Our backpacking trip to Capetown has been in the fridge for so long; 5 years! My friend and I have in the past few months nailing down the dates to finally hit the road. Last year we had set it all for early March to arrive in time for a festival in Capetown. Work could however not give. September it now is.
For a 3 week journey, the schedule is tight and exciting; at least a day in every country except Zambia to allow enough time for Victoria falls tour and a bungee jump. It means we’ll have to take night buses where possible, resting and walking the different cities by day. I’m a little apprehensive of the little time to rest, but it’s all flexible and open to adjustments on the fly. While it’s difficult to find reliable bus schedules online, blogs by backpackers have really been helpful in figuring out what to expect with timings and fares.
There are plenty of small hotels close to the bus stations, but we can only hope for the minimum comfort. I have taken long distance buses in Zambia and Tanzania and they are comfortable enough. Since we are not out for a luxury trip, that should be welcome. In Lilongwe a friend will host us for a night; a great opening to once again enjoy home-like comfort.
Fortunately we do not require a Visa for all the countries we will pass through, except South Africa, which makes arrangements way easier. Initially we planned to hit Swaziland and Mozambique after Capetown but both are off schedule for now. It would take more than a month to do a round trip by road, a month that we sadly don’t have. Mozambique is a backpackers’ heaven in terms of its history, long coastline and vast remote interior.
Besides the bungee jump, I look forward to seeing how Namibia is like. From Livingstone in Zambia, the trip takes you to Sesheke, a border town with Botswana and Nambia. You then have the expansive Kalahari desert to cross headed for Windhoek. The desert and Windhoek are places I very much want to discover. From there to Gaborone, we hope to visit the famous Okavango delta. Great places to see!
Backpacking gives you a chance to break from the usual and lose yourself for some time with only the basics. There is the invaluable chance to meet new people, try new foods, see new places and have great stories to tell your children by the traditional fire. 🙂 It’s an experience full of the unexpected which makes it memorable and very very exciting.
Photo courtesy of: galleryhip.com