Sustenance on Safari


Tina Kennedy


On a recent trip to Hoanib Skeleton Coast and Serra Cafema in Namibia, we were treated to some truly wonderful cuisine! While the fruits of extensive chef training, menu planning and redefining the food experience were very evident, I think what makes it all the more impressive is considering where you are! We operate camps in some of the more remote and seemingly inhospitable environments, and yet you are presented with the most divine berry sorbet when it is a toasty 36 degrees C outside, or a chilled glass of bubbly on arrival at the Hartmann’s Valley airstrip – more than an hour’s drive from camp over tough terrain.


When you consider the vast distances that need to be travelled by road or air, and the challenge of keeping things cold in a desert environment, the wonderful dishes we had were indicative of how the Operations teams more than rise to the challenge. Choose your flavour – vanilla or caramel ice-cream or the sinful spoil of a frozen chocolate and peanut butter cup! Cleanse the palate with peach or basil and lime sorbet. Can we offer you a lovely chilled sauvignon blanc or rose with your lunch on the deck?

We also had some of the most delicious “non-meat” meals I’ve ever had. I hesitate to use the word vegetarian as for some it may have negative connotations but the overriding sense was one of eating tasty, yet healthy and “planet-friendly” dishes.


A divine chickpea curry and probably the best burger I have ever tasted – made of lentils on homemade buns with a zingy salsa. At Hoanib Skeleton Coast, the enterprising maintenance manager has started a small vegetable garden.


The beetroot are thriving so we were treated to the results in a lovely beetroot and feta salad, with fresh leaves in the salads from his rocket and lettuce beds! Lunches were light with wraps and beautiful salads….even when picnicking on the beach where the salad came in a jar.

Travelling on safari is not always easy on the waistline – especially with the treats lined up at tea-time…lemon drizzle cake, chocolate iced doughnuts, carrot cake, little savoury pies and quiches, Breakfast too – with their choice of warm oats, cereals, fresh fruits, cold meats, pastries or toast AND a hot option of flapjacks, traditional eggs and bacon or omelettes.


However, all is forgiven as you are on holiday after all! Plus the rush of adrenalin when sighting lions or elephants in this unique environment or the physical effort required on a quad-bike excursion exploring the Kunene region, melts all those calories away…

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