Matabeleland South Province

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9 travelers at this place

  • Day336

    47 - 48: Matopos Nationalpark

    July 5, 2019 in Zimbabwe ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    Mer händ ehn wunderschöne Tag ih de Umgäbig vom Matopos Nationalpark verbrocht. Mer sind de ganzi Tag mit ehmene sehr liebe Guide wo ehn mega schöni erzähl-Stimm hed unterwägs gsii und händ so viel verschiednigi Sache gseh.

    Am Morge simmer im Park sälber umegloffe und händ Nashörner gsuecht. Mer sind denn au mega nöch ah die Tier häre cho und es esch beidruckend gsii sie z beobachte. Zuesätzlich simmer informiert worde wie bedroht d Nashörner sind und was mer nach de Meinig vo üsem Guide mösst mache zum sie schütze.

    Denn simmer zum Zmittagsplatz gfahre wo üs Salat und Brot und chli Ufschnitt zur Verfüegig gstande sind :). Nach ehm Mittag simmer zu ehnere Höhli ufe gloffe wo mer Malereie vo de Buschlüüt gfonde hed. Üse Guide hed üs det au öber sini Begägnig mit dene Mänsche, wo bis Höt ih dere trochnige und läbensunfründliche Umgäbig läbed, verzellt.

    Ganz am Schluss simmer de zu ehmene Ussichtspunkt gfahre und gloffe zum de Sunneuntergang luege. Begleited vo no meh Gschichte und ehmene chalte Bier esch das de perfekti Abschluss vo ehmene wunderschöne Tag gsii.
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  • Day23


    May 27, 2017 in Zimbabwe ⋅ ☀️ 30 °C

    Nach dem Besuch der Viktoriafälle auf der Zimbabwe Seite (mehr Panorama, weniger Rauschen, aber trozdem klatschnass) ging es 12 Stunden per Truck weiter nach Bulawayo, eine richtig nette Stadt in Zimbabwe. Das Land ist politisch immer noch sehr geplagt, die Menschen sehr arm, dennoch voller Lebensfreude und Aufbruchstimmung.
    Leider bedeutet diese Kombination nicht nur Gutes. Die Nashörner sind in Afika mittlerweile so gut wie ausgerottet (in Asien ist das bereit komplett der Fall) und die Stimmen hier gehen davon aus, dass das in 3 Jahren auch hier der Fall sein wird. Da das Horn als vermeintliches Super-Viagra bis zu $400.000 auf dem Markt erzielt halbiert sich die Population im Grunde jährlich. Hier im Matopo Park versuchen 50 Ranger rund um die Uhr die verbliebenen 50 Nashörner mit ihren Gewehren zu schützen. Leider haben die Wilderer mit ihren Helis und Nachtsichtgeräten den Vorteil auf ihrer Seite. Würde der Handel mit den Hörnern legalisiert, wäre das Problem offenbar gelöst. So aber geht das Schlachten für den Schwarzmarkt munter weiter. Eine echte Schande eben. Vor unseren Augen.
    Freudigerweise sind noch ca 60 Nashörner in Matopo übrig geblieben und werden hier so gut es geht geschützt. Es war ein tolles Erlebnis ihren Spuren im Busch zu folgen und ihnen trotz Nachwuchses bis auf wenige Meter Nahe zu kommen. Sanfte Riesen - wenn man hektische Bewegungen vermeidet und gedeckte Kleidung trägt.
    Ehemals war Zimbabwe Südrhodesien (Zambia der nördliche Teil). Cecil Rhodes' (heute umstrittener Namensgeber und "Besitzer" / Ausbeuter der Region) Grab liegt sehr pathetisch auf einem der Hügel im Nationalpark mit 360 Grad Blick.
    Ich hätte gerne mehr Zeit als nur 5 Tage in Zimbabwe gehabt, um mehr zu sehen und über das Land zu lernen. Gerade politisch ist auch mit dem 92 Jahre alten Herrn Mugabe vieles gerade im Umbruch...
    Ansonsten gab es auch Höhlenmalereien der San zu bestaunen, welche unglaublich präzise gestaltet sind.
    Zugegebenermaßen war der Sonnenuntergang hier besonders schön.
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  • Day50

    Motopo National Park

    January 13, 2020 in Zimbabwe ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    I got up for yet another early start at 5.30am. The sky was clear blue and the sun was rising on a pink horizon.We had welcome beans on toast for breakfast and I packed a bag to take on the overnight train later in the day.
    We boarded our covered safari vehicle with our guide, Andy, whi was an interesting character and his daughter, who was very knowledgeable. We headed out through a wealthy residential area towards Motobo National park. Along the way, Andy and his daughter stopped to pick up a beautiful green chameleon which we were able to handle, its sharp tiny claws clasping my hand as I held it up. They also stopped to pick up a small leopard tortoise from the road. They were both very keen to give us lots of information about the local wildlife. We passed through the gates of the park and immediately into the most stunning countryside with spectacular granite outcrops and tree filled scrubland. As we turned every corner we were presented with another incredible view. We turned down a small road looking for wild rhino. Andy stopped a fee times to assess the rhino tracks and was clearly a very skilled tracker. At a certain point we stopped where Andy had previously scouted a wild rhino the previous day. We walked through beautiful scrubland with great views of the surrounding rock outcrops. Along the way Andy and his daughter showed us different aspects of the local nature such as frog spawn in creamy lather that drops the spawn into the water when they're ready to become tadpoles. Andy also showed us where rhinos had wallowed I'm a waterhole the precious day. Andy said that he was determined to find us wild rhino and sure enough after about hour's walking he pulled out his binoculars and spotted four wild rhinos among trees on the distance. He led us in to approach the wild rhino. Within seconds we were within about 20 metres of four wild rhinos, three adults and one infant. We watched them and took photos. They were aware of our presence and one rhino was a bit skittish and came towards us momentarily, but then they seemed to relax in our presence. We were then able to walk around and get even closer to them within about 8 metres. It was almost unbelievable to get this close to such a wild animal. We were even able to have our photos taken with the rhinos behind us. It was such a privilege to spend over half an hour in close proximity to the rhinos. They became so relaxed with our presence that theu even laid down to sleep. All too soon ot was time to leave the wild rhinos and return to the safari vehicle. On the way back the clouds thickened and we all got soaked in a heavy diownpour. Andy ran on ahead to pick up the vehicle and then came and picked us up from the roadside, sheltering under a tree. We continued on through the wondrous scenery to a small covered hexagonal concrete building with a thatched roof for some lunch Andy and his daughter prepared a wonderful and tasty lunch for us which included one of the best bean salads I've ever tasted. Andy talked a lot about his views on the political situation in Zimbabwe and his occasional annoyance at outsiders telling him how he and his colleagues should conserve wildlife in the park. His daughter had previously talked to us at the park gates of the complexities of local people being moved out of the park when it was created, the extreme poverty that drives poaching of rhinos in the park, the huge prices fetched in China and the far east for rhino horm, how the park staff have to tranquilise and cut off the rhinos horns to prevent them from being poached and how there is a 'shoot to kill' policy for anyone caught trying to poach rhino in the park. Andy's views were strident. He clearly heals a passion for and a great knowledge of the wildlife in the park, but also believes that controlled hunting is an important way to make income for conservation which I would disagree with..
    After lunch, we boarded our vehicle again and headed for Nswatugi cave where there are ancient cave paintings made by the San people. We parked and climbed up a trail which took us over a very large granite outcrop and up into a large cleft in the granite Up on the smooth granite walls were dozens of paintings in red ochre of many types of animal and figures in strange poses. A line of figures seemed to be sitting cross legged above what appeared to be an image of a lion that used the natural rock to partially delineate its features. Another group of figures seemed to seated in a circle around an indecipherable central object.. Therr were also several images of abstract dots and ladder shapes. These images are thought to have been created by many generations of nomadic hunters over thousands of years and the whole rock surface was packed with images. Andy informed us that a burial of a woman was found near the apex of the cleft during excavations. This was a very impressive series of cable paintings and apparently there are hundreds of such sites across the park, some of them being harder to reach but even more impressive than the one we saw.
    As we left the cave paintings, Andy suggested that we climb to the top of this great granite outcrop for the views over the surrounding countryside. The 360 degree views were indeed breathtaking and we spent some time at the tio taking photos. We then returned to our vehicle and headed for the Cecil Rhodes memorial which was the next place on our itinerary. We parked up and walked up another beautiful granite outcrop to the high point which had amazing views over the surrounding countryside. At the top there were huge rounded granite boulders naturally arranged in almost a circle. It felt like a special place and according to Andy's daughter was originally called Malindidzimu by the local people which means 'Place of the Kindred Spirits' and this felt like such an ancestral place. Cecil Rhodes' grave was drilled into the rock right in the centre which felt like a colonial arrogance to match that of the man himself. Hundreds of tame rainbow lizards skitted across the sun baked rock surface. Apparently, there were also elephant shrews jumping around which I didn't see. We spent some time surveying the magnificent views when another heavy rain shower drove us back to the vehicle.
    We drove back out through the park stopping for wildlife along the way. We saw small antelope with specialised hooves for climbing in the sheer, rocky terrain of the park. We also saw some delightful small ringed mongoose.
    We returned to our campsite, Burkes' Paradise, and had to get our packed belongings quickly to get back on the vehicle to drive to the train station to catch an overnight train to Victoria Falls. We also ordered pizzas for the train and by the time they arrived we only had 5 minutes to catch the 7.30pm train. We had to chase all the way up one platform and back down another to get on the train. There then ensued long negotiations in the sleeping compartments we had booked with local people who had sat in them. It was stressful situation for our tour leader, Jemma. Eventually, we all had a sleeping space and I could eat some of my pizza for which I had little appetite. The train seemed to be about 60 years old and was absolutely filthy. I tried to settle down to an uncomfortable night sleeping in my clothes with occasional trips to a dirty metal toilet where you could see through the hole to the tracks below. The caeriage door was also flapping dangerously open throughout the night. The stars were out in the night sky as the train slowly passed by the dark silhouettes of the African countryside but the scene brought me little cheer on this occasion.

    Film - The Conservationists Cry
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Matabeleland South Province, Matabeleland Méridional