April 2017

Namib's Valley of a Thousand HillsNamib's Valley of a Thousand Hills

Namibian potpourri

On our visits to Windhoek we often make a turn for a light lunch or a cappuccino at Wecke & Voigts. This time the large side entrance made of glass was covered by boards and the entrance was closed. We asked the waitress for the reason. Apparently, a minister had driven over the 6-meter-wide sidewalk and had crashed into the glass door.
We asked if he had been drunk and she answered: No questions asked when it comes to ministers! 

Spitzkoppe is an amazing nature reserve with community campsites.

Unique campsites between huge, colourful rock formations. Only long drops, but

with great vistas. However, a too efficient welcoming committee. We paid 300 Namibia Dollars for one night to the couple and got a receipt for that. As we enjoyed the place we extended our stay for one more night and paid another 300 Dollar. The couple asked us for our receipt, scratched out the 300 and replaced it with 600. Of course, without changing the amount on the carbon copy in the receipt book, which they use to cash up.
Should they practice this trick a couple of times they earn a multiple of their monthly salary. Unfortunately, also cheating the shit out of their own community.  

Spitzkoppe CampsiteSpitzkoppe Campsite

Spitzkoppe Spitzkoppe Spitzkoppe

At a MTC branch

Brigitte recharged her iPads SIM card with 3GB of data. After three days and hardly using the internet the data was used up. We went back to MTC and asked for an explanation. After identifying herself with her passport and paying another 35 N$ a request was submitted. We were to return after 24 hours to get the print out on which the time and amount of data usage would be recorded on.
When we wanted to fetch the print out after two days the in every way clumsy woman again asked for Brigitte’s passport.  She demanded a certified copy of the passport, which wouldn’t have made a difference anyway as the print-out was not existent. As a matter of principle, we demanded a refund of our 35 N$. Yes, but then we first have to fill in another form, which then has to be send to the main branch. And after approximately two weeks we could come back and get the money.
If you know that 35 N$ are approximately 2.50 SFR you can imagine that we gave up on the claim. 

Elisenheim Guestfarm near Windhoek 

We travelled on numerous scenically interesting areas south of Windhoek. During our stay on lodges with campsites we had positive and less pleasant impressions. Elisenheim just outside Windhoek: total darkness. The owner tried to install a 220V spotlight, but failed due to the weak power supply. We made use of our own LED lamps powered by our trailer battery.
We prefer the Urban Camp due to its proximity to town and its modern infrastructure. 

The campsites of the much-vaunted Bagatelle Lodge

were a disappointment to us. The private ablutions were badly cleaned. We have never in the whole world had so many mosquitoes at one spot as we had here.  With a little bit of chemicals, at least in the bathroom the situation could have been much more endurable. Has to do with maintenance though. The fact that the geyser gave two different error indications without producing any hot water was also not very pleasant.
As the German speaking caretaker was busy enjoying himself in the afternoon for over two hours with a German tourist, we of course had an understanding for these deficits.

 Bagatelle Game Ranch CampsiteBagatelle Game Ranch CampsiteBagatelle Game Farm Bagatelle Game Farm

On the 320 kilometres of well-maintained gravel road from Bagatelle Kalahari Game Ranch to Kalahari Game Lodge we only met three other vehicles. The Auob Riverbed en route with its different farms was worth seeing and impressive. 

The Kalahari Game Lodge

convinced us to stay for some days. Modern infrastructure. Beautiful surrounds, friendly, attentive service.

 Kalahari Game LodgeKalahari Game Lodge

 Kalahari Game Lodge Kalahari Game Lodge Kalahari Game Lodge

At the Erongo Plateau which we visited previously we felt just as welcomed. 

The River Guesthouse in Omaruru

is recommendable for a stopover. Strikingly well-maintained garden at the restaurant and pool area. Just a pity that the lights of the actually well-lit campsite was switched off at night – probably to save some money.  

River Guesthouse UmaruruRiver Guesthouse Umaruru

 Photos

 

Namibia: April 2017