Etosha National Park, wildlife galore

Elephants bathing in the waterhole, surrounded by giraffes, oryx, kudu and impala. This is Africa. Moreso, this is Etosha National Park, filled with wildlife around waterholes and hiding away in the desert planes.

Waterhole in Etosha National Park

Waterhole in Etosha National Park

The animals look so at peace and relaxed, no lions or other predators nearby the first few waterholes so there was nothing for them to worry about, except for cooling down from the hot Namibian sun.

Animals in a waterhole

Animals in a waterhole

Oryx and giraffe watching each other

Oryx and giraffe watching each other

Elephant in a waterhole

Elephant in a waterhole

Elephant drinking in a waterhole

Elephant drinking in a waterhole

Giraffe drinking in waterhole

Giraffe drinking in waterhole

Giraffe drinking

One of two ways a giraffe drinks, either spread the legs or bend them

A late afternoon game drive kicked off with zebra and giraffe roaming the lands, beautiful oryx, somewhat ugly wildebeest and loads of springbok and impala. We even spotted a black rhino.

Wilderbeast

Wilderbeast

Three heads of zebra

Three heads of zebra

Stunning Oryx

Stunning Oryx

Springbok traffic jam

Springbok traffic jam

Impala

Impala

Hartebeest

Hartebeest

Giraffe in Etosha National Park

Giraffe in Etosha National Park

Black Rhino

Black Rhino

The highlight game towards the end of the game drive: a large pride of young lions. Around 20 in total! They were walking slowly over from a tree to an area 100m or so from our truck. Each one slumped down and went to sleep – one on top of the other, creating a very close-nit pile of young lions. Unfortunately there was no big male present, but they were still a stunning sight to see.

Pride of lions

Pride of lions

The breading herd of elephants came the next day at another waterhole. To see the young and old elephants all together was incredible. I’d seen a breeding heard once before in Uganda, but this group was much closer and in the open drinking, bathing and running around.

Breeding herd of elephants

Breeding herd of elephants

Breeding herd of elephants

Breeding herd of elephants

Baby Elephant from the breeding herd

Baby Elephant from the breeding herd

Breeding herd of elephants running

Breeding herd of elephants running

White rhinos were also on the agenda and even a male lion that cleared a waterhole of giraffe once they saw him coming. He drank and gave a few roars to find his family and then proceeded to sleep under a tree.

Giraffes watching a lion coming into the waterhole

Giraffes watching a lion coming into the waterhole

Lion calling out for its pride

Lion calling out for its pride

Lion drinking

Lion drinking

Etosha was an incredible park and our last campsite was the best yet. It had a flood-lit waterhole just a minute from our tents. As the sun went down the fun began. Over 30 elephant came to the waterhole to bathe and drink. It was incredible. Giraffe spread their legs at the waters edge to drink alongside the elephant. After dinner was rhino time. A few elephants were still there, but the rhinos wandered over first a single one that decided to walk right into the water to turn his bottom half a striking darker colour to his top half. The two toned rhino then moved to the side as a family of three (including a little rhino) walked in for a drink. Incredible sight to say the least.

zebra-running-into-water-etosha-national-park-copyright-ngaire-ackerley-2014

Zebra in Etosha National Park

Zebra in Etosha National Park

White Rhino

White Rhino

No leopards were spotted, but the amount of lions and elephants meant none of us were too concerned about not seeing a leopard.

Jumping as you do in Etosha National Park

Jumping as you do in Etosha National Park

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