Sunday, 26 April 2015

From Elizenheim to Lake Oanob near Rehoboth.

Leaving Elizenheim is never welcome with us, but life goes on and we must eventually get home, which to us is the Kruger National Park.  We traveled everywhere in Southern Africa and winter in Punda Maria, we feel cannot be beaten.  Nice and warm, but some evenings can even get cold, but tomorrow things are great again.
On our way south, we had to pass Rehoboth and we were not sure where we will get camping for the night.  Just before Rehoboth, we passed a sign indicating the way to Lake Oanob, a very nice resort with good camping and accommodation and  a restaurant that serves quite nice food.  We forgot to check the date and were quite surprised when they had a noisy party that evening.  Not what we like to hear, but traveling Southern Africa always has its surprises due to the diversity and cultures of the people and we settled in nicely and enjoyed a very good night's sleep.

The huts at Lake Oanob

Fun on the water at the lake

The main guest area with pool and restaurant deck.


Kids playing on the lake.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

From Otjiva to Elizenheim Guest Farm

S22.43586° E17.10013°  That is the coordinates for Elizenheim Guest Farm in Namibia.  One of the best places we visited in any of the Southern African countries.  And tha maybe because the owners at Elizenheim, Andreas and Christina Werner are such great people.  I promise, they do not give us anything for singing their praises!  Just go and see for yourselves!
They offer on their farm, apart from the guest rooms and camping near their homestead, a wonderful place to stay right high up the mountain and also a great 4x4 route to a beautiful dam and camping on the other side of the mountain. Real remote.
If you  are an international Bush Drifter, this is the place to store your camper until you are back in Southern Africa and you need it once more.  Andreas will keep it and prepare it for your trip and even fetch you at the airport before your trip commences.

Bushdrifters just love to park their campers at Elizenheim

The pool and garden at Elizenheim

Even large groups can congregate at Elizenheim Guest Farm

Great, informal and laid-back camping makes Elizenheim very popular with guests from Europe.

Spacious campsites

The Bushies at Elizenheim

Some Bushdrifters go for BIG!

Most are just normal.

Restaurant, pool and free WiFi

Ablutions at the campsite.

A Bushdrifter Paradise!

One LuckyBbushdrifter's vehicle primed for the owner's visit to Southern Africa.

Friday, 17 April 2015

Buschveld Park to Otjiva Lodge

Leaving Buschveld Park and Outjo behind, we traveled on to Otjivarongo where we decided to test the offerings and standard of one of their restaurants.  After a tasty meal, we carried on in search of a good place to sleep over.  

We found Otjiva Lodge a few kilometers past Otjivarongo and found a beautiful lodge with very nice camping sites.  They still believe in the good old tradition to leave enough firewood at the campsites for the free use by campers.

At their lodge, they also offer free WiFi and we found that the internet here was much better than what we experienced further north, so we stayed over for a few days to catch up on some of our work.

We recommend Otjiva Lodge for both camping and other accommodation.

The outside garden and restaurant seating of the Lodge at Otjiva.

A campsite at Otjiva Lodge

The Bushies at one of the large campsites at Otjiva Lodge.

The dam next to the camping sites at Otjiva Lodge

Lunch outside the Lodge at Otjiva

Mamselle to Buschveld Park near Outjo

We passed Buschveld Park on the way to Outjo, decided to go and see what it is like and decided to stay since they have WiFi available.  Coming from the north where internet connections are really slow when you are lucky to even get a signal, we were starved for a bit of nice, fast bandwidth.

We were quite surprised to find the WiFi only marginally better than what we were used to, but spent some time in their lapa where the signal was the best.

We found the owners friendly and the ablutions clean, as well as a very neat garden.  Something happened though and I only later found my camera was set on a setting that makes the pictures come out in a kind of a haze.  Hopefully you will forgive me for that.  I think that the pictures at least give a reasonable reflection of what one can expect at Buschveld Park.

The lodge, the pool and the lapa.

The Bushies under shade and on grass - quite a change after the sand of the kalahari

The lapa where the WiFi is the best.

From Alpec to Mamselle

From Alpec we took the road south towards Outjo through wonderful green landscapes of bushveld and large hills with silver trees growing over and between reddish rocks.  A very rewarding an peaceful trip on a smooth tar road.

Before reaching Outjo, we turned left on the road to Etosha and went to a place called Mamselle where we stayed at on one of our previous trips.  We became friends with the owner's parents, but found only their son and his family there.  News was that the parents are still well and healthy and staying in Walvis Bay.

We enjoyed staying for two nights and then decided to move on to another campsite a little distance nearer to Outjo, called Buschveld Park.

We recommend Mamselle for camping as well as the stay in their little rustic pole hut.  The people are friendly and the amenities are clean.  Hot water available in a "donkey type" geyser. 

Rustic hut with bathroom and inside toilet.  Great in-nature camping!

The Bushdrifters at Mamselle

Sunset at Mamselle

Friday, 10 April 2015

Bushbaby Lodge to Dik-Dik

Leaving Bushbaby Lodge a bit late, we were in quite a hurry to find a camping spot before nightfall and we kept our eyes peeled for signs next to the road indicating a place to camp. 

We felt very relieved when we saw a sign on the left of the road with a little tent and a campfire on it.  We turned in and followed the arrows to an open gate where a message board told us to proceed, pick a camping spot, make a fire with the wood provided and well, camp.

A little further on we saw the neat camping facilities with a water tank, a washing basin and a toilet.  We were supposed to leave R50 per person in the visitors book, but we felt a that we will double the amount to compensate for the firewood we will use.  We then proceeded to unpack our chairs and food and made a nice campfire.  We had our traditional braai and something to drink before we crept into bed and slept like babies through the night.  The next morning, we left early for Tsumeb and a place to stay over.

Tall water tower and small white building for ablutions with bush and green grass.

The basic camping facilities at Dik-Dik.  A beautiful place to stay over on your tour.

Campsites marked out.  Benches and dust bins supplied,

The Bushies at Dik-Dik, a great halfway stop between Grootfontein and Tsumeb

Hakusembe to Bushbaby Lodge

From Hakusembe, we took the road to Grootfontein, a farming area in Namibia.  We refueled and bought some supplies before moving on towards Tsumeb and Etosha.On the way to Tsumeb we passed a notice board advertising Bush baby Safaris.  We entered and drove to the farmhouse and reception on a good gravel road through the bush.

A green, spacious website with large trees at Bush baby Lodge

At the reception we found their price to be on target and we left for the camping sites.  We found a number of large, spacious campsites under shady trees on green grass and decided to stay over for a few days if the internet reception is any good. 

Green lawn, view over the place from up high and a waterhole with animals

The owner visited us and invited us to the lodge and to use the free WiFi they have there.  That sealed it for us and we decided to stay a few days working at the lodge on the mountain, which has a fantastic view over the bush below and also a waterhole where the animals congregated for water.

A waterhole some distance and quite far below with some animals drinking water.

The view on the waterhole from the lodge

A small walkway between trees and scrubs leading to the ablution block.

The walkway to the ablution facilities.

This is a place we recommend for a stay-over during the week.  During weekends they allow day visitors in who tend to be quite noisy and somewhat unruly, so for people who like to spend quiet time in nature, weekends is not the time to visit Bushbaby Safaris.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

From Nunda River Lodge to Hakusembe Lodge

From Nunda River Lodge on pass through Divundu and then onto one of the straightest and most boring roads on our trip.  Next time I will definitely rather take the D3402 gravel road, which I am sure will result in a more adventurous road.  It may even turn into a positive adventure!Rundu is a town that shows a lot of growth and quite a few great, innovative young entrepreneurs like the ones who quickly found us a new window for the Hilux and also another group who quickly changed our flat wheels for new ones.Hakusembe turned out to be right on the Okavango River with Angola on the other side of the river.  We had some misgivings about the fact that there were also some Angolans living on the other side and we could not shake the memories of being freshly robbed at Nunda River Lodge and we were stressing about the possibility of a repeat of that experience.  Luckily nothing like that happened and we were glad to leave after two evenings at Hakusembe.

Hakusembe on the Okavango river.  Deck with nice view, cocktails, food river activities, like fishing for Tigerfish, mokoro trips, etc.  They also have very nice bungalows for those who are not into camping.

Every campsite has it own bathroom, dishwashing facility, campfire facility and sunsets!

Great sunset!

Being a low-lying area next to the Okavango, the grass is green reminding of a golf course.  Beautiful flowers and the roofs of the huts built by the locals in the distance.  A real peaceful scene!

Cattle belonging to the locals peacefully lying next to the road to Hakusembe.

Typical dwelling of a local family.