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Author Topic: Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar  (Read 561 times)

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Offline aroundafrika

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Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar
« on: December 20, 2007, 12:17:59 pm »
Hi All,

Planning to ride from Nairobi to Maun in late Feb, going through Arusha to see NgoroNgoro crater then head for Malawi, Zambia hoping to spend a few days on the Kariba dam on a house boat. From there to Vic Falls, possibly staying on the Zambia side and from there to Maun in Botswana.

If anybody's been on that route recently please advise on road conditions and any good stop[s along the way. Distances and time required along the route, etc would be much appreciated.

We are 6 riders on BMW GS 1150'S, we started in Dubai planning to go to Durban eventually.


Offline Maverick

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Re: Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar
« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2007, 06:06:21 pm »
Hey dude, if you don't get much info from here try http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/ there is always somebody on the road or who has done the road recently  8)
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Offline LuckyStriker

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Re: Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2007, 08:53:30 am »
I'm afraid I can only comment on the Botswana part of your trip as I did it earlier this year.

The road from Kazungula to Nata has a perfect highway surface (tarred)
The road from Nata to Maun is also very good (tarred)

The road from Kazungula to Maun through Chobe national park is a very, very bad track.
Not only will you face many, many hours of deep sand, but you will have to avoid elephants and lions as well.
In the rainy season the road turns into a swamp. It is not recommended on a bike

The main roads south from Maun to Ghanzi/Tsabong or Gaberone are all tarred with good surfaces.
Watch out for roaming livestock. NEVER ride at night. Don't exceed the posted speed limits.

Offline Highlander

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Re: Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2007, 11:00:55 am »
Road from Kazangula to Kariba dam is fine but heavy roadworks for 200km odd just before the dam, it goes through a pass there. My wife counted about 10 or so trucks which jack knifed or ran of the road. Gravel sections with trucks flying along, so be carefull there. The works might be close to finish now 12 months later.

The main drag through Lusaka is perfect and also east through kapiri mposhi towards tunduma. Make sure you guys got enough fuel leaving tanzania, cause the fuel stations along the route up to central zambia were all dry.

Tanzania/zambia roads are all fine, you can cruise at 130 without worries of speed traps.

o yes make sure you guys have proper raingear, it gets wet there.

Offline Gus

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Re: Nairobi to Maun Botswana in Feb Mar
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2007, 01:14:16 pm »
I did a trip down that way last year, well in March / April, so nearly two years ago now. That was in a 4x4 vehicle though, so a bit less challenging than you guys, but can maybe give you a few pointers. Bear in mind that you will be there pretty much in the rainy season and what might be a fairly good road when dry will be mush if you get heavy rain. The road up to the Ngorogoro crater from the park gate is one of those so be careful. The crater itself is one of the most jaw dropping, smack in the face, pieces of natural beauty I have ever seen, so it's definitely worth the effort getting up there. Even if the park fees are a rip off and the camp site (Simba A) is crap. I also doubt it if they will let you into the crater on bikes, nice if you could let us know about that though.

The road down from there is gravel most of the way but they were working on it and should be ok. When you get to Dodoma you can decide to go tar to Iringa via Morogoro or gravel/mud/mush the shorter route straight down. I chose the mush, thats just my nature, but I was quite lucky that it didn't rain. You should be ok on that road also if it doesn't rain. From Iringa to both the Zambia and Malawi border is good surface. In Malawi the main road from North to South is newly tarred and good condition, although if you might want to stick by the lake if you're after the adventure of it.

When you cross into Zambia from Lilongwe side and looking for a place to stay check out Mama Rulas in Chipata, awesome spot. From there to Lusaka it's mostly tarred surface all the way. Also a nice place to stay in Lusaka is Eureka campsite on the road south. The Botswana part has been covered a bit already, so good luck and let us hear of your experiences. Definitely a trip I'd love to do again but this time by bike.