Zeb the Duck Visits Kruger Park in South Africa

This morning Samson picked us up really early.   We are driving to Kruger National Park in South Africa for the day.   Driving, the sun came up and we reached the border between Mozambique and South Africa.

Immigration point between countries

Immigration point between countries

We cleared immigration to leave Mozambique and then cleared immigration to go into South Africa.   Minutes later we enter Kruger National Park.

Kruger National Park, South Africa

Kruger National Park, South Africa

This is our safari vehicle.

Ready for a safari.

Ready for a safari.

I am ready to find big animals.  As you know, I, Zeb the Duck, have been on safaris so I know that I stay in my traveling bag or sit on the vehicle seat most of the time.   Our first animals are impalas.

Impalas

Impalas

Chris, our guide, says there are more than 150,000 impalas in Kruger Park.   That is a lot!   These hippos know we are here.

Hippos. Always watching

Hippos. Always watching

They are watching us.   Guinea Fowl or Guinea Hens are rather plentiful and they have a beautiful blue neck and head.

Guinea Fowl or Guinea Hen

Guinea Fowl or Guinea Hen

This is a brown snake-eagle.

Brown Snake Eagle

Brown Snake Eagle

Glad he wants to eat brown snakes, and not yellow ducks.   I love zebras.   Look at this one.

Zebra

Zebra

I believe this is a Burchel Zebra.   They crossed the road directly in front of our safari vehicle.

Zebras. The crossed right in front of us!

Zebras. The crossed right in front of us!

I love to see big animals this close.   Chris showed us this owl.

Big eyed Owl

Big eyed Owl

He sure has big eyes.   This bird with a bright red neck caught my eye.

Bird with bright red neck

Bird with bright red neck

We love birds, but I prefer big animals on safari.   Here is a warthog.

Warthog

Warthog

Warthogs are rather plentiful also, but I, Zeb the Duck, love to watch them.

Warthogs grazing

Warthogs grazing

They eat a lot and often.   The top tusks are not very sharp, but the bottom tusks are very sharp.   Don’t you just adore giraffes?

Giraffe

Giraffe

Mom and I really like to see them.   This is an animal we have not seen yet.

Blue Wildebeest or Gnu

Blue Wildebeest or Gnu

Chris says this is a Blue Wildebeest.   He also calls it a gnu.   We are seeing so many animals and I want to show them all to  you, so I will finish this next time.   We don’t want these posts to get too long.   Remember, next time, more big animals.

Fish Market in Maputo, Mozambique with Zeb the Duck

Isaac met us at the hotel entrance and we are going to the fish market today.   I, Zeb the Duck, have never been to a fish market.   Isaac finds a taxi for us.

Taxi

Taxi

I like this little one.   Driving out of town, I love the painted cement on the side of the road.

Great painting by road

Great painting by road

The photo was taken from the taxi, and guess mom got a mirror reflection in the upper right corner.   Typical ocean scene here, with a boat, a man to the left watching the water, and a bird flying overhead.

Approaching fish market

Approaching fish market

Watching the water is so relaxing for ducks and humans.   We have arrived at the fish market.   Going inside, I see that there are fish of many types, sizes, and colors.  Let’s start with shrimp.

Fresh shrimp

Fresh shrimp

Large, fresh shrimp look tempting.   But look at these fish.

Colorful fish

Colorful fish

The color variation is great, but guess when they are cooked, the color is not important.   And the bright blue catches my eye.

Bright blue

Bright blue

So many choices.   What to do with these fish?   There are many restaurants here.

So many restaurants here

So many restaurants here

Humans can purchase a fish and the restaurants will cook it as you request.   We did not know that.   We sat here, ordered grilled fish and waited.   Soon the fish arrived.   On the left is our taxi driver.   On the right Isaac and mom are looking at the fish.

Humans, ready to eat

Humans, ready to eat

All humans are ready to eat.   We have three whole fish.

The whole fish

The whole fish

And I mean whole fish.   At home they don’t bring us the fish heads.   But here they are.   We see something new every day.   Lunch was delicious.   I am sitting here with the Indian Ocean behind me.

Beach at fish market

Beach at fish market

Boats are in the water and a human is walking on the beach.   I could sit here for hours.   But, we have to go now.   Along the road near the fish market, we could buy more fish from this lady.

More fish

More fish

Or maybe coconuts from this gentleman?

Coconuts for sale

Coconuts for sale

Very tempting, but we do not have a kitchen in our motel room.    I enjoyed this drive along the water.   Love the fishing boat.

Fishing boat

Fishing boat

Of course palm trees always make my vacation better.

Palm trees

Palm trees

The people of Maputo work very hard, but the atmosphere here is calm today.    We hope you visit Maputo and also have a great experience.

Zeb the Duck is in Maputo, Mozambique, but Now What??

I, Zeb the Duck, am in Maputo, the capital of Mozambique, in southern Africa.   My hotel is nice and centrally located.

Hotel Maputo in Maputo, Mozmbique

Hotel Maputo in Maputo, Mozambique

But, there are no tourist offices, no tourist maps and no tourist information in sight.   So, mom and I head out and are greeted by vendors.   Persistent, but friendly, vendors.   We do not want to shop today, just look around and get oriented.   We head downhill, hopefully toward Maputo Bay.    Must be a government building?

Government building

Government building

This statue is of Marechal Samora Moises Machel, the first president of the Republic of Mozambique.

First president of the Republic of Mozambique

First president of the Republic of Mozambique

And here are the friendly, persistent vendors.   Still no shopping today.   We wander a little more, not sure where we are heading and what we are seeing.   A park, older homes, and our friendly, persistent vendors.   So, mom talks to Isaac, one of the vendors.   He is friendly and persistent, and we like him.   He agrees to be our tour guide today.   This is so much better.   I, Zeb the Duck, like Isaac, and he speaks a little English.   Mom wasn’t a very good tour guide here.   Isaac takes us to The Fort.   A short walk and we are here.

The Fort

The Fort

Inside is a garden and small museum.   I love the statues.   Here I am on a horse.

Love statues of humans on horses--and a duck

Love statues of humans on horses–and a duck

This wagon is great also.

Wagon

Wagon

This fort was build by the Portuguese in the mid 19th century, near the site of an earlier fort.   Portugal colonized Mozambique and the official language is Portuguese.   However, like many places in Africa, people speak a few tribal languages first, then learn the official language left by the Europeans.   These people speak many languages.   Here I am, sitting comfortably with Isaac, our guide, watching me.

Isaac is watching me.

Isaac is watching me.

Inside one of the small rooms of the small museum, I rest on the sealed carved wooden coffin of Ngungunhane, the final ruler of the famed kingdom of Gaza.

Wooden coffin

Wooden coffin

The Kingdom of Gaza, 1824-1895, dominated southeast Africa in what is now southern Mozambique, southeast Zimbabwe, and parts of South Africa.     The coffin lid carving is beautiful.

Carved coffin lid

Carved coffin lid

More wonderful carving on these wall panels.

Carvings

Carvings

More statues with me, Zeb the Duck.

Sculptures

Sculptures

And statues on wall panels.

Sculptures

Sculptures

This fort was well guarded.

Every fort needs canons.

Every fort needs canons.

Attacks from the water were always a very real threat.   This fort is on Maputo Bay which goes into the Indian Ocean.   Leaving The Fort, you can see that Maputo Bay, and the Indian Ocean are right here.

Leaving the Fort, Maputo Bay sparkles in the sun.

Leaving the Fort, Maputo Bay sparkles in the sun.

Mom and Isaac agree to meet again tomorrow morning at our hotel, and he will show us more of the Maputo area.   I am so glad she decided to hire Isaac.

Last Minute Shopping in Zimbabwe with Zeb the Duck

Well, this is our last morning in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.   We love this town and, of course, we love the waterfalls.   Our hotel was near an indoor craft market and an outdoor craft or curio market.

Elephant's Walk Shopping Village next to our hotel

Elephant’s Walk Shopping Village next to our hotel

This sign is for the indoor market.   But, look what else humans can do here.

Crocodile Cage Diving??

Crocodile Cage Diving??

I am glad mom did not try this.   I don’t think this is the crocodile that would be a diving partner.

I like this crocodile

I like this crocodile

I do like this crocodile though.   Isn’t this the most colorful rhino you have ever seen?

New kind of rhino

New kind of rhino

It is a first for me, but in the middle of National Parks and game preserves, this rhino seems right at home.   I even made a new friend here.

I always find new friends

I always find new friends

I have seen so many hippos in the water, but now I can sit on this one.

Friendly hippos

Friendly hippos

Inside this market there are many nice craft stores and there is even a Fed Ex office here if you want to purchase items too large for you suitcase.   We did not.   Also inside there are various small market areas and individual stands.   The cloth is for Chitenges.

Chitenges

Chitenges and more

Chitenges are the cloth women buy and then wrap to make skirts.   We think the material is very pretty, but we did not purchase any.   We are waiting for our taxi to the airport, so we go outside.   This vendor was very nice.

My friend, the vendor

My friend, the vendor

He even asked mom to put me on some items for photos.    Our taxi is here so the suitcase goes in and so do we.  We are back at the Zimbabwe airport in Victoria Falls.

Back to the Zimbabwe airport in the city of Victoria Falls

Back to the Zimbabwe airport in the city of Victoria Falls

Inside this aerial view of Victoria Falls is nice.

Aerial view of Victoria Falls. Nice picture

Aerial view of Victoria Falls. Nice picture

We have plenty of time until our flight leaves.   We do a little more shopping.   Mom likes the shops here and we purchase more souvenirs.    Then we enter the small restaurant in the airport.   Even the chairs have African wild animals.

Small restaurant in this small airport

Small restaurant in this small airport

Look at this menu.

There it is. Crocodile Burger

There it is. Crocodile Burger

Crocodile burger?   We ask the waitress about it and she says it is good.   And, of course, it tastes like chicken.   We have never had a crocodile burger; never have seen it on a menu either.   Mom has eaten crocodile nuggets in South Africa and crocodile appetizers, almost like shoe string potatoes in Denver, but never a burger.   So, we order the crocodile burger.

Crocodile burger

Crocodile burger

It is very good, and it does taste like chicken.   However it is much more dense or heavy than chicken.   We liked it, but we may never see it again on a menu.   And for the curious, the official currency of Zimbabwe is the US Dollar, so yes, we did pay $15 for a crocodile burger.   Our flight is called now, so next time we will be in Mozambique.   More adventures to come.

Victoria Falls from Zambia with Zeb the Duck

Our time at Victoria Falls is almost over, so today we will walk to Zambia to see the falls from that side of the river.      We passed Zimbabwe’s Victoria Falls National Park and walked to Zambia.

Into Zambia

Going Into Zambia

Since we were exiting one country and entering another, we stopped for immigration in each country and paid a fee to visit the destination country.  We stop often to view Victoria Falls from Victoria Falls bridge.

Victoria Falls from Victoria Falls Bridge

Victoria Falls from Victoria Falls Bridge

Isn’t it beautiful?  Victoria Falls Bridge is famous.

Victoria Falls Bridge

Victoria Falls Bridge

The span of the arch is 158 meters.   The bridge is 128 meters above the Zambezi River at low water.   And, this Victoria Falls Bridge is one of only a few bridges in the world that carries road, rail and pedestrian traffic.   And has great views of Victoria Falls.

Victoria Falls from Victoria Falls Bridge

Victoria Falls from Victoria Falls Bridge

Just inside Zambia, we see this statue of Dr. David Livingstone.

150th anniversary of first European to see Victoria Falls, Dr. David Livingstone

150th anniversary of first European to see Victoria Falls, Dr. David Livingstone

This statue, dedicated November 16, 2005, commemorates the 150th anniversary  of the first sighting of Victoria Falls by a European.   Dr. Livingstone reached Victoria Falls November 16, 1855.   We enter Zambia’s National Heritage Conservation Commission area.

Zambia's National Heritage Conservation Commission

Zambia’s National Heritage Conservation Commission

We purchase our ticket and rent another raincoat.   This is a view of the Victoria Falls bridge from inside the park area.

Victoria Falls bridge from Zambia

Victoria Falls bridge from Zambia

We follow the path along the falls, delighting in each view of Victoria Falls.   We will cross this foot bridge, but see how wet it is.

Walk over this bridge. Spray from falls keeps everything and everybody wet.

Walk over this bridge. Spray from falls keeps everything and everybody wet.

The mist and spray from Victoria Falls is very strong.    This is Rainbow Falls.

Rainbow Falls

Rainbow Falls

Isn’t it spectacular?   We love rainbows and water, so this is perfect for us.   These waterfalls are beautiful and we are captivated by them.

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls

Leaving the park, we like this sign.

Reminder that malaria is a real threat

Reminder that malaria is a real threat

Malaria kills many people.   We take our daily pills and use mosquito netting.   We hope all people in Africa use the mosquito netting also.   We bought a couple t-shirts and are carrying them in a bag.   As we cross Victoria Falls bridge to return to Zimbabwe, we see this baboon on the bridge.

Our baboon

Our baboon

He is coming to us.   What???  He runs to mom, jumps up and grabs the t-shirt bag.   He rips the bag, but then leaves the bag and us because there is no food in the bag.   No one is hurt, but we are certainly surprised.   Is this an almost baboon attack?   These baboons are really friendly.   That was a new experience and a great story to tell our friends at home.   Looking at the waterfalls, we recognize the foot bridge we crossed in the park.

Our foot bridge from Victoria Falls Bridge

Our foot bridge from Victoria Falls Bridge

While we walk across the bridge, a train, Pride of Africa, is also crossing the bridge.

Train, Pride of Africa, going over Victoria Falls Bridge

Train, Pride of Africa, going over Victoria Falls Bridge

This is our last full day at Victoria Falls.   We really wish we had more time, but we have plane reservations and hotel reservations in Mozambique.   If you visit Victoria Falls, we know you will love it.

Zeb Experiences a Botswana Game Drive and Dinner at Mama Africa Eating House

We are still in Botswana at Chobe Safari Lodge.   The river safari and lunch were fantastic.   We loved eating by the pool and the Chobe River.   On this safari, the humans agreed that they had seen enough birds, impalas and warthogs.   They were looking for zebras, giraffes and lions.   But they did want to stop to admire other large animals.   An early stop was to gaze at these rocks.

Large rocks? Not at all!

Large rocks? Not at all!

Oh, they are not rocks, they are resting hippos.   Hippos are so big, but they can run really fast. Remember the elephants we saw on the boat safari?   Well, here they are again.

Elephants, adult and young

Elephants, adult and young

Those two babies are so cute.    Mom was having a little problem getting them to move quickly enough, so mom’s tusks bumped into the youngster’s rumps if they got too slow.   That seemed very effective.   Cape buffalo are also very big.

Cape Buffalo at rest

Cape Buffalo at rest

The humans did say they wanted to stop for big animals.   Alright, this is a new animal for me, Zeb the Duck.

Zeb's first zebra

Zeb’s first zebra

This is my first wild zebra.   We saw a small herd of them, and what are these animals near them?

Giraffes.

Giraffes.

Wow.   These tall guys are giraffe.   My first wild giraffe also.   Oh look.

Giraffes with young on the right

Giraffes with young on the right

To the right, near the center of the photo, there is a young giraffe.   Shorter, but certainly not short.   I don’t believe I have seen this one before, either.

Kudu. See those horns?

Kudu. See those horns?

This is a kudu.   Very impressive twisted horns.   Well, our game drive in Chobe National Park in Botswana has ended.   It was great, but we did not see the big cats.   No lions, no cheetahs, and no leopards.   But we did see so many magnificent animals.   I love safaris.   This was my first time in Africa, so my first safaris, but mom has been here a couple times and experienced safaris in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.   We both loved these safaris.   I have to tell you something amazing.   The other humans on our game drive were from Colorado and one couples lives less than 10 miles from our home in Colorado.   And we met on a safari in Botswana!   Mom and I are now in the car, entering Zimbabwe.    The other humans are staying in Zambia, so we are in separate cars.

Returning to Zimbabwe

Returning to Zimbabwe

Remember that the road from Botswana into Zimbabwe and then to Victoria Falls goes through a National Park.   These baboons are really wild and ran away.

Wild baboons along the road

Wild baboons along the road

Another day I will tell you about our encounter with another baboon; one that was not afraid of humans.   We are back in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe and it is dinner time.   The gentleman in our hotel office recommended a restaurant.   Here we are at Mama Africa Eating House.

Mama Africa Eating House

Mama Africa Eating House

At our table we loved the colorful placemats.

Great placemat. And peanuts and popcorn

Great placemat. And peanuts and popcorn

The peanuts and popcorn were delicious for snacking while our food was being prepared.   We ordered Nuku Nedovil.   That is a Shona dish of chicken and peanut butter with rice.  Yum!  I love chicken and I love peanut butter.   When we arrived we admired the paintings on what we thought was a storage area.

Great door decoration

Great door decoration

We soon learned that the doors come off and this is the area for the band.

Preparing for live entertainment

Preparing for live entertainment

Live music is great during and after dinner.   The food was delicious and the people were so nice.   I really liked Mama Africa.   When we returned to our hotel we certainly thanked the gentleman for his wonderful recommendation.

River Safari in Botswana’s Chobe Park with Zeb the Duck

I, Zeb the Duck, am going on a safari in Botswana.   This is a one day trip from Victoria Falls, so we will be back with more about Victoria Falls in a few days.  We are going to Chobe National Park and first we will cruise on the Chobe River.   George picks us up early in the morning and we drive about 70 kilometers to the Botswana border.   We get passports stamped because we are leaving Zimbabwe; go to the Botswana immigration station, get passports stamped to enter Botswana.   Driving into Botswana, we drive slowly through water in the road.   This is to wash our ties.   We get out of the vehicle and walk through water to wash our shoes.   Then Leonardo meets us and we go to Chobe Safari Lodge.

Chobe Safari Lodge

Chobe Safari Lodge

The lodge is beautiful.   I was so happy to wash my feathers here.   Look at the birds in the sinks.

Decorative sink in ladies room

Decorative sink in ladies room

I love this place!  Of course, we love the pool.

Nice pool

Nice pool

We will return here for a lunch buffet.   Yum!  I am on the boat and ready to go.

Ready for boat safari

Ready for boat safari

There are some very nice ladies from Sydney, Australia on our boat safari also.    This colorful bird must be our mascot.

Mascot for our boat?

Mascot for our boat?

He stays with us, leaves for a few minutes, then returns to our boat.   He is small and beautiful.   These mongoose seem to like us.

Mongoose

Mongoose

I like warthogs.   We saw many of them in Liwonde National Park in Malawi also.

Warthog

Warthog

Isn’t he wonderful?   There are many birds here also.   We admire the gray heron.

Gray Heron

Gray Heron

And, we recognize the fish eagles.

Fish Eagle

Fish Eagle

This is a Nile crocodile.

Nile Crocodile

Nile Crocodile

He is big and more green than gray.   I love his color.   This cape buffalo looks like he combed and parted his hair, but those are his horns.

Cape Buffalo

Cape Buffalo

They can be vicious, if they feel threatened.   I, Zeb the Duck, would never threaten them.   We are visitors in his territory.   We are on the Chobe River and in this portion of the river, one side is Botswana and the other side is Namibia.   This island was claimed by each country.   Eventually Botswana got the island and this flag of Botswana, on Sedudu Island shows everyone that this island is Botswana.

Flag of Botswana on Sedudu Island

Flag of Botswana on Sedudu Island

In Namibia, the island is known as Kasikili Island.   Elephants are so big and so magnificent.   Here are elephants and a small baby elephant.

Elephants of all sizes

Elephants of all sizes

I, Zeb the Duck, and the humans loved these elephants.   Don’t you?  This beautiful bird is the Lilac-Breasted Roller, the unofficial national bird of Botswana.

Botswana's Lilac-Breasted Roller

Botswana’s Lilac-Breasted Roller

Just as a reminder, I am on this boat, but like before, it is difficult to get me in photos with the animals.    I might fall into the river.   But here I am, in front of an elephant.

I see the elephant

I see the elephant and maybe he sees me.

The country of Namibia has a huge desert, but this small part of Namibia has these same animals.   This is a safari lodge in Namibia.

Namibia Safari Lodge

Namibia Safari Lodge

Love the chalets on stilts.   Maybe next time…?  Time to go back to the Chobe Safari Lodge for lunch.   Next time I will show you what I saw on the afternoon game drive.