Hwange advice please





Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Hwange advice please

    We have a trip booked to Hwange in mid August. We have 5 nights booked at Ngweshla picnic site and then 3 nights at Kapula Camp. Please can I get some advice with regards to the following queries:
    We are traveling from Johannesburg, is it best to go through Botswana and overnight close to Pandamatenga, any suggestions of where?
    We then need to get to Ngweshla the next day, would it be better to drive via Hwange town and enter the park at main camp and down to a Ngweshla or drive through the park?
    Any tips about Ngweshla or suggestions of extras things we should be taking?
    Is it okay to drive from Ngweshla to Kapula camp?
    If we leave Kapula on our last day at say 09h00 and exit via Pandamatenga, any suggestions of how far we will get and where we should book that night to stay encountering back to Jhb?
    What extras do we need on/in our vehicles to travel on Zim roads?
    Any help / suggestions would be much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Umdloti
    Age
    47
    Posts
    3,085
    Thanked: 320

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    I doubt you'll get to Pandamatenga on the first night. I'd go through Plumtree, staying around Francistown or at a push Matopos (try and give yourself 2 nights if this is an option).

    Ngweshla is fantastic, take extras for the camp attendant, he'll be extremely grateful.

    No problem getting from Ngweshla to Kapula, tar between Main camp and Shumba is awful though.

    Return leg stay, what about Elephant Sands, Nata Lodge or at a push Woodlands.

    Read through older posts to see vehicle requirements or check AA website.

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to RobH For This Useful Post:


  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Joburg
    Age
    43
    Posts
    60
    Thanked: 22

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    We did Kapula a couple of years back and absolutely loved it. If it was me I would definitely try and get to Nata on day 1, stay up there and then from there to Pandamatenga. We combined a couple of nights in Vic Falls on our way there which was also great. Went Nata, Vic Falls for 2 nights, kapula x 4 and then back to Nata. I would always go up via Bots to Hwange.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to martcassidy For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    George
    Age
    45
    Posts
    428
    Thanked: 162

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Via Pandamatenga on the way in would be a massive detour - definitely approach from Bulawayo side and come in via Main Camp. I am convinced your quickest route with the current state of border posts and your mid month entry is via Beit Bridge - Tods Guest House is a good stopover between BB and Bulawayo.

    On the way out going via Pandamatenga from Kapula will still be longer than by going straight back South again via Bulawayo, but would add some variety. It is a pleasant drive past Robins Camp and through game areas all the way to the Pandamatenga border post. You should make Francistown with ease unless you leave Kapula very late and really dawdle all the way.
    Andrew


    Land Cruiser 76 (4.2)

  7. The Following User Says Thank You to AMacAfrica For This Useful Post:


  8. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Thanks Rob for the advice. We are really keen to try and avoid driving on the Zim roads, we had such a terrible time driving to Mana last year! Is it a lot further going via Pandamatenga? Going through Plumtree border also took us forever and Pandamatenga sounds like it will be a lot less time. We are only 2 vehicles and easily did Nata last year in a day so thinking of adding another 100kms or so to get a bit further up.

    Ngweshla is fantastic, take extras for the camp attendant, he'll be extremely grateful. Any suggestions of what they would appreciate the most?

    No problem getting from Ngweshla to Kapula, tar between Main camp and Shumba is awful though. That's great thank you.

    Return leg stay, what about Elephant Sands, Nata Lodge or at a push Woodlands. Woodlands is a great idea thank you!

    Read through older posts to see vehicle requirements or check AA - Will do thanks

  9. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Cool Re: Hwange advice please

    [QUOTE=martcassidy;3948569]We did Kapula a couple of years back and absolutely loved it. If it was me I would definitely try and get to Nata on day 1, stay up there and then from there to Pandamatenga. We combined a couple of nights in Vic Falls on our way there which was also great. Went Nata, Vic Falls for 2 nights, kapula x 4 and then back to Nata. I would always go up via Bots to Hwange. Thanks so much, so looking forward to it

  10. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Thanks Andrew for this advice; we will relook at our route. We are very anti driving on the Zim roads though; we had a terrible road trip to Mana last year so keen to try and avoid it Via Pandamatenga on the way in would be a massive detour - definitely approach from Bulawayo side and come in via Main Camp. I am convinced your quickest route with the current state of border posts and your mid month entry is via Beit Bridge - Tods Guest House is a good stopover between BB and Bulawayo.

    On the way out going via Pandamatenga from Kapula will still be longer than by going straight back South again via Bulawayo, but would add some variety. It is a pleasant drive past Robins Camp and through game areas all the way to the Pandamatenga border post. You should make Francistown with ease unless you leave Kapula very late and really dawdle all the way. Andrew, how far is Kapula camp be from Pandamatenga? If we didn't go out of Pandamatenga, which gate would we exit from?

  11. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Mooketsi & Phalaborwa
    Age
    44
    Posts
    376
    Thanked: 36

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Amanda,
    We returned from Hwange about two weeks ago. Amazing experience ! As we farm in Limpopo we opted to enter Bots ( we despise Beitbridge ) at Zanzibar and drove up to Woodlands. The next morning we drove to Pandamatenga ( Fill up your car and extra jerry cans here as fuel is cheap in Bots ) and the entered Zim at Panda border post which was a breeze. From there we first went up to Vic Falls before we went to Hwange. Might sound crazy but consider the same route and at the Vic falls / Bulawayo road take the road to Bulawayo and enter Hwange at Main Camp and then drive to Ngweshla. The road from Pandamatenga border post to the Vic Falls and Robins camp T junction is about 30 km, there you turn left and continue to the main Vic Falls / Bulawayo tar road ( 40km ) There you turn right and drive to main camp which is about 145km. On your way there you pass Hwange town which has an amazing OK shop with anything you might need. The drive from Panda to the Vic Falls /Byo tar road is via the Matetsi Safari area and we saw lots of game driving trough there on a decent gravel road.
    Last edited by kallie404; 2018/07/24 at 10:17 PM.

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to kallie404 For This Useful Post:


  13. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Quote Originally Posted by RobH View Post
    I doubt you'll get to Pandamatenga on the first night. I'd go through Plumtree, staying around Francistown or at a push Matopos (try and give yourself 2 nights if this is an option).

    Ngweshla is fantastic, take extras for the camp attendant, he'll be extremely grateful.

    No problem getting from Ngweshla to Kapula, tar between Main camp and Shumba is awful though.

    Return leg stay, what about Elephant Sands, Nata Lodge or at a push Woodlands.

    Read through older posts to see vehicle requirements or check AA website.
    Thanks Rob for the advice. We are really keen to try and avoid driving on the Zim roads, we had such a terrible time driving to Mana last year! Is it a lot further going via Pandamatenga? Going through Plumtree border also took us forever and Pandamatenga sounds like it will be a lot less time. We are only 2 vehicles and easily did Nata last year in a day so thinking of adding another 190kms further up.

    Ngweshla is fantastic, take extras for the camp attendant, he'll be extremely grateful. Any suggestions of what they would appreciate the most?

    Return leg stay, what about Elephant Sands, Nata Lodge or at a push Woodlands. Woodlands is a great idea thank you!

  14. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Quote Originally Posted by kallie404 View Post
    Amanda,
    We returned from Hwange about two weeks ago. Amazing experience ! As we farm in Limpopo we opted to enter Bots ( we despise Beitbridge ) at Zanzibar and drove up to Woodlands. The next morning we drove to Pandamatenga ( Fill up your car and extra jerry cans here as fuel is cheap in Bots ) and the entered Zim at Panda border post which was a breeze. From there we first went up to Vic Falls before we went to Hwange. Might sound crazy but consider the same route and at the Vic falls / Bulawayo road take the road to Bulawayo and enter Hwange at Main Camp and then drive to Ngweshla. The road from Pandamatenga border post to the Vic Falls and Robins camp T junction is about 30 km, there you turn left and continue to the main Vic Falls / Bulawayo tar road ( 40km ) There you turn right and drive to main camp which is about 145km. On your way there you pass Hwange town which has an amazing OK shop with anything you might need. The drive from Panda to the Vic Falls /Byo tar road is via the Matetsi Safari area and we saw lots of game driving trough there on a decent gravel road.
    Thanks Kallie so much for this info.
    Is it an option to drive through the park from Pandamatenga gate to main camp or won’t we manage it as we will still need to get to Ngweshla.
    Would you recommend we go via Hwange town?
    Any accommodation recommendations close to Pandamatenga?

  15. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Mooketsi & Phalaborwa
    Age
    44
    Posts
    376
    Thanked: 36

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Quote Originally Posted by AmandaT View Post
    Thanks Kallie so much for this info.
    Is it an option to drive through the park from Pandamatenga gate to main camp or won’t we manage it as we will still need to get to Ngweshla.
    Would you recommend we go via Hwange town?
    Any accommodation recommendations close to Pandamatenga?
    The drive through the park is quite long and the roads are badly potholed from Shumba Picnic spot to Main camp ( old broken up potholed tar road ) From JHB I would sleep near Martins Drift border post ( Klippan lodge ) or just over the border at Kwa Nokeng. Next morning take a leisurely drive to Nata Lodge (450km ) and sleep there or push through to Pandamatenga (660km). At Panda there are a few overnight options like Panda Restcamp and Touch of Africa. If you take this route you pass Francistown. As you enter Francistown the first shopping centre on your left has a Spar that is unbelievably well stocked and has some of the best meat I have ever seenand tasted in Botswana at a affordable price. Buy everything you need in Botswana as Zim like you know is crazy expensive. Also a word of caution, use all your meat products in Zim as when you return into Bots everything will be confiscated. From Kapula ( which is basically in the middle of the park ) if you leave early drive to Robins camp and exit the park there. It is then a 100 km drive to Pandamatenga border post and more than enough time to reach Woodlands Stop Over ( 380km) or even Palapye Town ( 560km )
    .

  16. The Following User Says Thank You to kallie404 For This Useful Post:


  17. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    52
    Posts
    20
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Quote Originally Posted by kallie404 View Post
    The drive through the park is quite long and the roads are badly potholed from Shumba Picnic spot to Main camp ( old broken up potholed tar road ) From JHB I would sleep near Martins Drift border post ( Klippan lodge ) or just over the border at Kwa Nokeng. Next morning take a leisurely drive to Nata Lodge (450km ) and sleep there or push through to Pandamatenga (660km). At Panda there are a few overnight options like Panda Restcamp and Touch of Africa. If you take this route you pass Francistown. As you enter Francistown the first shopping centre on your left has a Spar that is unbelievably well stocked and has some of the best meat I have ever seenand tasted in Botswana at a affordable price. Buy everything you need in Botswana as Zim like you know is crazy expensive. Also a word of caution, use all your meat products in Zim as when you return into Bots everything will be confiscated. From Kapula ( which is basically in the middle of the park ) if you leave early drive to Robins camp and exit the park there. It is then a 100 km drive to Pandamatenga border post and more than enough time to reach Woodlands Stop Over ( 380km) or even Palapye Town ( 560km )
    Brilliant thanks Kallie, what accommodation would you recommend in Palapye area?

  18. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Lonehill
    Posts
    117
    Thanked: 22

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    We just recently came back from Mana and Hwange and driving now in Zim is a breeze, don't compare to a year ago. We also had planned our return through Panda from Sinamatella to avoid driving in Zim as much as possible but then when we saw how easy it was now, we changed our route and went through Plumtree instead. Panda would have added about 3-4 hours to our route. Enjoy!

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to kellyee21 For This Useful Post:


  20. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    George
    Age
    45
    Posts
    428
    Thanked: 162

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    The advice to go via Pandamatenga and your fear of the roads (police roadblocks) is largely based on the old situation. I experienced this as well and stayed far from Zim for a good few years because of this. However, the situation has changed and the police roadblock staff are even more friendly than those in Bots (if they even stop you - I stopped on purpose at some of them anyway to have a quick chat to the cops to also help build trust with overlanding type vehicles). Going in and out via Pandamatenga is really extreme if not including a Kasane/Vic Falls visit in the trip.

    Going out via Pandamatenga from Kapula is at least worth the drive for the experience and you will still see wild animals all the way to almost in Nata.
    Andrew


    Land Cruiser 76 (4.2)

  21. The Following User Says Thank You to AMacAfrica For This Useful Post:


  22. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Corona
    Age
    50
    Posts
    187
    Thanked: 91

    Default Re: Hwange advice please

    Am assuming you will go via Main Camp to get from Ngweshla to Kapula? The road is absolutely terrible so give yourself extra time. I would also come thru Plumtree - the road is very good and will save you a lot of time.

  23. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to kimbaleee For This Useful Post:


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •