Your Hosts: Terry O’Connor & Paul Rigby
Terry O’Connor and Paul Rigby first fell in love with South Africa 20 years ago. So much so, that if a chapeau was dropped, they would take off to take in another thrilling tour.
Over time they added more and more pieces to their jigsaw. Wild cat days in the Kruger; high life nights in Cape Town; Drakensberg hikes and garden route meanderings.
They became hooked on the blood red dust of safari, misty African sunrises and sunsets that bathed them in gold. They yearned for the smell of fresh rain, the scent of blooming honeysuckle and freesia. They constantly longed to see what was fast becoming their spiritual home again.
Then one evening, over champagne sundowners and under twinkling stars, Terry and Paul had a light bulb moment. They decided they would build a South African home from home and share their secret haven further afield.
And so out of love for the land, South African Secrets was born…
This intimate privately run business specializes in creating dream-come-true bespoke holidays. Just tell them your passions and Terry and Paul will build a special itinerary to fit the bill. With local on-the-ground knowledge that is seldom matched by bigger companies, South African Secrets has multiple gems up their khaki shirt sleeves.
Paul is a respected equestrian instructor and the perfect companion to lead an unforgettable on-horseback Big 5 safari, where it is not uncommon to come nose-to-nose with a rhino.
Terry is a seasoned bon viveur, happy to recommend the best food and wine experiences known to South Africa, organize a high-end journey on the legendary Rovos Rail, book a private helicopter ride over stunning scenery, or simply take you to a local good times braai.
Just recently, a visiting geologist wanted to include some research into his trip. Terry and Paul knew exactly the individual rocky outcrops he was looking for. And years of building relationships with idyllic hideaways have produced a little black book to die for. Nothing can better the secrets of local knowledge.
Terry and Paul created their luxury house ‘Indlwana’ in 2014 on a private estate in Ballito, a stone’s throw from the stunning Dolphin Coast and the historic Boer Battlefields. It soon became a luxury stop-off point for families and couples alike and is considered the jewel in the crown of the hand-picked accommodation South African Secrets offers their customers.
In 2019 Terry and Paul cemented their relationship with the country and each other, by marrying at a secret picturesque spot near Mkuze Falls, surrounded by family, friends, rangers, cheetah and lions.
Today, they divide their time between South Africa and Warwick, but the call of the wild is never far from home. Cue their feisty company dog (heart of a lion, body of a Jack Russell) trotting in. Answering to the name of Zulu. Naturally. In Terry and Paul’s lives, all roads lead to South Africa.