Departure to Windhoek
On May 09th 2022, the time had come. After weeks of intense tension, coping with a lot of stress and realigning our lives, we flew from Zurich via Frankfurt to Windhoek. Everything was the same as before, you might say. While in Zurich everything was very relaxed, friendly and courteous, we had the impression that travelers in Frankfurt are under general suspicion (of whatever) and have to prove their innocence. Guido had to explain himself the first time at the personal check for used napkins in his pants pocket – without words. Both pieces of hand luggage and the two handbags were subjected to a closer inspection for explosives – after a connecting flight, to be sure.
True to the principle of always smiling and waving, we got the Eurowings flight we so disliked behind us. This time there was at least a pillow in the eco class. Everything else was as usual and no reason to book this flight. We would have really much preferred to fly with Swiss to Johannsburg and then with AirLink on to Windhoek. Unfortunately, there is this combination only with 6 hours stay in Johannesburg. That did not work for us, because the arrival at 5.30 p.m. is too late.We still have to pick up the car and clean out 4 fully packed travel bags. At the end we have to come up with a first arrangement. So 10 hours of gritting our teeth and landing at 07.50 a.m. in the morning and being able to clear out all day in peace!
When everything was done, we looked like this:
Things to do in Windhoek and Swakopmund
It was clear that we would have to have a few things done on the camper after arrival. Attachments, conversions and improvements were on the plan and for this we first met Christian and Marcel from the Offroad Centre – the fitment center of our confidence. We have never had a problem with the work of this company and always – absolutely always – they finished in the scheduled time. After their visit we drove to Swakopmund to have more work done. There we ached at Sophia Dale – after enjoying a surprise dinner with birthday cake there on Sonja’s birthday – as the weight fell off our bodies. We allowed ourselves one day of rest each and then we continued with the program with renewed power.
All in all, it took 10 days before the camper and we were ready to wrap up the preliminary skirmish and begin our journey!
On to the Kalahari
We have so far ignored the Kalahari part of Namibia and so we decided to start our trip there. When we found out that the Bagatelle Game Ranch also offers a campsite, we booked ourselves there for two nights and set off. We expected the red dunes of the Kalahari and found – due to the great rains of the past rainy season – a sea of green grasses.
What a debut! We experienced again what we love so much and could not get enough of the boundless expanse. It is difficult to convey what the incredible peace and quiet, interrupted only by birdsong, does to us. We enjoyed every second of this loneliness and the next days were all so affected. Quite special was the cold in the morning. After we had already endured a cold wave coming from Johannesburg in Windhoek, which gave us a whopping -5°C at night, it was also cold here again – although not as cold as in Windhoek.
A Sheepskin against the cold
We could enjoy the morning sun with a coffee or tea. The sheepskin (available at Nakara) is worth its weight in gold and the cotton blanket gives warmth from above. We are prepared for the African winter morning.
With 450 NAD/p.P.p.N. this campsite is very expensive, but it offers very clean and well maintained ablutions (exclusive per campsite) and campers are allowed to use all facilities of the lodge without exception! This is not a given and should be taken into account when judging. All in all, we were happy to be guests here.
Tiras Mountains – here we come
After leaving Bagatelle Ranch, we decided to return to the Tiras Mountains. We have recorded our impressions from 2018 in this blog also. We made a stopover in Betta and were very pleasantly surprised. The very friendly host invited us to help ourselves from his orange, clementine, guava and pomegranate trees. In competition to the birds. In addition, he gave us a large and tasteful avocado. We chatted with him and were very pleased with how nicely we were received. We purchased some extremely tasty oryx filets and continued the next day to the Ranch Koiimasis, located at the D707. This was as nice as it was in 2018. However we would classify today’s prices as excessive and thus the ranch no longer finds consideration for our future visits to the region. The drive through the region is as always incomparably beautiful.
The last two nights we spent on the Farm Tiras at the Rustic Campsite. An absolute recommendation! The campsite is located in the middle of nowhere and you are completely alone. Electricity is not available and hot water is produced by a donkey. The view is sensational and we enjoyed every second at Mrs. Koch.
This is how the morning atmosphere welcomed us.