Graptolite is at 36:49.20N 028:18.56E in Turkey and the skipper is in
Not a hugely successful day. We wanted to take a look at the Makgadigadi
salt pans of the eastern Kalahari. Even though they cover hundreds of
square miles, we didn´t actually get to see these endless plains of
whiteness due to minor navigational problems. Maybe as well, as with the
heavy rain that they´ve been having here it would have just been endless
plains of grey mud unfit for driving on.
We also had to abandon looking at Chobe National Park and turned back as
we reached the gates to allow more time for crossing into Zimbabwe before
the border closed for the night. The border crossing was a nightmare as
expected with loads of fees for this and that. We even had to buy Third
Party insurance and some kind of export-guarantee insurance as we were a
rental car and classed as a commercial vehicle. Poorer but with a sigh of
relief we drove into Zimbabwe and around the first bend we were stopped at
a police roadblock and, like all non-Zimbabwe cars, we were fined for not
having a bit of reflective tape on the front bumper.
We drove on to Victoria Falls and stayed at the elegant but faded, old
colonial era, Victoria Falls Hotel. The place was nice. There were
baboons and warthogs on the lawn and we could see the rising falls spray
and the Victoria Falls Bridge over the Zambesi from our room.
In the morning we walked to the Victoria Falls National Park for a view
but they wanted $20 each for the pleasure so we got a helicopter flight
instead for an even better look. The falls are not easy to take in from
the ground anyway as the Zambesi spills through a series of gorges.
After that we changed some money. An unusual experience as Zimbabwe has no
currency of its own these day and only uses US dollars. As well as
currency problems they also have fuel problems. All the normal petrol
stations had no petrol to sell but fortunately we were able to get some
from an industrial supplier on the edge of town.
Then we used almost all the petrol up by driving a long way south through
the forests of Matabeleland, stopping in Bulawayo for the night.