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Southern Africa 4x4 overland and weather

Southern Africa 4x4 overland and weather

Old Feb 25, 21, 11:32 am
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Southern Africa 4x4 overland and weather

Would like thoughts about the following:

Renting a 4x4 camper with winch for 181 days, Cape Town to Windhoek, September 15 - March 16.Traveling as a single vehicle.

Plan A:

62 days in SA ending in Kruger
30 days along the Mozambique coast and inland towards Zimbabwe
30 days in Zimbabwe ending in VF
30 days in Botswana and entering Namibia either mid country or north.
30 days Namibia traveling north to south ending in Windhoek

Now, looking at the rainy season it appears the northern part of this trip will encounter some difficulties especially if we travel as a single vehicle. Thus, Plan B is being considered.

And 62 days in SA ending in Kruger
120 days as follows:
Enter Zimbabwe at Beitbridge and head north towards VF
Early December in northern Botswana
Travel south to the Kalahari/Kgalagadi
Enter Namibia and eventually end in Windhoek

The main purpose of Mozambique was to relax on the beach for a couple weeks and explore the parks on the way to Zimbabwe (although these may be affected the end of December) and it was relatively easy to reach from east Kruger.

We are pretty flexible except the SA portion which is fairly well planned having done it a few times before.

Iíd appreciate any thoughts especially when it comes to the weather.

Thanks
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Old Feb 25, 21, 2:05 pm
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I'm biased, as I don't like hot and humid tropical beaches and would therefore give Mozambique a miss in summer for that reason alone. I spent parts of several summers in Maputo back in the civil war days. The beach was only a short bike ride away, but the water was far too hot, and my towel would never dry in the breeze, it was that humid. And every now and then the rain of course came down in buckets. Rainfall varies considerably from year to year, but the coast is prone to drenching downpours in summer. Apart from the odd cyclone none of that should stop a competent 4x4 driver, but it may not be everybody's idea of fun.

Tracks in Botswana's NPs are generally sandy, which make for easier driving in summer when they are wet. I've driven right through the country several times in summer, starting back in the days when the tar stopped at Francistown. Never a problem. Did it one time in a big Mercedes 1113 4x4 truck, without once using 4WD.

Namibia's road network is fine, including the gravel roads. Just don't hit a kudu.

Zim's roads used to be rather good, but I haven't been there for many years. The country has been speeding downhill for decades, I suspect the roads were a lot better in the early 90s than they are now.

SA you already know.

All in all, you should do just fine from a driving perspective, even in a really rainy summer. Whether such weather is enjoyable is another matter entirely.

Johan
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Old Feb 28, 21, 6:29 am
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I’ve done 2 self driving African extravaganzas and I cannot recommend it enough. Even with limited off-road experience (which was my case in Botswana/Namibia) we had so much fun.

I cannot speak for Zim appart from VF but the drive through eastern Botswana was absolutely stunning, especially the night in the Makgadikgadi salt flats on Kubu Island.

the other part of the trip that was fantastic was Namibia, if you enter through the Caprivi strip to Etosha, south towards Sossusvlei and then finish around Fish River canyon you’ll see some of the most breathtaking landscapes I’ve seen.

I don’t know if you’ve selected a rental company but we rented through Bushlore and I cannot recommend their cars enough. Having a well serviced car is the key thing to have an enjoyable time.

I’ve posted our routing. We did that over 15 days which a bit stretched but still doable.

hope you have a wonderful time.


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Old Feb 28, 21, 9:50 am
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Thanks Chuvash!

That’s a similar route we were thinking but starting in Mashatu Reserve and spending a bit more time in the central Kalahari since we have 120 days for Botswana and Namibia.
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Old Mar 3, 21, 7:00 pm
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Followed a similar route as the map above with one deviation, coming from Livingstone, Zambia, there is a car ferry across directly to Botswana at Kasane for access to Chobe, then back up to Namibia, crossing back to Botswana further west for the Okavango delta - highly recommended.

Then head back into Namibia towards Rundu and Etosha
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Old Mar 4, 21, 8:13 am
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Originally Posted by rankourabu View Post
Followed a similar route as the map above with one deviation, coming from Livingstone, Zambia, there is a car ferry across directly to Botswana at Kasane for access to Chobe, then back up to Namibia, crossing back to Botswana further west for the Okavango delta - highly recommended.

Then head back into Namibia towards Rundu and Etosha
yup itís on the map above.

Very fun experience and my first bribe facilitation payment to a custom officer (how exciting!!)

Itís the only 4 corner border in the world, back in 2018 they were building a bridge no idea if itís been completed.

also you should get the track4africa app on your phone. Itís a highly reliable mapping tool for tracks etc.


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