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danilbruce Hwange - A travel report by Daniel
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Hwange,  Zimbabwe - flag Zimbabwe
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danilbruce's travel reports

Hwange National Park

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Hwange travelogue picture
Hwange National Park is the first African park I ever visited in 1990. It is large, an area of 5,600 square miles. It is covered by low bushes, grass, and a few trees. The best way to see the park was by car. I managed to bum safaris rides from the Main Camp.

Favourite spots:
My favorite spots were at the waterhole watchtowers. I would just watch and wait. I often saw impala, eland, elephants, warthogs, baboons, and vervet monkeys by just waiting at the waterholes. For some reason, the park liked to stick a single croc in each waterhole. I saw a humorous game of chicken between a eland and a croc.


What's really great:
Hwange travelogue picture
Foot safaris. There are usually two safaris a day, early in morning and late in afternoon for about two hours. I was the only person on the foot safari I took, escorted around by an armed park ranger. We saw wildebeast, giraffe, warthog, various antelope, vervet monkey and buffalo very close up. The ranger was very uneasy about being close to the buffalo though.
On a Volkswagen Beatle safari, which I hitched from two German taxi drivers from Berlin, we saw a pack of wild dogs with blood on their muzzles and one with a impala head in mouth.




Accommodations:
I stayed at Main Camp. It had a variety of accomodation; plush bungalows, basic huts, and camping. I camped. It was a nice quiet area with some shade and a little grass. The campsite was invaded by baboons one morning though. About 20 baboons came in over the fence to loot through the trash. I stayed in tent because I'll admit these monkeys scared me. The guards came in a few minutes and scared them away by banging trashcan lids.

Restaurants:
Hwange travelogue picture
The Main camp has a nice if overpriced restuarant. It is a nice place to relax and meet people. I met a hunter hired by the park to cull animals to prevent overpopulation. He told me how when he killed an elephant the government got the tusks and a village just outside the park got the meat and skin.

Other recommendations:
I came to Hwange by steam train. The train stopped at Deke station which is a few miles from the park. The only problem is it stopped there about 3:30 am. As I waited for sunrise at the station, I watched a dung beetle (which are ENORMOUS) heading across the floor to where a young woman and her child laid on the train station floor. When the beetle got near the woman she would swipe it and it would then go sliding across the floor on its back. The beetle would then flip itself back over and head right back to where the woman with child laid, and then she would swipe it again. This happened at least 3 times.

Published on Sunday October 19th, 2003


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Wed, May 12 2004 - 08:07 PM rating by whereisliz

Daniel, I found this report fascinating... It sounds like you had a more interesting experience than those who would spend more money. Thanks for sharing your story & photos.

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