2019 Aug/Sept. South Africa, Scotland, Switzerland, Singapore travel blog

Lucky sighting of a leopard

Chobe game park drive

How close to the animals!!

More animals

And more

Our vehicles

Saddest sight - an elephant which died 3 days ago.

Day 15. Wednesday. 28/8/19. Chobe Water Villas, Namibia.

What a day!!!!! Early breakfast, on the boat to Namibia Immigration Office - well, shed actually, stamp out; back on boat to Botswana Immigration Office - another shed, stamp in - and then on safari Jeep. We had 2 jeeps for our group and we were on with only 1 other couple. Drive through the town of Kasane and out to the Chobe National Park - but, before we got there, our driver suddenly swung to the other side of the road with jeeps coming towards us. Bit scary, but then the best part - bush bashing! Into the bush, no roads or tracks, just duck our heads and keep our arms in or else could be wiped out or seriously scratched, and hang on for grim death. Then the driver calls out ‘leopard’. It can be 3-4 weeks between sightings, but we were lucky. To us it seemed to be strolling through the bush, but we were told later that it was going quite quickly. Once a sighting is made, all the tour operators radio it through, hence about 8 safari jeeps converging on this small area. How those drivers didn’t crash into each other was a skill only they possessed. We were able to get a good view and one of our ladies in the other Jeep actually got some video of it. We were so lucky to see the leopard, so stately and it continued on its way, not bothering about all the jeeps driving around and in front of it. So very special. Back onto the road and then into the Chobe National Park where there were roads of sorts, mostly deep sandy ruts. Elephants, giraffe, ibex, water hogs, gnu, kudu, Cape buffalo, crocodiles, hippos were in abundance, along with ground, water and air birds. We rushed to a possible lion sighting, but didn’t find it. Yesterday we saw lots of the same animals from the boat, and I nearly said I’d give this safari a miss. So glad I didn’t, as it was very different actually seeking the animals and having some cross the road in front of us, especially a family of elephants, one who trumpeted very loudly and the baby giving a call for its mother who had already crossed the road. The saddest thing we saw was a huge bull elephant dead on the side of one of the tracks. Apparently it only died 3 days ago, and awaiting the results of tests for anthrax. If positive, they burn the animal where it is, if negative, it is dragged away by tractor. We saw numerous clusters of sun bleached elephant skulls and bones, also a large animal carcass being stripped of flesh by vultures taking what was left after the other bigger animals had had their fill. We were stamped out of Botswana and onto a boat where we had a lunch cruise down the Botswana side of the river before being stamped in to Namibia and back to our accommodation. A short break, then 4pm High Tea which had been arranged to acknowledge John’s 50th birthday tomorrow and also happy birthday to Adrian, one of our travelling companions. Another short break before dinner which was a degustation menu -but portions were way too big!

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