Exit Namibia, Enter Botswana

It’s January 10th, Maria’s birthday! <Cue wild celebration>

We spend New Year’s Eve in Opuwo. We settle in for a comfortable stay at the ultra-posh Opuwo Country Lodge.

Said to be the largest thatched building in Namibia

Again, we stay at the campsite, the steerage class of posh hotels, where available. This has become a habit of ours: find a fancy lodge that has a camping option and enjoy all the amenities at a fraction of the price. Imagine staying at the Chateau Montebello for 30 or 40 dollars a night. Canadian dollars!

Maria spends a lot of time in the infinity pool overlooking a beautiful valley.

Opuwo has a lot of National Geographic-style costumed locals, mainly Himba people and Herero people. They are related, but quite different, both in lifestyle and clothing habits.

The following is a selection of each. (All photos taken surreptitiously by Maria.)

Herero women
Himba women
Herero woman
Himba couple
Herero woman
Himba women

We drive to Epupa Falls, on the Angolan border. It’s 350 kilometres down a gravel road and back.

On the way to the Caprivi Strip, we wind up stopping in Etosha for one last night.

King Nehale Lya Mpingana Gate

So we are back in Botswana. We stay at the Senyati Safari Camp.

On the road to Senyati

We stayed here in 2020, just when our trip was cancelled by COVID. It’s still a great place to stay.

Especially because of their waterhole, which always has lots of wildlife slaking their thirst.

We drive into Chobe National Park for some game viewing.

Hippos on the Chobe River

Sight or Insight of the Day

Among the pleasures of being back in Senyati: there is a tame banded mongoose on the property.

JoJo at rest

Turns out he is super-friendly. I can cross ‘pet a banded mongoose’ off my bucket list.