This overland safari in Africa was an amazing trip and the first of our 2016 bucket list. It was full of adrenaline, adventure but at the same time stress-free and relaxing. It was a life experience that we will never forget and will cherish forever. We recommend everyone wondering to do a safari and to expats living in Africa, it’s almost mandatory.

So, what exactly happened on this trip for it to be so good? Let’s see, we:

The trip started with an 8-day overland Safari from Windhoek (Namibia) to Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe). Then we stayed in Vic falls 3 days, returned to Windhoek and finally visited Swakopmund and Walvis Bay, before returning to Luanda.

Why should you do an Overland Safari in Africa?

Our overland Safari was organized by Nomad Africa Adventure tours and we traveled in an adventure truck, accommodated in tents, huts and sometimes hotels.

It was the first time we did an overland organized tour. We usually prefer self-driving tours to have the flexibility to do our own itinerary at our own pace. Yet, this was a good decision, the roads in Africa sometimes aren’t in good shape and if you have car trouble in the middle of nowhere it can be a problem. Besides crossing borders and overall safety could be tricky and this made it all very easy. Also, we quickly found out this was a good way to meet people and have a stress free voyage, without worries.

Why should you do an Overland Safari in Africa?

Why did we choose to do this safari…? Basically their itinerary covered all the places we wanted to go, and the dates of the tour matched with our holidays; it was a good value for money.

We didn’t regret going on the tented version of the safari. Camping was an awesome experience, although our tent didn’t have the right pole sizes, and when it rained we were always wondering if it was going to rain in the tent. It did rain considerably twice and the tents resisted well.

The truck was cool, spacious, although the seats were a bit uncomfortable seeing we had to spend many hours sitting. Besides these small things we very were pleased with Nomad.

Nomad Africa Adventure tours

Overland Safari Itinerary

Overland Safari Itinerary

We started our voyage in Windhoek, a super relaxed city with a good vibe. Windhoek is the capital of Namibia, a very clean city where there aren’t many tall buildings, you see a few cars and few people on the roads. You can feel safe and stress-free. Surely, one of the quietest capital cities in Africa.

We visited the Christ Church and the National Museum of Namibia that is free. Did some shopping (Angolan style). We ate in a very touristy restaurant, after all, we are tourists, Joe’s Beerhouse. This restaurant has a fantastic decoration and tasty food, mixture of African and German Cuisine, just like the rest of the country you can find a fusion of two so remote countries in different continents that sometimes it is weird.

The next 8 days were spent in the adventure truck 🙂 The tour started in Windhoek, from there we traveled to Botswana. A 530 km (329 miles) drive through the Kalahari Desert, land of the Bushmen. The scenery is dry, sandy and full of small bushes, acacias and donkeys (yes donkeys!) on the roadside. We overnight in Ghanzi Trail Blazers, sleep in a San Bushman hut ( that was so cool), and had an opportunity to do a bush walk and at night see a San Bushmen tribal dance.

What to do in Namibia

Next destination was the Okavango Delta and we stayed there for 3 days.  We spend the night camping in Sepupa in Swamp stop by the river. And the next day caught a speedboat and went to explore the Okavango. The Okavango was exceptional, it was the dry season so less water, giving us the opportunity to do trails that in the wet season it would be covered with water. Explored the delta in a Mokoro (small canoe) watching the hippos and crocodile. Fantastic 3 days in the oasis in the middle of the desert with plenty of wildlife. It made us appreciate how incredible nature is and will make you want to watch all the National Geographic/discovery shows about the region.

Visit Okovango Delta

After the Delta, we headed to Caprivi  Region (back in Namibia) and then Chobe National Park (back in Botswana). In the Chobe National Park, we spent an afternoon doing a boat cruise in the Chobe River, when in the middle of it started raining cats and dogs so we saw wet animals, and enjoyed the rainy view)

Next morning was stunning, we visited the Chobe National Park, we were always thinking, that we didn’t what it to end. We were able to see a rare black sable (that made our day, it’s the Angolan symbol), also leopard just sitting by the side of the 4×4 of the safari, saw wild dogs playing in a mud lagoon, vultures eating a dead elephant (this wasn’t so nice), Baboons eating fruit on top of a tree. We would have liked spending more time in the park, we just spend a morning there. Weirdly, we barely saw elephants in Chobe…

In the afternoon crossed the border to Zimbabwe and went to Vic Falls National park. The Vic Falls are massive, simply breathtaking, with a height of 108 mt and 1,708 mt wide. We stayed in the city for 3 days, so we could enjoy all the adrenaline the city has to offer. Unfortunately, the activities are so expensive that we could only choose two, but these were totally worth it. We spent half a day rafting in the Zambezi river and saw the view of the Vic Falls by helicopter.

What to do in Victoria Falls

From Vic Falls in Zimbabwe, we returned to Namibia to visit Swakopmund and Walvis Bay. We rented a car in Windhoek and went from Windhoek to Swakopmund (352 km), it took 4+ hours driving, 2 of them in the savage rain. Well, that was unexpected… We stayed in Swakopmund for 3 nights, 2 full days, had a marvelous time. Did sandboarding, quad bike, desert exploring, seeing the little 5 and meeting fantastic people:) (full Swakopmund travel guide here)

Unfortunately, on Saturday back to reality,  Luanda, start working…

Costs of an overland Safari in Africa

How much does a Safari Cost? Africa isn’t cheap and we didn’t restrain ourselves much in this trip… so this was probably the most expensive holidays we ever did and a really bad example of budget holidays 🙂 Check our expenses during these two weeks in detail:

Overland Safari

Total cost per person: 2726.69 USD in line with the 2750 USD initially budgeted.

Cost per person per day (all in): 181.78 USD

Overall trip value for money: 4 + out of 5, extremely high value but quite expensive.

Were we able to inspire you to do a Safari in Africa? We are already planning one to East Africa to Kenya and Tanzania.

Claudia Bastos

Claudia is a physiotherapist and a clinical Pilates instructor. Claudia was born in South Africa and has worked in Portugal, Angola, and Belgium. She loves new adventures, trying new things, and daydreaming. She's obsessed with coffee (lots of coffee), cheese, spicy food and street markets. Claudia is our food specialist but loves to write posts about travel health using her knowledge as a physio! Her motto is "be happy with what you have while working for what you want"

10 Responses

  1. This post brings back so many memories of my trip through Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana and Namibia 2 years ago.

  2. Cristina Luisa says:

    Wow, four countries in one safari! It looks like you had quite the adventure, and got some excellent photos out of it. I’d imagined that an excursion like that would’ve been much more costly.
    Also, Love in the Time of Cholera- excellent reading choice, but yes, sometimes you want the characters to just MOVE ON! 🙂

  3. lavidanomade says:

    Great post. Definitely on my travel bucket!!!!

  4. Jessica says:

    Lovel the graph as it represents your wild trip. Amazing place to visit indeed and i like how you explore it little by little. Looking forward for your next african adventure

  5. Haley Janelle says:

    How fun!!! Great idea and I’m so glad you got to experience that!!! Thanks for sharing!

  6. Angela & Dave @dangtravelers says:

    We have an African safari on our wish list as well! It sounds like it did not disappoint. Chobe National Park looks like one of those places that you will always talk about getting back to some day. A little on the expensive side, but seems worth it for the experience.

  7. Nancy Pitman says:

    I want to do this so bad! Would love to have seen those wild dogs playing in the lagoon! But I also would want to see more elephants. I wonder if there is a better time of year to see them or if its just luck finding them.

  8. miieloise says:

    What a trip!!! You did so much, it’s amazing!! I did a safari 18 months ago. We spent one week exploring amazing parks in Tanzania, before climbing Kilimanjaro. It was incredible and the safari was way over my expectations. I couldn’t believe how close we were from the wild animals! 🙂

  9. Brianna says:

    Wow. This looks like an unforgettable trip! And I like how you did the cost breakdown too. I always thought African safaris were way out of my budget, but maybe not….

    • coupleRTW says:

      In general it is more expensive than other locations, but South Africa and Namibia are quite cheap and have unbelievable natural beauty.
      Vic falls is on the expensives side… but it’s vic falls! 🙂