Traveling While Plant Based and Gluten-Free in Namibia
By Molly Patrick
Apr 16, 2022,
Most of the lodges we stayed at only had a few guests. Namibia doesn’t get as many tourists as some of its neighbors, like Botswana or South Africa. COVID-19 has also hit tourism hard.
Let’s talk about the most popular activity on an afternoon safari drive, the sundowner. This is when the safari stops and the alcohol begins. The guide will find a safe place away from wild animals (knock on wood) and set up a proper table with a tablecloth. Then out come the beverages and snacks. Lots of alcohol, sodas, sparkling water, and things like nuts, cucumber rounds, jerky (aka Biltong), chips, and dried fruit.
Then you drink and snack until sunset is over. Here’s the thing about sunsets in southern Africa, though. They last FOREVER. I’m not exaggerating when I tell you it took three hours! Maui sunsets last approximately 15 minutes and I was not expecting marathon sunsets. They’re are jaw-droppingly gorgeous and an amazing thing to experience in the bush (ew, not that kind of bush), but an extended happy hour every evening can be a lot, especially if you don’t drink. After a couple of hours watching people get drunk and loud, I’m kind of over it.
Our first safari happened to be with three fellas from South Africa who were there to party. I was soaking in the beauty and they were soaking in the gin. I was mesmerized by the zebras and they were mesmerized by themselves. I was in awe of the colors and textures of the desert and they were in awe of how much they loved drinking. I was annoyed until I checked myself. Molly, I told myself, this is part of the experience. We can plan our adventures, but we can’t control them. So, I let it go and enjoyed the epically long sunset instead.
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