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My Amazing African Adventure!


SaminKaz
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I started writing my new trip report a couple of weeks ago and forgot to post it here.

 

I have about 25 days to go till I leave for my epic trip 3 month adventure to Southern/Eastern Africa with my parents. Due to my circumstances it is a bitter sweet feeling. The start of my journey means that I will be finally ending my contract with the people I work with. My job is not like most people. I work as a governess/teacher plus pa, travel agent, guide, driver, psychiatrist, psychologist, life coach, fixer, surrogate mum, big sister, aunty, friend and anything else that is needed. This is definitely not the normal 9-5 position and means that I always end up becoming very close to the children I work with. Therefore, leaving for this holiday means leaving the kids that I have worked so closely with for the last 3.5 years. But it also means that for a short space of time I have the freedom to do anything and live without consequences except for the fact that mum and dad are tagging along. I am sure mum will always be happy to throw her 2 cents worth in! J

 

I am extremely proud of the fact that my parents have finally accepted my invitations to travel to Africa with me. My love affair started 2 years ago and I would never have thought that such a passion and love for somewhere could exist within myself. The joy of being in Africa brings tears to my eyes and to share such an experience for the first time with my parents is beyond belief. I know that for many people travelling with one’s parents will conjure images that are unpleasant but I hope that my maturity will keep me calm when such times arise and the fact that they are seasoned travellers means that they can handle anything that I throw at them. Surprisingly, they have volunteered for everything that I am wanting to do including cage shark diving in Cape Town, so kudus to them both!

 

My parents are now 66 years old. Thankfully, they are seasoned travellers and have instilled the art of travel in their daughters. I give them credit, especially my mum who has arranged and organized all of their mega trips prior to this one which is generally 6 months at a time and includes Europe/America. This alone means that she understands the never ending drama that the research for a mega trip involves. I understood that clearly when she told me she would travel with me to Africa but only if I arranged everything, I think tackling somewhere new was just not in her in regards to the preparations needed. Luckily, I am still excited to do such a thing and also do it regularly for my job. Therefore, finding out about new places for us to explore and of course take them to places I have been to, is not a chore but a pleasure.

 

I am now at that stage that the preparations are complete. All hotels, transfers, activities and restaurant bookings are done and thankfully most are paid for. I am now in the process of finalizing the packing of my Africa/camera bag and the luggage for my next deployment. Mum and dad have bought all of their “pack for a purpose” items, gifts for our guides when we are in Kenya/Tanzania, first aid/medicines for a 12 week odyssey and had all the shots necessary plus more. We are on the final countdown which is when it all becomes a reality and the pleasure and suspense is tingling whenever one thinks about it.

 

My last minute thing is to organize our Kazakhstan visa on arrival. Thankfully, the Kazakh government has introduced last year a new visa option that will allow the three of us to enter as a tourist without the prior rigmarole. This will allow us all to enjoy a 5 days in Almaty with the family I worked with and my parents to finally see many of the places I have described to them over the last 3.5 years – the good and the bad. My contact at a local travel agency has assured that all will go well and I am now in the process of organizing the letter of invitation with them.

 

Now I can dream each night of what my first 3 month trip will be like. I can only think that such an epic journey will provide amazing experiences over the length of the trip which, may render one oblivious to incredible individual experiences. I want to try and be “in the moment” but of course capture the trip not only for my memories but also for my family, friends and TA so they can try and “live the moment” with me. Ultimately, I am doing it for myself and the joy I receive when I look back at my own written word, photos and movies of the experiences I have had. Thankfully, my father has bestowed on me the gift of being the family’s memory recorder and the invention of the GoPro and an iPole along with iMovie means that my creations look amazing. It also keeps me busy and the joy of the final product is beyond belief.

 

So tonight I will once again sleep dreaming on the cusp of a new adventure. Thinking of the experiences that will enliven my doorstep soon.

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Well the trip is now well and truly booked. The route is set in stone and now the researching for activities/tours and things to see is well under way. What has started off as a 45 day trip around Namibia, some time in South Africa and then Kenya has changed around to a parents and daughter Africa mega trip.

 

After begging my parents for 18 months to join me in Africa or at least to visit it has finally paid dividends. Actually I think it was my sister who guilted, no convinced them to join me. It does pay off to involve sisters into your devious ways.

I was actually preparing to pay for my parents to join me as a Christmas/Wedding Anniversary present. This was going to only involve them joining me in the Masai Mara where I would have them stay with me on safari at a camp that I had previously been to. The cost involved was a lot but thankfully my points were going to cover their business class airfare. In the back of my mind was my parents comments after their last long haul trip that economy 13 hour was now too much for them to recover from so I knew that business was the only way to get them on a plan again to the other side of the world. With this in mind I planned everything, had the homemade brochure ready and sent it off to them along with a pre-warning to my sister. Who in turn told them and guilted them to join me regardless of what I was offering. This is when it all turned into a logistics nightmare for the travel agents assisting me.

Suddenly I was changing my original plans into an itinerary that would showcase Africa to 2 brand newbies but also allow me the opportunity of seeing some new places as well. Namibia self drive turned into Vic Falls, Chobe Riverboat tour, Caprivi add on and then the original tour with a few more shorter stays to keep everyone on their toes (considering they are not photographers). South Africa went from Cape Town/winelands chill out whilst eating/drinking to Cape Town, winelands and Garden Route. Showcasing the best of what the area has to offer whilst keeping the costs down as low as possible so we could safari in style after. Masai Mara extravaganza turned into lets go and see the Great Migration in the Serengeti and stay as long as possible whilst ending in The Mara. Thankfully, for us the low season was just starting and with a little bit of research we were able to extend what is a normal price for 8 days into a 22 day animal odyssey by taking advantage of low season rates and stay 3 pay for 2 prices. Maybe it will rain and maybe not but time on the ground amongst such amazing animals is unbelievable and to stay 6 nights in a camp is an opportunity to really understand a place and enjoy not just a camp but its staff. Plus it allows me to get out the cameras and just stay still and enjoy.

The privilege of being able to do what I am doing is still beyond belief. Three months in Africa is a dream that only a job there could allow me to enjoy. Being able to spend it with my parents is an added bonus. They say that memories are priceless and this is something that I truly believe in. I am so lucky to plan and then enjoy such an experience that it makes me tear up with gratitude.
So now it is back to all of my helpful Africa/safari websites where I plan all my trips, any other kind of travel website and of course travel books to continue researching what I hope is going to be the best Africa experience possible.

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I can't believe I have just a couple of days till I am on my way. All my suitcases are packed for when I return and need to move to my next job. Now I need to go over my Africa bag because like a true female I have packed too much and keep thinking of 3 months! My batteries need to be checked to make sure they are fully charged. Everything is labelled and I am now looking forward to recording my trip properly and hopefully in real time so my nieces/nephews as well as you guys can see what we are up to.

 

I have looked at everyone's trip reports, comments about various places, ideas for problem solving difficult situations and hints/tips from the photographers. I want to say big thank you to everyone because it is the effort of the community of a travel forum which allows us all to benefit from the collected knowledge of the group. It allows anyone planning a safari to feel confident in the choices they make considering the huge amount of options available. It also means that we are all able to share in the joy of what a safari offers when we read other people's adventures and allows us to reminisce our own experiences. Just a wonderful part of the planning process for any travel experience and thankfully one that I love.

 

So now I can start counting down hours instead of days! Bring on Sunday evening!!!!

Edited by SaminKaz
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I can feel your enthusiasm! Here's to hoping your family falls in love with Africa, too.

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What an epic journey to take your parents on @@SaminKaz, and I am sure they feel every bit as excited as you.

 

If you have a moment before Sunday, I'd love to know which TZ and Kenya camps you chose....just because I love to see where others stay. Something might pop up that I had not thought about!

 

Breaking it up for the parents to enjoy Capetown is a brilliant idea; a bit of wine and gardens to prepare for the intensity of safari. Oh and of course a shark dive..naturally.

Though I am heading to the other side of 65 in a bit over a year, I certainly feel I could keep up with any 30something..which I gather you may be.

 

If you are in your 20's.. then forget it, I could not :P - and you would have a super paying job!

 

Have a blast :D

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Just for you @@graceland.

 

I think I have managed to give them the best of Namibia with a combination of awesome game viewing from both land and water and the stunning landscape/scenery the country offers. South Africa will offer a little respite from the long drives, hot weather with coastal drives and some nice wineries thrown in. Then East Africa is the sit back and bring it on safari time. No need to worry about driving, cameras out, cats galore (hopefully), migration and kills!

 

Namiri Plains and Seronera is a new area for me in Tanzania which I am excited to check out for animals but the rock formations and good landscape shots with volatile weather hopefully adding to the interest.

 

Something new everyday!

 

February

8-13 Abu Dhbai for some R and R for me before jumping into everything

13-16 Livingstone

16-19 Ichobezi River Boat (Chobe/Impailia Island area)

19-20 Camp Kwando, Caprivi, Namibia

20-22 Nunda River Lodge, Caprivi

22-25 Onguma, Etosha

25-27 Okaukuejo, Etosha

27-1 Dolomite, Etosha

March

1-3 Grootberg, Damaraland

3-5 Mowani Mountain Camp, Damaraland

5-7 Erongo Wilderness Camp, Erongo

7-11 Sea Breeze, Swakopmund

11-13 Sossus Dune Lodge

13-16 Eagle's Nest, Klein Aus Vista

16-18 Fish River Lodge

18-20 Bagatelle Kalahari Ranch

20-25 Cape Town AirBnB

25-28 Centre Ville Guest House, Franschhoek

28-30 Zwartberg View Guesthouse, Ooudtshorn

30-1 Knysna Inn, Knysna

April

1-2 Jeffreys Bay

2-3 Johannesburg

3-5 Nairobi

5-11 Namiri Plains, Serengeti, Tanzania

11-17 Dunia Camp, Serengeti, Tanzania

17-20 Governors' Camp, Masai Mara, Kenya

20-26 Mara Bush House, Northern Conservancy, Masai Mara

26-27 Nairobi

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Just for you @@graceland.

 

I think I have managed to give them the best of Namibia with a combination of awesome game viewing from both land and water and the stunning landscape/scenery the country offers. South Africa will offer a little respite from the long drives, hot weather with coastal drives and some nice wineries thrown in. Then East Africa is the sit back and bring it on safari time. No need to worry about driving, cameras out, cats galore (hopefully), migration and kills!

 

Namiri Plains and Seronera is a new area for me in Tanzania which I am excited to check out for animals but the rock formations and good landscape shots with volatile weather hopefully adding to the interest.

 

Something new everyday!

 

February

8-13 Abu Dhbai for some R and R for me before jumping into everything

13-16 Livingstone

16-19 Ichobezi River Boat (Chobe/Impailia Island area)

19-20 Camp Kwando, Caprivi, Namibia

20-22 Nunda River Lodge, Caprivi

22-25 Onguma, Etosha

25-27 Okaukuejo, Etosha

27-1 Dolomite, Etosha

March

1-3 Grootberg, Damaraland

3-5 Mowani Mountain Camp, Damaraland

5-7 Erongo Wilderness Camp, Erongo

7-11 Sea Breeze, Swakopmund

11-13 Sossus Dune Lodge

13-16 Eagle's Nest, Klein Aus Vista

16-18 Fish River Lodge

18-20 Bagatelle Kalahari Ranch

20-25 Cape Town AirBnB

25-28 Centre Ville Guest House, Franschhoek

28-30 Zwartberg View Guesthouse, Ooudtshorn

30-1 Knysna Inn, Knysna

April

1-2 Jeffreys Bay

2-3 Johannesburg

3-5 Nairobi

5-11 Namiri Plains, Serengeti, Tanzania

11-17 Dunia Camp, Serengeti, Tanzania

17-20 Governors' Camp, Masai Mara, Kenya

20-26 Mara Bush House, Northern Conservancy, Masai Mara

26-27 Nairobi

Wow, this is awesome. I am going to print it out, take it with me on my upcoming journey and hopefully be able to read about every camp; area before you arrive.

 

An epic adventure awaits :D

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wow what a mighty trip and it's so great that you'll be travelling with your parents. They will surely come to understand your love for Africa when they see for their own eyes the splendour of the country.

 

so we will have to wait until May before there will be any TR from you! it's going to be a really good one. :)

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@@Kitsafari I actually like writing when I get the chance on a holiday. I would like to try and keep a realtime account of the trip if possible and maybe supplement it later on. I always try and edit photos/video whilst on safari to help with the workload later on. Not sure how it will work with mum/dad but they do like to go to bed early so I will have a few hours each night to contemplate the day's activities/experiences and hopefully keep you all updated.

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Well I have spent the last four days in Abu Dhabi recharging the batteries and boosting my vitamin D levels. My departure from Kazakhstan was a little teary but I will be back there in 12 weeks to show my parents around and pick up my bags. The flight down was uneventful apart from looking at the steppe with snow on it for the last time. I was super excited yet exhausted at the same time after finalising all the packing, catching up with friends and hanging out with my shadow B for one last day skiing before flying out on the Sunday evening.

 

My parents had left early the Sunday morning Kaz time and I knew from flight tracking websites that they would be arriving nearly 90 minutes late. This was not the news I wanted to hear considering that their arrival was 3:30am Kaz time and we would still need to get to the hotel. Thankfully, there is the new arrivals lounge in Abu Dhabi so I had a comfortable place to wait the 5 hours and also grab a shower and snack.

 

When I saw the announcement that their plane had arrived I made my way into the luggage carousel area to help them out by collecting their bags and of course the bike we needed to take to Kaz after our Africa trip. This was mum and dad's first time in Abu Dhabi and they looked a little lost and then surprised as they walked down and found me with everything. We made our way through customs, collected my bags and went to go to the chauffeur area to take a car to our home for the next couple of nights.

 

The Jumeirah at Etihad Towers, Abu Dhabi has been my go to place when needing a few days to chill out after a trip. It is more of an adults/business hotel which means that I am not listening to the yelling and screaming that all pools have when children are around. Working with children is great but when I am on a holiday I really enjoy the quiet.

 

Mum and dad have never experienced the "Etihad" treatment before so it was great to see them enjoying the chauffeur car. I always knew that this hotel would blow my dad out of the water. The reception is so grand and a real "wow" moment when entering the property for the first time. Dad didn't disappoint and exclaimed "Holy shit, this is amazing, look at this Sandra!" We finalised our check in with a surly and unhelpful hotel employee and made our way upstairs to our rooms on the 35th floor. Mum and dad's room had been decorated because I had notified the hotel that they were celebrating their wedding anniversary so a rose petal decorated bed and a lovely cake welcomed them. I wasn't hanging around so I bid them goodnight and headed next door to my room for a good sleep, reminding them that they had breakfast included in their room rate and they definitely didn't want to miss out on the extravaganza that would await them.

 

My parent's surprise at staying in such a lovely hotel was great to see. They were amazed at the breakfast spread each morning and the diversity on offer from various cuisines around the world, the impeccable service, huge rooms/beds and little touches like receiving fresh fruit each day, turndown service and incredible views whilst watching the Red Bull Air Race pilots practising each day for the upcoming competition. The hotel's private beach and three pools offer an oasis to relax and recover after their long flight from Australia and allow us to chat about what we have coming up. There are plenty of restaurants to eat at to cater for every palate and price point. There is also a great Waitrose supermarket downstairs that offers fantastic salads, olives, cheese and biscuits to enjoy in our rooms. We particularly like these kinds of dinners so we don't feel as though we are eating heavy and unhealthy food when on the road travelling.

 

Abu Dhabi has offered the chance for us to do a couple of cultural/tourist things including a visit to the Grand Mosque and the Marina F1 Circuit. Both were fantastic experiences that I thoroughly recommend. The Grand Mosque is ideal to visit during the late afternoon around 5pm and by the time you have toured around you have been able to see it during the day and lit up in the early evening.

 

So now we are on our final countdown to our flight down to Jo'burg at 2am tonight. Bags are packed, carryon has been organised and check in down. I have arranged for a meet and greet in Jo'burg to get us through customs quickly so we can make our connection to the Livingstone flight which we can't afford to miss. Fingers crossed! I can't wait to touchdown in Zambia so our adventure can really start and my parents can start to understand my love affair with Africa. It also means I can get the cameras out and start taking photos which really relaxes me and reminds me that I too am on holiday...

 

Where I Stayed - Jumeirah at Etihad Towers

 

Fantastic!

 

As soon as you walk into the atrium of this property you know you are somewhere special. The beach facilities and service were brilliant. The beach is not that great but the pool is lovely. Wonderful little touches like snacks accompanying the wine, ice lollies and fresh towels were much appreciated. Like other people the only issue I had was the noise factor from the neighbouring construction sites whilst relaxing outside. I made a point of listening to my iPod or iPad to keep this distraction down. The Nahaam Restaurant was great for casual and tasty lunches.
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  • 3 months later...

I was wondering if your trip is over? and if you are doing a trip report? Pen

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This is a unique and exciting buildup to a wonderful family trip. Please share your trip with us at your convenience. It can also be a wonderful tool for reminiscing with the family.

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  • 2 months later...

Where I Stayed - Jumeirah at Etihad Towers

 

Fantastic!

 

As soon as you walk into the atrium of this property you know you are somewhere special. The beach facilities and service were brilliant. The beach is not that great but the pool is lovely. Wonderful little touches like snacks accompanying the wine, ice lollies and fresh towels were much appreciated. Like other people the only issue I had was the noise factor from the neighbouring construction sites whilst relaxing outside. I made a point of listening to my iPod or iPad to keep this distraction down. The Nahaam Restaurant was great for casual and tasty lunches.

 

~ @@SaminKaz

 

Thank you for this endorsement.

I've specifically wondered about that facility.

Tom K.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Everyone,

I have returned safely and working on my trip report. I have completed many of the videos to accompany the trip report that I have started to post online.

Here are some of the videos from my time in Namibia.

Hope you enjoy as much as I do looking back and reminiscing over the amazing experiences I got to share with my parents who by the way were blown away everyday by what we did and saw.

 

More to come!

 

 

https://vimeo.com/139681456 - Chobe Riverboat Safari

 

https://vimeo.com/139673922 - Fish River Canyon day tour

 

https://vimeo.com/139684739 - Sandwich Harbour 4WD

 

https://vimeo.com/139683373 - Kayaking with seals, Walvis Bay

 

https://vimeo.com/139679108 - Sossusvlei, Namibia

 

https://vimeo.com/139688713 - Sossusvlei Helicopter Ride

 

https://vimeo.com/139425407 - Etosha NP

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Very beautiful videos , thanks for sharing !!!

 

It is nice to see Etosha so green , we visited one year ago in August and everything was mostly dry and yellow !!!

 

Paco

Edited by africawild
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@@SaminKaz

 

Amazing videos, and the whole trip was probably equally amazing. Looking forward to read the trip report! Thanks for sharing, Samantha.

 

-Chobe Riverboat Safari : so different one can hardly believe it is filmed in Namibia

-Fish River Canyon day tour : I must have had same facial expressions when my daughter lured me on my first rollercoaster ride in Disneyworld, Paris :) . I have missed this activity when there, from where did you start (lodge)?

- Sandwich Harbour 4WD : once a boy always a boy - https://goo.gl/TmfJSJ

- Kayaking with seals, Walvis Bay : firmly on our to-do list for next visit

- Sossusvlei, Namibia : a magical sunrise

- Sossusvlei Helicopter Ride : simply WOW

- Etosha NP : remarkable rhino sequences

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Friday, 13 February

 

Our flight from Abu Dhabi to Jo’burg was at 2am. Our transfer was running late and then we waited patiently for numerous Etihad staff members to arrange for our luggage to go all the way through to Livingstone which would save us valuable time in Jo’burg with customs/luggage collection. The 90 minutes it took to organize this meant that we only had time to go straight to the plane.

 

We arrived in Jo’burg on time and transferred easily to our Livingstone flight courtesy of the VIP transfers I had arranged. I was stressed we would miss our connecting flight and through some research saw that a VIP transfer was a great way to get through customs quicker. After clearing customs Mum and I spent some time shopping in Jo’burg Airport, which has some fantastic shops for African souvenirs and dad went to the lounge to grab some breaky. We met up at the gate and boarded our BA flight to Livingstone.

 

On arrival in Livingstone we were confronted with only two immigration workers processing a full flight of tourists, which meant that we had to wait for 90 minutes to get to the front of the line. We went to retrieve our bags and immediately I noticed that both my parent’s bags had been broken into. Both of their zippers and locks were cut open and the contents of my dad’s bag had been moved around. They were both pretty upset but at that stage I just wanted to report the incident and get us to our b&b to understand what was taken. BA were very good with the handling of the situation and we left within 30 minutes with a warning to wrap our bags whenever we were flying through Jo’burg Airport.

 

With this warning we left for Gloria’s Bed and Breakfast close to the centre of Livingstone. Our transfer was done through the owner’s husband and paid in US$20. On arrival we were shown to our 3 person room with a bathroom which thankfully had air con. This was important because the air was hot and heavy with humidity. The room was clean, a good size and suited our needs nicely with a queen and a single bed. I had decided to try and save money on accommodation in Livingstone so we could splurge during other parts of our trip. We checked the luggage and although their bags had been rifled through nothing was taken. They hadn't packed any valuables in the bags but it was interesting to see that they had gone through both sets of toiletries and emptied all of their vitamins out looking for anything of value.

 

We settled in, went for a swim and then spent the afternoon/evening at the Royal Livingstone Hotel for sundowners and dinner. This was a great opportunity for mum and dad to see the Zambezi River and their first African sunset.

 

https://vimeo.com/139713367

 

Where We Stayed

Gloria’s Bed and Breakfast, Livingstone – triple room $70/night. Clean, safe and comfortable. Simple b&b for a great price in Livingstone. Transfers offered by the property and they are happy to arrange tours. The city centre is walking distance but a taxi is easier. Breakfast is simple but filling.

 

Victoria Falls would require a transfer and costs US$20 to enter. It is best to rent a poncho to protect you from the spray from the waterfall and to protect your belongings. Make sure you have a waterproof camera or something to protect your camera due to all the spray from the falls. Good footwear is necessary because the steps and walkways are very slippery. The Victoria Falls Bridge can easily be walked to from the entrance to the falls and takes about 15/20 minutes. You can partake in bungy jumping and ziplining at the bridge and there is also a café but not sure what the opening hours are. Shops are also situated at the carpark to the falls that sell trinkets and snacks.

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Hi Everyone,

I have returned safely and working on my trip report. I have completed many of the videos to accompany the trip report that I have started to post online.

Here are some of the videos from my time in Namibia.

Hope you enjoy as much as I do looking back and reminiscing over the amazing experiences I got to share with my parents who by the way were blown away everyday by what we did and saw.

More to come!

- Chobe Riverboat Safari

- Fish River Canyon day tour

- Sandwich Harbour 4WD

- Kayaking with seals, Walvis Bay

- Sossusvlei, Namibia

- Sossusvlei Helicopter Ride

- Etosha NP

Great thanks! All done with your Go Pro? Do you zoom in post processing? You did a great job. Pen

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Glad you and your folks had a great time. It sounds like everyone enjoyed Livingstone, luggage issues notwithstanding. I'm working my way through your videos now - love the rhinos and eles in the Etosha video. Also the Chobe eles drinking makes for a really great scene.

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oh no! so sorry to hear about the luggage being broken into. I would have thought that was a thing of the past, but it still seems to happen. but glad your parents had no valuables in there.

 

Chobe on a boat looks really special. lovely to see the elephants browsing at eye level!

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Interesting detail about the luggage "inspection" in Johannesburg. Will remember to leave my bag unlocked next time I have to pass through there.

 

Epic trip and you definitely win the "Safaritalk Good Daughter of the Year" award.

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Sunday, 15 February

 

After a terrible sleep due to my parent’s snoring and one of the biggest storms I have every experienced I woke to a hot and humid morning in Livingstone. We enjoyed our breakfast at Goria's and I arranged to do a zip line ride before heading to the falls. The zip line included free transfers and meant that we wouldn’t need to pay for an additional transfer to the falls from the b&b.

 

I had originally expected my parents to participate in the zip line but unfortunately the wrong company was booked. I wanted to do the zip line at the Victoria Falls Bridge where we put on a harnesses, sit and then let go and zip line down to the bridge. Instead I was taken to another operator where after harnessing up you need to run and launch yourself off the side across a large gorge. Still a great experience but too much for my parents to endure so it was just myself who launched over the edge three times. Great footage especially the superman style which I would have to say was a little nerve wracking and definitely not flattering with how the harness was fitted.

 

https://vimeo.com/139724730

 

After my exhilarating adrenaline rides we went off to see Victoria Falls. I had calculated that by arriving around midday we would have the sun coming out and it would allow us to enjoy the experience better. Weather during February is very intermittent with mornings normally cloudy and the strong chance of rain. Midday and afternoons were normally nice with breaks in the weather and strong sunny periods. Thankfully this turned out to be true and after paying our entrance fee we put on our waterproof jackets for our next adventure. The falls were not as full as they should have been for February but the spray was certainly in force. My parents were astonished at how wet they were getting and needed to take things slowly as they made their way around. The spray limited our view from a number of the vantage spots and prevented most photo opportunities except from my waterproof GoPro.

 

We spent 90 minutes walking along the top tracks of the falls and speaking with other tourists at different spots. We should have invested in the large ponchos for rent considering the camera equipment I was carrying but I decided that the weather was warm enough and used my jacket to cover the backpack and walked around in my shorts and t-shirt.

 

After the falls I convinced my and dad to walk down to the Victoria Falls Bridge to dry off and to watch the bungy jumpers launching themselves from the bridge. It would also provide some good photo opportunities with the resident baboons and allow mum and dad to put a “foot” into Zimbabwe. We endured plenty of people offering us lifts in either local taxis or on tricycles. We were happy to walk and dry off but the insistent locals were a problem considering there was very little tourist traffic.

 

We enjoyed an hour watching the daredevils launch themselves into the abyss of the gorge from the Victoria Falls Bridge, took advantage of photo opportunities by having a foot in both Zambia and Zimbabwe and of course were offered billions of Zimbabwean dollars for only US$5 from the touts along the bridge. We made our way back to the falls car park and encountered the local baboons who were all behaving nicely. Certainly not like my last visit.

 

We caught a local taxi back to the city center from the entrance to the falls where we enjoyed a late lunch at Ocean Basket before heading back to pack our bags for our departure the following day.

 

Zip lining – US$50 but due to being the only guest I was given 3 rides

 

Victoria Falls – US$20 per person. Poncho rental is 8 kwacha and is ideal if you are carrying a backpack with valuables.

Edited by SaminKaz
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