Sunday, February 1, 2009

CAMPING HOLIDAYS IN GAME RESERVES IN AFRICA - PART 1

I have been going through family photos and decided to do a few blogs on camping holidays that we have done in Africa.  I will add to these camping recipes as eating is a big part of our camping holidays and we don't believe in frozen instant camping foods - meals are all planned in detail and you will be suprised what we come up with.

Before I start I would like to mention that I have started a seperate blog with c
ake decorating photos, tips and recipes -www.mammalallacakes.blogspot.com/ .


The first trip that I would like to share with you is one of the last trips we did - namely to the Khutse Game Reserve which is situated in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in Botswana.  This is a very remote game reserve with only a few undeveloped camping sites.  

There is so much to show that I will have to do it in a few blogs.









Some info re the reserve:

KHUTSE RESERVE

INTRODUCTION

This private reserve in the southern Kalahari and part of the Central Kalahari Game Reserve was established to conserve and protect the smaller salt pans of the Kalahari. Its flat, endless plains of shrub and grass which anchor the restless sands of the semi-arid desert attract large herds of various antelope, these in turn attract endangered predators such as cheetah and wild dog. During the wet season, after a good rainfall, up to 150 different species of bird can be spotted near the pans. 

ATTRACTIONS

  • The Kalahari region is vast and unchanging, but by no means uninteresting. Other than the Khutse Reserve

  • You will find the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and Mabuasehuba. 

  • This dry harsh land used to be home to the indigenous people of Botswana - the San or Bushman. They have left us many reminders of that forgotten time and an experienced guide can teach you their way of life and culture and how they adapted to the environment in which they lived. 

ACTIVITIES

  • Game Viewing  Game viewing in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve and Khutse Game Reserve is the prime game viewing areas in Botswana during the wet season. A variety of antelope, such as springbok, gemsbok as well as zebra and wildebeest are most commonly seen in the park, there are also cheetah, lion, black-backed jackal and brown-hyena to be seen in some parts of the park. In the Khutse Reserve, the wet season brings

     over 150 different species of birds to the pans. 


  • Historic Trails: Bushmen remnants are everywhere to be found in this region which will teach you their way of life and culture and give you a few tips on how to survive in this harsh, remote environment.

  • 4 x 4'ing: Venture into the 4x4 paradise of Africa, comparable to the desert of Namibia and the tough trails of South Africa. This harsh, untamed land will make any 4x4 enthusiasts heart race. Be sure to know where you are going and pack enough supplies and fuel to last your journey. Its a mean, inhospitable and uninhabited land out there.

ACCOMMODATION

As there are no accommodation establishments in the Kalahari region, you have to get back to nature and camp out in the open. It is recommended that you travel this area with an experienced guide and be sure to find out what and how much supplies you need.


All supplies need to be taken with - water, petrol, food, camping equipment, everything. Thus quite an expedition.   There are only a few undeveloped camping sites in the park.  We only saw two other vehicles in the park in the 5 days that we spend there. My son and his wife went some months before us and they were the only people in the reserve for about a week. 

My husband and I went with two old friends and their daughter with her husband. The six of us went in two cars.  It is advisable to always travel with two cars.

This is the entrance to the Khutse Game Reserve.















Herewith a video clip of the condition of the road to our camping site.  It takes a few hours to travel to the camping site.

video
At last our camping spot which is situated next to a large pan. We set up camp as we arrived there.

In the centre we had our tent with an add-on large tent which we used as our dining area. Our friends slept in a trailer on the left side with a tent on top and the other two in a camping trailer on the right side.  The men also decided that we can't have a camp without our national flag.

The only ablutions is the bucket shower - for this we had to bring with our own water and to have hot water for the shower we warmed it by putting the water in special black bags and leaving it in the sun during the day.

There is also a long-drop toilet. Both these do not have a roof, only the wooden pole enclosure.


















More photos to follow next time.  Regards.


3 comments:

Judy said...

Hi Laura, this is going to be fun!! I can hardly wait for more. It is really educational too for us in the US.

Mamma Lalla said...

Hi Judy - thanks! I thought you would enjoy it! There is many such trips that I can share. Other to come is eg Makoro trip in Okavango,Botswana; Namibia, Caprivi & Chobe trip; Tanzania & Kenya trip; Climbing Kilimanjaro. Will love to share all these trips. Luv till next time.

angeljoy said...

Hi, just wanted to pop by and thank you for your comment on my post today! Come again, any time!