At the border, entering the "country" of Transnistria. Photo taken December 8, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Tiraspol, Transnistria...the country that doesn't exist.

Where are they going next? Northern Moldova. Arrive December 11th.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

On the border of Angola!

I was really looking forward to yesterday's drive.

This would take us to an area of Namibia that we had not seen before. Out of the desert, and more like the Africa we had envisioned. To the northern part of Namibia, right on the border of Angola!

We had to do a 550 km (341 mile) drive, and it would be even longer if we stayed on the main roads. So we took a backroad for the first part, one that would save us 40 kms (24 miles) over the other route.

Yesterday's drive, 550 kms.

We were on the road at 8:15am. We checked with the managers at the lodge to see what they thought of us taking one of the back roads, and they said that while they hadn't been on it themselves, they had heard that it was a good road.

And it was a good road!

The D2779. It was a great road, with nobody on it!

It was a farming area and Ruth got out to open and close four or five gates like this one.

So we're tooling along just fine at 80 km/h (50 mph) or so and have seen only one other vehicle in the 70 kms (42 miles) since we left. When what do we see? A couple of guys walking along this stretch of road. 

Hitchhiking!

So we stopped and picked them up. If we hadn't, it's a pretty safe bet they would still be there!

We drove them about 100 kms (62 miles) to the town of Otavi. They couldn't speak any English except to say "thanks" which they said about a dozen times. Too funny.

Things got a lot greener after the town of Grootfontein.

The road was in perfect condition, and very little traffic.

We had been going through an area with a lot of agriculture and farming. Then, there were fenced private hunting parks on both sides of the highway. Then, things changed again. Drastically.

Not in a bad way. But in a very different way. 

We had entered the Kavango Region of Namibia, where the local population is still very much traditional.

There were huts like this along the road for miles.


We made it to the outskirts of Rundu, the largest town in the Kovango region. We had to turn before the town, so we didn't get a chance to see it yet.

The road to our next destination at Hakusembe River Lodge was in pretty rough shape!

The road to Hakusembe Lodge.

But when we got there, we found an oasis. More pics later!

Here's our accommodation for the next two nights...

Ruth, enjoying our front porch overlooking the Kavango River.

The view from our porch is the Kavango River. The other side of the river is the country of Angola! Wow!


21 comments:

  1. Very cool! I saw a documentary on Namibia this week and was hoping you'd make it to the desert.

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    1. Sandra, we have been in the desert for most of our trip so far. This is our first time we really have been away from it but we will be back to it next week.

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  2. OK so, the sign on the gate is in Dutch. I guess the two languages are interchangeable, depending on where you are?

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    1. It's Afrikaans, widely spoken in this region

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    2. 2 CooPs is right but we are finding that most of the local people we speak with, speak English and Oshiwambo.

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  3. What a neat drive. And your digs with the view for two nights....what fun.

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    1. It really is. We are looking forward to our time up here on the Caprivi Strip and in the whole northern region, it should be very interesting.

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  4. Another great drive to another terrific accommodation! What a view!! You really are having a tough time of in Africa.

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    1. We have really been enjoying our time here and watching the villagers across the river in Angola. This has definitely given us a great taste of Africa.

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  5. If you are into country collecting you will probably find you can do a boat trip to the other side and the boat men usually have signs for you to hold saying "illegal in Angola", bit of a laugh.

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    1. Nope, we only count countries that we've truly visited.

      And yeah, we thought about stepping off at the other side of the river, but Angola is one of those funny countries where it's difficult to be a tourist. I think we'll pass for now!

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  6. Such beautiful photos and what a great experience it must be. I grew up in South Africa and haven't been back in about 14 years. I have to make it a plan one day, when my children are a little older.

    I can't wait to hear your thoughts as you move further south.

    Enjoy,
    Michelle

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    1. Thank you Michelle. We are looking forward to exploring South Africa and seeing what the differences are between it and Namibia.

      I hope you make plans to return for a visit. 14 years is a long time.

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  7. I'm wondering if you have seen any signs of the death of Nelson Mandela yet?
    Nice photos, looks like a great place to be for a while!

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    1. No, nothing. But we've not been into any major centres since he passed away.

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  8. More diversity - love the photos, Kevin.

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    1. Yes, we are sure finding that out. We couldn't believe the difference between the district we were in and the Kavango district, it was a very drastic change as soon as we crossed the district line.

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  9. Beautiful header picture. Keep having fun.

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  10. Spoiled rotten! What a wonderful adventure. Awful cold here in Denver - headed to Coz Tuesday. Hope to see you in March - chance the house will be done...

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    1. Yep, spoiled is a good word for it. We' ve been watching the weather back in Canada and the States and it looks like an early winter for a lot of people. Glad you are getting away from it on Tuesday. We are looking forward to seeing you both in March too.

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