Camping with the San People in the middle of wild nature

After the luxury of the past days, the neatly maintained Elephant Song Campsite welcomes you with naturalness. The main thing here is to experience the traditions of the San People and pure nature. Both campsites offer trees for shade, under which we have set up our tent on Campsite 1 as “visitor safe” as possible. Furthermore, there are simple bucket showers, for which the San prepare warm water in the sun. Wonderfully romantic!

The San People have pointed out to us that at the current time of night a bull elephant likes to stop by to snack on the fruits and leaves. There is no need to worry, because on the one hand the elephants are not keen on confrontation with humans and on the other hand our campfire would keep him away anyway. Right in the first night the bull came by. At first we only heard the cracking of the branches before we could gaze at the giant through our tent entrance. He took his time to look at our camp. Then he walked in an arc around our tent and continued to nibble comfortably in the next bushes. Pure adrenaline! The next morning we marveled at his huge footprints. Unfortunately, he did not stop by again.

Khaudum National Park

Khaudum National Park was supposed to be another park where no other visitors were hanging around that day except us. The Khaudum Game Park is located in the extreme northeast in the Okavango region, on the border to Botswana, also called “Bushmanland”. Due to its location in the Kalahari sandveld, even the approach through partly deep sand is only allowed with four-wheel drive. Dune ridges crisscross the predominantly flat area and water is found in the dry riverbeds only after extreme rainfall. The animals living there can move freely through the park and beyond its borders, as there are no fences.

Once again, it was a bit about experiencing traditions and pure nature. We did not find huge groups of animals – but that is not surprising after the rains this year. Everywhere there is food and water, so the animals stay in the places far inside and move on only when they run out of both. Nevertheless we could enjoy elephants, wildebeest, ibex and various other antelopes. The bird world also delighted us with a special guest – the giant kori bustard. This is the heaviest flying bird, which is unfortunately very shy.

Some Time with the San People / Bushmen

The next day we started together with the San People. They took us on a hike through the surrounding nature first thing in the morning. So it was time to experience traditions and pure nature. You have to leave early to avoid the sun and heat of the midday. Here the women show you which fruits and plants serve which purpose. Be it vitamin-rich berries, watery roots, potato-like tubers or beans that taste like coffee when roasted. For digging and chopping, the San use their self-made multifunctional tools.

Back in the village with its typical round huts, we still made fire together. And of course the collected berries and beans were eaten together. Furthermore, the women showed us their handmade jewelry and tools, which they offer for sale. The purchase of these beautiful handmade traditional pieces makes it possible for the San to buy food and other things necessary for life in this day and age. So you can do a good work and at the same time take a piece of tradition home with you!

Nyae Nyae Conservancy

The second half of the day we spent around the Nyae Nyae Conservation Area. This is a nature reserve belonging to the Bushmanland, in which wild animals and the for this region special and partly gigantic baobab trees grow. Unfortunately, their visit should be denied to us this year – thanks to the rain! We drove along every possible route through the protected area. But because of the big rain masses every even small depression was filled with water, so that we came to a standstill again and again in front of a lake landscape. On various paths deep tracks were milled into the mud – here people had already tried their luck before us and had to give up. Then we will come back as soon as possible to visit our friends, the gigantic baobabs.

Stay tuned!

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