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Namibia & Botswana diary by Neil & Deborah Tysall

We are very grateful to Deborah & Neil Tysallfor providing us with their trip diary and photographs from their safaris. They combined Namibia and Botswana to make a superb self drive holiday.

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Namibia & Botswana

Windhoek 22 July
Finally the day is here when, under the bright African sun, we collect our Land Rover, home for the next 19 days. After a busy afternoon buying supplies and sorting out our kit a night in the beautiful Elegant Guesthouse was very

23rd and 24th Jul
We were really on our way today, first stop Waterberg Wilderness campsite on the southern slopes of the Waterberg Plateau. This is a great campsite, a fabulous location and never have we been so well looked after. The braai had been swept clean, fire wood was neatly stacked and there was a bin and tap for our own use. The moment that we lit the fire Goddard arrived to check that we had enough wood. We signed up for game tracking on foot the next morning and were delighted to find out that we were the only people on it. So for the next 4 hours we had the undivided attention of Wilson, a very interesting and knowledgeable guide who got us up close to the reserve's two white rhino.

25th and 26th July
By the end of today we felt fully acquainted with Namibia's gravel roads as we spent most of the day on them with just a short respite on tar and a brief refueling stop, for the Landy and us, at Grootfontein. Our destination was a bush camp in the heart of the Nyae Nyae Conservancy, home to the Jo/'hoansi. The road to Tsumkwe did seem never ending, but eventually we reached the town and continued on beyond it until we found the sign for our campsite. At the village of Makuri we were met by N!aici who took us to the campsite. Wow! What an extraordinary place, a clearing under the branches of the most enormous baobab we have ever seen. This is a magical place to stay. We spent the next day in camp, just enjoying the place, watching and photographing the squirrels and many birds that passed through. During the afternoon N!aici came to take us out tracking and show us how he hunts. Spending time with him was a very special experience, one that we had looked forward to for a long time. Tonight's dinner set the standard that all others have to live up to – moussaka with a crispy cheese topping. Cooking on the fire is a lot of fun. In fact we are enjoying every aspect of the camping because the Landy is so well equipped. We didn't want for anything; neither did we carry anything unnecessarily (except perhaps the table cloth!)

27th July
Back on the road today; and an early lesson in the way things work in Africa. N!aici had asked us if we could give him a lift to the main road on our way out. When he did not arrive at the appointed time we drove to the village to collect him. He was sitting shivering under a blanket with a hot drink and said that it was too cold this morning to go, he would go later when it was warmer. Of course we were already in shirt sleeves by then.Maun was our destination today; that required a border crossing into Botswana and the loss of an hour. Despite the fact that the border is simply a gate in a fence that runs through miles of bush it was immediately apparent that we were in a different country; from the gravel roads of Namibia we were into the sand of Botswana and there were more people, goats, cattle and donkeys to be seen along the way. At Maun we had an opportunity to change money, refuel and have a bath as tonight we stayed at Riley’s hotel. We met with Annelies, Safari Drive’s contact here. She has enormous knowledge of the area and was very generous with her time and advice.

28th July
With a great deal of eager anticipation we set off into Moremi Game Reserve this morning. It did not take long to reach South Gate, our campsite for tonight. So after booking in we set off on a game drive to Xini Lagoon. Although only a short distance there and back game was everywhere, including a very sleepy male lion and a lovely herd of elephant taking their evening

View Windhoek to Windhoek via the Okavango in a larger map


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