sand dunes, victoria falls, okavonga delta, tropical beaches
12/1/08 - 12/29/08 100 °F
Since our last entry we have been covering a lot of ground and seeing a different side of Africa. We started out by travelling to Namibia with the main highlight being the amazing sand dunes of Soussevlei. Some of these dunes are over 500 meters high and thousands of years old. We were allowed to climb only one dune with an approximate height of 150 meters. The colors and feel of the sand was amazing and we would definitely rank it as one of the highlights of our trip so far.
Next stop was the Caprivi strip and the Okvonga Delta. The main highlights were the hippos and A mokkoro trip. After staying along the Caprivi river,in a campsite with the most interesting toilets in the world we crossed over from Namibia into Botswana. This portion of our trip involved some serious hitchhiking. It started off easy enough but soon we ended up waiting 5 hours for a ride. Lucky for us the Botswana military was kind enough to let us hop on there supped up hummer for a luxurious ride along the delta. We felt like we were ambassadors from the U.S. with our own personal convoy. After a couple of hours cruising along we happened to run into the one white person along the whole strip in the middle of the bush. Fortunately we met a very nice peace corps volunteer named Jen and set up tent outside her hut. Talking about commitment we thought we were roughing it but she is living in the middle of nowhere with spotty electricity and intermittent running water. We had a nice chat before leaving the next morning for our mokoro boat trip in the delta. Unfortunately the water levels were very low but our guide still managed to navigate us through some tight spots. Being canoed around by someone else is definitely a luxury we felt like some movie stars from the 50's era. We were also fortunate to see some hippos close up, talk about intimidating they could of flipped our mokkoro and had us for lunch and I think they thought about it before leaving us alone.
After the delta it was off to Chobe national park in Botswana. Once again we hitched but luckily it went fairly smoothly we had to cross back into Namibia then back into Botswana. Chobe National park had a good share of elephants crocs and hippos. We also saw wild boar roaming the streets of the local town as if they were stray dogs, except with massive tusks that could inflict some serious damage. After our share of wildlife it was off to Zambia and the impressive Victoria Falls.
The town of Livingstone was our base for the falls. The town itself was nothing impressive but the people were friendly and the falls were stunning. Luckliy we had quite a bit of rain for two consecutive days which allowed the water to start flowing. Unfortunately it was pouring the whole time we were viewing the falls. Next we decided to splurge on a flight back to South Africa rather then endure a 30 hour bus ride assuming everything went smoothly.
After a night in Pretoria and getting our visas it was off to Mozambique for a little bit of beach time.
Okay, cool, that was Raminder talking above, now it is Thea, and I 'm going to try to make it quick. Mozambique was very nice, an actual vacation as opposed to "travelling." We were lucky enuf to meet some pretty awesome people early on in our trip, and we ended up hanging out for almost a week. A few random adventures excepted, (Raminder getting shredded on the reef and almost drowning before being rescued by a boat, familiar themes???) everything went very smoothly. We bought fresh veggies, fruit (mmm... mangoes..), and fish almost every day, and everybody pitched in to cook. Christmas eve we had rum drinks in coconuts instead of eggnog (but we could have made eggnog if we wanted to, right???) and an awesome fish braii. We had BEAUTIFUL weather in Moz right until the last day. On Xmas eve the rain started, and we all left to go our seperate directions in a bloody monsoon on Christmas day.
So now we are back in Pretoria, getting ready to head off to India tonite. I'm a bit sad to leave the Africa part of our trip behind...