleva Photigraphy.

Your Foto Story.

Montenegro 2015.

Alina and Sergey’s Wedding on a Surf Tour to South Africa.

Alina and Sergey came to South Africa all the way from Ukraine to join Unravel Surf Travel on a Surf Expedition to KwaZulu-Natal. And guess what, they decided to get married while on surf tour with us! How romantic is that?!

It was a very spontaneous decision, as with so many truly romantic decisions, and preparations for the event only started weeks before the date. What a task! Dreams from Ukraine became reality in South Africa and, from opposite sides of the planet, a special wedding was taking shape!

Even the most challenging projects are possible when you’re part of a dream team. And thanks to our incredible hosts, Ali and Richard, Umzumbe Surf House was transformed into a wedding venue overnight!

We surfed in the morning and in the afternoon we had a beautiful wedding ceremony, on the shores of the Indian Ocean! Alina and Sergey celebrated their union in the company of their closest friends, in a truly special location. Now that’s what I call a memorable wedding!

Photography: Jenya Zhivaleva. Your Foto Story
Place: Umzumbe, KwaZulu – Natal, South Africa.

A love-story photo-shoot turned proposal!

Meet beautiful Russian couple Anya and Roma.

What started as a love-story photo-shoot, ended up with Roma on his knees holding a ring!

These two love-birds joined a recent Surf Еxpedition to Mozambique via Kruger Park, South Africa, organised by Unravel Surf Travel, June/July 2014.

Being an organiser and photographer for Unravel Surf Travel, Roma approached me in advance and told me about his plan to propose to his girlfriend, Anya, during our Surf Tour.

At more or less the same time Anya contacted me and booked a couple’s photo-shoot during the Surf Tour.

Obviously this was the perfect setup for a proposal! Anya would be convinced that she was getting ready for their couple’s photo-shoot, while Roma and myself were preparing for something far more special!

After an hour of taking beautiful photographs of the couple, we moved to a little beach-restaurant where Anya thought we would simply carry on shooting.

But as we moved onto the beach, in the gentle light of a setting sun, I stepped aside and Roma’s eyes started glinting mischievously.

He took Anya’s hand and opened his hand onto hers. At first she had no idea what was happening.

But then she saw the ring. At first there were no words. She had had no idea, but now it was clear. Roma wanted to marry her! She was surprised. She was happy. And I was quietly saying to myself “please say yes, please say yes!”

After a few moments, but what seemed like ages to Roma and myself, she finally said it. Softly. Yes.

There were lots of tears. There was laugher. And there were hugs all around!

It felt incredibly special to be a part of such an important moment in their lives!

They spent the rest of the night alone at their private dinner table on the sand, surrounded by nothing other than stars and the warm Indian Ocean waters along the coast of Mozambique…

All photographs by Jenya Zhivaleva

Place: Barra, Mozambique

 

Point of Human Origins Experience

Last week I joined archaeologist Peter Nilssen on his tour “Point of Human Origins” in Mossel Bay South Africa. Rainy cold day didn’t spoil the experience. It was an exciting interactive talk on our origins and present human condition combined with an archaeological walk to scenic caves.

Until year 2000 it was believed that modern human behaviour first appeared in Eurasia about 50 000 years ago. The Pinnacle Point Caves of Mossel Bay show evidence of modern human behaviour that dates between 72 000 and 162 000 years ago. The evidence suggests that Pinnacle Point of Mossel Bay has the traces of the earliest modern humans. In other words until they find something else, that is where modern humans come from, that is where we come from or have been on our journey.

The big part of the Peter Nilssen’s tour is dedicated to understanding of the human bahaviour 100 000 years ago and comparison with our behaviour today. What was driving humans behaviour back then? Are we any different today? What did modern human back then knew and practiced that we’ve lost today? Where are we going as a specie?

Anyone interested to join the tour please check out the website http://www.humanorigin.co.za/

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