After consecutive stays in Zambia and Zimbabwe in very modest accommodations, I was looking forward to a room with air and a comfortable bed. My wife stumbled upon The Old House Bed and Breakfast and though still pricey for Botswana at about $90/night, it proved to be a welcome respite.
The Drive to Kasane, Botswana
A short note on how we traveled from Victoria Falls the 70km distance to Kasane, Botswana. It was 65km to the border and we negotiated down to $40 to hire a cab to bring us to the border – I tend to think he got the better end of the deal, but it was less than half the starting offer.
The drive was through game country and we sighted a few antelopes, elephants, and giraffes, but no lions or leopards.
At one point we were stopped by police officers who were clearly looking for a bribe. They closely scrutinized our driver’s license and grilled him with several questions (this was not in English). He was used to the game, answered everything, and after about five minutes we were allowed to continued. He complained that the police are always trying to find ways to extort.
At the border crossing we were quickly stamped out of Zimbabwe but then had to walk about 750 meters through a no-man’s land to the Botswana border crossing. Our cab drive helped us with our luggage and bid us adieu as we finally reached the Kasane Border Station.
Entry Into Botswana
The immigration process was quick and there is no fee or visa needed for entry into Botswana for U.S. and German passports.
As we passed customs (a group of ladies sitting around gabbing) we noticed there were no cabs at this lonely border post and town was about 7km away. We asked one of the ladies if they would be willing to call a cab, and one called a friend who arrived about 10 minutes later to take us into town. Kasane is small and he knew exactly where the Old House was. Cost was about $10 for the cab.
Old House Room
Kasane seemed like a safe enough town, but there was a security guard on duty at the guest house who checked us off a list before inviting us in. A young man in safari uniform enthusiastically welcomed us and escorted us to our room, which featured a small terrace with table and chairs outside and a large, square, single-room with adjoining bathroom.
Oh to have air conditioning again!
The room was comfortable, the bed was great, the refrigerator was stocked with water and unlimited complimentary coffee and tea was available as well. Power ports were plentiful and strategically placed throughout the room, including smartly on the floor next to the couch. The internet was not great, but functional. It was nice just to be able to relax for a few hours before dinner, though we did walk down to the inn’s peer to catch the sunset.
Old House Dining
We took our meals for the next couple days in the hotel restaurant. Dinner was not included in the room rate, but prices were not exorbitant. I had pizza the first night (the menu was international) and it was so appreciated – with good cheese and a crisp crust. The following night I had chicken Nando’s style (with spicy peri-peri sauce) with a baked potato, yams, and creamed spinach. Heidi had a salad with salmon and an egg. Complimentary chilled and filtered tap water is offered, which is nice in the intense heat of the morning and evening.
Breakfast was partially buffet and partially a la carte, with cold items self-served and hot dishes ordered from the kitchen. Both mornings I had an omelet “with everything” and found it to be tasty. Heidi had boiled eggs and a small helping of scrambled eggs. The homemade blueberry muffins were exceptional, while the coffee was mediocre.
Old House Activities
We worked with the hotel to arrange a visit to Impalia Island in Namibia, the next section of this trip report. They arranged everything and added the charge to the room.
Kasane Airport is about 15 minutes away from the hotel and though the hotel does not offer a shuttle service, they summoned an honest cab driver who took us to the airport for $10. Check-out was a breeze and with the exception of tepid internet speeds, the stay was a great one. The hotel offers safari packages to nearby Chobe National Park, but we were safaried-out, even without having seen a leopard.
Read More of My Month in Africa Trip Report
Introduction: A Month in Africa
Review: Houston to Lagos in United Airlines 787 Business
Transit in Lagos: Bribing My Way Out
Review: Oasis Lounge Lagos (LOS)
Review: Gabfol Lounge Lagos (LOS)
Lagos to Johannesburg in South African Airways Economy Class
Setting Up Shop in Pretoria
How to Obtain a South African Police Report
A Safari in Kruger National Park
Review: Nkambeni Safari Camp
Driving Through Swaziland
Review: Mountain Inn Mbabane, Swaziland
Review: Johannesburg to Livingstone, Zambia in British Airways Comair Economy Class
Our Humble Abode in Zambia
Victoria Falls from the Zambian Side
From Hate to Great: Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe