It’s the final countdown…


12 days to go, and so much still to do! We have planned the route, booked some of the places, leaving some to chance. Inoculations are done, travel clinic has been visited and I am trying to figure out the best way to pack the unbelievable amount of meds we need to take with us.

And that’s not all the meds!

Insurance for vehicle and medical is sorted. Carnet de Passage is ordered. Next week we will focus on stocking Klippie with food, packing our clothes, packing all the bits and pieces, packing the roof rack with all the recovery gear. My jobs for the next few days include making certified copies of various documents for the border crossings; typing up a list of all our electronic equipment with serial numbers to assist speeding this process at border crossings and for insurance purposes; putting together the files with our bookings; choosing which maps and guide books to take along.

The portable bookshelf Richard put together made from an ammo box. The lid will be put on when we hit bone shuddering roads. It hangs over the headrest of the back seat.

Richard is in charge of anything technical. Also sorting out finances – we need to take USD to pay for park fees, fuel etc in various countries.

And of course, we need to make sure all will run smoothly at home! We are managing to keep it pretty much all in the family with respect to looking after our cats and house, which is a relief. Hopefully we will occasionally have decent internet connection to make the usual payments and keep up to date with things at home.


The journey begins in Muizenberg on 21 May 2018 when we depart for Kruger National Park. We meet up with Susan and Patrick Holloway there, and gently test our 4×4 capabilities on the Lebombo guided 4×4 trail, ending at Pafuri.

Route planning with the help of Tracks4Africa, plus good old paper maps

We then head into Gonarezhou in Zimbabwe, hopefully via Mozambique if the rivers are not too full, otherwise we will have to enter Zim through Beit Bridge. After a good week, the Holloway’s return to SA, while Richard and I head to Botswana via the Matobo Hills. We plan to visit Nxai Pan and Nata Bird Sanctuary before heading up to Kasane.

From there it is into the Caprivi, Namibia, for some tiger fishing and bird watching, and to meet up with the families heading into Zambia. We are lucky enough to join 4 families to spend time in Liuwa Plains National Park and Kafue for two weeks.

Thereafter we head north with Pete and Sally Shaw, who are on a much longer African odyssey than us. We will visit Bangweulu Wetlands to find shoebill storks, before leaving Zambia and heading into Tanzania. First stop will be Ruaha National Park, and on 21 July we will be enjoying my 50 th birthday wish ( half of it) to fly in a hot air balloon over an African landscape! Then off to Udzungwa to meet some interesting primates and birds, before heading to the coast.

Diving, fishing, snorkeling just north of Dar es Salaam at a rustic camp/ lodge on the beach. I reckon we will be so excited to be near and in the sea. Then we head aback inland to find giant 3-horned chameleons at Amani Nature Reserve.

Now the second half of my 50th birthday wish – Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti and the great wildebeest migration! I am so excited. We leave the northern part of the Serengeti, and the Shaw’s, in early August and head down to see Lake Natron, before starting the long drive home. This will be south via Dodoma back into Zambia, into the Caprivi, and then head south through Namibia back to SA.