The Long Road to Rundu
Our last morning in Etosha National Park unfortunately arrived as we prepare for Rundu! Up before the sun, we made a quick breakfast and packed up the truck, arriving at the Von Lindequist Exit Gate for sunrise.
We planned this trip using google maps prior to landing so we expected a very long drive. To our surprise, our GPS actually advised us it would be a lot shorter than expected!
When we first started planning this trip a travel agent friend told us it would be impossible to navigate the many checkpoints we’d encounter without the help of a guide or tour operator. We figured, how hard can it be? Having toured Southern Africa before , she told us how intimidating the vet fences were. We were pleasantly surprised by just how easy they are. We breezed through with no problems. Just smile, be polite, and do what they ask of you. Piece of cake!
The Africa You See on TV
Overall, we learned that the Africa you see on TV in North America doesn’t do justice to the real Africa we experienced. Yes, there is poverty. Our drive to Rundu was the first time we saw children rummaging through garbage dumps, women lining up at water pumps, and rustic woven huts made of mud and straw of some kind. There are also metropolitan cities, luxury lodges and natural abundance. Scenes like this definitely contributed to our culture shock at first but by the end of trip our perspective already changed. That’s what we love about travel. New cultures open your perspective to new ideas and you grow as a person.
Hakusembe River Lodge
The Hakusembe River Lodge is a luxury lodge that also has upscale campsites. It is located on the Northern border where Namibia meets Angola across the Okavango River.
We arrived much earlier than expected and had time to set up camp and use the beautiful pool. We booked a sunset cruise on the river for later in the day.
Devon went to the bar and had a beer while I lounged in the sun by the pool. We really enjoyed our stay here and can’t recommend it enough!
Okavango River Cruise
We hopped on the boat with approximately 6 other people and our guide. The guide was great and pointed out different types of birds, snakes, and even a few crocodiles! We saw a group of crazy locals swimming in the river right after we saw a massive crocodile and when our guide told them about it they just laughed us off!
A Rapid Decline
It was at this point that Devon started to feel a little off. He realized he didn’t drink much water throughout the day which is a critical mistake when its over 40 degrees Celsius and you’ve been in the sun all day. I try to always be prepared so once we got back to our campsite I mixed up an electrolyte drink for him that I had brought with us from Canada. He drank as much as he could but it wasn’t enough and he declined quickly. Hopping into bed he also got stung by some sort of wasp which didn’t help!
In the middle of the night he woke me up saying he felt sick so I quickly unzipped the tent by our head and he threw up. We mixed up some more electrolytes and in the morning I made up some plain rice for him to try to eat.
Being violently ill in a foreign country is never ideal…