Namibia Travel Destination: Mudumu Park
Escape the hustle and bustle and unwind at a camping spot far away from the maddening crowd in Mudumu National Park. An independent traveler and stocked up on your own reserves of water, food and fuel you can make yourself at home in the solitude of the Nakwata Camp. Here you could go days without seeing another soul except for the bustling riverine nature around you and abundant wildlife teeming nearby your sandy beach camp.
Watch the sky turn red behind the perfect silhouette of the Jackalberry trees reflected on the water. Let the croaking bell frogs, chirping crickets and occasional grunt of a hippopotamus lull you to sleep as you look for the Southern Cross star constellation in a clear Namibian night’s sky.
Situated on the western side of the eastern part of the Caprivi Strip, about 40km south of the village of Kangola, the Mudumu Park is a lush water land with a settling blend of papyrus swamps, woodland, riverine forests and muddy marshes. The bounteous Kwando River borders the park with Botswana on the west side and apart from that has very few boundaries providing a crucial passage for the migration of animals every year.
Succeeding in conservation efforts, the park is a model for cooperation with its neighbors to manage common resources. Conservation has been crucial in the rescuing of the Mudumu Park due to it being a huge target in the past for poachers and they have successfully reintroduced the eland (Africa’s largest antelope), the giraffe and the rare sable antelope back into the park. A main locale for elephants, you are bound to see them moving in big herds through the park or frolicking in the water at midday.
Explore the dense Mopane woodlands which create a favorable habitat for the elephants as well as zebra, impala, kudus, warthogs and wildebeest. The Mudumu Molapo fossilized river makes for an intriguing exploration, now abandoned by water due to river channel change years ago. You can sees trees growing out of termite mounds and the environment is mounted on a flat white bed of powdery sand. On a lucky day you might spot a lion or cheetah in the area or even a pack of wild dogs which have recently made their way into the park.
Inside the park you can also stay at the private Lianshulu Lodge or Lianshulu Bush Lodge overlooking the Kwando River. These provide a great spot to relax, have a drink, try out the restaurant or take a dip in the pool. Along the river, freshwater angling is a popular past time with plenty of tiger fish and tilapia to be caught. You can go out on a boat trip and look out for turtles and otters in the water as well as the occasional crocodile.
Birdwatching is also a gratifying experience in these parts as almost seventy percent of the bird species in Namibia have been spotted in the Mudumu Park. Look out for the African fish eagle, African skimmer and western-banded snake eagle. On the river look out for cranes or the African Jacana jumping on lily leaves on the water.
Situated in this wet, wild, unknown part of Namibia the Mudumu Park is a high risk malaria zone. Interestingly enough, the locals have inbuilt tolerance to it but there is nothing to fear as long as you take the necessary precautions before embarking on your journey.
This water wonderland is still quite a secret to the unaware world and provides an authentic escape to the great outdoors and a break from the everyday mundane.