So continuing with the write up on my trip to Botswana and Cape Town…
We all wanted to have a safari experience, something different from seeing caged animals in a zoo and so I started researching (which was not work at all as I love planning hols) and came across Madikwe safari lodge. It had great reviews and looked really good, so I contacted them and we booked a game drive.
Some of us booked a one day drive and a others wanted to see more and stayed for a couple of nights. I was scared of the open jeep (in my mind, this was just an accident waiting to happen), animals coming into the room at night (places the imagination can take me to when I let it)…so I felt one day was more than enough for me and I honestly did not think I would enjoy the experience at all.
It is really very well organized, the reserve is near the South African border coming from Botswana and we were picked up and dropped back at our hotel (which saves a lot of hassle when you are visiting a country). It was fun crossing the border as we had to come down and fill some forms just walking from one country to the other (like in an episode in the series of the Nº 1 Ladies detective agency).
Upon our arrival, we were very warmly welcomed into the safari lodge and I started deeply regretting my one day drive decision (and when I saw the rooms…). The members of staff were so friendly and attentive, they were the personification of the word hospitality. Our tour guide came for us and I can´t say that when I saw the jeep all my misgivings flew out the window (especially as it was an open one so no windows necessary) but I was allowed to sit in the middle (safety in numbers and all that 🙂 ) and this really helped.
The drive was really beautiful and so informative, we got to see the animals in their natural habitat and at very close range and at some point I lost my fear of being in an open jeep and too close for comfort to a lion and ended up having an amazing time. We got back for a lunch that had nothing to envy any Michelin star restaurant and just before lunch had the pleasure of seeing an elephant drink from a nearby pool.
I´d like to thank Quina as she handled with such patience our reservation and many changes (sorry, it happens when organizing a group) and everyone that was so nice to us at the lodge. I highly recommend this to families, groups of friends, honeymooners (very romantic)… I will be going back for a longer stay and I know of a few that will be coming with me :).