Page 2 of philannie Travel Blog Posts

Africa » South Africa » Western Cape » Cape Town October 31st 2009

We flew from Winkhoek to Capetown,our 1st flight since Spain! Long st Backpackers was our home for 3 nights in Capetown. We spent an alcoholic day in Stellenbosch visiting wineries-another in Simonstown in quest of the African Penguin and another seeing the Capetown sights but we were didn't to go to table mountain due to cablecar maintainence. Naturally there were lots of restaurants and beers. Flying to Durban we stayed with Sabrina and Kal for a couple of days. We met Sabrina in west Africa on our truck trip and she and Kal were great hosts. We took the Bazz bus to Swaziland and then van to Maputo where we stayed at "the Base" backpackers. Maputo is great-a mixture of big city , Portuguese coffee shops and pleasant city streets and buildings. Recovering from the civil ... read more

Africa » Namibia » Etosha National Park October 31st 2009

We cossed into Namibia at Oshikango and after shopping and a few beers pushed on and camped at a small wildlife park. The next day we arrived at Etosha National Park and spent 2 nights there. We had multiple game drives on our truck and drove across to the west at Okaukuejo for the second night. The variety of game was enormous. Lion,elephant,giraffe,cheetah,rhino,oryx,plus many more. The next day 29th July marked our departure from the group at Ouitjo where we met Mike and Carla,local residents with whom we stayed for 3 days before we drove to Windhoek where we stayed at camelian backpackers and enjoyed a pleasant time celebrating our anniversary and generally sightseeing. We then flew to Capetown.... read more
Zebra and guinea fowl
Oryx Etosha

Africa » Angola » North » Luanda October 31st 2009

After a couple of days camping at a catholic mission school in Matardi,preparing and repairing for our race through Angola,we departed DRC via a remote border post to the north at Songololo. We camped the night in a quarry. The roads were terrible and we made slow progress until lunchtime on day 2 (of 5) the radiator was destroyed by the fan after a particularly deep hole. We limped into N'Zeto a small seaside town and spent the next 6 hours on the roadside getting the radiator repairs. When these proved to be ineffective we were allowed to stay in a construction compound 3 Kms out of town with fence and security. We ended up staying nights 2,3and 4 there before getting a proper repair done.Our unexpected stay in N'Zeto was interesting. It seems they backed ... read more

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Matadi August 1st 2009

Leaving the haven of the Catholic mission in Brazzaville ,we set out to the port to enter DRC. The chaos that ensued could only be seen to be believed. There are no photos because to take one is to risk death(literally). After waiting for a couple of hours while loading proceedures continued, we obtained some Congolese Francs to buy snacks and just watched while the ferry was filled and filled and filled until it was so overloaded that no one could move. This ferry is a city- anything could be obtained or sold and all types of humanity was aboard-money changers, sandwich makers,beggars,officials,families and US,a small group of white people. The scene was both exhilarating and terrifing. After 30 minutes the whole process started in reverse at the Kinshasa port and again about 2 hours passed ... read more

Africa July 14th 2009

Crossing into Congo we did not know what to expect. This unknown and rarely visited place has been racked by violent civil war until recently although still is unstable.We arrived in brazzaville after 3 days of bushcamping again through bad roads and little to see or buy. We entered from the north and travelled the length of the country.As usual we bush camped and in Brazza at a mission this time Catholic and spent a couple of days here-quite nice really although you have to be careful.There are a few Lebonese restaurants here and some interesting watering holes including "Luna Park" We headed to the port to cross the Congo river and enter another basket case- DRC... read more

Africa July 14th 2009

Crossing the border and another Quarry BC,we drove on only a few kilometers from Equatorial Guinea . We got to Lambarene where Albert Schweitzer had his hospital and a visit to the museum and hospital. This was another long term ambition and it was fantastic to see where this great man and Nobel prize winner spent his life .After our radiator blew a hole we made it to Lope national Park where we laid up for a few days while repairs ensued. We went on a game drive seeing the rare forest elephants, various monkeys etc On our way again ,the radiator gave up again and we found ourselves staying at a logging camp while repairs were made after being rescued by the manager in the middle of nowhere-lucky. We continued on through Franceville and Bongoville ... read more

Africa July 14th 2009

After crossing the border at Madigali,in the north and avoiding the Calabar crossing anf diabolical roads and the Delta region, we continued an untravelled road , bushcamping at a vet farm, quarries and the edge of the road. the roads were incredible and after 5 days we made it to the paradise of Yaounde and its international restaurants, bars, nightclubs and icecream. this was a visa stop where Gabon,Congo and DRC visas were obtained ( at a cost of over 1000 Australian dollars to us). While the others lazed at the Presbyterian Mission, 5 interpid climberes went to Buea to climb Mt Cameroun ,a 4095 meter monster rising almost from the sea. This was a 25 year dream for me and we braved cloud,cold and terrible rain storms over 3 days to make it!! After rest ... read more

Africa July 14th 2009

We returned from Jos and back to the Sheraton but by a stroke of luck we obtained the Angolan visas- 5 day transit only but our way became clear. After celebrations at the Elephant bar happy hour we made our plans and finally departed our home at the Sheraton car park. Abuja is a great place ,sterile perhaps but the Grand Mosque and Cathedral-next door almost to each other are magnificant and the city is safe and modern. We decided to travel an unknown route so we headed north through Jos and on towards Kano onto Gombe and then to an isolated border post at Madgali. The roads were diabolical however! Our stay in Nigeria was great and the friendly people contrasted with the bad Nigerian Reputation- on to Cameroon... read more

Africa » Nigeria June 3rd 2009

We entered Nigeria at Chikanda(where?) This godforsaken tiny outpost does not see many travellers and we were about to see why. This was the beginning of 3 days of the worst roads I have seen. 3 days of bouncing frayed nerves and giant thunderstorms. The road was so busy that one night we camped on it-no traffic all night except a couple of cows coming to drink from the giant potholes (I mean swimming pools). On Thursday 28 May we arrived in Abuja. We headed straight for the Sheraton Hotel where , like those who went before camped in their grounds. Imagine 25 some dirty overlanders camping and cooking at the Sheraton-all using free internet sitting around using the pool and the hot showers all for free-- that was us. Abuja is a big city new ... read more
Nigerian Children
Annie at ECWA Hospital Jos
Joshua and Philip ECWA Hospital

Africa » Benin » East » Parakou June 3rd 2009

3 Days of luxury at the New Haven Hotel in Accra spoiled us. Air con internet at all times day and night at Busy internet to complete our business and catch up and beer and junk food interspersed with a little sightseeing. we met up with the rest and off we went.We travelled north East to Lake Volta and camped by the dam. Lots of water sports and the biggest dam in West Africa. This little travelled area was very beautiful. We continued our unusual route and travelled further up visiting the highest waterfalls with 1000's bats and crossed into Togo at an isolated border post and then on through the highlands of Togo.We camped at a school and were surrounded by 100's of pupils while we cooked our dinner.Moving on we spent a day in ... read more
Beninese Child
The Gates of No Return
Voodoo Ceremony Benin

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