2 Day River Rafting in Nambia
We started our tour in Namibia with a 2-day river rafting trip that covered 43 km of rowing over 2 days and slept on the banks of the river under the stars on a huge groundsheet.
Hammerstein Lodge and Big Cat Rehabilitation Centre
Next, we were on our way to Swakopmund – sleeping over at Hammerstein Lodge and Big Cat Rehabilitation centre.
The Leopard is an amazing cat. We first couldn’t find it in the camp, then at closer inspection, we saw that it was actually lying 2 metres from the fence and it was so well camouflaged we were looking right at it and didn’t see it till the cat moved.
The cheetahs were a lot tamer so we could walk through their camp as long as we kept quiet and reasonably still – it was a very enthralling feeling.
Solataire, Sossusvlei and Sesriem Canyon
Next stop was Solataire, which followed a day of long distance driving and then climbing sand dunes at Sossusvlei and Sesriem Canyon. The sand dunes didn’t look that big until we started climbing them.
Sesriem canyon was formed by a river that washed out the canyon which is exactly the depth of putting 6 horse reins together. Thus the name “Sesriem Canyon”.
Walvis Bay and the Pink Flamingos
Walvis Bay, our next stop, is renowned for their Pink Flamingos feeding in the lagoons next to the harbour.
They get their pink colour from the prawns and shrimps they manage to get out of the lagoon banks. As they wade in the water you see how they disturb the sand to get their food moving and swoop in to scoop up their prey.
Swakopmund has definitely crept into my heart as a town I will definitely come to visit again. Many of the building’s architecture in the town got their origin from Germany, giving the town a story like feel.
Spitskoppe has amazing rock formations and a sunset to die for. The rock archway which forms a natural frame for the Spitskoppe in the background is a sight to see.
Etosha National Park
We then went on to Etosha National Park which I loved. The animals were in supreme condition and I was privileged to see Black Rhino in nature. It was a sight for sore eyes after all the media on how Rhinos are being slaughtered all over Africa.
We also saw Zebra, Springbok, Gemsbok, Wildebeest and my favourite animal – The Giraffe, who gave me a fantastic photo when I got a full frontal of a beautiful stare. What long eyelashes…
We even saw an elephant taking a mud bath
We spent our evening at the waterhole, admiring all the beautiful animals.
The Hoba Meteorite at Grootfontein
The Hoba meteorite at Grootfontein is an interesting stop to investigate the bit of extra-terrestrial element on earth
Roys camp was amazing after spending a couple of days sleeping on the floor in a tent and bush toilets. Having my own room with a flush toilet and shower with hot water was a treat. It also has a bush internet cafe
Ngepi Camp on the Kavango River
Next onto Ngepi camp on the Kavango river. This camp has an amazing atmosphere and is situated with views of the river and Hippos swimming by and feeding on the grasses in the river, bellowing and sometimes sounding like they are right outside the tent.
It has fantastic facilities for a bush camp and the bush toilets and showers have a lot of amusing signs and even a bush mirror.
There is also a pool in the river where you can swim with the crocs and hippos without fearing they going to eat you as it has a metal cage that surrounds and separates you from the wild animals in their natural environment.
Botswana – Maun
The next morning we made our way to the Botswana /Namibia border and then into Botswana and onto Maun, where we stayed at the Delta rain campsite. Early the next morning drove into the delta were we caught our Mokoro’s into the Delta.
The polers use a long stick to propel the boat forward and steer it at the same time. They stand in the boat and balance, steer and propel all at the same time. These people are really skilled as we tried it the next day and it is not as easy as it looks.
The Delta has islands totally surrounded by water. We were poled out for an hour and a half before we reached our island. Our campsite was situated under a large sausage tree. It was our home for the next 2 days.
Here we went for guided walks and encountered zebra and warthogs. Our guide then spotted a heard of elephants in the distance, but as we got closer a Male elephant started getting agitated and we decided it was best to keep our distance and admired the heard from afar.
It is a strange feeling when you have nothing between you and a supreme animal like an elephant. You feel very vulnerable and the respect for the wild and elephants elevates to the next level.
We returned back to camp and was lucky enough to experience another amazing sunset.
The next day we were taken to a part of the delta that had a large pool that was in the territory of a hippo family. At first, there were no hippo’s to be seen then in the distance we first heard the hippo then we saw it as he swam towards us to investigate these intruders in his environment.
The polers had placed the mokoro’s in such a way that we were parked in the reeds against an island thus not causing the hippo’s any distress and when we didn’t create a threat towards the hippo he happily turned around and swam away leaving us to be thankful that we were of no interest to him .
Our trip back was once again during a sunset I will always remember and took a couple of photo’s that could only hope to bring that scene any kind of justice.
Back to Namibia
The next morning it was time to go back to Namibia. We slept over in Windhoek in tents and it’s here that we experienced our coldest weather of -2 degrees. Our tents were frozen in the morning.
We then went on to Keetmanshoop. Here we watched cheetahs being fed.
AiAis – Hot Springs
We then went to AiAis – hot springs – a great place to relax a sore body that is not used to sleeping on the floor so often anymore. I even decided to enjoy a foot, neck and back massage
Back To Cape Town
Our last night was back at Noordoewer and from there it was back to Cape Town and home.
It was an amazing trip, I totally fell in love with Namibia and Botswana and I will definitely be back to do some more exploring in both countries.
Guest Post and Photos by
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