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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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  #1  
Old 9 Sep 2012
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Motorbikes in game parks - southern Africa

We are riding from Ndloa in Zambia through Botswana to Namibia and Cape Town October 2012. Understand no bikes in Etosha but any advice on where bikes can and cannot go in the game parks e.g Chobe, Okavango etc.
Also any advice on alternative routes from Ndola to Livingstone (e.g. out towards Kafue National Park) apart from the obvious main road south.
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Old 9 Sep 2012
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Southern Africa

We will be riding that route at the same time, so I am interested as well !!!
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Old 9 Sep 2012
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Parks you can take bikes into are usually ones without dangerous animals for obvious reasons.

Definitely not possible in Botswana (park rules require a 4x4 - and no riding on a roof or in an open bakkie). Probably OK in some South African parks which aren't all about the game (not Kruger or KTP for example). I'm thinking of Golden Gate, Drakensberg etc.

But you can ride main roads that transect parks eg the road from Mongu to Lusaka that goes through Kafue. You will probably be warned by police not to stop though and do watch out for animals in the road. The road from Kasane down to Nata in Bots is in a very game rich area and there are often elephants around. Take care though. I can think of many occasions where we have come across elephants whilst in a car where I definitely would not have wanted to be on a bike.
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Old 9 Sep 2012
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Thumbs up Animal Watching

A tricky situation to be in. We went to Etosha, but were in Windhoek beforehand where we met up with a couple of backpackers who also wanted to visit a game park. So we shared the costs of a hire car, they paid the fuel up to the gates of the Park, we went up by bike and left the bike with the wardens at the gate- but I know not everyone can bear to let their bikes out of their sight.
Had three fantastic days in the Park and then returned to the bike and continued our journey.

At the Adventure Travel Film Fest I remember speaking to someone who had taken bikes through a game park in South Africa quite recently but I can't remember who it was or which Park. They were told they do so at their own risk It sounded like they saw a lot of animals and not just the "harmless" ones either.
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Old 9 Sep 2012
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Like Tiffany I have joined up with backpackers at both Etosha and Kruger to share car hire and enter the parks, my bike was left at the hostels and was perfectly safe.
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Old 9 Sep 2012
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Game Parks

Yes I have already had 2 bad encounters in a park in Uganda, rode into a herd of Elephants & was in soft sand as well, fully loaded on a F650gs twin. Was not fun but I had a GoPro on so got to film it all. Then I came to what I thought was a campsite at Mweya, set up camp no one else turned up except a pride of lions so I lay motionless shitting myself for about 6 hours ( its really amazing how quietly one can breath ) so not overly excited about repeating the experience tho.
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Old 10 Sep 2012
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Going from Victoria Falls through Botswana and on to Namibia via the Caprivi Strip you have to go through Chobe NP but it's no problem. The main road is sealed and bikes are allowed through. Excellent chance of seeing Elephants here whilst sat on a bike- awesome experience.
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Old 14 Sep 2012
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Moremi park at Okavango.
You can drive to the south gate of the park, and the last 40km's are after the buffalo fence. The animals can all come there too (big stuff, but also lions have been spottet there) and then you turn around at the gate ~where they will stop you on your bike.

Botswana: you'll see plenty of elephants on the side of the road

Tanzania: we just drove through Mikuni NP, the main road goes through the park and you do not have to pay anything. We managed to get up early and drove into this park at sunrise. Plenty of elephants on the side of the road, giraffes, buffalo's etc.

Northwestern Namibia: offroad, but plenty of lions and elephants.

Be aware though ;-)
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Old 25 Oct 2012
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Kafue is fine as already mentioned.

I did it on a bicycle, the rangers hassled me a little but let me through. It was a pig to get through in one day with a serious head wind as I didn't want to stay at an expensive lodge.

Thanks to the headwind the 3 Cheetahs didn't hear or smell me So I saw them at about 30m which was awesome of course. Once they spotted me they bolted as most wildlife does. Another pain with the wind was that I could cycle fast enough to escape the Tse-Tse flies, in the end I had hundreds attacking me.....NOT NICE.

– Wind, Tse-Tse and Kafue

For Etosha I also rented a car, just as well because I spotted some Leopards .

I wild camped most of Namibia (including Caprivi), Zambia, Botswana ( Trans kalahari and west side of Okavango) without problems. Locals often say be careful of Lions but there are plenty of goats and cattle around so I wasn't too worried.

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Old 3 Nov 2012
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As has been said there are no bikes allowed in Chobe, Moremi in Botswana. they are allowed to travel the transit road to Ngoma Gate but there is no stopping on there. You sign in/out at both ends.
Bikes are also not allowed Kruger and other ZA parks with the big 5 nor in Etosha.

Having said that animals can be seen in many areas and care must be taken with donkeys, cattle warthog etc which roam freely.


Margaret
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