Hallo from a lovely Inhassoro!!
Today is a rainy day, but for us farmers this is always welcome!
We heard from our neighbors that it’s also raining on the farm. Which make it easier for Eugene to relax because out of previous experience, we know when it is really raining on the farm, we do not go driving around on the farm. Read all about it in Rain Culture
We had two lovely sunny beach days, but getting here, as always, was a mission!
We left Mokopane, in South Africa before 4 am to meet friends on the Pafuri border. It was their first time traveling this far north in Mozambique, although it actually still is southern Mozambique, something that a lot of people get wrong. They are adventurers and nature lovers so we recommended that they travel from Pretoria to Inhassoro via the Pafuri, a road not for the faint hearted. Ideal for spending a day in the Kruger national park.
The Pafuri border post is open from 8am to 4pm which can be an inconvenience. The estimated travel time from the Pafuri border to Inhassoro or Vilanculos is about 10 – 14 hours, so one would like to cross the border before 8am.
Crossing the River
I must admit, I was nervous. Yes I get nervous a lot. If you were here and handled what we handle at times you would understand. I was very nervous because there was reports that the Limpopo River was in flood and that meant we would either have to take the famous ferry or turn around and go south and cross at the Giriyondo border, also situated in the Kruger national park. That was a far way to go. Eugene was in contact with the people at the ferry and they kept on saying we would be able to cross but the water was coming, we must hurry. We didn’t know how much time we had to cross the river. Eugene hoped that we had to use the ferry just to add to the adventure. He had to use the ferry before on a previous trip.
Pasport control and Customs
The border crossing at Pafuri border was hassle free and quick. The officials are friendly and were on our way before we knew it. We drove through the area called Crook’s corner. Crook’s corner is also filled with history and there is some nice tiger fishing spots, so people can sleep over at Dumela Wilderness Safari’s tented camp and work some fishing and sightseeing into their vacation.
The first 80km is always the hardest for me. The road from the border to the Limpopo River is rough, bad at times. Rocky, sandy, ditchy…. All the 4 x 4 road conditions in 80km to a river crossing. Seeing the magnificent Baobab trees along the way, always help. We had crossed the Limpopo at various places in the past. To Chicualacuala, at the power lines and a couple of other crossings that took us on other adventures and other beautiful virgin bushveld locations, but today we decided to go for the normal route because we did not know exactly what the Limpopo River had in store for us. At times one can see the river from the road and we saw water… Well, it isn’t really normal, because Google Maps can’t help you
Chicualuala is a small town bordering Zimbabwe. It is filled with nostalgia. A neat and clean little colonial town with a hotel filled with history.
What a disappointment and relieve it was when we reached the river because the Limpopo was still dry and the crossing was easy and uneventful.
Filling up at the filling station in Mapai is kind of a rip off if you want to pay in Rands… the exchange rate is very tight, so we always try to fill the fuel up at Thipese and drive to Mabote. There is a BCI bank in Mabote where you can exchange or draw money and the best bakery in Mozambique!!
The road from Mapai to the farm is scenic and various conditions. At the beginning of the rainy season, the road is still dry. During rainy season, lakes forms over the road and you need to search for roads around the lakes. Always an adventure!
We reached the farm at around 6pm and was glad we didn’t have to drive all the way to Inhassoro. It was a welcome break! Remeber to never pack liquids in a trailer when driving this road.