Going on vacation for 5 weeks, exploring a completely new continent (at least for Michael) and travel beside the well known tourist tracks really started for us here, in Southern Africa in 2003. For Karin South Africa was not new. She was here a few years earlier and had spent 7 months in Stellenbosch as part of her studies. As she really enjoyed the wine tastings we decided to come back. ;-)
For this trip we decided to explore new countries on our own. We did rent a 4x4 camper van, had a rough idea where to start and from what location to take a flight back home. The rest would develop as we go along.
During these five weeks we covered certain parts from four countries including South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Namibia. We drove on well prepared tar roads as well as hardly recognizable paths. 7777 km in total we explored on our own part of this fascinating continent and the very friendly and welcoming people. Dive into this journey with us as it has just begun.
Places We Visited
Johannesburg - Roodeplaat Dam Nature Reserve - Limpopo - Fancistown - River Chobe - Victoria Falls - White Water Rafting - Mamili National Park - Lizauli Traditional Village - Mahango Game Reserve - Baobap Tree - Etosha National Park - Kunene River - Epupa Falls - Sesfontein - The Petrified Forest - Twyfelfontein - Skeleton Coast - Cape Cross - Swakopmund - Dune 7 - Welwitschia Drive - Namib-Naukluft National Park - Henno Martin Shelter - Kuiseb Canyon - Gamsberg Route - Sesriem Canyon - Dune 45 - Sossusvlei - Lüderitz - Kolmanskop - Wild Horses - Orange River - Cape Town - Boulders Beach - Cape Point - Cape of Good Hope - Chapman's Peak Drive - Hout Bay - False Bay - Diane &Andre - Stellenbosch - Wine Tasting
One of the first highlights are the Victoria Falls which we visit from Zimbabwe. We use this opportunity to also do a rafting tour on the Zambezi, the largest river flowing into the Indian Ocean from Africa.
December 16th 2003
Arriving in Johannesburg we don't spend much time in South Africa but drive straight towards the northern border and cross over to Botswana.
December 12th 2003
To travel further west we pass through the Caprivi Strip and make stop in a number of amazing locations. Here we are almost alone with no other tourists around for most of the time.
December 18th 2003
Many rivers in Africa are being used to generate electricity. Unfortunately this destroys a lot of the surrounding nature. The Epupa Falls a the border to Angola are one of the few left untouched so far. Who knows for how long.
26 December 2003
If you are in Namibia this is one of the main tourist attractions. For Michael it is the first time in such a large national park. We are lucky and see a lot of animals. Here we also celebrate Christmas this year.
Etosha National Park
22 December 2003
Going south again we pass through impressive landscapes including the petrified forest and down to Twyfelfontain. We also camp at basic but great camp sides.
28 December 2003
Leaving Swakopmund to the south east we use the Welwitschia Drive. It got its name because of the plants. Passing by the Husab Welwitschica, which is the oldest one known and estimated to be more than 1500 years old.
02 January 2004
"Hopfen und Malz, Gott erhalts" is one of the things we come across in Swakopmund. The German history is very visible. We also come quite a few people of German decent who still speak German but for us it sounds very old.
31 December 2003
Following the Gamsberg Route we pass by the Henno Martin Shelter, take a look at the moon landscape and have to visit both the Kuiseb and Sesreim Canyon.
03 January 2004
As we arrive in Lüderitz the German influence is even more visible compared to Swakopmund. Not sure if we like this but it's part of our history. So is the ghost two of Kolmannskuppe.
05 January 2004
One of the highlights on this tour for us is the Namib, one of the oldest and driest desserts in the world. Dune 45 and Sossuslvlei are places not to miss of course.
04 January 2004
After a full month on the road with our 4x4 camper we change cars. For the last week we explore the Cape Town area from a comfortable B&B, visit friends and do some wine tasting before we have to fly back.
Cape Town Area
07 January 2004