CREAM OF THE CROP ... Miss Slovenia, Tina Petelin (left), and Miss Slovakia, Barbora Franekova, at the Summer Fashion Show held at the Boardwalk last night. Picture: BRIAN WITBOOI
MISS World contestants traded their extravagant high heels for equally trendy sneakers when they were treated to game drives in the Eastern Cape yesterday.
The 112 contestants were divided into four groups named “Black Rhino”, “African Penguin”, “Martial Eagle” and “Cheetahs”.
The groups were taken on separate excursions at the Kariega Game Reserve, Cape St Francis and Shamwari.
After a tiring two-hour drive to Kariega, just outside Grahamstown, the girls – who had slept through the journey – awoke and geared up for a true African experience.
For Miss Panama, Nadege Elena Herrera Vasquez, 23, the experience was slightly more special as she was celebrating her birthday: “This has been a memorable experience for me.”
The group of 45 girls was most enchanted by the majestic lions, and their gasps and camera flashes had to be monitored by the tour guides because of the felines’ irritable nature. The lions, which are active only four hours out of 24, were wide-eyed and seemed to admire the beauties.
Miss Poland, Anna Jamroz, 21, who had only seen “wild” animals in the movie The Lion King, referred to the lions as “Simba” and was happy finally to come face- to-face with one. “It’s my first encounter with lions. It was a great experience.” she said.
The girls listened attentively as the tour guides educated them on the giraffes with their 45cm tongues, the white rhino with poor eyesight but strong hearing, zebras, waterbuck, blue wildebeest and impala, among others.
Miss Namibia, Happie Ntelamo, called the drive “an unexpected and beautiful surprise”.
Miss Nigeria, Glory Chuku, said she was proud that Africa as a whole was getting exposure and being recognised worldwide.
The day was rounded off with lunch at the game reserve.
The girls will be competing at the Nelson Mandela Bay soccer stadium today in the sports leg of the Miss World competition.
Their activities will include a relay race, a gladiator course, archery, Fear Factor, a penalty shoot-out, adventure arena and other activities.
The winner of the sports leg will have a guaranteed spot among the top 15 finalists of the final competition to be held in Johannesburg on December 12.
Today’s event is unfortunately not open to the public