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Day 17

Saturday 20 August 2005
Cresta Thaparma Hotel, Francistown - Royal Livingstone Hotel, Livingstone

Today we continued on our quest north again on fast asphalt roads. Although an easy run was expected, we still headed off early to avoid long delays at the Zambian border.

The route today started across flat landscape, which is a mix of cultivated land and wild bush, with the odd group of elephants lulling by the roadside every now and then.

After driving through Nata we arrived at the Bostwana border post at Kazungula. This border post, like Pontdrif the day before, led us to a river that needed to be crossed. Unlike the Limpopo, however, the Zambezi, was anything but dry.

The only way to cross is by the Kazungula Ferry, which was a most memorable experience! As we entered the ferry area, we realised that it would take longer than anticipated. Not only was there a huge queue of cars and 4x4s, but there was also a big queue of sixteen wheeler lorries.

The ferry itself had a capacity of 10-14 cars or four cars and a single lorry! Unfortunately, the ferry master would load one truck every journey, which took approximately 8 minutes each way. Luckily some sweet talking and friendly banter persuaded the ferry master to let our event vehicles pass quickly in a couple of loads, leaving the lorry drivers a little vexed.

On the other side, the Zambian border was hectic and very uninviting, but we all had the superb Royal Livingstone Hotel to look forward to, in it's beautiful setting beside the Zambezi as it rushes towards the magical Victoria Falls.

That afternoon, after visiting the Falls, which even at five per cent of their normal water delivery were unforgettable, we all relaxed on the hotel sun deck and watched the glorious sunset, before being treated to some African music and dancing at a traditional outside Boma dinner.