Saturday, March 31, 2012
Sunday, March 18, 2012
As I write, I am sat soaking up the sun on a glorious Sunday afternoon on Swakopmund Namibia….Jealous yet? If not you sure will be by the time you’ve finished reading!
So, back to the beginning. Once leaving Livingstone and crossing into Botswana, the fun began as we spent 2 nights in the Chobe area. Game driving through Chobe National park where we spotted all kinds of colourful birds, giraffe, rhino AND mating lions! Yes! But the fun wasn’t over yet as the Fish Eagle Boat Cruise was yet to come. Whilst cruising along the waterways of the Chobe River we were blessed with herd after herd of elephants, including babies of no more that 6 months running and playing underneath (yep the were that small) their elders!
Next up was Maun (known as Maun Vegas,,,,,,,for what reason I am still unsure!), the gateway to the flowing channels of the Okavango Delta! The Delta, where bush camping and toilets masquerading as holes dug into the earth becomes everyone’s fabulous reality! We were treated to a bit of welcomed relaxation as we were ‘poled’ through the watery alleys of the delta brushed gently by reeds and water lilies as we passed. Once at our bush camp we swam and tired to pole the mokoros and as the blazing sun became too much we retreated to the shady solace of a sausage tree! In the cool of the afternoon we headed out for our first bush walk where we got to experience the serenity of the bush by sunset! Back at camp dinner was served around the fire and we saw the evening in listening as the night came alive with the nocturnal noises of all creatures calling the Delta their home.
The Delta experience was over as soon as it began and we were headed back to Maun for one more night before heading over to Ghanzi. For our one night here the peeps got to walk with and learn about the survival of the bushmen. Sadly the walk was cut short as the heaves decided to open with an enormous cloud burst. The rain continued all night adding to the eerie atmosphere of this old tribal land.
Next up was our first glance at a westernized infrastructure: Windhoek, Namibia’s capital and possibly Africa’s cleanest city! Time was on our side so we had plenty of hours to mooch around the city streets. That night, not to break overlanding tradition we took over Joe’s Beer House!!!!
The following 2 days were spent meandering through the dirt tracks of Etosha National Park, scouting out for the 4 of the big 5 that live here (Etosha is too dry for the buffalo)……Having spent the 2 days with our eyes peeled we managed to spot lions, elephant AND rhino but sadly the ever elusive leopard remained anti-social (as per reputation) and kept well hidden amongst the bush. Other spots included owls, many frogs, a jackal springing on and eating a mouse (I am counting this as a kill!!!!), and a turtle swimming through a massive puddle. But the best spot goes to our very own eagle eyed TJ who managed to glimpse a monitor lizard completely blended into the tree upon which it was sat, so much so that it took us ages to work out what it was we were supposed to be looking at! All were very impressed with TJ’s eye site!!!
Onwards to what will probably remain my favorite place in Africa: Spitzkoppe. Again, time was with us so having arrived and setting up camp everyone disappeared into the rocky wonderland to go and explore. Some went jogging, others went for gentle strolls in the shadows of the outcrops and then 4 decided to tackle the big mountain, 1 of which reached the top! Big shout out to Lee Sheara Jones who is my only pax EVER to get to the top!!!! Hugely impressed we awaited their return. The sunset,the moon rose and thanks to a clear evening the stars bought the night sky alive as they shot across the black backdrop but alas our explorers were still to return,,,,eventually at 10.30…6 hours after they set out they returned…this my friends is a lesson to ALWAYS carry your head torch!!!
This brings me pretty much up to date, We have already sent 8 out of the 11 passengers off to skydive. Over the next day and a half people will continue their quest for adrenaline as they sand board and quad bike over the sand dunes. In the mean time, whilst I await the safe return of our skydivers I will continue soaking up the sun with a good book and a cold beer. Jealous yet? Bet you are!
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Thursday, February 9, 2012
Next up is another long drive to the foothills of Mt Kilimanjaro - Africa's highest point and the worlds tallest lone standing peak - where we will spend one night before heading to Arusha....and you know what that means!?! The Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater!!
Friday, January 27, 2012
From Ghanzi we headed to the place of reeds i.e Maun where we spend stay before and after the Delta. This is when it happened…….the rain….the warm downpour. So I always tell people that they must be a little greatful for the rain at this time of year otherwise you battle hard with the humidity. However, I must admit the storm that hit the Delta is one of the biggest I’ve experienced….the thunder felt like it was lifting me off the ground and the lightening was blinding, but everyone kept smiles on their faces and put it all down to the adventure which was great!
From Maun we headed to Kasane, the Chobe region which was a touch dryer….the 620 km drive was eased somewhat but the enormous amount of elephants we saw on the drive, beasts that didn’t make an appearance in Etosha so everyone was chuffed to bits. The Chobe game drive was an absolute success with the peeps not only loving the wildlife but the beauty of the park made a huge impact on everyone which is so wonderful to hear.
And now I am writing to you from Livingstone. We have said good bye to a few and hello to some more and from here we will start our East African leg of tour. Soon we will be soaking up the views from Lake Malawi
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
So i guess you're wondering about the title huh?!? Tigers in Africa??? Well not quite (fact of the day: there's no tigers here as it's beleived they couldn't cross the Sahara Desert?) However, one of my pax Dave decided to bring along a tiger suit!! Having set up the prank with myself and TJ he kept dropping commentns to the others like "hey guy's, you recon we're going to see a tiger?" to which everyone replied no way! Spitzkoppe provided the perfect setting and oppourtunity and whilst everyone was other wise distracted Dave slipped into the bush and slipped on his disguise.
It went something like this:
TJ: Hey Loz, you see that bush moving?
Me: What the hell? (trying so hard not to laugh as Dave pops his tiger donned head above the bush)
(pax now beginning to show some interest)
(Dave begins rustling bush)
Pax: Oh my god,,,is that a cat??
Pax: Holy shi* is it a leopard???
Pax: What the hell, it has stripes!!!
(Dave continues bush rustling)
Pax: (now getting a little nervous) oh my God!!
(Me and TJ are trying so hard not to laugh)
Pax: What the (Dave no exposes his tiger suited bu,) HELL!!!
So after Spitzkoppe we headed North to Etosha where we stay for 2 nights ...It's always amazing to visit here in January, not necessarliy for the game viewing (which to be perfectly honest wasn't huge with only 1 of the big 5 being spotted as the recent rain meant that the animals are now free to roam instead of being tied to the man made watering holes), but insuch a short amount of time the park has been transformed from dry dusty and arid to lush and fragrant with this seasons rain fall!
Now we're on our merry way to the countries capital Windhoek where we will spend our afternoon mooching around the city and tonight (our last night in Namibia) will be celebrated at Joe's Beer House!!
Until next time...
P.S When my internet connection is better i PROMISE phot'os of the only tiger in Africa :)
Friday, January 13, 2012
Well I must start by saying I can’t believe we’re already 1 week into the tour, it has gone so quick, but I guess time does fly when you’re having fun! J
So lets go back to the beginning. Saturday morning saw our fresh faced pax head off on their town ship tour and to have lunch at popular mizoli’s.having been returned to us we began the first journey of the tour to Highlanders campsite where everyone broke the ice with Sparky’s famous wine tasting…..without giving too much away (what happens on tour stays on tour) everyone was well bonded by the end of the evening (and a little soggy from the pool!). Up next was our trip to the Orange River where temperatures reached roughly 45 degrees, thankfully the river is totally fine to swim in and easily accessible from our camp Umkulu so needless to say the afternoon was spent frolicking in the watery no mans land between South Africa and Namibia.
The following day saw us crossing the boarder into Namibia and saying goodbye to the tar roads for a while. After a bumpy journey we arrived at our camp in time for lunch and a quick swim before setting out for Fish River Canyon. Beers were sipped and snacks were nibbled as everyone took in the burning sunset over the desolate canyon! That night tested everyone’s ‘bug’ limit as we were visited by first a red roman (sun spider) and secondly a thick tailed scorpion! Next up we were desert bound. More bumpy roads delivered us to the heart of the Namib where we hiked up dunes and walked deep into the arid landscape to discover more about this incredible land and the little (and many) creatures it homes.
For the last 2 days we have been spoiled yet again at Amanpuri Lodge (Swakopmund) to some creature comforts. Last night we nipped to Napolitnas for dinner then danced the night away at the local bar/club grunez. Today regardless of some delicate heads lanes have been jumped out of and dunes have been boarded however I think tonight will most definitely be an early one.
Tomorrow will see us once again heading back into the wilderness to beautiful Spitzkoppe for one night of hopefully incredible star gazing and then off to Etosha for 2 days for some (again, hopefully) awesome game drives, and the of course Windhoek where our last night in Namibia will be spent at Joe’s Beer House. . . Will keep you posted!
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Well folks, it's that time again where we find ourselves back in the office and workshop preparing for another tour. Having had 2 weeks off to refresh (although it was over Christmas and New Years) we find ourselves chomping at the the bit to get back on the road again.