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Namibia . In the green season of March 2022. postponed twice due to Covid plague.


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2 hours ago, dlo said:

Maybe after Tanzania I can do another Namibia and Zambia combo.

I am looking at that. Kunene, Kaprivi and Kafue has a certain ring to it and encompasses three of my favourite Lodges.

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We did Caprivi,Vic Falls and Luangwa and it was one of my best trips. Luangwa is an absolute gem and I'd love to add North Luangwa next time. The only problem of course is time, we absolutely raced through Caprivi in order to see everything. Some members who I trust keep recommending Kafue so maybe one day.

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Next stop a hidden gem.

We had enjoyed our stay at Halali despite a shortfall in our quota of large mammals and cats but it was time to leave with the accent on time. Our entry time at Galton had been slightly adjusted but we still needed to get to Von Lindquist Gate by 09.59 or risk being charged for another 24 hours. We had 82km of park to cross so there was no loiter time. Google said 90 minutes but we all know how ambitious that will be even on a non stop run and who can do that in Etosha? We had originally planned to visit Fisher’s Pan on the run east before exiting but time restraints made that impractical.

So having loaded the car, cleaned and locked the Chalet, handed back the key and had breakfast we exited the camp gate as it opened at 7.00.

We just kept to the main tracks and headed east at a comfortable game viewing speed. Fortunately, or unfortunately, there were no distracting sightings during the drive apart from a couple of Spotted Hyenas returning from their late night excursions. A recent revised road layout even detoured Namutoni Camp and we then had some nice tar for the first time for a week or so. Exit formalities at the gate some minutes before ten o’clock and the open road beckoned.

2080809691_HalalitoMundulea.JPG.ff5eda3bad96e7e4bcdda6669064bf4d.JPGA relatively short drive of 280km lay ahead so now we could slow down as we were not due be at the next meeting place until 14.00 to meet. So there was absolutely no excuse for me to be waved down by a very nice policeman who told me he was running a ‘speed awareness’ operation and I was speeding. Oops! He seemed a nice chap, very well spoken, and I offered no resistance other than to say I had lifted my foot as I saw the ‘60’ sign and was decelerating but just not braking hard for safety reasons due to the downhill slope of the road. Driving licence produced and all was in order. I politely asked ‘what next Officer?’

“Was he going to throw this elderly tourist in Gaol or accept my sincere apology and send me on my way remorseful but with good memories of Namibia?” He smiled and chose the latter saying I was forgiven and we were sent on our way.  Phew!! We were still ahead of schedule so I pulled in to a roadside picnic spot and got out the rented Satellite phone we had rented, for the first and only time, and after fathoming out how it operated I phoned Kate at Turnstone check the entry track to Mundulea and to advise our E.T.A when we would meet our host Brno Nebe. We still had time to kill so we pulled into the usual fuel and supermarket in Otavi to buy a sandwich or something and then found somewhere quiet to eat it. After which we set off to find the turn off for the D road which was where the instructions said it would be. There was some very muddy patches following recent rains so we took it extremely carefully and eventually reached the gate to Mundulea. Still early so we indulged in a bit of birding.

The attached ‘map’ does not show the whole route there. The D road is clear enough and we were waiting at the gate just where the final track hooks south which is where Brno found us. He unlocked both gates and instructed me drive on and he would follow to the Farmhouse which he did. Our trail stops at the farm as we then transferred into Brno’s ancient but reliable Land Rover for the final drive to the Bush Camp.

Mundulea Camp is named after a local purple flower in the legume family and lies in a very secluded stand of trees that is almost invisible from any distance. The four guest tents are each secluded from each other and connected by paths to the main dining and cooking Lapa.

DSCN4134.JPG.6bba9f341b40d1e8323ffdb651abec96.JPGThe tents are on a large plinth, and are not lavishly furnished but more than adequate. All lights are solar powered and hot water is provided by a Donkey Stove or, as East Africans call it, a Kampala boiler. There is a comfortable bed with duvets as it can get cold I am told, and a wardrobe and two chairs. The ‘bathroom’ is out is the fresh air at the rear and contains the usual fittings such as washbasin, Shower stall and WC. Who needs more? DSCN4065.JPG.cde67234e3c61d6792288e61ca7d748b.JPGDSCN4063.JPG.c13e7535589a4c7d336ad8f8746af20f.JPGDSCN4064.JPG.97706b2a00a385c8c5932145a34acbe4.JPGDSCN4061.JPG.c3ff125b20ef85abcb0d6ac5acd452c0.JPGDSCN4062.JPG.d840c0a119f51050e5bd2492cc426f63.JPG

The whole set up is lovely and private.


Meals are cooked on a wood stove in the Lapa and rely heavily on the use of Potje and pans. They were excellent. Local wildlife could be seen at a salt lick and waterhole either from the Lapa or from two rustic hides. A fine Kudu bull regarded us as we ate our first meal in this lovely haven whilst African Paradise Flycatchers hawked insects along the pathways..DSCN4068.JPG.669cbba55d47c122b5fbadec0423e823.JPGDSCN4205.JPG.cdb7ec4a1f69a8d0044191d782c5e9a9.JPG

Activities are mainly guided walks with Brno or short drives around the property for birds and mammal watching at dambos and clearings in the bush.

The property was purchased by Brno as a private wildlife reserve and there are large herds of Eland, Kudu and Black-faced Impala plus Giraffe and smaller mammals such as Damara Dik Dik and porcupines etc.,



I set up my trail camera to see what came after dark after which we discovered that sleep quality was superb and awoke refreshed the next morning. After breakfast Brno led us off on a walk into the bush where we saw quite a few mammals and birds. We stopped at the foot of a large rocky outcrop to watch three Hawk eagles hunting as well as seek out Damara Rockjumpers which we saw but failed to photograph. As well as pointing out birds Brno explained the history of the reserve as well as his plans for the future.



There was certainly a lot of wildlife around as my trail camera had almost exhausted the 8 batteries the first evening on multiple shots of visiting animals from giraffe, to oryx and impala.   Hoped for small nocturnals did not get a look in at all. Next time I will try another location or bring two cameras..




Next morning we awoke to heavy and steady rain which killed off any hope of another walk but after lunch we did take a game drive for a couple of hours and sat by another dambo where giraffe, wildebeeste, impala came down to drink whilst Little Grebes and even a Dwarf Bittern were observed.

Arachnaphobes should look away now as this is a shot of Golden Orb Spider, female left and smaller male on right that we came upon on our walk.




Plus a small Black bordered Lemon Butterfly under foot.


I really cannot praise the place enough. It contained much that I really like about small camps such as isolation and solitude and yet still provided all the comforts of home such as running water and good food. We will be back soon I am sure.

Edited by Galana
amended text as some photos failed to upload.
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Really pleased you enjoyed Mundulea @Galana.  The tents have been slightly upgraded but the main cooking and dining area is exactly the same, see picture. 

This was in 2008!


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1 hour ago, Zim Girl said:

but the main cooking and dining area is exactly the same, see picture. 

Brno obviously subscribes , as I do, that if it ain't broke don't fix it.

Even the kettle on the hob looks to be the same one. The Hob certainly is.

It seems to be more waterproof or shaded now.

Thanks for sharing that with us.


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Home away from home.

We had no need to rush away from the idyllic Mondulea as our drive to the next lodge was not far at all. Barely 100km.

883074489_FIMun.JPG.671d05995178283f01102340554e0e1a.JPGAfter a leisurely breakfast and a last walk up to the ‘mountain’, Brno took us back to our car and we said our farewells under the gaze of yet another Great Spotted Cuckoo in the farm garden.


16km of gravel track, and a 100 metres of gooey mud where the Hi Luxe had to be prevented from going axle deep following the invisible rutted tracks of a larger vehicle that lay below the liquid surface, and we gained the main B1 tar road once more. This road is dead straight and smooth so I do not know what sort of spectacle our very muddy ‘farm’ truck must have made for the other drivers in their shiny and newly washed vehicles. Having then reached our very familiar turn off we left the tar and had another 18km of gravel road which, whilst still wet from yesterday’s rain, was not as bad as the last one.

And so we arrived at the gates of one of our favourite lodges. No visit to Namibia by us is complete without a few days here. Built by and named after a prominent local business man, Dr. Frans Indongo this will be our sixth stay here and naturally the ‘welcome home’ was effusive.DSCN4227.JPG.75408f08d1ea0adfc609a2ba921a5a1b.JPGDSCN4225.JPG.53e616a5d71b97d3f5b80528562136aa.JPGDSCN4218.JPG.df0e9321709c0eeaafc4845bcd560628.JPGDSCN4216.JPG.29b2d9b8bfc0d4c3522613fceec245df.JPGDSCN4220.JPG.5139234c6a6ca3c33ce4d620b9d2e670.JPGDSCN4222.JPG.cd689357806a1b61eb0ee14afc7d6304.JPG


The Lodge is part of a larger private game reserve created as an indulgence by Dr. Indongo to be both home for him and a collection of wildlife. There are 14 en suite private chalets grouped around the main ‘Lapa’ building that contains bar, restaurant, public lounge and large open deck overlooking the main wildlife reserve where many antelopes of several species can be observed.

Many are native species, such as Sable, Roan and Impala but there are some ‘exotics’ too like Bontibok. DSCN4228.JPG.54ffaf0b4bddb552b265e7cf7accbb7b.JPG1-DSCN4345.JPG.a3423df527298d5a681f78f223317889.JPGDSCN4231.JPG.b179494484bbbc4fef4b8d2c50fb9c10.JPG

DSCN4223.JPG.cc303c4539df95a52b3237440fbbca0b.JPGMost of these come to the newly created illuminated waterhole just a few metres from the viewing deck towards sundown. There are other large enclosures, Namibia is very strict on the permitted area per mammal, containing White Rhino and other wildlife which can be visited on game drives offered by the lodge. Other activities are on offer for longer staying guests such as 3 unescorted hiking trails over the property towards the line of rocky outcrops to the north.

1-DSCN4270.JPG.2cd8d9626f34f5c4769c5493d39d530f.JPG1-DSCN4271.JPG.703800b45678033afc7b8d2af66b9a90.JPGHere one can wander freely among game animals and view both them and the prolific birdlife on foot armed only with a camera or binoculars in good clean air with only the smell of the bush in your nostrils.

Meals are usually three course set menus served at your table by friendly staff. Very much meat based but veggie options are available. Indeed due to low guest numbers on one evening we were ‘indulged’ by being asked to suggest our own menu and chose fish which made a nice change. It was served accompanied by the Managers personal choice of her favourite white wine from a very comprehensive wine list.

We used our time here just to relax and the only exertions were our usual walks on the property and a couple of short drives over the dirt roads towards the Waterberg massif to the south.

DSCN4264.JPG.d691fb2756b0522b118809b7f3c8e2a5.JPGIf Amboseli can have elephant against a background of Kilimanjaro then surely Frans  Indongo can have the Waterberg at sundown with Roan.


We also took advantage of the Wifi to reserve our seating on the planes home which in itself was an interesting exercise in a British Bank’s attempts to deal in Namibian dollars to a merchant based in Addis Ababa.

As our plane leaves WDH at 14.30 and we had the car to return first it was necessary to leave quite early next morning so settled our account the previous evening and true to form an early breakfast was readily provided.

As always we really enjoyed our stay at Frans Indongo Lodge and are always sad when the time comes to say good bye and Auf Weidersehn. But one thing is certain we plan to see them again when we return to Namibia.


The next post will be the final one for this trip and will comprise of the short account of our drive down to Windhoek and a summary of the logistics and statistics of the trip overall.

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What entertaining posts 1 and 2! You've described the Twilight Zone atmosphere of travel today.

I know what you mean about duplicating all the charging equipment for different cameras.  Despite all the vexations, a hot chocolate and Tiramisu or Belgian chocolate cake had to be bright spots.  So glad you made it.  "Wiffy" seems to be available for your postings.  Beautiful landscapes.


Glad the eles appeared for you and you managed to lose the gittar.  Overall, Hobatare seemed to be a success.  The roller and ele combo is unique.

Edited by Atravelynn
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The final curtain.  Homeward bound.


As stated we needed an early start from Frans Indongo Lodge in order drive 310 km to Windhoek to hand back the car and still make an 11.30 check in at the Airport.


So it was ‘early doors’ for a 6.30 breakfast with the car packed and rolling at 06.47. The drive down was trouble free and we had fuel for the whole trip and some to spare. We could return it empty but I did not want to sweat on an empty gauge as we got close to Windhoek. I took the view that better leave some unused fuel, N$17 per litre, than risk running out. Just not worth the hassle.

And so after a trouble and worry free drive we found ourselves on schedule for a 10.00 arrival as we headed down the Windhoek Western bypass with 10km to go. Oh dear. There were road works just where we needed to turnoff on B1 south and we missed the signs. Bu55er!

793786123_Advancedrtn2.JPG.f108e867dff0ee60e110ddf74edcbbbb.JPG So we went on new road that has not yet made it onto Traks mapping and took the next exit. Did a smart loop around a new estate and picked up B1 south again and got to Advanced Depot at 10.07.

1924701063_Advancedrtn.JPG.23c72eca5534ebaedd89377dbc2c98ba.JPGA swift handover, all of 15 minutes at most, the car was dirty but unbroken, a cup of coffee, loaded cases into the shuttle minibus and off to the airport.

Check In was no problem although having printed out our boarding cards at FI.Lodge it was a minor irritation to get new cardboard ones. Through Security and Immigration and a two hour wait for boarding. That’s why we carry a paperback book in hand luggage, innit! Boarded and away on time.

Land ADD and repeat. Well, not quite. A bus ride and more security. Why? We were all queuing nicely at the appointed time and gate and they spun us a Gate change. The Tel Aviv plane was broken so the Israel bound pax stole ours and we could use theirs when it was fixed in 50 minutes. And another bus ride.

We lifted off northward bound about 50 minutes late. No sweat as the driver man blew some ‘pocket change’ on extra fuel for extra speed and we made our technical stop in Brussels just 10 minutes late. Good eh?

Nope! After offloading about half the Pax the ‘body count’ did not match. Either someone had got off that should not have done or somebody was still on board that should have got off. After several recounts it still did not match so all boarding cards were examined and still no change. Logic dictated that it must have been somebody who got off that should not have done so why not just leave him/her to the joys of Brussels?? Come on, when was the last time or first time you heard of Airlines using logic? At one stage I honestly thought they were going to turf us all off and start again. But eventually the doors were closed and we were off on our last leg to sunny Manchester. Coincidently 50 minutes late once more!! Conspiracy theorists would have a field day if they knew! And so we landed and joy of joys, we had another bus ride to reach the terminal. As ET are on the ground here for the best part of 12 hours I can understand them not using up a gate and we were in no rush. Even the later arrival had not put our onward connection with Loganair at risk but it was still a relief when our two cases came up the carousel after Border Force condescended to let us into UK with almost a smile.


So a schlepp from T2 to T3, by grabbing a free trolley (the tight Ba$tards at MAN charge a quid but I know where the spares live) and a trouble free check in with two hours to spare before our 10.50 flight home to Isle of Man and only the overwhelming pleasure of ‘Security’ to face in between. And whilst they were on top of their form we got through relatively easily despite them being treated to body scans of me as my mother knew me. Some folks would pay for that treat I am sure but many would not. Off at 10.50 and down on time. Handed over our ‘Approved resident’ forms so we could be allowed back in to join the 70,000 other drunks that cling to this rock in the Irish Sea. Our luggage appeared on the small carousel and we loaded it onto a Free trolley and out the door where Alan from Airport Secure Parking was waiting to re unite us with our car that had been left in his care for a month.

The drive home was occasionally punctuated by swear words as I tried to remember the column stalks for wipers and indicators were now reversed again from those on the Toyota of the last month. Stopped at the corner shop for Milk, Bread and Eggs (and other essentials) and home. Supper was Scrambled Egg on nice fresh crusty bread (something we sorely missed in Namibia) a glass or two of Red wine and an early night. 

The trip was done.


Some details for anyone interested.

Flights were with

Loganair IOM-MAN-IOM. Trouble free.

Ethiopian. MAN-ADD-WDH-ADD-MAN. Not without its moments but it went well enough.


Car Hire. Toyota Hi Luxe. 2.6 diesel Double Cab with reserve tank, fridge and two spare tyres, with a crappy canopy over the load bay and a fuel tank with a permanent air lock. Supplied by Advanced Car Hire, Palladian Street, WDH. No mileage charge and N$45,000 XS. (N$45,000 at risk versus Zero XS which would cost N$8120 extra so no contest from me?) I do have annual Worldwide XS cover for that if needed.

We drove 3282km and used 270 litres of diesel costing about N$17 per litre.

No punctures and the engine ran without a pause.


Lodges (Already reviewed above.)

Must return to...Mundulea and of course Frans Indongo.

To be avoided as Never again?   Never say never.


Ground agent for Etosha bookings. Info-namibia. Treasure Hunt Design and travel. They did the few small jobs entrusted to them very well indeed.



Avifauna Checklist.  190 species. 4 new to my Namibian list.

BY scores.                 167. Species. 

Photographs taken 2489.


Where next?

The Isle of Mull and the Outer Hebrides in five weeks time.

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Dave Williams

Excellent report Fred. The wet season is not the best for some mammals in Etosha it seems. We only saw one pair of Lions, two Elephants, and two Rhino. Plenty of BB Jackals, herbivores etc and some excellent birds too. 

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Thank you for a great report with loads of very good photos.

Very enjoyable!

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Lovelly trip and a very pleasant to read report, plenty of info and lots of bed linen, looking forward for the next one.

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Thanks for a very enjoyable and informative report @Galana. Definitely a useful resource for whenever we plan our first visit to Namibia. 

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A little rough patch getting on the plane home, but that's a small price to pay for 190 species on the avifauna checklist.  Still laughing at the "Speed Awareness Operation."

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Thanks everyone for persevering.

@Dave WilliamsWe knew some mammals would be scarcer but the greenness made up for it. I will admit to an elephant deficiency although the grass was so tall they could have been hiding.

@pedro maiaI did the bed linen just for you.:P

@Zubbie15you should be planning now. Namibia is waiting for you.

Thanks @Atravelynn. 190 was a low score for us. There were many 'regulars' that for some reason we never saw (or maybe just failed to tick.) I too still smile at the lovely encounter with the policeman. What stood out a mile was his beautiful unaccented voice and ready smile. It would have almost been a pleasure to have been fined by such a pleasant man.

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Thanks for an entertaining ride through Namibia - what's a journey without the bumps and humps, but just glad you managed to stay on track and on schedule even if the airlines cant!  

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Great report, really enjoyed reading it!

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Thank you for posting this very enjoyable and informative trip report. This surely is a place we must go back to, even if it means activating the windscreen wipers with every turn of the car for the weeks after ;) 

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8 hours ago, PeterHG said:

This surely is a place we must go back to,

Well I certainly am planning to. I have long believed that 'less is more' and prefer a few stops for longer rather some mad relay race around the whole country.

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On 4/21/2022 at 2:25 PM, Galana said:

It would have almost been a pleasure to have been fined by such a pleasant man.

Now that's going too far!

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  • 2 weeks later...

What a pleasant rip you have, and what a great trip report you share with us! Thanks, and enjoy Outer Hebrides!

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43 minutes ago, xelas said:

enjoy Outer Hebrides!

Thanks and we will. ETD - 24 days and counting.:)

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  • 1 year later...

Only one and three-quarters of a year late.

Thanks for a wonderful report.

Munduleu looks truly wonderful!

Regarding the drive to Hobatere, there actually is a virtually straight road. Called the Khowarib Schuscht off-road trail (and even visible on your maps). Only I'm not sure it would have been passable at this time of this year. We did it in April 2017 and it was no struggle at all (in fact we were even towing trailers), but it looks like 2022 was a wetter year than 2017. Of out whole trip in 2017, those roughly 50km were by far the ones I enjoyed most.


Lastly, with regard to there being fewer people on the plane than on the manifest, it is my understanding that that particular requirement was introduced after Lockerbie.

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Better late than never @Peter Connan and glad you liked it.  Regarding Kwowarib Schlucht, I knew of that track and had read up on it.

But on the day take a look at the photo on 25th March 22 above. No way.


We actually had taken a look during our stay, pre rain, and I wrote this on that same post.

"We did try on the morning but after only a couple of km the ‘trail’ fell off a cliff into the river and we did not attempt the descent in fear of not being able to get back up again. "

It will be there for me next visit.


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We did it in the other direction, thus your entry-point was our river exit, and we made it easily. But it was the most difficult part of the trip.

However, despite the fact that we were towing trailers, we were also two vehicles, which makes a lot of difference in terms of the chances one can take on getting stuck. This is of course done entirely on purpose and for this very reason. And of course, we also bring some recovery equipment with us. I have no idea what hire vehicles have, but we always carry a Hi-lift jack (with a variety of attachments and accessories), some recovery ropes, a spade, a compressor and an axe at a minimum.


I do hope you get there someday in circumstances that look good enough to try.

Edited by Peter Connan
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Well coming in from south to North West would act as a stimulant. When you hit that river Hoanib you are well committed and will just press on as you are much nearer the exit by then. Dangerous thinking I know but....

As for Rental equipped Hi Luxes. Advanced have always been good to me (even turned the Nelson eye to our trip down Van Zyl's until after the event then wanted photos for Facebook.)

We got a hi lift jack and spare tyres but not a lot more. I bring Gaffer tape and lots of cable ties (for fixing things that 'fall off') but I hate that damn spare under the body. I take it off in WDH and sling it in the back. Must work as it rarely gets needed away from helping hands.

But I have known of other outfits that send their cars outwith little more than a toothbrush. Inflators that don't work, knackered wiring and a wind up jack with no handle.

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