Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Fallen leaf

The characteristic butterfly-shape of a Mopane leaf. Mopanes are either tall trees that form beautiful woodlands, or scrubby bushes, well grazed by elephants. At this time of year they look rather autumnal in their yellow and  russet brown colours - even though it is spring now - but I guess its more to do with rainfall than temperature. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Waterlilies and crocodiles

A visit to the Okavango Swamps would not be complete without a boat ride on the permanent swamp.
The water is cold and clear and there were lots of beautiful waterlilies.
as well as a few floating crocs!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Sunset in Moremi

Campsite number 9, Third Bridge, on the edge of the permanent swamp. Sundowners and millions of tinkling frogs.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Gateway to the Okavango

 This is the entrance to the fabulous and famous Moremi Game Reserve: Magwe or South Gate.
After passing through South Gate the veld is dry and sandy - and the palms on the horizon are the only hint that the swamps are close.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A community thing

We drove through Maun and carried on northwards to our overnight stop, the community campsite of Kaziikini, our last stop before entering Moremi Game Reserve and the "real" swamps. En route we bought some beautiful baskets and bangles from this roadside stall.
 Our cosy little Rondavel in the Mopani trees at Kaziikini Campsite.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Shopping in Ghanzi

Stocking up in Ghanzi for a week's camping supplies - surprisingly good shops. We preferred them to the shops in Maun.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Rampant Aardvark

From Askham we crossed the border into Botswana at Bokspits and headed up a wonderful new tarred road (complete with wandering goats, cows, sheep and donkeys) all the way to to our next destination - the comfortable and welcoming Thakadu Bushcamp. The pub is called "The Rampant Aardvark", which is apt because that is what "thakadu" means in Tswana.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

The road to Askham

We left Cape Town in the pouring rain and four or so hours later hit the R27 from Calvinia to Upington which we remembered as a fantastic, truck-free road to the north. Sadly, it was being renovated and was punctuated by about 14 or 15 "stop/goes" that slowed us down rather. The reason for the bad condition is also the huge increase in trucks that use the roads now that the once proud SA Railways is all but defunct.
We eventually arrived at our overnight stop, the delightful Kalahari Sands Guesthouse, at Askham before dark. Askham is a tiny little village in the middle of the Kalahari and the guesthouse is run by the stylish Hannetjie van der Westhuizen. We had the most delicious dinner and met another family of travellers en route to the Kgalagadi National Park who are "regulars" at this establishment.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Blue Moon

I am back! After an extensive trip through Botswana and some hectic catch-up with work once we were home, I am now able to play on my blog with a clear conscience. Also I am taking time to work out the new Blogger layout and my photos keep disappearing but I think I have the hang of it now.
This photo was taken in Cape Town on 31 August, the night before we left on our safari to Botswana, It is a rather unusual event, a Blue Moon, which only happens, well, once in a blue moon! (When there are two full moons that fall in one calendar month.) It was a cloudy night, but suddenly there was a hole in the clouds and the moon appeared. So this will start off my account of our Botswana road trip. After all, the kind of trip we did will also only happen once in a blue moon!