Day 359 Zambia : Kasane - Livingstone

Day 359 Zambia

Trip Distance 388km (241m) Total Distance 2636km(1638m)
Road Condition 100% tar    
Time to travel 5 hrs    
Cost of diesel ZKw6757 (£0.939)    
Stopover
Zambia
Bushfront Lodge S17 52.836 E25 50.611 US$20 (£13.33) - Wonderful site, grassy with plenty of shade, electricity, pool, hot showers

Part of our trip to Zambia was always to include a visit to Katima Mulilo.  Pete had been in the army in the 1970s and was based there so he had wanted to do a "pilgrimage" there so see if there was anything in Katima still familar to him.  This meant we would be cutting through the Chobe National Park to Ngoma, cossing into Namibia through the Caprivi Strip up to Katima, doing a second border crossing at Katima into Zambia and  then making our way across through to Livingstone. 

We managed to convince the security on duty at Chobe (it was early enough and they were still in a good mood!) that we were merely transiting and they waived the park fees for us.  After signing in we went on our merry way prepared to see all manner of game on our drive through.  Not a single one appeared, making us rather glad that we hadn't paid any entry fee.  After an extremely brief crossing into Nambia, they sent us with instructions to pay the road tax or CBC (Cross Border Charge) of BP160/N$160/R160 (£14) in Katima or face a N$2000 fine if we were caught without it.  So it was straight to the office to pay our CBC and from their Pete took the lead.  We drove around the town for a little and out westwards but there was nothing familiar to Pete at all.  So Pete called it and we turned around to make our way into town for a bite to eat.  Chicken again (Nando's style)!  But it was good and, anyway, I had a prego steak roll... :o)

We hit the road, crossed simply in 10 minutes through the Namibian side of the border having our carnet stamped as we were exiting the SADC countries.... and hit our first "grown up" African border crossing in Zambia.  Once you have the process down pat, it's pretty simple but until someone tells you it can get rather complicated... and took us over 1 hour to complete.

Immigration first:  SA passports, no visas required, UK passports, US$50 (payable in US) each which gives you a 30 day stay that can be extended twice (every 30 days) at an Immigration office near you - in essence a maximum 90day stay.

Customs (in this order): Pay for 3rd party insurance in the first office on the left behind the Customs/Immigration Desk (if you have bought a Comesa as we did in Ethiopia, this applies and you don't have to purchase more),  present your carnet in the second office to the left of the Customs/Immigration desk and pay your Carbon Duty based on engine size which for us was R250 (£22) valid for the length of the visa ie 90days (and remember to get your receipt and carnet stamp), exit outside to a dingy little caravan/office, being careful not to fall through the rotten floor, and pay your R50/BP50/N50 (£4) Council Tax issued with a receipt, then behind the caravan to a converted container to pay your Road Safety Tax of US$20 where they present you with a receipt as well.  Once all bits of paper were in order, we jumped in our vehicles and entered Zambia.  Since then, we have had our insurance checked a few times at the numerous police road checks but nothing else. mmmm.

So we set off for Livingstone.  We arrived at the Waterfront Camp only to be turned away as they had 5 overland trucks that they were catering for and, in what turned out to be a stroke of immense luck, ended up at Bushfront Lodge.  And in comparison to our stay at Kubu, well, there is still no comparison.  Francis, the manager greeted us on arrival, introduced the staff to us and sent us with an escort to the camp to chose our spot.  From that point on we couldn't fault their hospitality.  It's clear that a good manager and his exceptional attitude rubs off onto the staff.  During our stay Francis organised all our outings, Hobbs (as in Calvin and...), the security guard, on his own accord fetched umbrellas for us from reception and brought our washing in when it rained, chased off the monkeys when we left food out, brought us a hose pipe to fill our water tanks, fixed a tap when I couldn't stop it running and generally chased away marauding beasts on his white steed to protect our vehicles :o) - what a star.

And speaking of weather, my goodness, we have been blessed.  On rest days and nights, the unseasonal rain has bucketed down but on excursion days, the sun has peeped out from the horizon and shone gloriously till we finished before pouring down again.  To whoever arranged that - thanks a million!

#1 Ben "Daddy Cash" Cashman on 4.26.2010 at 8:29 AM

Well hey there! We are so bummed that we couldn't have the self drive experience in Helga up through the Caprivi and into Zam, but the good fortune we had for selling her in time couldn't be passed up.

How was the drive into Livingstone? And for that matter, up through Botswana? Keep the stories and updates flowing, as both Katie and I are reliving African travel through you both at the moment!

We are thinking South and Central America for the next adventure... but I think we might need traveling companions... hmmm...

Much love to you both, missing you like crazy! B + K xo

 

 

Hello both, hugs and kisses and missing you madly too.  Africa's a bit different without bumpiing into you.  South America sounds GREAT!!!

Have made some tentative new plans about our travel so as soon as we have something definite, we'll let you know.  We want to do the work in Chipata first before we finally decide what to you.  We are meeting up with SOS Childrens in Lusaka next week and onwards from there.  Have met some amazing people here at Mukambi Safari Lodge in the Kafue National Park and loving it - tearing ourselves away to go back to Lusaka next week is proving difficult but we must carry on now.  We needed the rest we have had here though.  The camp is fantastic and has regular visitors from the bush including lion (very noisy!!) and makes your hair stand on end when they roar so close, elephant (very quiet), Basil the hippo (despite the name still wild) and a sounder of warthog (just learnt the collective noun today from the guide!! - isn't it so descriptive).  

Anyway we have no comms so are cadging satellite from the managers Linda and Jacques here (fab people!!!).  Must dash. 

Love

Trev & Janxxxxxooooo