Finally it was time to head to the bush for six nights. With a car full of food, water, firewood and a solar panel on the roof. We drove to our first stop being Mankwe. This campsite is located outside the parks but because there are no fences there is also a lot of game around here. To get there we had to take a sandy road where we could test our offroad driving skills. On the way over we saw our first snake in Africa. After a few kilometers we arrived at the reception. Here we were welcomed by a gentleman in a tent. The lodge burned down two years ago and ever since they’ve got this huge tent. He explained how we should get to the campsite and that we had to be careful of the elephants and the hyenas. He also indicated that the campsite was ‘very private’ and that there were no other guests but if there were any they would be placed next to us.
An elephant in front of us!
We drove on a sandy path and arrived at the campsite. This was pretty spacious with a toilet and a bucket shower. We unpacked our stuff and prepared a lunch. At the end of the afternoon we did a gamedrive in search of wild animals. The first wildlife we saw was a green snake lying in the sand. When we were at the end of our drive we realised that we had something on the roof. We got out to put it in the car when I suddenly saw an elephant in front of us. We decided to quickly jump back into the car.
Visitors around our campfire
In the evening we had a fire and were eating when we suddenly heard branches breaking. ‘Oooohnoo elephants!!’ It wasn’t just one elephant, a whole herd of elephants came by. Fortunately they had little interest in us. At night we also heard lions and hyenas.
Welcomed by impalas and zebras
The next morning we drove to the Khwai Community area. On the way over we saw a large group of giraffes, about twenty of them. We headed to the river and followed its course for a couple of kilometers. Here we saw elephants drinking and a group of sabel antelopes, which you don’t often see. There is also a large pool with hippos. You can watch this for hours.
Around 1 o’clock we drove to our campsite number 14. We had to search a bit because the elephants removed the sign. We were welcomed at our campsite by impalas and zebras. Number 14 is a beautiful site because it’s very open which enables you to see a lot of animals passing by. An elephant walked by in the evening right next to our car. At night we made a big fire to warm up and to protect us from the animals. Even though the latter did not really work because a hyena came to see if we had some food left for him. At first we could chase him away but then he came back with another hyena. At one point you just decide to go to bed :).
Farewell by elephants
After a quiet night we went to the other side of the river. Because we didn’t want to cross the river we had to make a detour. We visited this part in 2016 but then it was very dry. Now it was green everywhere and the grass still very high. The roads were also less passable. We saw a herd of elephants on a sandy road and we just missed a leopard. Furthermore we saw some antelopes. In the afternoon we drove back to our campsite. The next day we went to Savuti. When we wanted to leave three elephants suddenly came out of the bushes to say goodbye. What a great place is this!