Ever since reading about self-drive safaris in Namibia it’s been part of a long list of places we wanted to visit. So here we are in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia, kicking off the first part of our Southern Africa trip. We are taking a circuitous journey around Namibia. Our route will take us south to Fish River Canyon, then northwest hitting Sossusvlei and Twyfelfontein before heading northeast to visit Etosha then finally heading south again ending at Windhoek. This time we have swapped the slow clunky campervan of Western Australia yore with a new, powerful, fully eqipped 4X4 to explore this spectacular country.
We are also swapping one sister for another as our traveling companion, this time Kim instead of Sally (trading in new model for old model?). It will be Kim’s first time in Africa and we can’t believe she actually entrusted us with her maiden voyage to this continent.
Driving from the airport to our hotel we saw a hartebeest, warthogs, baboons and a giraffe.
Windhoek is surprisingly a very modern and well-organized city with huge shopping malls, new development and a smattering of old historical German buildings. Our first night we had dinner at Joe’s Beerhouse. We asked around for where we can go to eat traditional cuisine and was told Joe’s the place to go. Well it turned out Joe’s was more German than Namibian unless you count the wild game as local food. It was good overall just not what we expected. Both G and Kim had the Bushman Sosatie which featured Springbok (like aged beef), Crocodile (tasty), Kudu (taste like pork), Oryx (tough) and Zebra (very gamey) while D chickened out and had the Pork knuckle. G and Kim also ordered the Kingklip fish which they enjoyed as well.
The next day we picked up 4X4 our semi-home for the next 20 days. The rental turned out to be a Ford Ranger fully decked-out for safari camping equipped with a freezer/fridge, gas burner and a roof top pop-up tent. It took us over two hours to go over how to operate that thing and setup the equipment.
Afterwards we shopped for provisions in one of the many fancy malls and had an excellent dinner at Gathemann. Kim & G opted for the fish combo which again included the kingklip while D had something non-adventurous, the nut-crusted chicken.
G and Kim getting instructions on how to operate the 4X4
From sleeping off the jetlag and preparing for our self-drive trip we didn’t really have time to explore Windhoek. Maybe when we come back to Windhoek after the roadtrip.
Self-drive Tour Specialist:
This trip was almost a no-go. We weren’t sure if we were going until about a week and half ago. Thinking we had time (Sept/Oct are considered low season) we left the planning until the last minute. However, once we started, we realized quickly that the logistics to arrange such a trip required more time than expected and we needed help pronto! Enter Andy from Botswana Drive who managed to put this trip together at the last minute. Andy GO!
United Airlines: SFO to Frankfurt, DE
Condor Airlines: Frankfurt, DE to Windhoek, Namibia
Guesthouse Terra Africa
Avis Safari Rental
(Arranged through Drive Botswana)