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Offline LanceC

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Botswana / Namibia / Cape Town 2019
« on: August 29, 2019, 09:53:25 pm »
TRIP REPORT - BOTSWANA & NAMIBIA 2019

VEHICLES TAKEN:
BMW 1200GS Adventure with pillion & Volkswagen Touareg 4x2

ROUTE TAKEN:

Day 1
Fly CT - Jhb. Bike sent up by trailer and car rented at OR Tambo.
Africaren Guest House – 1 km from airport:  A little shabby but friendly and convenient.
Day 2
Big Fig Inn – Martins Drift, SA side:  Well priced, great camping and close to border.
Day 3
Khama Rhino Sanctuary:  From the entrance to the campground is about 5km of extremely thick sand. No chance of doing it on a 1200GSA and the 4x2 got stuck several times and had to be pulled out. Saw no rhinos on the game drive. Camping was nice, restaurant a bit sad looking. All in all not worth the hype.
Day 4
Tuuthebe Lodge:  Nice enough camping area but on concrete.
Day 5-6
Okavango River Lodge:  Stayed in a family cottage, neat and clean. Very nice bar and pool area. The mokoro trip was well worth it but make sure to wear tekkies and take water for a long walk on the island! We decided against the stay over on the island due to too many tourists.
Day 7
Planet Baobab:  Terrible camping, right on top of each other. Total tourist trap, won't go again. Take a pic of the aardvark outside and move on!
Day 8
Elephant Sands:  Quite sandy entrance but not too much of a distance to the camp so worth the odd topple in the sand. Let the tyres down for a better ride. Campsites in the sand and can be dusty and crowded but it's better to move to a campsite away from the waterhole. We still saw loads of elephants, even walking through the camp. Absolutely wonderful and well worth it.
Day 9-11
Senyati River Camp:  Fantastic place. Try to get Chalet Nr 2, it's right in front of the waterhole. Many kinds of animals you can watch while you braai - worth every cent. There's a bar and even a bunker to check the animals up close. Also a great base for visits to Vic Falls and Chobe Game Reserve (which they can arrange for you).
Day 12
Ngepi Camp - Caprivi:  Bit of a long, sandy entrance but a beautiful camp with a lovely bar area and views over the river. 4 km of sand – tyres down to 1.1 front and 1.4 rear. Beautiful outside showers and the toilet is a little hut you have to climb up to get to, but you can have a nice view while you're sitting there!
Day 13
Roy's Rest Camp:  Lovely helpful people, a nice bar area and big campsites.
Day 14
Weaver's Rock:  Stayed in the bush chalets. A bit pricey but incredible views and there's also a nice bar and pool area. The drive up is a little rocky but short and easy to manage.
Day 15
Tiger Reef Campsite - Swakopmund:  No view of the sea but situated close to the beach and there's apparently a beach bar with views. The sites are a little cramped but the amenities are good. Go to the Fork 'n Nice food truck for a wrap! Awesome value and delicious.

Day 16
Tsauchab River Camp:  The C14 wasn't too bad but the D854 to Tsauchab was terrible, not helped by a hostess who just wanted to send us off on our way with a confusing map. The camp was nice though and the oryx wors from their little shop fantastic.
Day 17
Betta Camp:  Day from hell. The C27 is ABSOLUTELY AWFUL. Corrugated, sandy, rocky and goes on forever. Had to do it twice because of visit to Sossusvlei. It sucked every minute and metre. Betta Camp is great though, good camping, clean amenities with a nice shop and petrol pump. 
Day 18
Shark Island Light House - Luderitz:  A whole lighthouse to yourself, best accommodation in Namibia! Quaint throwback to grandma's house with 360˚ views from the balcony.
Day 19
Quiver Tree Rest Camp:  The igloos where we stayed last year were cute but the camping this year was disappointing and the toilets blocked. The hostess is extremely rude and you are forced to pay for a visit to the quiver tree forest and giant's playground whether you want to go or not. It does include a cheetah feeding though, which is nice.
Day 20
Canyon Roadhouse:  Lekker eclectic bar and restaurant and nice camping with lovely bathrooms. Watch out for the kudu's, they steal your padkos during the night. 
Day 21
Fiddler's Creek – SA side of border:  The glamping is worth it with very nice private areas and a nice bar as well as a shop. There's another little shop and bottle store close by, expensive but convenient.
Day 22
Kroon Lodge:  Awful campsites, like chicken coops. Extremely small with no privacy at all.
Day 23
Nama Bike Camp - Klawer:  Very nice bar area but you are no longer allowed to bring your own alcohol which was a bit of a disappointment after 23 days of budgeting with our own booze.   

 


FURTHER NOTES:
1. Watch out for speed traps in Botswana! We got 3 fines, the cops are everywhere! You can try and talk your way down on the price if you're nice and polite.
2. Most of the places we stayed had wifi but only at the restaurant/bar/reception and none at the camps. If it matters to have outside contact buy a local sim card. Note for Botswana you need to register it at one of the booths before it will work. For Namibia get your airtime converted to Aweh-o-Yeah, great value for money.
3. If you braai and do your own booze like us then note that a Botswana town does not usually have a shop and a bottle store. Unless you like sheeps' intestines. So plan your shopping accordingly and try and get your groceries from the larger towns.
4. Take adequate spares such as tubes, gators, glue. If you can – have spare tyres.
5. Have a good compressor – a lot of pumping up to correct pressure stops.
6. Sunscreen ( PF number just means how often you apply it )
7. Camelbak – save last night’s ice and fill it.

« Last Edit: September 09, 2019, 08:39:12 pm by LanceC »
 

Offline eberhard

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Re: Botswana / Namibia / Cape Town 2019
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2019, 10:24:21 pm »
Pictures, pictures, pictures!!!!

Please. Don't be a cock teaser.
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Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: Botswana / Namibia / Cape Town 2019
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2019, 02:19:02 am »
Yes, as eberhard say ...  8)
1978. It's 6am, mid winter...two up on a XL 185S ... off to my first casino ever with all of R40 and we've got a full tank of fuel, so enough to get there we reckon.... that's determination...

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Re: Botswana / Namibia / Cape Town 2019
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2019, 05:23:56 am »

Day 7
Planet Baobab:  Terrible camping, right on top of each other. Total tourist trap, won't go again. Take a pic of the aardvark outside and move on!

Day 8
Elephant Sands:  Quite sandy entrance but not too much of a distance to the camp so worth the odd topple in the sand. Let the tyres down for a better ride. Campsites in the sand and can be dusty and crowded but it's better to move to a campsite away from the waterhole. We still saw loads of elephants, even walking through the camp. Absolutely wonderful and well worth it.


Day 16
Tsauchab River Camp:  The C14 wasn't too bad but the D854 to Tsauchab was terrible, not helped by a hostess who just wanted to send us off on our way with a confusing map. The camp was nice though and the oryx wors from their little shop fantastic.

Day 17
Betta Camp:  Day from hell. The C27 is ABSOLUTELY AWFUL. Corrugated, sandy, rocky and goes on forever. Had to do it twice because of visit to Sossusvlei. It sucked every minute and metre. Betta Camp is great though, good camping, clean amenities with a nice shop and petrol pump.

 
Day 19
Quiver Tree Rest Camp:  The igloos where we stayed last year were cute but the camping this year was disappointing and the toilets blocked. The hostess is extremely rude and you are forced to pay for a visit to the quiver tree forest and giant's playground whether you want to go or not. It does include a cheetah feeding though, which is nice.



Spoton on these places, had the same experience.   :thumleft:


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Offline eberhard

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Re: Botswana / Namibia / Cape Town 2019
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2019, 12:34:22 pm »
Really?? Is that all?! Only 9 pictures over 23 days? I’m tired of elephants - seen enough of them. That one on the desert road is very good.  :thumleft:
« Last Edit: September 11, 2019, 01:08:38 pm by eberhard »
eberhard
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