A road trip around Botswana over the Christmas holidays seemed like a perfect way for us to see the country we live and work in and to quench our desire to be out in the bush, mixing up some camping with some lodge accommodation and seeing what Botswana has to offer along the way. Little did we know how unprepared we’d be for a seemingly simple but exciting trip!
Having planned the trip around 4 months prior, we had made all necessary bookings and deposits and payments and had spent the last couple of months of 2016 getting the last bits and pieces of gear for our epic, 12-day #RBOFAroundBotswana road-trip. The plan was to go North from Gaborone and visit all the “main” places that one should visit around Botswana - mainly camping/lodge, bush, safari, self-drive related. We had a vehicle (Toyota RAV4 AWD, with newly fitted all-terrain tyres and roof rack) that could get us to where we wanted to go, or so we thought, and all the necessary gear to allow us to camp at some places and then get a bit pampered at others. So at 9am on Christmas day, our overly-loaded RAV4 pulled out of the drive-way and onto our first stop-over, the Khama Rhino Sanctuary (KRS) near Palapye, almost 300km away.
By 13:30 we had reached our campsite at KRS, having bought a few bags of firewood at the reception on our way in. The clouds that had been following us all the way from Gaborone had made for pleasant driving but seemed to hover over us as we set up camp. Nevertheless, we had arrived, our long-awaited road-trip had begun and we were going to enjoy it! After setting up camp and having a drink as we started to unwind after a busy year, we went for a short drive to the pans to see what animals were out and about that afternoon.
We reached the first pan to find a couple of giraffe and their buddies the white rhino hanging around the watering hole. There wasn’t much activity there, so after a few photos we moved on to the second pan where we saw three pickups parked right by the water, a few men standing next to the vehicles and a couple of them in BDF (Botswana Defence Force) uniforms. Our binoculars showed us that there was rhino lying in the water hole, on his side and not being able to get up and/or out. The animal struggled a couple of times to try and get up, but couldn’t and then lay back down again. We could not hear what the men were saying, but after a few more minutes, they all got in their vehicles and drove away, leaving the rhino where it lay. Ten minutes later we decided to head back to camp as it was getting late but we would ask at the reception the next day what happened (which we never did…).
Back at camp we had the fire going strong, table and chairs set up, having some Amarula on the rocks and getting dinner going. The clouds still loomed over us and a cool breeze was flowing through the campsite. I had bought a light-weight and compact set of Kovea camping pots so as to not carry around heavy cast-iron pots with us for camping. We would use them where ever we camped and I’d do my first product-review on them for the blog (which I never did…). As we prepped for dinner, the wind began to pick up, bringing with it a raindrop here and there. The rain began around 19:30 and that was the beginning of the end of our camping trip.
What followed was a drastic increase in rain fall, increase in wind intensity and decrease in temperature. The rain forced us to huddled inside our tent with our unpacked bags and rolled up sleeping mattresses, with only a thin blanket to keep us warm. “It will stop” I assured my wife, “It can’t go on all night,” but boy was I wrong. At around 9pm, the wind was still blowing outside, enough to make our nylon tent sway a little and have the sides of the tent and the fly-sheet touch, thus leading to water dripping into the tent. Awesome. We then decided to make a dash for the car, turn up the heater and wait in there for the rain to stop. With the digital clock in the car showing 23:00, the rain was falling as hard as ever and our looks at each other shared the same sentiment, “We have to get out of here”. Dina wasn’t feeling that great, so I went out into the rain in my slippers and socks to pack up our stuff. I got the rest of our gear out of the tent and along with our soaking chairs and table, stuffed them somehow back into the car. Now to manage the tent which in the dark, with the wind, cold and rain, was not an easy thing to do. I yanked the pegs out from the ground and managed to pull out the poles leaving the tent flat (and open) on the muddy ground. I threw the poles into the car and started folding the tent up as quickly as possible. A couple of folds from the end I realised that a balloon of water had collected at the bottom of the tent and that I had to get it out somehow. I tried squeezing the balloon hoping the water would pour out somewhere, but that water wasn’t budging for no one! Dina had gotten out to help but a sick stomach made her stop and get back in the car. There was no way I was going to unfold the entire tent to get that water out and then refold it again as it would be as pointless as emptying water from a sinking boat.
It was late, cold, wet and windy and we were cold, wet, sick and hungry. Without hesitation I carried the tent over to the large trash can, opened the lid, threw the tent into the bin, closed the lid and made my way back to the car, sloshing over the mud-covered groundsheet which was still pegged to the ground. I jumped in the car, got the engine running, turned up the heater and told Dina to buckle up. “Where’s our tent?!” she asked me curiously. I calmly replied that I had thrown it away and that we’re heading back to Palapye to find a hotel room. Not one more word was said between us as we drove through “rivers and lakes” on our way back to the entrance gate. A wrong-turn here, a bit of sliding-in-the-mud there, and we made it to the gate. The rain was still water-falling down as the gate guard let us out. We were out and on the tarred road, still in the pouring rain and darkness driving back the 60km to Palapye. Around 01:30 that night we walked into the reception-area of the Cresta Hotel in Palapye with our soaking bags, our soaking clothes and our soaking selves, much to the surprise of the clearly-sleepy desk clerk who had, in his surprise at seeing us, knocked over his glass of let’s say juice, which had spilled all over the floor. He was very quick to help us settle into our cosy room, where we set the air con to heat and where we were sound asleep in the warm beds after a hot shower. Right before I drifted off to sleep, I thought to myself how I had laughed at all the forum-comments I had read in preparation for this trip, about how campers had thrown away their tents after their trip or had gotten wet during a massive storm on the coast. “What amateurs” I had said to myself just a few days ago. Yup, what amateurs indeed.
On day 2 of our trip, according to our carefully planned itinerary, we were supposed to make our way to Planet Baobab, near Gweta, on our way to Maun. We were going to camp there as well. Well, we had planned to camp there… Can’t really camp without a tent. The weather forecast was showing rain and more rain all over the place. Maun was getting a lot of rain. We had planned to spend a few days in Maun, see the town, go Mokoro riding on the Okavango Delta, see about perhaps doing a short plane flight over the Delta as well - all activities that require nice, rain-less days to do them in. So basically, without a tent and with the rain being very active the next few days, we decided to ditch our carefully crafted plan, spend the rest of the day in Palapye and then get a fresh start in the morning and head straight for Kasane where we were planning on going to after Maun anyway.
After breakfast we spent a couple of hours unpacking, cleaning, drying, sorting and repacking our stuff and the RAV4. We looked like a travelling gypsy-circus in the parking lot, with all our stuff lying around the car, wet and muddy. I threw away the tent poles I had carefully, although ironically, managed to salvage the night before, we repacked everything and made a little more room than we had before and agreed that even though our trip had had a terrible start, we were going to turn it around, change some plans and make the most of it and that’s just what we did.
We started that afternoon by going for a drive to the nearby Goo-Moremi Gorge where one can go on a couple of hiking trails with their guides to see amazing waterfalls and large vulture colonies. After the small village of Moremi the dirt road turned into muddy and slippery sludge and at one point we stopped to assess the situation and think about going back. We had no idea how much further we had to go and the rest of the road looked even worse. Plus we had to make the drive back and more dark rain clouds were coming from the south. We figured we had enough rain-related situations for now, so we turned around and headed back to Palapye.
The following, cloudy morning we bid farewell to the welcoming Cresta Hotel, filled up just outside of Palapye and by 08:30 were on our way to Kasane, via Francistown and Nata. We had Googled the location of a Cape Union Mart store in Francistown where we would stop to buy a couple of warm jerseys, as we had not quiet prepared ourselves for this type of weather. A couple of hours later we were at Cape Union Mart at Galo Mall (GPS coordinates: 21.169942, 27.514000) buying a couple of warmer jerseys that were on a post-Christmas sale! We were soon on our way as we didn’t want to reach Kasane after dark as we were told how elephants cross the road to Kasane and it can be dangerous during the day, let alone at night.
The road out of Francistown on to Nata is, plainly put, horrible! For the next 20-30km, potholes are more prominent on the road than the actual tar. There are sections where we would drive on the gravel next to the road as it was smoother than the tarmac. Once we passed that minefield, the road smoothed out and while it was easier to drive, one still needs to be wary of cattle hanging out by the road side, ready to cross the road in the blink of an eye. About 100km from Nata we joined the back of a small convoy over overlanders, led by a Land Cruiser towing a trailer followed by a fully-equipped Land Rover Defender. We kept a respectable distance from the Landy as he was going at a good speed, not too fast, not too slow, and we figured they’re going to Nata as well, so might as well not travel alone then. At the Engen filling station in Nata we stopped to fill up before the final stretch to Kasane. The Defender who had taken another turn earlier pulled up next to us and nods of overlanding-approval were exchanged.
In Nata there is a small fork in the road. Left goes to Maun and right goes to Kasane. We took the right turn this time but promised we would come back and take the left one, one day! The 300km from Nata to Kasane flew by quickly, not that we were speeding, but because it’s a nice road to drive and once the “Elephant Crossing” signs start popping up, it became an exciting road to drive as well. 50km from Nata is the Elephants Sands lodge, which was on our planned route back and we now knew where it was.
It’s safe to say that we saw at least 15 elephants on total on the remainder of that journey to Kasane, along with zebra, impala and baboons. Some elephants were right by the road, munching on some leaves from the nearby trees, while a couple of lone elephants even crossed the road as we approached. We slowed down, took photos and admired these great beasts as they lumbered off into the green thicket.
Around 18h, while the sun was still barely in the skin we reached the small town of Kasane, in the most Northern part of Botswana, literally on the banks of the Chobe river, at the gateway to the magnificent Chobe National Park. As we were arriving a couple of days before the planned date, we had booked a couple of extra nights at the Chobe Safari Lodge where would be staying. We drove through the one main road of Kasane (President's Avenue), seeing the lodges along the way, all the safari vehicles driving around and the warthog families crossing the street at pedestrian crossings!
Chobe Safari Lodge is the last lodge at the end of the street. A mix-up with the room arrangements had us spending the first night at the Chobe Bush Lodge, and we would then be transferred to the Safari Lodge the next day. The Bush Lodge is the sister lodge to the Safari Lodge, as both are run by the same company, Under One Botswana Sky. The Safari Lodge was established in 1959, as the proud sign states at the entrance and faces the river, while the 2-year old Bush Lodge is still new and faces the national park. We checked into our very modern, comfortable room with it’s large wooden terrace and had a drink on the terrace before heading to the restaurant for dinner. After our tastey meal of ostrich kebabs, we returned to our room, let down the mosquito nets and went to bed, looking forward to our extended stay in Kasane.
The next morning, the sun had dispersed the clouds a little and we had enjoyed our room and the peaceful vibe that we decided to stay at the Bush Lodge for the duration of our stay and not go back to the Safari Lodge. We did however request to move into a room that was a bit further away from the kitchen and reception as we could hear everything from there. As my wife put it, she felt like she had to answer the phone everytime it rang at the front desk. We were quickly moved to a new room in another block, further from the reception and kitchen area. They even brought us a small bar fridge on our request as we had some foodstuffs from our small, thermo-electric cooler, which we needed to keep refrigerated.
We went to explore the town a bit and came across a vibrant little place called
Coffee Buzz, which is part of an establishment called Kalahari Holiday Tours. It’s essentially a small cafe with colourful decor, a pool, a relaxed garden and a curio shop, only a pathway through the trees away from the Chobe river. Rex Kelly and his wife run the place and they run Kalahari Tours as well, which offers boat cruises on the river, game drives through the park and even over-night camping as well. Over a tastey lunch of homemade mince beef bobotie and rice washed down with a local St. Louis lager, we made our plans during our visit to Kasane. We wanted to go on both a boat cruise (to see the hippo) and a game drive (to see the elephant) and since Kalahari Tours do both, we booked both activities with them for the following day.
On our way back to the lodge, we stopped at the local Spar (GPS: -17.796071, 25.152581), which is in one of the two shopping malls on President’s Avenue (the other has a Choppies Supermarket (GPS: -17.804531, 25.147717), to buy some drinks, sandwhich ingredients and milk for our coffees, although the room does get stocked daily with coffee, tea, sugar and milk packets. The Bush and Safari Lodges are joined by the campsite, which also looks out onto the river and is right at the doorstep of the Sedudu Bar, which is a large terrance-bar, overlooking the river and the Namibian coastline on the other side. Even with the weather being as gloomy and wet as it was, most of the campsites were occupied, although those campers were seasoned and had the gear to prove it. No weak, nylon tents for them, no sir!
At 6am, we were on the terrace of our new room, which overlooked the lush greenery of the national park, where warthog families, baboon troops and the occasional impala wander by, and were staring up at the sky wondering if our boat cruise would be rained-on or not. The clouds were there, but didn’t look that threatening (we had become cloud experts over the past couple of days it would seem). We arrived at Coffee Buzz around 9am and by 09:30, along with a number of other tourists from all over the world (US, Japan, China, Australia...) were heading out the back garden down a path to the small dock on the river bank, to our boat. David was our guide and captain, he welcomed us on board and we set off. David explained a bit about the Chobe river and park, the border between Botswana and Namibia and the importance of Sedudu island.
We reached the park-entry point, on the river, where we stopped and David went to handle the entry fees, which are included in the amount we paid Kalahari Tours for the entire package. As we set off again, we could already see hippos and some antelope on the islands dotting the river between the Botswana and Namibian coasts. A large fish eagle soared above us and as we cruised leisurely along, we encountered more and more pods of hippos. Some were wallowing in the water together, others were off on their own, eating the green grass or flinging their feces around with their tail to mark their territory and impress any females around. As we rounded a bend in the river, we saw more impala and warthog on the river bank, and two single elephants off in the distance. Camera shutters were clicking as everyone wanted to get a shot of the majestic elephants and who knows if we’d see any more! As we got closer to the elephants and rounded another bend, a whole herd of elephant was coming out of the tall trees to the water’s edge, weaving in-between game vehicles on the road which stood between them and their water source. At one point there must have been at least 30 elephants of all sizes on the river bank, some drinking, some wading in mud, some playing with each other. We could get onto the top deck of our boat for a much better view and to get some good photos. In all the elephant excitement, no one had noticed two large hippos, camouflaged and lying in the mud, mere metres away from our boat, until they let out a grunt and caused some nervous laughter among the visitors.
We were soon on our way back to the shoreline and our lunch, which was ready and waiting for us at the Coffee Buzz. The buffet looked and smelled delicious, offering chicken, beet meatballs, rice, mash, salads, quiche and dessert. By 13:30, we were splitting up in groups for the game drive into the park that afternoon. The one group was going for a game drive and then to camp for the night somewhere in the park, and the other group was just going on a 3-hour drive around the park. We were in the second group going just for the day and a short drive later we were parked outside one of the gates of the Chobe National Park, waiting for our driver and guide, Furimbi, to sort out our park entry fees at the reception (which were also included in the price we paid at the start).
We were quickly moving again and were listening to Furimbi share some facts with us about the park, it’s massive size and how many elephants roam this bush. Around 90,000 elephants can be found in the Chobe National Park, which is the largest concentration of elephant in Africa. As such, the BDF with the support and backing of the Government of Botswana are always on patrol in the park, watching out for poachers and keeping the elephants safe. There is a BDF camp on the river bank which can be seen from the boats. We were following the dirt road to get the river bank and along the way saw baboons, impala, warthog, a dead elephant in the distance and even a couple of elegant giraffe. As we approached the river, we were greeted by more elephants, still soaking up the mud and even a couple of Cape Buffalo who were seemingly unwelcome guests at the elephant's party.
We could see more zebra, hippo and sable on the islands dotting the shoreline as well as more elephant on the left side, nearer to the trees. A highlight of the drive, apart from the elephants, was the sighting of a couple of fish eagles sitting together on a branch of a tall tree, surveying the bush and river bank without being noticed by their fellow wildlife. Furimbi informed us that it’s not often a pair of Fish Eagles is seen together and when they get together, they stay together for life and if one dies, the other doesn’t find another mate.
We eventually turned away from the river to a higher road and were essentially on our way back when we came across another small herd of elephant, but these ones were, interestingly, all huddled underneath one large tree and enjoying the shade. About 5-6 large elephants stood around a couple of calves that were sleeping on the ground. The sheer amount of elephant we saw and how close we were to them made up for not seeing any lion or leopard on the drive.
By 16:30 we were back at the Kalahari Tours office where we popped into the office, which works until 18h, and found out that we could book through them, a day-trip to the Victoria Falls. We didn’t know what the weather would be like, but thought we’d give it a go and hope for the best. We’d be collected from our lodge at 7am the next morning and so off we went to find an exchange office to buy some US Dollars for our day-trip into Zimbabwe to see the great falls. We found an exchange office that was open, along the main road, just before the police office and hospital.
At 7am sharp, Joe, our driver and guide from Wild Cars & Guides was waiting for us outside our lodge. We picked up a couple of energetic old ladies who had come by themselves on a roadtrip all the way from Johannesburg in South Africa. Another family from Namibia joined us and soon the little combi (minibus) was on it’s way to the Botswana-Zimbabwe border at Kazangula, about 10km away. Our border crossing was relatively quick, even with our delay of getting visas for our Serbian passports, which cost US$30 each and were relatively quickly issued.
The road to the town of Victoria Falls isn’t much better than the pothole-infested road outside of Francistown but we still arrived at our destination about 40 minutes later. Joe parked the van behind a local market and we crossed the street over to the entrance of the Victoria Falls. As residents of a SADC country (Botswana), we paid US$14 while normal entry fee is US$30 (The US$ is equal to the Zimbabwe $, so they can give you change back in Dollars). We heard that the spray from the falls can get you really wet, so either bring your own raincoat or buy one from the vendors across the street.
A path winds its way through the green forest from the entrance to the statue of famous English missionary and explorer, David Livingstone, who named the falls, upon his discovery, after the queen of England at the time, Queen Victoria. The path then runs parallel to the falls, with view points of various sizes and proximity to the falls dotted along the way.
We did get slightly damp from the mist of the falls, and it was extremely humid, but I guess that’s much better than getting soaked by the rain. The sun came out and we were treated to a spectacular rainbow in the gorge, coming off the bottom of the waterfalls and creating a rather surreal experience. At the "Danger Point", view point there is no fence or hedge or boundary, but some slippery rocks and the sudden edge that leads to the rocks about 100m below. The views from here are spectacular but do be careful.
We proceeded along the path and eventually reached the end from where you can see the train bridge that crosses the gorge which is famous for the bungee-jumping that you can do from the bridge. We watched as a few people dared to try it and jumped and screamed with joy. We headed back to the entrance as the group was to reconvene there around 13h, as Joe had made lunch reservations for us at the Look-Out Cafe, a short distance away. While we waited for everyone to gather, Dina and I went across the street to the market where, after some price negotiations, we bought a few Nyami-Nyami necklaces, a typical souvenir when visiting the Falls.
The Look Out Cafe is perched up on the edge of the gorge, with a terrace that hangs over the edge and a grassy knoll with tables and chairs that looks out on the bridge (from the opposite side to where we saw the bridge by the Falls) and a platform from where you can go on an extreme swing "ride" above the gorge. We had local Zambezi lager with our crocodile kebabs which were delicious even though they tasted like moist, tender chicken. Around 14h we got back in the van and were heading back to the border post. No queues coming back either and we were shortly in Kasane, being dropped off at our lodge. I inquired with Joe, who works and lives in Kasane, if he could recommend a mechanic to investigate a rattling sound on the left side of our RAV4. He explained where in Kazangula I could find a mechanic and that they should be open tomorrow, even though it was New Year’s Eve.
Another wet and gloomy day greeted us, but that was alright as we didn’t have any fixed plans for the rain to ruin. After breakfast and coffee on the terrace, which was interrupted by a curious baboon who took a fancy to my sandwich, we were on our way to Kazangula to find a mechanic that could figure out what was making the rattling sound by the left front wheel. Quickly enough we found Soli and Nick of Shatars Investments - Radiator Repairs, Mechanics and Panel Beating (GPS: -17.806270, 25.245655) who were a couple of local mechanics willing to help us out. After removing the wheel, and checking the brakes, it turned out that a clip had come loose on the brake pad and was causing a rattling sound everytime the wheel went over the slightest of bumps in the road. Soli did what he could to reduce the rattling, but said that a new clip was needed but that there was no danger of anything breaking or falling off, just that the occasional rattle may be heard. Having thanked and paid them for their help, we headed back to Kasane noting the location of Thebe Safari Camp, on the way back, as we were told that they have great pizzas at their restaurant.
Just before the road reaches Chobe Safari Lodge, there is a turn to the left that winds up the hill toward the airport and in the direction of the National Park entrance. A little way along this road is the Caracal's World of Wildlife, a small reptile and bird park which we thought we’d check out (GPS: -17.808241, 25.153075). Turn off by the large red containers and you’ll get to a small parking area and a gate. Once inside, we were greeted by a young lady who took us and a couple of other tourists on a short guide around the park, showing us the injured and/or healing owls, bush-babies, tortoises and a number of snakes, including the black mamba and the Gabon Adder. The tour was short and not as informative as we’d like, but the community-made effort is present and visible and they are playing an import role in looking after injured and illegally imported animals, birds and snakes!
Back in Kasane we went to visit the massive baobab trees in the yard of the local police station. The tree in front was used as a post office and prison at one point many years ago, while the one in the back is even grander and towers over the building. It’s estimated that the trees are around 600 years old. That evening we decided to try the pizza that was recommended and headed over to the Thebe Safari Camp restaurant (GPS: -17.785875, 25.181240) and were welcomed by a friendly local-bar atmosphere, good music, sports on the TV and cold beer. Without much hesitation, we each ordered the Thebe Carnivore Pizza, which smelt and looked amazing, but was so filling that we couldn’t even finish them! Half-way through our meal, the rain started pouring again. Flashbacks of that first night at KRS came back to us. We laughed nervously as we enjoyed the pizza and cold beer on the 31st of December at the most Northern point of Botswana. After dinner we headed back to the lodge in the pouring rain and waited out the old year on our terrace, sipping Amarula on the rocks, listening to the rain pour over the bush and the Chobe National Park in front of us.
New Year’s day was our last day in Kasane, and we spent it walking around town, seeing what it has to offer and looking for potential places to visit next time we come. That evening we had cocktails by the pool bar at our lodge and thought about the next phase of our journey the following day. The plan was to make the 250km journey to Elephant Sands just before Nata where would stay in tented accommodation followed by 2-nights of camping at the Limpopo River Lodge in the Tuli Block before heading back to Gaborone. Since we were still tent-less, we would then have to see if we could get space at a rondavel or chalet if we even made it to the lodge.
We left Kasane on January 2nd, 2017 filled up at the Engine just outside the town, bought a couple of fresh pies and made our way back south to Elephant Sands. The road from Kasane was again an exciting one to drive as there were more elephants roaming by the roadside. One lone bull elephant was standing right next to the road, having a drink from a water puddle and watching as cars slowed down as they passed him. The road South from Kasane to Nata does have a vet-fence check point at which you will have to dip all your shoes in an anti-foot & mouth disease solution, drive your car through the same solution and also allow the guards to inspect your coolboxes for fresh meat.
We reached the lodge at Elephant Sands around 13:00 (GPS: -19.749655, 26.071938), with a heavy, dark cloudy looming over us all the time. We were shown to our large tent, which was in a cluster among other tents, that surrounded a small watering hole which was opposite the restaurant and bar area. Closing off the circle between the large tents and the restaurant is a small, unshaded camp site. The tents are large, have ensuite bathrooms (toilet, basin and shower with hot water), a large comfy bed, large windows and lights. There are no electrical power points in the tents or chalets.
We went down to the bar area, where we managed to charge our phones and put our small electric cooler to run for a bit as we had drinks by the watering hole. There were a number of other overlanders, campers and overseas tourists hanging out there as well and we were all treated soon enough by a large elephant making his way through the campsite over to the water hole for a refreshing drink and splash. With so much rainfall, there are other water sources in the area, so there weren’t many elephant coming to the water hole at the lodge, but we were all thrilled to see this elephant so close up and peaceful and calm. After drinking its fill, the elephant walked around the tents, eating the green grass and just hanging out in the area.
We had a scrumptious dinner followed by a drink by the pool and headed back to our tent for a night cap and plan for tomorrow. Going to the Limpopo River Lodge was out of the question as the rains had probably made the 30km dirt road probably un-passable for a non 4x4 and there was no guarantee that there would be available accommodation for us (and there was no cellphone signal for us to call the lodge and check). We decided to go to Palapye the next day and not have to make the long drive to Gabs in one day. We had a leisurely breakfast in the morning and headed off to Nata, stopping there to fuel-up and then made the 4-hour drive down to Palapye, bypassing Francistown this time. We arrived at the Majestic Five hotel on the outskirts of Palapye at around 16h (GPS: -22.576722, 27.082364). We relaxed by the poolside bar, rested in our air-conditioned room and then had a nice dinner of beef and pap with “morogo” (spinach). We checked-out after breakfast, I emptied a whole jerry can of fuel into the tank, so as to avoid having to stop anywhere along the way. The drive back was uneventful, except for the occasional roadblock and police helicopter, reminding us that we were on our way back to civilisation.
I told Dina about what I was thinking about that first night as we lay in the warm bed at the Cresta Hotel, about how I had laughed at the forum comments about the amateurs who had thrown away their tents. She laughed as well. We agreed then and there that this was not the end of our travel adventures around Botswana, but only the beginning. Alanis Morisette has that one hit song, called “You Live, You Learn”, which was exactly what we were doing. Next time, we’d be better prepared and learning is all part of the experience, because no matter how many forum comments and websites you explore, nothing teaches you better than going out there and doing it yourself!
Click here to visit our YouTube channel to see a few more video clips from our trip. Below is the full photo gallery recollecting all the moments from the #RBOFAroundBotswana road-trip:
"We are a Botswana-based couple who live for those outdoor, bush-bound moments."